Not that it is really our format, but it begs addressing that Aus are now 2-0 up in the ODI (only dolts interested) comp in Blighty at the moment.
I missed the first game and was too tired to get into the 2nd due to a few days in the hills, but after reading a few reports and listening to the radio this morning it is interesting to see a team that plays with a lot more self belief... do we think this is due to Clarke at the helm? Or the quite different make up of the squad?
Ferguson has settled into his role there. The bowling team were consistent amongst themselves, with Hopes the only one going for more than a run a ball- admittedly only bowling 3 overs. Lee was frugal with 2 wickets and Jonno, Watson and Bracken all getting 2 also.
In the batting it was contributions all around apart from the skip, Hopes, and Hussey showing he is consistent with his form across all formats! Either Hussey is just the nicest bloke to ever strap on pads (possible from all accounts) or he knows of every crime and indiscretion every selector and member of CA has done and has made a list and is checking it twice!
Two more positive results in the yawn fests and Australia can then prattle on senselessly about how they have "redeemed themselves".
Talking of ODI's in the pejorative, it seems to me that the 'Little Master' has come to the same conclusions: ODI's in their current format are a fait accompli at the toss and so should be given a new structure to make them more competitive and hopefully more interesting.
Sachin has proposed a 2 innings game of 25 overs to ensure both teams bat under lights. I must say, i don't know why this hasn't been openly and broadly suggested before. I think it has the potential for a much more interest contest as it will bridge the gap between T20 and Test. Teams can go the tonk twice! Now i accept what it is about T20 that many out there dislike- the thoughtless crunching of the ball every ball; but as a "batsman" that only opens the shoulders my self, and as a bowler that like being taken on i think this is a serviceable way to preserve 50 over cricket.
I know i said around this time last year that ODI was dead and buried- and without some effective change it is- so as someone who was a captivated kid during the "Packer v ACB" days, i can't help being enthusiastic about this idea to rejuvenate the format.
It makes sense, but i'd like to hear why it won't work, anyone?
And because i haven't voiced an opinion elsewhere on this issue, let me say the in regard to Nielsen having a break now after the Ashes while the rest of the squad plays ODI cricket: i wish i received a holiday every time i failed to live up to my KPI's at work! In world sport, the cricket coach is the least called upon when it comes to on field activity and is therefore not much more than a skills coach/manager; if Nielsen needs a break after the Ashes and feels he can't do anything with the team to lift our standing in the next stage of the tour, maybe it should be a "permanent vacation".
down the wicket