Saturday, August 19, 2006

Non-events and consolation wins

This triangular comp is turning out to be the cricketing non-event of the year. So far, the matchups have largely featured the South African team and the press (and some ex-test cricketers, notably the burly Duleep Mendis, who with much the same fervor with which he would smack square-drives off the back-foot, laid into the Proteas' decision to go home). The Indian team is probably sitting around, watching Star TV, calling home , and driving each other nuts. (I'm going a little crazy in New York too; my book's deadline is September 1st, and I'm finding it harder and harder to blog). Who wants to be cooped up with folks, whom you primarily deal with in a cricketing context, as teammates, for too long when you aren't playing too much cricket?

Meanwhile Pakistan have finally turned the tables on England, and while this might only bring them a consolation, it'll do much to restore some pride. Note, of course, that bringing the wonderfully talented Mohammed Asif in place of the incompetent Sami had something to do with it. Umar Gul and Mohammed Asif are not tearaway quicks but they can be a real handful in the right conditions, as England have found out. Not quite the tonic England wanted in their interminable build-up to the Ashes, but they'll take comfort from the fact that they've won two tests in real style and discovered some new bowling options for the Ashes (I note that Panesar was the economical bowler in the English bowling line-up).

1 Comments:

Blogger Mike said...

England can take a lot of positives out of the series with Pakistan despite being on the back foot in this final test. They will need Flintoff back though if they are to compete in the Ashes. The signs are looking good though that the Ashes will again be a competitive series. Before this series with Pakistan I was thinking England had gone off the rails and had no show. It seems I was wrong.

5:32 AM  

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