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    February 03, 2005

    Yet another tie for South Africa

    Just what is it about South Africa which makes them tie so many games, especially from winning positions? Yesterday, South Africa started the final over, bowled by a newbie Kabir Ali, needing 8 runs to win. In spite of hitting a four off the first ball, which was also a no ball which meant 3 runs were needed in six balls, South Africa somehow contrived to tie the game, scoring two runs in the six balls bowled, losing three wickets in the process. I believe the right phrase is "they choked".

    Kevin Pietersen, who has made a few headlines because of his obvious batting ability as well as the fact that he moved from South Africa to England to pursue a career, made a brilliant century. I didnt see too much of the knock, but if you're scoring a century at more than a run-a-ball, so early on in your career, you're doing quite well. I hope I can watch more of him, preferably against better opposition. I did see him do a Slater by kissing his helmet though after he reached his ton. He now has more centuries after six one-day internationals than Vaughan has after sixty two.

    Trescothick, Jones and Vaughan got starts but just didnt go on to make a decent score. Pietersen had a couple of 80 run partnerships, first with Vaughan and then with Collingwood. While Vaughan belaboured to 42, Collingwood scored quite quickly and that partnership put the innings back on track and England finished with 270. South Africa's reply began smoothly and then stuttered as Smith and de Villiers were out in quick succession. Kallis and Gibbs then put on a 130 run stand which seemed to have taken the game away from England when Kallis got out. Gibbs then had a 50 run partnership with Justin Kemp but then the wickets started to fall. It got to a point where South Africa, with Pollock scoring rapidly, had five wickets in hand at the start of the final over and couldnt score three runs off six deliveries. They didnt deserve to win this, not after Pietersen's heroics earlier.

    Trescothick was in charge when England fielded since Vaughan had a stomach bug. I wonder why there're no rules to prevent situations like this. There are laws which prevent batsmen and bowlers from leaving the field and returning to bat or bowl as they please. Why cant there be a similar law for someone who isnt going to bowl when his side is fielding? I am not doubting Vaughan's integrity here, but there's a lot of scope to misuse the law here. Imagine a batsman who isnt a very good fielder just going off the field claiming a tummy upset when his side is bowling and a far superior fielder comes out to replace him, for possibly the entire duration of the innings. Things like this could affect the outcome of the game.
    Thus spake Jagadish @ 10:52 AM |
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