Monday, 9 April 2007

Aussie Domination Continues

image courtesy cricinfo.com

The World Champions displayed champions’ stuff, but should not forget the help meted out to them by the men in the middle. Adam Gilchrist and Matthew Hayden were gone for all money by the second over. The latter was plumb in front to Anderson, while the former was struck in front by Mahmood.

Billy Bowden should never forget he has a job on hand, his innovative signals and humour are all well appreciated but unless they are laden with the right decisions the original plot is lost. A player's stature should never come in the way of an umpire’s call. A classic example is Shane Warne bagging a sizeable number of wickets by putting pressure on the umpires.

I have always held Abdul Qadir a better exponent of leg-spin than Warne. In the 80's the straighter one from the spinners never met with the approval for a LBW shout. Umpires started changing their view only from the mid-90's on this subject. Without taking a iota away from Warne, let us be honest in admitting that his standing as a player put that extra pressure on the umpires and their changed perception helped him add a lot more to his kitty.

Coming back to the match: Australia cannot be blamed for the umpire’s mistakes. It is only to their credit they made it count. England, for their part, displayed better resolve but sadly it was not enough. No team in the world can expect to be consistent if the openers continue to be consistently inconsistent. The biggest bugbear for the English has been the appalling show by Ed Joyce and Michael Vaughan.

The top-order takes time to rebuild the innings, and valuable time is lost. Promoting Andrew Flintoff as opener might have been a far shot. Then again, it might have worked. His form with the bat has been his biggest problem. With the field restrictions in place and the ball coming on to the bat, Flintoff could have turned a corner and it would have solved two problems for England in one shot. Another batsman would have also added to the depth.

The Aussie juggernaut continues to roll. It seems to have answers to every question posed. It is going to take something extraordinary from either New Zealand or Sri Lanka to stop the men from Down Under from clinching their third successive World Cup। At the moment, no other side apart from the above mentioned two seem to have the wherewithal, or the ammunition, or the game plan, to come anywhere near upsetting the Aussie applecart.



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In other matters of note, the Google cricket blogging contest is still wide open, moreso than this tournament if comparisons are to be drawn. Remember to send in your entries soon. I will be thrilled to keep pace with your posts!

4 comments:

Satz said...

Dear Krish...you having played against both Warne & Qadir do have the right to pass judgement on the guile of both the players...However don't you think that the reputation of Warne was built on his feats from 1993 when he came into prominence...Even though his weapon ,the flipper had become redundant after his injury woes,he did pick up a lot of wickets with the same...However umpires/referees in any sport face this problem of pressure from superstar players...Also I really doubt whether umpires of the stature of Dickie Bird ,David Shepherd S.Venkatragahavan who were considered to be at the top of the game when Warne was at his peak would have succumbed to such pressure as they were strong characters themselves...Also If in the 1990's people started changing their opinion then I guess even our own Anil Kumble has taken maximum advantage of that :)

Well All I can say is umpires buckled under pressure then it wasn't right....However let me tease you & other readers further...If Warne put pressure due to his "standing"...doesn't Murali derive an "unfair" advantage due to his bent elbow...In that case who do you think deserved more success ...Cheers :)

Indyank said...

Krish,

Definitely qadir was a great leg spinner...but warne was greater and the best that the cricketing world has seen so far...what variety he had...what lovely action...warne definitely was aggressive in his appeals but i have seen even qadir indulging in excessive appealing.He infact used to twist and jump after he delivers in his own unique way...

Aswin Kini said...

Hi Krish, it's sad to see that the Aussie Juggernaut is on the route to yet another World Cup victory. Although i appreciate the Aussies for playing great cricket, i take this opportunity to point out that the other teams never play to their potential against Australia.
It seems that the other teams are in awe when the face Australia and they tend to lose their nerve.

I have always maintained my opinion that Aussies are just a bunch of very talented cricketers who perform well when needed the most. When the great WEST INDIES of the 1980s could be beaten by the then Indian Team, why has not any team beaten this Australian team??? Are there no talented teams out there?

It's sad to see that there is no team in sight to beat Australia.
I fear if Aussie win this world cup, i would stop watching cricket and start watching other games like tennis and Hockey.
Cricket fans love to see teams dominating, but when one team dominates the game just because of sheer reputation and some good performances, then the game loses its sheen.

If Australia go on to win this cup, i would declare that this World CUp to be an absolute Failure. It is already a boring world cup, we have had just 4 exciting games so far.

What do you say Krish?

subra said...

I agree Warne was ruthless in whatever he did on field and, yes, the umpires came under pressure. But he was also very clever in deceiving the batsmen. He was a thinking cricketer. In a World Cup match in England (1999?),I remember Warne pitching two balls wide outside the leg stump to Azharuddin and both the balls straightened up, ending up in being called wides. Warne kept shaking his head as if in disbelief, inducing Azhar to let down his guard. Warne came back and pitched the third consecutive ball at the same spot as the two earlier balls. Azhar, apparently thinking that it would be one more wide ball and one more run, offered no stroke. The ball turned viciously a long way and bowled Azhar comprehensively round his legs. Azhar was well set and his downfall ensured that we lost the match and exited from the World Cup. That was a master stroke from Warnie!