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Old 01-23-2019, 09:27 PM
penultima thule is offline
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 3,396
Originally Posted by Cumbrian View Post

Cheers for this - interesting to get a perspective on this. The one thing that seems to be implied in amongst all this is that Warner isn't coming back when his ban is up but Smith is? Seems to me like Australia need both of them, unless one of these guys can stick.

Speaking as someone who isn't looking at the news on this daily or exposed to the Australian media, Warner seems like the one who is coming out of this best - just shut his mouth and got on - Handscomb and Smith on the other hand have been in the news chucking everyone under the bus.
Point of order: Bancroft rather than Hanscomb.

Attended an interesting forum recently where the speakers were Gideon Haig and Peter Lalor. An excellent session.

Warner is radioactive. The question is whether the half-life is longer than a Test career.
Not being one of life’s thinner planks, you get him alone with a microphone for a tell-all and he’ll be sitting in a pile of compost up to his neck with a shit-eating grin.

Warner took the role as “shiner of the ball” at mid-on for the team on his own volition several seasons ago and other teams were closely watching what he was doing. SA even got the TV broadcaster to have a camera focused/dedicated to him as well as their stump mike shenanigans. Not that he was likely doing anything other Test teams weren’t, and still are, as part of their ball management routine. The atmospherics of that series were getting rather volatile as you might recall. Australia had a poor session (playing the #1 team, on their own decks, at the end of a long season so fairly understandable) and one of the CA executives at the ground took it upon himself to do some motivational work, went into the rooms and berated the players including the line “We don’t play you XXXXXX to play, we pay you to win.” There was a very handy bonus on offer if Australia won the series and took the mantle of #1 in the Test rankings. A plausible scenario is that Warner who is hocked to the gunnels on property in a falling market and lifestyle of the “rich and famous” saw a serious cash-flow problem in the offing. His relationship with the CA Board is way on the nose because he was a leader in the contract dispute. And most of the CA board are people who genuinely deserve large non-biological things shoved up their fundamental orifices. So he picked a susceptible mark to do his dirty work. Have no idea who else was in the know but it wasn’t the bowlers and personally believe it wasn’t Lehmann.

Yes, if Warner shuts up, buries his bogan attitude and scores runs he’ll get back in. But without the bogan attitude he’s not David Warner and it’s a case of leopards and spots. If he reverts to type his boorish, abusive form in a Test the crowd will start throwing stuff at him. A whole bank of CA sponsors (both new and those who didn’t leave in the ball tampering aftermath) have told CA their money walks if they pick him. Based on a show of hands at the Haig/Lalor forum, less than a quarter of the “informed” public want him back at any price. 95% of the same forum would welcome back Smith as soon as his availability and form allows.

The issue for Smith is there isn't much else to his whole life but cricket.
I don’t think “breakdown” or “manic depression” is the correct terminology but he made a ad for Vodaphone, donating his fee to charity on the topic.
There’s been fairly mixed response to the “Gutsy is Calling” ad but which might have sent a wonky signal to the selectors thinking of rushing him back. He’s had an elbow operation for an injury he took into the Bangladesh League and flared over there and there isn’t much first class cricket between the finish of rehab and the Ashes tour.

Bancroft is a twerp and will see out his career in the BBL with the Scorchers or WA cricket in that cloistered culture of “WA boys can do no wrong”. Yes the current alpha Waussie (Langer) would like him back but that ain’t going to happen. The publicity around his initial Test selection as opener because mentally he was a hard nut that wasn’t fazed under pressure. IMHO his batting didn’t back up the assertion and it turns out off-field he’s a blancmange.

The other point is that the Australian team is absolutely convinced that SA have found a mechanism to rough the ball in a clinical fashion. Seems that the deed is done using the keepers gloves where part of the dimpled rubber palms might be of a different construction say one of the thumbs is vulcanised or like, making it able to abrade one side of the ball in a controlled but surreptitious manner.

Last edited by penultima thule; 01-23-2019 at 09:28 PM. Reason: spillung