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Hereward

Cricket: ODIs Aren’t Proper Cricket Edition

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Agreed on both counts @ljkeane. Australia is going to continue its good run in tests in South Africa, but that was a top effort from AB. 

Side note: Anyone here think that Renshaw might get parachuted in mid-series?

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13 hours ago, Paxter said:

Side note: Anyone here think that Renshaw might get parachuted in mid-series?

It's possible, but I imagine the selectors will give Bancroft at least the first two tests and if he makes a score you think he'd stay for the rest of the series.

This ODI series between England and New Zealand is turning out to be a real gem. NZ win the first ODI against the odds by 3 wickets in the last over, England come back and win the second convincingly, but this one was like an old-school ODI as England defended 234 - win by four runs.

Tough on Kane Williamson who was on an unbeaten century at the end, but the middle order let him down badly. They were cruising at 2/90 and then suddenly collapsed to 6/110 or something like that.

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Posted (edited)

Ha well maybe that was enough from Bancroft. Again credit to Maharaj though - he’s up to seven wickets for the test. Not something that happens often in the case of SA spinners!

Overall though, I doubt this test will live long in the memory. The Proteas really need to dig deep for the next match. 

Oh and I forgot to mention: Morne retiring from tests really sucks. 

Edited by Paxter

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11 hours ago, Paxter said:

Ha well maybe that was enough from Bancroft.

53 may or may not be enough....he'll probably want at least another 50 in the next Test. I didn't see the innings, but to get 10 boundaries in 53 would suggest he was in pretty good nick.

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Posted (edited)

Continued one way traffic in the First Test. The sooner it's over the better, South Africa need to start with a clean slate in the next Test.

Hopefully Markram or de Bruyne (or both) get some runs, because they are in desperate need for some up and coming batsmen. Amla, de Villiers and Faf are all 34ish leaving the slightly younger Elgar (30) as the only one who might still be around in 2-3 years' time. Massive hole to fill.

Markram and de Bruyne both have pretty good first-class records (averaging 47) but they better deliver soon or it's going to be one very shaky and unstable batting lineup in the next decade - they would essentially turn into another version of Pakistan, always able to put together a great bowling attack but continually under-delivering on the batting.

EDIT: Looks like they heard me. I should point out that Markram's early healthy Test batting average is clearly inflated by playing his first Tests against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, where he scored 97, 15, 143 and 125. Only one fifty in the three subsequent tests against India. But looks like the real deal here.

Edited by Jeor

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1 hour ago, Jeor said:

Hopefully Markram or de Bruyne (or both) get some runs, because they are in desperate need for some up and coming batsmen. Amla, de Villiers and Faf are all 34ish leaving the slightly younger Elgar (30) as the only one who might still be around in 2-3 years' time. Massive hole to fill.

Decent effort from both of them so far, Markram in particular.

They’ve got de Kock too, who’s seriously talented, so it’s a bit of a transition period but not exactly panic stations either. The problem for South Africa is they need to worry about quotas too. They seem to have relaxed it a bit from the levels they were talking about last year but you’d think they’d have to at the very least replace Amla with a non white batsman when he retires.

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The qualifying tournament for next year's World Cup have begun in Zimbabwe. I still think it was a terrible idea to cut the numbers of teams in the World Cup to 10. The ICC's attitude to the smaller nations seems inconsistent, they've now given Ireland and Afghanistan Test status but simultaneously made it more difficult to be successful in the shorter format where they are probably better. It's also another part of the West Indies sad decline that they could miss out if they're not in the top two teams, I think they should still be favourites to qualify but it's not certain.

I'm a bit sceptical about Scotland's chances of qualifying (although they did win the qualifying tournament for the previous World Cup), but they've made a great start by beating Afghanistan in their first game.

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Just one final $0.02 from me on the South Africa test: that was another pretty good test for Mitch Marsh. He top scored in the first innings and chimed in with the key wicket of Markram in the fourth. I’m not ready to say that he will be able to play like this on, say, English or Indian pitches but it’s a major step forward.

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In other shock news, it appears that, contrary to all previous evidence, David Warner is a massive cock.

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Posted (edited)

Warner has been good at hiding his loose-cannon status recently but there's no question that deep down he's a hot-headed crazy man. It was pretty silly of him to take the bait. And given he's one of the most notorious sledgers going around you think he'd be able to handle something coming the other way, but I guess dishing it doesn't mean you can take it.

I never really understood reacting to sledging in the first place...do people really have such thin skins? It's obvious you're giving them what they want if you react. You're basically just telling them that you're a small child.

And I speak from a position of vast authority on sledging, having played been presented with an end-of-season award in club cricket for a sledging incident. Our spinner had been smacked over mid-on for three boundaries in a row. I yelled out, "Don't worry Macca [every team has a bloke they can call Macca], looks like this guy's only got one shot". He was bowled the next ball trying a sweep. Now that's proper sledging...directly to do with the game and none of this personal "your mum" or "your wife" nonsense.

Glad to see Markram got a big century against top opposition. That'll help him for the rest of the series. De Kock needed the runs as well. South Africa do have a powerful batting lineup if it all clicks and if the big three (Amla, de Villiers, Faf) can regain the old magic. And their bowling is always pretty good. They should have a much stronger performance in the Second Test.

Edited by Jeor

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Posted (edited)

Another ordinary day for Australia’s batting, but I’m sure questions will be asked of SA’s lineup tomorrow. Set up to be a better contest than the first match.

Edited by Paxter

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Yes, I expect Australia's bowling attack will pose a good test to South Africa. They'll need a vintage performance from one of the Big Three (Amla, de Villiers, Faf) if they are to get a good first innings lead. If they can get to parity with a few wickets in hand, there is where de Kock could be really dangerous.

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Brilliant hundred from de Villiers. He is head and shoulders above the rest fo the batting. Hasn't actually been dismissed yet by a bowler (70* and 125* and run out for a duck) in this series and he scores so quickly it looks like he's batting on a completely different pitch. Good support from the tail has run up a 100+ lead for South Africa, if they can take early wickets they will be in the money.

Still, if Australia can set a target around 200+ I can't expect it will be easy, so a lot of cricket yet to be played.

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The match is interestingly poised, but you’d think it is South Africa’s to lose from here after that De Villiers performance.

Please, please AB: stick with tests.

Does Maharaj have Smith’s number? Our “new Bradman” certainly looks more human against South Africa than other opponents.

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There's a theory Smith is susceptible to left-arm orthodox bowling. I'm not sure of the numbers but I remember reading it somewhere. Still, very early in the series. I bet he'll bounce back soon, especially if there's a Rabada-less attack next Test and he can cash in on some lesser lights.

Yes I hope AB's century has convinced him to come back to the Test arena. He clearly still has some life left in him, so it would be a shame to give it up, whereas it looks like Amla really is in terminal decline. AB bats so quickly and makes it look so easy compared to everyone else.

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ABD has never looked better, to be honest. I feel for him though - he makes such a killing at the IPL, wants to win a world cup, and is also his country's best Test batter at a time when the batting is looking pretty frail. Where does he cut down on his workload? Hopefully the sabbatical took care of those feelings but it's clear that test cricket is always going to be the first to go for him.

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And the series is ruined by the ban on Rabada. I have to wonder, if this suspension system had always been around, would Australia ever have been able to field a team? B)

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A real shame for the series, but he’s a repeat offender and needs to face the music.

@Hereward: Agreed. 

@Jeor: I had a look at some stats and Smith does seem to fall to spin more than you would expect. Herath and Jadeja have certainly bowled well to him in the subcontinent and Maharaj has him a few times now. His real kryptonite though is Y Shah - six dismissals from nine innings.

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Most Australian batsmen have very poor numbers against spin on the subcontinent, so it's hard to say whether it's a Smith-specific flaw or just the generic Australian tendency not to play spin very well. Still, with Smith I guess you want to go for any chink in the armour. It'll be interesting to see if Maharaj can continue to pick him up.

Rabada's ban is fair enough. The guy has a history of this sort of thing. I wish he were playing, it would make for a great series, but he knew the rules and should have been more careful. I only hope that Morkel can step up in his anticipated recall and bowl half as well as Rabada did this Test. Imagine a full-strength South African pace attack - fully fit Steyn, Rabada, Philander. Morkel and Ngidi aren't bad backups either, though Morkel's meant to be retiring. There'd be nowhere for batsmen to hide. It'd be like the Australian bowling attack in its heyday - McGrath, Gillespie, Lee, Warne all at the peak of their powers.

AB is in a quandary. It's hard being the best at everything - but at 34 you understand he wants to manage his workload. If the IPL is throwing so much money at him, it's hard for an athlete these days (with limited money-earning years) to turn that down. At least he's not captaining and wicketkeeping as well, though!

 

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Posted (edited)

Rabada decision is rubbish. Everyone should be allowed to shoulder-barge the Aussie captain (and Warner, cause he is a prick). Just due to decades to karma if nothing else lol

edit: Can we just get rid of this bullshit care bear "Spirit of cricket" and change it to match modern day aggression/drama? It's way more fun.

Also, fuck that idiot umpire for ruining the series.

Edited by The Winged Shadow

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