shane watson

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ICC World Cup 2015: Quarters to semis

The quarters are over and the winners gave no quarter. Well, almost.

The results followed the dictates of the form book.

South Africa defied the odds and tore up the ‘chokers‘ tag. Perhaps, this is the Cup that will cheer the Proteas .

India made the semis but not before having to overcome some tight bowling in the first 35 overs. They were also the beneficiaries of three decidedly dubious decisions from the umpires. The result could have been much closer than the scoreline suggests.

Pakistan’s batting failed again but Wahab Riaz took the fight to the Australians in an inspired spell of fast bowling that had Shane Watson hopping, skipping and jumping like a cat on a hot tin roof.

New Zealand had it pretty much wrapped up when they scored close to 400 runs with Martin Guptill registering the second double-century of the tournament. The primary prima donna record holder Chris Gayle flattered to deceive in a brief stay at the wicket. The West Indies captain Jason Holder impressed one and all with his composure under pressure.

Semi-final line-up:

  • Tue Mar 24 (50 ovs)14:00 local (01:00 GMT | 06:30 IST)
    1st Semi-Final – New Zealand v South Africa
    Eden Park, Auckland
  • Thu Mar 26 (50 ovs)14:30 local (03:30 GMT | 09:00 IST)
    2nd Semi-Final – Australia v India
    Sydney Cricket Ground



Ian Chappell: What he said, really meant and definitely didn’t

English: Image of Australian cricketer Ian Cha...

English: Image of Australian cricketer Ian Chappell. Courtesy of the National Archive of Australia. The NAA has given permission for the image to be used under the GDFL license. Confirmation of this permission has been sent to the OTRS system. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ian Chappell raises his index finger to doctored pitches and biased adjudicating.

What he said:

“The players need to be careful where tit-for-tat pitch preparation might lead.'”

Ian Chappell is not keen on cricketers’ insistence on having wickets that suit them in home series. The former Australian skipper was responding to Shane Watson’s desire for bouncy pitches in the upcoming series against India.

Shane Watson

Shane Watson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Watson said:

“We are hopeful that the groundsmen are going to make the grounds very conducive to what we do, because in India they certainly make sure the conditions are favourable to them.”

Chappell, writing in his column, commented:

“I was reminded of two things when I read that quote. The first was a story told by Tony Greig about playing first-class cricket in South Africa.

It was at a time when umpires were appointed by the local association and the standard had dipped alarmingly. Greig described how the Western Province players would tell their local umpires to ‘send off’ the Transvaal batsmen because that was the treatment they received when playing in Johannesburg. In the end the situation became so dire the players declared a moratorium and agreed to ‘walk’ when they knew they were out.

That situation didn’t last long and soon chaos reigned.

The other was a comment concerning players who decide an umpire is either weak or incompetent and the team agrees to ‘appeal for everything’. Those teams are often the first to complain when the umpiring in a match is below standard. Hence the often-heard and eminently true comment: ‘Beware you don’t get the umpiring you deserve.’

The same could apply to pitches if players are going to start demanding retribution from the home curators.”

Chappell added:

“I’d go one step further and say that as captain, if I’d asked any Australian curator for a certain type of pitch, the answer would have been: ‘Get stuffed. I’ll prepare the pitch, you play on it.'”

What he really meant:

“Tit-for-tat reactions will create a dysfunctional relationship and ruin the ethos of the sport. It also breeds one-dimensional cricketers who cannot adapt to different situations and conditions. It’s  not going to produce great cricketers, but home-grown bully boys.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“How about a tit for two tats instead? Also, you ought to keep in mind that if Team India fold in three days or less, Cricket Australia will lose out on all that gate money and television revenue.”

What he said, really meant and definitely didn’t: Shane Watson

Shane Watson

What he said:

“He’s gone from eating baked beans, margarita pizzas and cheese sandwiches to broadening his horizons a little bit."

Shane Watson jokes about Shane Warne’s eating habits.

What he really meant:

“Warnie’s a healthy eater now.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“Broadening his horizons sure narrowed him down—at the waist.”


Shane Watson clinches it for Aussies

Overheard on Monday afternoon, the 11th of April, 2011:

“What’s on?”


“That’s what I said! What’s on?”

“Watson! Shane Watson! A Watson blitzkrieg against Bangladesh. That’s what’s on. ”

Shane Watson cracked a brutal 185 against Bangladesh at Mirpur with 15 sixes, a world record.


A tale of two Tests: Eng vs Aus, SA vs India

Jacques Kallis at a training session at the Ad...

Image via Wikipedia

Two tests began on the 16th of December, 2010. One at Perth, the other at Centurion.

The similarities were striking. Both pitches were expected to have something for the speed demons. And they did.

For Australia, after being shot out for 268 on the first day, it looked like deja vu. The Englishmen were on top and were pressing for an unprecedented third Ashes triumph, in the process, signalling their willingness to end the Punter’s reign at the helm.

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