Ponting must be scratching his head thinking, "what happened?" last night in the 1st ODI against SA. After being tied down for a while at the crease, Australia posted a competitive score and then began supporting it well enough.
Duminy AGAIN looked like he has no real threats within the Australian line-up, and the "weakest link" in the SA side -McKenzie- actually got some runs against his name! At this time the game was in a nice- though somewhat boring- point of balance; then that balance tipped decidedly Australia's way, with quick wickets.
Enter A.Morkel! In one Hilfenhaus over the game was effectively taken away from Ponting.
This post is not a criticism, as i think Ponting worked his bowlers and his field well- ably assisted by Clarke- when it was clear Morkel was there to win the match; evident by the HUMONGOUS and STRAIGHTEST drive imaginable! The big issue was the 'setting-in' of Duminy to steady the innings and allow a powerhouse hitter like Morkel to save the day.
I'm sure the Aussie bowlers have a plan (each) for Duminy, but what ever it may be, it plainly isn't working; he is such a talent!
I don't have one - although Flem on the radio said a series of short ones (not necessarily bouncers)and then jammed in at his feet is what he'd do... old school, but worth a try!
Of concern was the amount of wides bowled by our bowlers too: Tait and Hilf gave away too much down leg side; it is not like they don't know that it will be called if it is even an inch off the pads!
While all is not "doom and gloom" after this game, i think the biggest thing highlighted was that, even when the ball/runs ratio is close, the longer periods of 'tied down' play in ODI mean the death of the format to T20.... my 20c.