Friday, November 21, 2008

A Good Cricket Wicket[tm]

In case you hadn't noticed, 26 wickets fell in a test match in two days. But this didn't happen on a raging minefield, a dustbowl, a cracked, vicious, spitting, subcontinental hellhole, where crows shat on your head, and ferrets nibbled at your shoelaces, while one-armed beggars beseeched you for alms, and last night's meal made its way down to your nether regions, as sightscreens were adjusted and people with bad accents and brown skins scurried around. No, you see, this happened in Australia. In Brisbane. Therefore, its a good wicket. Good for test cricket. Good for spectators. It tests skills. It makes for a fair contest. It makes for cricket as it should be played, before greasy subcontinentals with curry-stained rupee notes showed up to spoil the party. Its the Mother Teresa of cricket, the Vatican, the Federal Reserve Bank, the Red Cross, and Doctors without Frontiers all rolled into one. Yes, this is salvation. This is da Bomb. This is a Good Cricket Wicket. Take that, you heathens, you spinners, you wily, crafty, devious, under-handed, cheating, formerly subjugated (now loud and insistent) fools. Take this strip and roll it. This is, in case you hadn't heard, a Good Cricket Wicket.

PS: Peter English over at Cricinfo tells us just how wonderful this 22-yard Garden of Eden is. Oh, Lord, I'm just quivering, thinking of how much faster my soul will ascend to heaven if my ashes were to be scattered over the Gabba.

16 Comments:

Blogger Jrod said...

I know what you are saying, you've made your point before, but this is a good pitch.

I haven't seen one ball veer sideways, jump off the length or stay low. There is seam movement, but not vicious or hard to handle stuff, most of it has been bad batting.

I love dodgy pitches, because they make batsman show real guts, you don't need guts to bat on this pitch.

Maybe some patience, and common sense.

3:52 PM  
Blogger Samir Chopra said...

JRod: I like dodgy wickets too. So what if it veers sideways, or jumps or stays low? It adds a bit of spice and makes batsmen work harder.

It just ticks me off when people take a clatter of wickets to signal a bad pitch or insist on saying certain pitches are bad. Both teams play on the same surface. The one that handles it better, wins.

In the NFL, ground conditions can affect how well a team plays. But both teams play on it - so no one complains. Cricket remains a little precious in this regard.

4:12 PM  
Anonymous raj said...

JROD, just for the record, what do you think of Mumbai 2004 - you know, the one where Murali Kartik turned demon-slayer and Oz batsmen peed at the sight of a target just over 100. Till date, I hear Aussie batsman and former cricketer-now-analysts slamming that pitch.
From your blog, you seem far from that typical if-we-do-it-it-is-good-for-cricket-if-subcontinentals-do-the-same-it-is-bad-for-cricket type of Aussies. Nevertheless, could you spell it out for me?

7:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No comments about the racial points but there's no way any one can like a pitch where the ball stays low or the bounce is inconsistent, regardless of the continent in question and especially on the first couple of days of a test match.

Don't mind a deteriorating wicket or a spinning dustbowl but atleast it can have consistent bounce?

Mohali promised to be a good fast consistent bounce pitch but not sure if it has flattened out recently.

- vivek

7:44 PM  
Blogger Jrod said...

Raj, I am against any test pitch where Michael Clarke can take wickets. But i don't mind pitches spinning sideways, I'm a spinner. If you go to India and complain the ball spins too much maybe you shouldn't go there.

7:55 PM  
OpenID achettup said...

It is a good wicket, the only reason the Aussies are struggling is because they've been using an "Indian defence". In fact, its "the perfect test wicket", if this match moves into the fifth day, it will crumble to the ideal requirements of a fifth day pitch.

12:11 AM  
Blogger Naked Cricket said...

anger's good. that was good samir.

11:43 AM  
Blogger V said...

Glad you highlighted this.....2004 mumbai pitch and the kanpur pitch dished out at SA were reported .....but no one made any fuss about the 2002 NZ tour strips......and i have this inkling that it wont be any diffrent next year ,NZ cant beat us with this team

1:22 PM  
Blogger Soulberry said...

Ouch! That wicked wicket at Brisbane swallowed two test cricket viewing days of mine!

Well if it wasn't the wicket, and wasn't the weather, it's got to be something which was not up to standard twice over from both sides.

1:35 AM  
Blogger Tifosi guy said...

Only pity for this good wicket was that it was New Zealand and not South Africa taking on the aussies. Pretty sure if it was the S Affers, the Aussies would have rolled up to a humiliating defeat.

My is Punter and his pricky team in deep trouble when S Af comes and when they head there. Now they are talking of ' horse for courses' selection policy. Last 11 test, 11 different teams. Is that some sort of record as well :)

Seriously I think if Flintoff/Harmison are in any decent form next year, Punter is going to have the nice tag of being the Aussie skipper who lost the Ashes to the Poms twice in England.

5:55 PM  
Blogger Tifosi guy said...

Btw Jrod

If a seaming wicket is fair wicket, then a wild spinning as a top wicket is also fair game mate.

How was it that Perth in it's pomp was all fair? Hmm one eyed blinkered vision is it mate?

5:57 PM  
Blogger Jrod said...

Tifosi, I'm assuming you read my comment where i said. "But i don't mind pitches spinning sideways, I'm a spinner. If you go to India and complain the ball spins too much maybe you shouldn't go there."

Although i only wrote it with one eye.

7:23 PM  
Anonymous raj said...

jrod, your response is definitely what I thought it would be - fair. many of your country's cricketers and former cricketers and cricket writers could learn from you, I guess. Not that there's a chance of that happening, is there?


The thing is the Kanpur pitch this year that was reported and ICC threatened to stuff BCCI if pitches like that were repeated - that was so unaaceptable - because BCCI was rapped, everyone turned their eye to it. It wasnt any different from the NZ pitches where last time, the match hardly lasted two days and both teams crumbled. Somehow, nobody ever even comments on that. In fact, Stephen Fleming sledged SRT and VVS are flat track bullies and cannot cut it on 'sporting' pitches like the ones they laid out there in NZ! Nobody even said a word against him - ICC didnt come calling then. ICC didnt hand any bans to any venues then. Yet, Aussies - your countrymates - complain that India dominates ICC, which is doubly unfair - one, penalising and punishments happen only to subconteintal playerrs and boards , two, on top of it you accuse that we dominate ICC and destroy NZ and Aus cricket - how is that for deceit and duplicity and indecent hypocrisy by the Oz and NZ and English cricketer, adminstrators, writers and bloggers.
I dont want to call it racism - it is just plain old hypocrisy and opportunism of the worst kind. They must be ashamed of themselves atleast in private else they wouldnt even be human - these
western cricketers, adminstrators, writers and bloggers.

Chris Broad was supposed to have told Ponting in Nagpur that if he fell behind on over rate, he would be suspended. Yet, in the next test, Ponting repeats the offence - and is not suspended by the self-same Chris Broad!!!!

If this is not partiality and bias, what is? Can you comment on that jrod? Is it any wonder that Indian bloggers complain about racism and double standards? Do you think MSM in your country will even contemplate these facts? Do you think even 10 people in Australia will accept the inherent unfairness of it all against the subcontinental players?

4:02 AM  
Blogger Jrod said...

Raj, one thing you need to know about Australian cricket fans, is most of them are fans of Australia, and not fans of cricket. So they don't care, hardly any of them even watched the Australia tour because it was not on free to air, and Australia doesn't have a big cable TV culture. So the media don't need to report as fair and balanced.

For some of your other concerns, the truth is the BCCi are the most powerful member of the ICC, but they still have to win the votes and don't run the place. But if India weren't the most powerful member Bangladesh probably would have been demoted by now and the ICL players would not be as harshly treated with.

Don't get me started with the over rates, and what goes on there. I think since Ganguly fought his suspension the match referees have been too scared to enforce the law. Paul Collingwood was the last captain to be suspended, and England would have fought that and won, except that they wanted to trial KP as captain.

12:06 PM  
Anonymous raj said...

On over rates, well, I dont think using part-time spinners and bowling 90 overs is better than unleashing your pacers and ending up a few overs short. I dont understand the clamour to reduce cricketing entertainment to numbers.

6:59 PM  
Blogger atticus said...

Jrod, you area prolific legend and therefore I won't even bother to argue with you. However, Ganguly was infact banned on two seperate occasions for a few ODI games for slow overrate. He deserved it but I also think ponting should be penalised. he is baltantly in breach of the codes in every match and yet he gets away with some piddly loose change fines. I do beleive that BCCI are strong but the penalties dished out seemed to be recently going against the indians. mind you we are not shrinking violets but i think aussies deserve to be punished as well.

In the international game, dodgy pitch issue should not arise beacuse the game is fought on the same pitch, dodgy or not. indians didn't really whinge in NZ but Saffers lodged a complaint! That's really below the belt...learn to take it on the chin and try and come back strong.

Jrod, your blog's the best, by the way

8:28 AM  

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