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Xray the Enforcer

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    no, you can't eat a whole ass capybara

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  1. [mod] Stick to the topic at hand, please. We were talking about statutory rape of minors and its pervasiveness in the music/entertainment industry. Further derailing comments will be deleted. Thank you. [/mod]
  2. @Zorral -- does one need to read all of the books in the series, or can one just jump in wherever? I'm feeling a bit daunted by a 16-book series, but I'm sufficiently intrigued by your description.
  3. Incredibly important point! This is another thing I love about Test cricket. Even the very ground you walk upon is mutable and treacherous over the course of the match. One last thing that's related to my example of someone bowling dozens of 90mph balls at your head: cricket balls are pretty similar to baseballs in size and hardness/density. Batters have suffered broken fingers, hands, wrists, and ribs after being hit by the cricket ball, and a couple of years ago an Australian cricketer named Phillip Hughes died after being hit on the side of the neck by a ball during competition (it hit a spot not protected by his helmet). There's a long history to this kind of aggressive bowling, where you bowl in such a way that the ball would likely hit the batter somewhere on their torso/arms where they don't have any padding, and unlike baseball you don't get ejected from the game for doing it. I'll defer to an Australian or English cricket fan to dive into detail, since the tactic emerged from Test matches between those two sides back in the 30s.
  4. To get a little more specific here in regards to the differences in gameplay between cricket formats -- your aforementioned difference between college, NBA, 3v3, etc... There isn't a perfect one-to-one analogy, but you do see different tactics on display in the different formats. T20 is like the home-run derby -- the whole point is to rack up as many runs as possible during your team's time on offense by launching the ball as far as possible toward the stands. There's very little room for nuanced play on offense. Bowlers have more room for nuance -- one of the good ways to get people out in cricket is to trick them by changing the speed and angle of each ball you bowl. So play is fast and splashy. Test cricket is really different because you have time -- so much time -- on offense to be patient and wait for the bowlers to get tired. Conversely, the bowlers have time -- so much time -- to really bore and/or piss you off into making mistakes. Imagine someone flinging an unplayable ball at your head at 90mph for an hour while you're standing in the blazing 110F Australian sun with full pads on while 10 obnoxious shitheads cheerfully tell you just how much you suck. And you have to just wait it out, hour after hour, until the opposing team fucks up. Unsurprisingly, there aren't a whole lot of people who are good at that kind of play -- they get mad and swing at the wrong ball and then they're out and walking back to the dressing room. To me, that's the main difference between the two forms: in Test, time is an incredibly powerful weapon because there are so many different ways to deploy it.
  5. OK, to start very basically, one of the fundamental structural units of cricket is an "over", much like how in baseball we have an "inning." I say this because your stereotypical baseball game has nine innings, right? (And to get a little granular, just like an inning in baseball is dictated by six batters being retired, in cricket an over = the bowler bowling six balls.) Well, in T20 cricket and One Day International (ODI) cricket, the basic structural unit of both of those games is the number of "overs." In T20, each team gets 20 overs to get done whatever needs to get done (score runs, or get batters out). In ODI, each team gets 50 overs to score runs or get batters out. As such, T20 cricket is the shortest form of the game (~3 hours). ODI is in the middle (it usually takes about 7 hours). Test cricket abides by different rules that I won't get into now, but the rules of the game dictate that a Test can be AT MOST five days long -- if you don't have a result by the end of five days, the match is considered a draw. T20 is played either by leagues (like NFL, MLB, EPL, etc) of teams that recruit internationally during a regular season, or they're played by national teams (like World Cup footy) during international competition. ODI format is mostly for international competitions like ICC World Cup. Anyway, so if you're not keen to watch how a battle unfolds between two teams over the course of five days, something like the Indian Premier League (it's like the EPL but for T20 cricket) is maybe a better way to get acquainted with the sport. As for the fielders -- they do basically what outfielders do in baseball: catch or attempt to catch balls. A lot of the action and nuance of cricket happens with the bowlers and how the batters deal with them, so that's where I'd start when it comes to appreciating the game. I still can't remember half of the fielding positions (silly point, cow corner, WTF) but that doesn't lessen my enjoyment of the sport.
  6. Now that the 4th Test is over, we should probably migrate to a new thread.
  7. I prefer the Test format, so a five-day match is ideal for me. As Paxter says, shorter formats like T20 (approximately three hours) sound more your speed. In the States, WillowTV should have at least some of the IPL matches.
  8. Damn. Well that's that! Well played by India and yeah -- Bumrah was just harvesting heads the whole day.
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