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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

2901 and counting...

Since I last posted I've spent a few days in Melbourne and across the cricket world a dozen or so ODIs have been played.

In UK England managed to take the last game of the series to deny Australia a 7-0 result and in South Africa ODI #2901 , a match between India and Australia in the Champions Trophy has just been washed out.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Australia take series as England again underperform

Australia 3/221 (43.4 ov, M Clarke 62*, T Paine 51) def England 220 (46.3 0v, A Strauss 63, B Lee 5/49) ODI #4 at Lords. Australia lead series 4-0.

Looked like a glorious day at Lord's. Good bowling from the Australians, especially Brett Lee in the final overs, saw England, Andrew Strauss again the exception, underperform with the bat.

With Ricky Ponting restored to the team 220 was never going to be enough and so, though the skipper didn't match his opposite number his 48 plus Michael Clarke (who is improving with each innings in the series) and Tim Paine's contributions saw their side home in a canter.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Australia lead 3-0 after comfortable win over England

Australia 4/230 (48.3 ov, C White 105, M Clarke 52) defeated England 9/228 (50 ov, A Strauss 63, S Watson 3/31) by 6 wkts: ODI #3 at the Rose Bowl Southampton.

Yet another below par batting performance by England against a tenacious Australian attack. Pity there weren't a few more in the Tests!

Andrew Strauss led from the front scoring 63 (72b, 7x4) of the first 98 runs. But he was fourth out. Eoin (how do you pronounce that?) Morgan and, lower down the order, Tim Bresnan and Ryan Sidebottom struck a few blows though no one remained long enough to set Australia a really daunting challenge.

A belligerent 105 (124b,9x4, 1x6) by stand in no3 Cameron White a more measured 52 (92b, 1x4) by stand in captain Michael Clarke saw Australia home comfortably (and predictably).

Why Adil Rashid, who performed well with bat and ball in ODI#1, was left out of the next two matches is beyond me. Now it's the England not, as in the Test series, the Australian, selectors who are under the pump. The only problem for the latter is who to drop to let Ricky Ponting resume the captaincy.


This series has prompted criticism from several people including Patrick Smith in The Australian who described it as "pointless". He makes some reasonable points though I disagree with his conclusion for reasons which I may elaborate upon another time.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Australian late batting surge provides margin of safety: ODI #2

Australia 8/249 (50 ov, C Ferguson 55) defeated England 210 (46.1 ov, P Collingwood 56) by 39 runs. Australia lead series 2-0: ODI #2 at Lord's.

A low scoring, by the standards of modern ODIs, saw Australia recover modestly from 3/73, stutter to 6/179 then surge T20 style in the last five overs to reach 8/249. Callum Ferguson's 55 (58b, 5x4) kept the momentum going before Mitchell Johnson's 43* (23b, 5x4) last overs flourish gave Australia more hope.

England began purposefully but after Ravi Bopara was out at 74, the innings followed a similar pattern to their opponents', except that there was no Johnson to redeem the top order's shortcomings. Andrew Strauss looked as if he might do do but with the total 85 he hit an ultrasoft return catch to Nathan Hauritz for 47 (53 b, 6x4). Paul Collingwood had his scratchy moments but hung on for 56 (84b, 3x4) to give England a chance if someone could stay with him. Which no one did.

Scorecard .

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Australia on top for most of game but just keep England out: ODI #1

Australia 5/260 (50 ov C Ferguson 71*, C White 53) def England 8/256 (50 ov, M Johnson 3-24) by 4 runs: ODI # 1 at The Oval.

This turned out to be an exciting finish, even though much of the play until the final overs lacked the intensity of the Ashes Tests or the frenetic excitement of many T20 matches.