Monday, 12 October 2009

The answer to Twenty 20

With the Chamions League currently occurring at the home of 20/20 I think we are seeing the best format for the shortest version of cricket. The concept of franchises has been well established through American sports and it is my contention that this is how 20/20 should remain. I must admit I've had little interest in the games but at least state/province clubs get an opportunity to reap the financial rewards that 20/20 offers.

This could mean international events are avoided and more 'real' cricket being played as a result. Sri Lanka play just 6 tests in the next 18 months - this is unforgivable and only acts to hinder their development as a top-flight test team. It means Sanga, Jayawardene, Samaweera and co. miss many opportunities to show their wares and build the passion for 5 day cricket in their own country. While many of us DTW followers have decried the infestation of 3 hour cricket, we all (I think!) tolerate the fact 20/20 is not going anywhere. As a consequence the right 'fit' for it must be found. While I'm sure the ICC cannot bear to miss out on the cash associated with the format - I suggest courage being sought and restricting 20/20 to teams/franchises which fosters youth.

Perhaps this can build on the ODI Champions Trophy success and an avoidance of stupid 7 match series like Aus competed in in England and soon India. I think a tournament like we saw in South Africa suggests that 50 over cricket has a place in the calendar - just not as often as it currently is. Watching a mixture of past and present players with imports and exports adds an interesting element to the Champions League. While I'll never likely be an avid follower I think the right mix has been found for the 20/20 format. Leave the green and gold for cricket that matters and give blokes like Henriques and Warner the opportunity to face different bowling in varying conditions; hopefully learning enough to develop more as cricketers.

Sunday, 11 October 2009

Limited Overs= little interest- unless i'm playing!

i know it not the purpose of this blog, but it is BF hard for me to be interested in short form cricket played OS.

As we know, Aus are the Champions of the Champions Trophy, well done to the boys, sorry that i just don't care!
For ODI i really only value the World Cup, as it at least gives lesser teams a chance at playing the big boys- who knows, one day we may get an Ireland or Holland side into a final! But a best of the best; just a same old same old to me- pouring $$$ back into the teams that need it less!

Great wins to NSW and Vic in the Champions league T20, for short form games, this is where i believe it is at: best club.

apart from that -until Australia play tests again- i'm a little engrossed in playing for Mordi!

We played week 2 in or one day comp yesterday and after last weeks win against last years winners, we were pumped. Unfortunatley, due to the importance placed on the team when it comes to selection through the club, we only had 4 of last weeks 10 playing.We lost... quite badly!

At 9 wickets for 100 i went in with still nearly 8 overs remaining. After last weeks duck and the acknowledgment i probably closed my eyes as the ball came through, i was determined to practice what i preach to my son, and watch the ball onto the bat; every ball!

the other batter Mark was a middle order batsman so i knew one end should be alright, but it was up to me to redeem last weeks fiasco and try and stay in for the rest of our innings; i had plenty of time to settle.

Mark informed me of the bowlers ability- not too quick and getting a bit of swing- and i then took the time to check the field and just enjoy the opportunity of stonewalling my end.
I let myself block or leave the rest of the over and just kept my eye on the ball and on to the bat; easy as!

The next over was a leggie who was getting no turn (which surprised me as i got heaps last week on the same track!) and getting onto a loose one i was away; the chance of a pair broken.
It is such a nice feeling when you rely on the basics and they pay off; there were no glorious shots, i concentrated on offering nothing in the air -one ok cover drive- a couple of streaky sweeps against the leggie, and one very close call on a run out -once again, saved by the basics: the massive furrow through the dirt before and crossing over the crease dispelled any doubt as to whether my bat was grounded!

They brought the opening bowler on to knock off the bunny, and the best thing about that was getting hit on the thigh pad a couple of time trying to turn the ball around my body. Because he was absolutely fizzing them in the blows allowed me to disregard any concerns of being hit; and when one lifted sharply at the body and smacked in to the thigh square and i just smiled back at bowler i knew i'd broke him down a degree. He got a maiden for his troubles, but he also stopped bowling at my body and his next over he was all over the place.

With one ball remaining we'd made it through our overs and when the other batsman called for a second run and ran himself out, we'd added 34 to the total and i walked off with 12 n/o. Happy days!

In the field nothing came my way as a chance, but i fielded well and received a nice big bruise on my left palm where a dive pulled up a certain 4. Brought on as first change again i was feeling really confident due to bowling 'on the spot' in the nets the night before.

The batsmen were well settled but i was mostly effective with a few smacking the pads turning in from well outside leg. Unfortunately as a 'newbie' i don't get to set my own field and while i respect the captains understanding of the game, i know my own bowling better. I would always put in a fly slip and deep leg slip; unconventional positions to be sure but i can get a lot of sideways on the ball so it goes across the stroke often or comes on quick to a batsman trying to play me down to fine leg. Given 2 chances for both of these positions went begging i better speak up next game.

In the end, my card belied how well i bowled- 0-28 off 5. There was a sitter dropped, and two shocking miss fields for 4 so i was fairly disappointed after my last over given so many ball landed well and most of the hits were not well controlled and very uppish. I'm not saying i was perfect, i bowled about 3 long-hops but apart from that...

I know stats don't tell the whole picture... i just hate it when they distort mine

stoph verismo
down the wicket