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Thursday, March 08, 2007

Bowlers more impressive as 12 wickets fall: SA v WA day 1

At the Adelaide Oval today in ideal conditions - high 20s, mostly sunny with occasional clouds- South Australia won the toss, batted and made 260 all out. This was at least an improvement upon some of their other batting efforts this season, but it didn't look a competitive, let alone matchwinning, total until Western Australia lost 2/23 in 11 overs at the end of the day. In fact it still doesn't look particularly good as WA has some good batters to come and one of their two wickets thus far is that of the nightwatcher/ nightwatchman.

The outcome of the match may well be determined in the first session or so tomorrow when Jason Gillespie and Ryan Harris will resume the attack against Chris Rogers (whose batting hasn't yet enhanced the reputation which has preceded him here) and Shaun Marsh. Today was ideal cricketing weather, with a temperature in the high 20s, though for the next two days the forecast is for mid to high 30s. Neither side will want to spend too long in the field.

The photo above is of Gillespie, who with both bat and ball looked determined to prove that he's still a very good player. He made a characteristically gritty 15/ 52b. When he was out well caught at square leg by substitute Heron, he paused almost in disbelief before trudging off. With the ball he was, except for one short ball to Justin Langer, a model of probing economy. Ryan Harris, who bowled with zest and nip off the pitch, took both wickets to fall and, without diminishing his achievement, benefited from having Gillespie apply such a tight grip at the other end.

I know that I've praised Gillespie in a post earlier this week, but I don't apologise for continuing in that vein here, though I should disclose that other things precluded me from attending the ground until after tea. Tomorrow I hope to watch much of the day's play to see if my prediction comes true or, if not, how matters unfold.

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