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  #551  
Old 09-15-2019, 07:58 AM
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Leach starts well with a nice bit of flight to draw Labruschagne well forward, slightly over balances and lifts his back foot, enough turn to beat the bat and Bairstow has the bails off.

Neatly done.
  #552  
Old 09-15-2019, 10:30 AM
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Leach starts well with a nice bit of flight to draw Labruschagne well forward, slightly over balances and lifts his back foot, enough turn to beat the bat and Bairstow has the bails off.

Neatly done.
It was. I must say, I do love a stumping.

Smith gone for 23, and Marsh just dismissed by Joe Root, fercrissakes. It will all be over soon.

I must say, it's been a very entertaining series, despite (because of?) the massive flaws in both batting lineups. As I said yesterday, a drawn series is probably a fair result, and at least the Australians get to retain the Ashes.
  #553  
Old 09-15-2019, 04:59 PM
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It was. I must say, I do love a stumping.

Smith gone for 23, and Marsh just dismissed by Joe Root, fercrissakes. It will all be over soon.

I must say, it's been a very entertaining series, despite (because of?) the massive flaws in both batting lineups. As I said yesterday, a drawn series is probably a fair result, and at least the Australians get to retain the Ashes.
According to Sir Geoffrey in the highlights, the later stumping of Wade was more like a run out, he was so far down the pitch.

I agree that England deserved to draw the series, but also Australia deserved to retain the urn. They were on top more than England, and Smith's runs plus some top class pace bowling was enough to get them over the line. You have to think that they would have put up more of a fight in this game were the Ashes still on the line.

Any comments about my putative England team from a few posts ago still welcome, in particular why Ballance doesn't seem to be in the frame for a recall.
  #554  
Old 09-15-2019, 06:35 PM
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Think of the discarded Australian opener Joe Burns. 16 Tests, four centuries and averages 40. Marcus Harris 9 Tests 2 50's and averages 24.
  #555  
Old 09-15-2019, 06:57 PM
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Congratulations to Australia for deservedly retaining the Ashes, and kudos to England for getting up off the floor and squaring the series.

But while picking apart dodgy batting techniques and dubious selections is fun, I don't think everyone here is giving Steve Smith enough credit. He scored 774 in 7 innings - to put that in context, Stokes got 440 runs at 55 and Labuschagne 350 at 50, so Smith was just about as good as the next two players - on either side - put together (and it's a fair drop after those three - no other England player averaged 40 and no other Australian averaged 35). Put another way, if he hadn't been hit on the head he would only have to have scored another 200 runs in potentially 3 innings to beat Bradman's all-time record for runs in a Test series.

Take Smith away from Australia, and they could easily have lost 4-1.

Incidentally, somewhere in the archives (couldn't find it, but I remember seeing it) is a newspaper pundit's comment on crazy selection decisions, around the end of the 2010-2011 Ashes. Something along the lines of "whoever thought Steve Smith was a Test-class Number 6?"
  #556  
Old 09-16-2019, 02:59 AM
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Steve Smith was definitely the difference between the sides,and nobody else was really in the running for the Australian man of the series.

England batting starting to look better at the end of that series. I don't think Ballance will come back, nor do I think Foakes will come in for Bairstow, but Burns is selling in at the top of the order and Denly has at least shown he's playing the correct game. It's still not brilliant, but these are the guys we've got and I suspect we'll be sticking with them for the winter tours.
  #557  
Old 09-16-2019, 04:52 AM
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My issue is that even if Burns and Denly settle as a decent opening pair (which would be a cracking result and a real positive outcome from this series), if that leaves Root at 3 and Stokes at 4, then what? Bairstow 5, Buttler 6, then the bowlers (some of whom - Curran, Woakes, Archer - can be handy with the bat, but they're not quite Test-class all-rounders yet). Basically everyone is batting one position too high in the order (and Bairstow has no form whatsoever at the moment, apart from burning reviews).

Cicero, I've never heard of this Joe Burns chap - why was he discarded, then?

merrick, you're right about Smith, but as someone else pointed out upthread, if you're going to remove him from the equation, you should also remove Stokes, which means England lose at Headingley. My brief assessment of the series is that England were poor at Edgbaston and deserved to lose, were on top of most of the game at Lord's and would have won given another session, would have lost the game at Headingley 99 times out of 100, came closer to a battling draw at Old Trafford than they have done for several years but ultimately deserved to lose, and were good value for their win at the Oval. So I think you could say a 'fair' result from the series would be 3-2 to Australia. But that includes the full-point 'swing' at Headingley, which shows that England weren't all that far away from an upset, even if it wasn't in a 'reproducible' fashion. Put another way, if the 1877 series had ended with this outcome, no-one would have been talking about the death of English cricket.

I also wonder, given the manner of his dismissals at the Oval, whether Smith might have got out to Anderson had the latter been playing? I mean, we saw how lost Australia were without Smith, it's easy to forget that we were missing an all-time great for almost the entire series (and in fact his presence in the first Test, through no fault of his own, was counter-productive). On such small margins can series turn.
  #558  
Old 09-16-2019, 11:41 AM
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merrick, you're right about Smith, but as someone else pointed out upthread, if you're going to remove him from the equation, you should also remove Stokes, which means England lose at Headingley. My brief assessment of the series is that England were poor at Edgbaston and deserved to lose, were on top of most of the game at Lord's and would have won given another session, would have lost the game at Headingley 99 times out of 100, came closer to a battling draw at Old Trafford than they have done for several years but ultimately deserved to lose, and were good value for their win at the Oval. So I think you could say a 'fair' result from the series would be 3-2 to Australia. But that includes the full-point 'swing' at Headingley, which shows that England weren't all that far away from an upset, even if it wasn't in a 'reproducible' fashion.
I think this is about right, although I'd probably score it 2 to 1.5, rather than 3 to 2. Aussies definitely didn't deserve to win 3, and England probably didn't quite deserve to win 2. I still think a drawn series was, overall, a fair result.
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I also wonder, given the manner of his dismissals at the Oval, whether Smith might have got out to Anderson had the latter been playing? I mean, we saw how lost Australia were without Smith, it's easy to forget that we were missing an all-time great for almost the entire series (and in fact his presence in the first Test, through no fault of his own, was counter-productive). On such small margins can series turn.
Again, I think this is right, but with a caveat.

Jimmy Anderson has been a historically great bowler, and has served England fantastically for 15 years. But when you're a 37-year-old fast bowler who has played almost 150 tests and almost 200 one-day internationals (not to mention another 500 first class and List A matches), some physical deterioration is inevitable, and the chances of injury or chronic pain increase with every passing match. I guess what I'm saying here is that, if you're playing someone this old, with this many miles on the clock, then he's going to break down sometime, and that's a risk you take by keeping him in the side. This is not intended as a criticism of the selectors; I'd have put him in there too. It's simply an observation that Anderson's injury can't be put down merely to "bad luck"; this outcome was predictable, even if the exact timing of it could not be accurately forecast.

Last edited by mhendo; 09-16-2019 at 11:42 AM.
  #559  
Old 09-16-2019, 12:19 PM
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Yes, very true, and the same goes for Broad of course. Without him as well, our attack could have been rather toothless. Certainly Warner would have likely doubled his average . That's why I backtracked on the side I posted earlier: relying on Anderson, Broad, Stokes, and Archer as your four fast bowlers would be trusting way too much to luck.

There is also the fact that your sole plan to get someone out can't revolve around a particular bowler being available all the time. And it's all hypothetical anyway - perhaps Smith would have swatted Anderson around just as easily as he did the others.
  #560  
Old 09-16-2019, 05:54 PM
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Cicero, I've never heard of this Joe Burns chap - why was he discarded, then?
Burns

Why was he discarded- who knows? No world beater but better than we have.;
  #561  
Old 09-17-2019, 07:14 AM
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Question to the SDMB cricket association:

Was posed by the Grade Cricketer podcast but worthy of consideration.
“Has any bowler in a Test produced a spell of of reverse swing since Sandpapergate?”

Last edited by penultima thule; 09-17-2019 at 07:16 AM.
  #562  
Old 09-17-2019, 07:23 AM
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Australia got the ball swinging in the Old Trafford test, after having an old ball replaced (with Steve Smith running away with it, holding it aloft like the Olympic Torch and a huge smile on his face). Uncertain whether it was actually "reversing" but usually it's the old ball that reverses is it not?

As a wider point, no idea. Would probably need a forensic look through the CricViz data to find out how much swing was happening at various points during an innings.

Last edited by Cumbrian; 09-17-2019 at 07:24 AM.
  #563  
Old 09-17-2019, 08:24 AM
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Yes, but Marsh was bowling conventional swing.
  #564  
Old 09-17-2019, 08:31 AM
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Marsh didn't play at Old Trafford did he?
  #565  
Old 09-17-2019, 04:57 PM
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True, seems too many late nights have blurred into one.
But Marsh bending them a bit at The Oval was the only occasion I can recall anybody getting swing in the series.
  #566  
Old 10-01-2019, 06:52 AM
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Probably not of interest to anyone, but the other day by pure chance I stumbled onto a doco on the Sports Channel where Mark Waugh and Adam Gilchrist were remembering what went through their minds during the semi final between RSA and Australia in 1999. Some of the thoughts were mistaken, but interesting and I found I couldn't remember a number of the players who were in the game (Elsworth?)

Of interest though they remarked that Klusener didn't play a false shot the whole tournament ( didn't his form drop away) and that Shane Warne was still dirty on Steve Waugh for being part of the panel that dropped him the previous year in the West Indies. To the extent that the guys still had difficulty speaking. (FWIW I thought the dropping was reasonable).
  #567  
Old 10-01-2019, 10:07 AM
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All I remember about that game is that it was on very late at night in Australia, and my housemates were asleep, so when the Australians got the final run-out to tie the game and go through to the final, I had to jump around the loungeroom like a madman while making as little noise as possible.
  #568  
Old 11-22-2019, 05:54 AM
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Just resurrecting the thread. Australia are playing Pakistan at the Gabba (I know I got caught in the damn traffic yesterday). Australia are around 1 for 330 in response to Pakistan 240. Even allowing for a flat pitch Pakistan has looked pretty ordinary. Even Warner scored a century and Burns was out for 97. (Why do they include Bancroft in the squad?).

Anyway, I guess AK84 won't be happy.
  #569  
Old 11-22-2019, 07:01 AM
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Yeah, since the damn no ball rule was changed in the middle of the game.
  #570  
Old 11-22-2019, 07:19 AM
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Did it? I musn't have seen that- if the rule was not to check over stepping I'm in favour. However, what was the rule change?
  #571  
Old 11-22-2019, 12:40 PM
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England are playing New Zealand as well, and are currently probably ahead after yesterday's play with NZ on 144/4 - although the press all has England "cementing strong position", I'm not so sure we're that far ahead.

As for the no ball wicket referenced above (Cummins to Rizwan), I was always told something had to be grounded behind the line, and for that wicket, there wasn't anything that I could see - it should have been a no ball. I can't find a picture now though.
  #572  
Old 11-22-2019, 12:44 PM
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Did it? I musn't have seen that- if the rule was not to check over stepping I'm in favour. However, what was the rule change?
In one case a Pakistani bowler had a wicket taken away because he clearly overstepped by maybe 10 cm. 24 hours earlier an Australian bowler escaped the same fate because it wasnít entirely clear that he overstepped. It was clear to 90% of people watching, including me. But the umpire was in the 10%.
  #573  
Old 11-22-2019, 12:46 PM
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England are playing New Zealand as well, and are currently probably ahead after yesterday's play with NZ on 144/4 - although the press all has England "cementing strong position", I'm not so sure we're that far ahead.

As for the no ball wicket referenced above (Cummins to Rizwan), I was always told something had to be grounded behind the line, and for that wicket, there wasn't anything that I could see - it should have been a no ball. I can't find a picture now though.


https://www.espncricinfo.com/story/_...-sparks-debate

Has a picture.
  #574  
Old 11-22-2019, 12:56 PM
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The problem with single frames is that a bowler can land and slide forward a little - as long as his heel went down behind the line it wouldn't be a no ball. I haven't seen video.

However, even the Australian commentators in that story thought it was a no ball. And from that article:

Quote:
After Cummins found Rizwan's edge in the 55th over, the dismissal was sent to the TV umpire, Gough, to check for the no-ball. Numerous slow-mo replays were used, which did not appear to show any part of Cummins' foot behind the line but, eventually, the wicket stood.
  #575  
Old 11-22-2019, 01:11 PM
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The problem with single frames is that a bowler can land and slide forward a little - as long as his heel went down behind the line it wouldn't be a no ball. I haven't seen video.

However, even the Australian commentators in that story thought it was a no ball. And from that article:
The commentators were all very surprised that this was not overturned.
  #576  
Old 11-22-2019, 07:24 PM
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Made me look - I was thinking "if Darren Gough is now an umpire, no wonder he's generous to the bowler on no balls".
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Old 11-23-2019, 12:49 AM
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Watling batted all day and New Zealand ground out a 40 run lead on day three. Normally I'd expect a draw. But with these two teams I think we're in for a final over on day five with all four results in play.
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Old 11-23-2019, 04:55 AM
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Made me look - I was thinking "if Darren Gough is now an umpire, no wonder he's generous to the bowler on no balls".
Yes, I did a double take at that.

However, I don't think one bad call resulted in Pakistan being knocked over for 240 and then Australia getting almost 600.

Interestingly, there is a school of thought that they should not even check for the no ball given all other deliveries are not checked and there are probably many during the day. If the umpire doesn't call it, don't check it.
  #579  
Old 11-23-2019, 07:16 AM
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Interestingly, there is a school of thought that they should not even check for the no ball given all other deliveries are not checked and there are probably many during the day. If the umpire doesn't call it, don't check it.
This is not a school of thought I subscribe to. You might as well just get of the rule. The umpires should check (and call) every ball, whether it's the 3rd umpire or square leg.
  #580  
Old 11-23-2019, 05:04 PM
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This is not a school of thought I subscribe to. You might as well just get of the rule. The umpires should check (and call) every ball, whether it's the 3rd umpire or square leg.
And a Test match would last a month. You've seen the delay a review takes.
  #581  
Old 11-23-2019, 05:16 PM
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Presumably Teuton wasn't advocating a delay in the game for each delivery to be checked and I've never seen anybody advocating that as it's patently ridiculous. However I would like to see the third umpire given the authority to signal to the umpire when they see a no ball in normal play.
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Old 11-23-2019, 10:26 PM
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Watling gets a double century and New Zealand declare with a lead if 252. England have about 110 overs to weather.
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Old 11-23-2019, 11:50 PM
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As for the no ball wicket referenced above (Cummins to Rizwan), I was always told something had to be grounded behind the line, and for that wicket, there wasn't anything that I could see - it should have been a no ball. I can't find a picture now though.
That is not the law;
21.5.2 the bowlers foot must land with some part of the foot, whether grounded or raised ii) behind the popping crease.

ie the same foot placement that would see a batter give out stumped would be a fair delivery by a bowler.
  #584  
Old 11-24-2019, 06:42 AM
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That is not the law;
21.5.2 the bowlers foot must land with some part of the foot, whether grounded or raised ii) behind the popping crease.

ie the same foot placement that would see a batter give out stumped would be a fair delivery by a bowler.
I didn't know that! That makes the call much closer, of course.

Square leg umpire needs to judge the majority of calls, with back up from the third umpire. There is time between deliveries even with a spin bowler to check as long as they avoid the theatre of showing people that they are checking. Just a glance would do it.
The problem seems to be that they don't want to put in a system that wouldn't be perfect.
  #585  
Old 11-24-2019, 09:52 PM
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Seems like we are heading for the third innings defeat in a test this week. Maybe within 24 hours. Not sure with all the time zones.
  #586  
Old 11-24-2019, 11:39 PM
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That makes the call much closer, of course.

More so than that.
If making a judgement with camera technology from in line with the popping crease is problematic, it makes the visual and live assessment from the umpire standing back a couple of feet from the stumps four feet from the popping crease an impossibility.
Therefore “benefit of doubt” on the legality of a delivery goes to the bowler.

At some point recently the umpiring fraternity have decided that they will not call “no ball” except for the most egregious (and then only through habit) because in international cricket batters now get an automatic review on their dismissal. (and bugger how the rest of the cricket playing levels accommodate this) and taken the judgement that this major but occasional benefit to the batsmen is counterbalanced by the cost (in this case) of 22 runs from illegal deliveries in a single day’s play, the opportunity to score from the near four overs of rebowled deliveries, the effort from the bowlers to do this and the time penalty to bowl the additional overs within the minimum daily quota.

As that cricketing tragic Oscar Wilde might have said, “To miss one no ball may be regarded as a misfortune, to miss 22 looks like carelessness.”

Note this is also another case of asymmetry in that if a batsmen were to get a life due to losing their wicket off a delivery actually called as “no ball” there is no opportunity for the fielding team to review that call.

Last edited by penultima thule; 11-24-2019 at 11:43 PM. Reason: spillung
  #587  
Old 11-25-2019, 02:21 AM
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England hammered by an innings and 65, with only some late order hitting by Archer and Curran getting us up towards 200.

The disappointment was on the second day, though, when we threw away a great start to finish on a score that was a good hundred runs below par.
  #588  
Old 11-30-2019, 03:07 AM
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Greetings from Hamilton. After being made redundant, I decided to take my “fuck off” money to...well, fuck off. Have been on a jaunt that has taken in the first two days here for the second Test (I am not doing the rest of the match - off to Auckland tomorrow and then out to Australia on the 3rd - ideally I am around to see some BBL when I am out there or maybe even the Boxing Day Test).

I have learned nothing from these two days. NZ are ranked second in world cricket, so they’re good. England are average (I was going to say a side in transition but we’ve been transitioning for about 2-3 years - I think at some point we have to accept we’re mediocre). This is exactly what was shown in Test 1 and England are well up against it here.

I think I have basically had enough of Root as captain. He’s actively bad at captaincy imo - just has no feel for the game. On Day 1, he took Broad off after he got a wicket and had started to ratchet the pressure up; presumably this is because we have a lot of bowlers and he wants to keep spells short to keep them fresh (something he criticised Archer for -!!!- in the last test; you’re the captain, you dictate the spell length you utter cretin). But if you’re feeling the game you probably give Broad another couple as he was looking dangerous.

Curran comes on, Root moves Woakes wider at fine leg, as I say to myself, if it goes fine it’s 4, if it goes wider, a finer fine leg can get around as the boundary is wider there and the outfield is relatively lush. Of course, immediately Curran drifts onto the pads, it gets tickled fine for 4. Curran then bowls on the pads again, shot beats square leg. So Root pushed square leg to the boundary instead of telling Curran to get off the pads. Next scoring shot, on the pads, dropped into the vacant square leg to midwicket area. 1 run.

Meanwhile we manage to take a wicket by bowling 4th/5th stump line. Just stick to the fucking plan and leave your field for it. Make the bowlers bowl to it and if they can’t, take them off. It’s not like he’s short of seam up options, particularly in this game.

He’s a waste of space captaincy wise and it’s damaging his batting. Give it to anyone else - we’ve had this discussion further up thread but I have got to the point where anyone would be better I think, so no need to rehash the names - and let him focus on batting.

NZ meanwhile trundle on, greater than the sum of their parts due to exemplary leadership. I don’t know whether any of their guys would get in a World XI apart from Williamson but they’re a fantastic red ball unit. Their series against India upcoming in Nz should be good and could have done with being longer, as it’s a shootout between 1 and 2 in the rankings.

In other news, I dislike David Warner and think he’s a flat track bully who prospers on pitches and with the Kookaburra that offer no sideways movement. Even still, with more than 3 days to play and him having a chance at Lara’s record and the team still being able to win, that declaration seemed harsh to me. I expect his autobiography will have a chapter all about it claiming he was made to eat shit for his part in SandpaperGate.
  #589  
Old 11-30-2019, 05:10 AM
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Hello fellow cricket tragics. PT your posts make everything a lot clearer and I thank you.

I see Warner broke Bradmans highest score record at Adelaide Oval. I have to be honest- I am disappointed- I believe Bradman would have scored about 800 in the time against such a listless bowling attack. (As with Cumbrian I am not a fan of Warner). I read somewhere that when Steve Waugh scored that memorable double century against the Windies with McGrath the last batsman McGrath jokingly stated after Waugh got out that he was on his way to a century (McGrath).
  #590  
Old 11-30-2019, 06:48 AM
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I thought the Mark Taylor's decision to declare when 334 not out (equal to Bradman's highest score) was one of the sports finest moments.
Haydon's belting of 380 off a hapless and sub-Test standard Zimbabwe to be Australia's highest TEst innings was just wanton thuggery IMHO though a notable effort of concentration.
Personally I'd have been happier if Paine had declared with Warner also on 334 but a matter of no great import
  #591  
Old 12-01-2019, 03:19 AM
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I thought the Mark Taylor's decision to declare when 334 not out (equal to Bradman's highest score) was one of the sports finest moments.
Haydon's belting of 380 off a hapless and sub-Test standard Zimbabwe to be Australia's highest TEst innings was just wanton thuggery IMHO though a notable effort of concentration.
Personally I'd have been happier if Paine had declared with Warner also on 334 but a matter of no great import
I agree with you. Further, Brian Lara was a splendid batsman but those two massive innings were on flat pictures against rather mediocre English attacks. Context is so important.
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Old 12-03-2019, 05:21 AM
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Just an aside but Brian Lara was at the Adelaide Ground when Warner got to 335 not out. When Lara broke the batting record of the immortal Sobers it was Sobers who emerged at the ground at Barbados and congratulated Lara.

Asked if he would have done the same, Lara (who had finished his media commitments) commentated that he was getting changed to go to the the ground to congratulate Warner if he had been given the opportunity.

The batting records of hitting massive scores always seem rather dubious to me. Generally you need flat tracks, ordinary attacks and someone needs to stay with you which tends to diminish the record when they score a lot.

I'd pefer to recall the efforts of Waugh in his 200 in the Windies and reading of McCabe and Trumper (who was possibly a Kiwi) on bad terms than flat track bullies getting massive scores.
  #593  
Old 12-03-2019, 07:48 PM
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January 2016 there was a two-day U16s cricket match between K. C. Gandhi High School and Arya Gurukul School in Mumbai.

Arya Gurukul scored 31 runs in their first innings, bowled out after facing 20 overs.
In reply K. C. Gandhi team declared on 1,465 for 3 with 15yo Pranav Dhanawade scoring 1,009 not out, from 323 balls. They must have been playing on a field the size of a tennis court.
In their second innings Arya Gurukul were dismissed for 52.

One wonders how many were inspired to play on and how many swore off cricket for life as a result.
  #594  
Old 12-04-2019, 12:19 PM
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Bob Willis has died.

He was just before my time - he retired in 1984, when I was 9, and I don't have any cricketing memories from that far back. But he's been a voice on Sky for as long as I remember, and one of the better ones. His 8-43 arguably did more to win "Botham's Ashes" than Botham's own 149*, which has always niggled me a bit (although it certainly needed both).
  #595  
Old 12-05-2019, 09:37 PM
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Bob Willis has died.

He was just before my time - he retired in 1984, when I was 9, and I don't have any cricketing memories from that far back. But he's been a voice on Sky for as long as I remember, and one of the better ones. His 8-43 arguably did more to win "Botham's Ashes" than Botham's own 149*, which has always niggled me a bit (although it certainly needed both).
It was a great performance, no doubt. But Bothamís knock was just magical. I only followed this match via BBC radio, but when Botham came in, England were 100% done and dusted. Dead as anything I had seen in cricket until then (I was 13). It was just mind-blowing what he had done by the end of that day.

He had planted the doubt in the Aussie mind that Willis so ruthlessly exploited.
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Old 12-07-2019, 02:05 AM
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Well, I have just has an interesting “day” at the cricket. Having moved on to Melbourne before heading up to Cairns to go the Barrier Reef, I decided to take in the Sheffield Shield game between Victoria and Western Australia at The MCG.

We got 40 overs before play was suspended (at first until 4pm then for the remainder of the day) as the pitch was achieving steepling bounce. Peter Siddle cracked a couple on the head from what looked to me to be reasonably legitimate short deliveries, though if you look at the video online you might argue that they’re back of a length and shouldn’t be taking off like that. He also managed to get several guys fending off around the short leg area. For a guy with not much pace, I was clued in to the pitch being somewhat spicy.

Then Marcus Stoinis got hit around the heart (by Fekete) off a ball that definitely shouldn’t have gone through there - was probably on what should have been a good length. So off everybody trooped and the groundsmen have been rolling the wicket and hoping it will dry out too - apparently there’s too much moisture in the surface and the ball was creating indentations that were helping it fly and these needed to be ironed out.

I’ve not seen much like it in my time watching cricket (though I was at The Oval for the abandoned England-Pakistan game, that wasn’t to do with the pitch). I guess this is meant to be about international cricket so the obvious link is that the next match on that square is the Boxing Day Test v New Zealand. Better get the pitch right for that...
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Old 12-07-2019, 06:48 PM
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This match at the MCG got abandoned on Day 2. Appreciate that it’s not the strip in use for the Test but that’s still got to be a concern. When I was in NZ I came across a number of people who were making the journey across the Tasman for this Test specifically, so there’s a lot of people potentially to be disappointed.
  #598  
Old 12-08-2019, 11:04 PM
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This match at the MCG got abandoned on Day 2
The MCG centre wicket area has been barely district cricket standard for decades, albeit more more likely to toe busting shooters than helmet rattling.
1955: 3rd Test vs England the pitch was so badly cracking at stumps on day 3 that the curator resorted to watering the pitch during the rest day.
1979 Sarfraz takes 7-1 in 6 overs of inept Australian batting though the pitch was more suited to bocce.
1980: Two Sheffield Shield matches moved to Geelong after complaints about player safety.
1981: Australian captain Greg Chappell threatens the Australian Cricket Board committee room the teams will not take the field due to the an uneven and over-prepared wicket.
1988-89: West Indies captain Viv Richards, looking at a pitch more resembling corrugated iron, says to Allan Border: "Why are you guys preparing a pitch like this, mon? You will get yourself f------ killed!"
1996 MCG switches to drop-in pitches
2005: The Boxing Day Test vs South Africa is delayed by half an hour because of a damp pitch, after curator Tony Ware over watered it on Christmas Day
2017: The MCG pitch for the Ashes receives a "poor" rating from the ICC. On a lifeless deck, England batsman Alastair Cook makes a stirling and remorseless 244 not out with 24 wickets falling in five days.
There was not one outright result in first-class cricket during the entire 2017/18 season at the MCG.

There have been changes to the structure of the drop-in pitches this year in an effort to make them less resembling pre-stressed concrete. Early season results hinted they may be headed the right way but the groundstaff havenít yet worked out the procedure yet.

The problem is twofold 1) despite the substandard surface 80,000 Victorians and a few others will show up on Boxing Day and 2) the MCG is a football venue first, and a cricket venue second.
Imagine if Old Trafford hosted ManU and cricket on the same surface, rather than adjoining fields.

Personally they should take the game to Bellerieve just to provoke the MCC to demonstrate they have fixed the problem before they get their Test back.
  #599  
Old Today, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by penultima thule View Post
The MCG centre wicket area has been barely district cricket standard for decades, albeit more more likely to toe busting shooters than helmet rattling.
............
As a Melbourne boy who has spent many years of my life at the MCG, I would like to take issue with some of your comments - but, in all honesty, I can't.

The MCG pitch has been poor for many years - usually lifeless, occasionally veering towards stone motherless dead. There have been plenty of results, but that's a consequence of how Test Match cricket is played these days. The pitch is still very slow. The last Ashes test was absolutely dreadful. The new curator tried to spice things up a bit for the Shield match this week- yeah, got that a bit wrong, did the new boy.

I'll take issue with you about the drop in wickets and football being the problem. They have only come around since the 1980s (Packer cricket invented them so they could play in non-cricket stadiums). So for decades prior, the MCG wickets would be ripped up by football boots every winter. So were the WACA wickets - supposedly the fastest pitches in the world. The SCG still has AFL played on it each winter, and the wicket square isn't removed. And for decades before the Swans moved up there, it was Rugby League HQ. Ditto - the Gabba. As for moving the Boxing Day game to Bellerive - well, they play AFL there too.

The Adelaide oval was a road for decades - but they moved to drop-in wickets a few seasons ago, and their wickets are now generally regarded as the best in the country.

Apparently the MCG is growing new wickets based on the technology used in Adelaide - but they are a couple of years away still.
They need to get it right.

Last edited by Wallaby; Today at 06:57 PM.
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