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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

T20 WC Semi line up - Rain decides the composition

The second round of the tourney involving 12 teams – filtered to best 8 is about to begin. Still there are two spots to be decided. SA is sure to put across Afghans, whilst Bangla has theoretical chance of upsetting Aussie applecart.

For Indians, the matches most likely would be : Friday 7th against Aussies (or Bangla!!) @ 7pm; 9th Vs West Indies @ 7 pm and 11th against Lankans @ 10.30 pm. In the other half, Pak, Kiwi, SA & England will fight it out.

Ireland could boast of sharp fielding but their hopes of giant killing act went astray due to the fickle Guayanese weather – May reported to be a dry month but rain is following cricketers. Collingwood called for revision in rules after their loss to WI and could have ended up with another. England scrambled for 120 losing 8 and Ireland were 14/1 in 3.3 when rain concluded the match. England struggled against the young left arm spinner George Dockrell. This score was possible due to an Irish man – Eoin Morgan who top scored with 45 off 37. Now England have qualified with bowling less than 10 overs in all.

Elsewhere, Zimbabweans had shocked Pak & Aussie in warm up ties but were rattled by Kiwis – made a very good start – one point 57/1 off 7; capitulated to 74/9 and all out for 84. Kiwis were helped by DL machination and won easily.

The names of Frank Duckworth & Tony Lewis are on the lips of every cricket follower. Rain rules are indeed strange; the revised targets generally favour the chasers as they have the job cut out in the shortened version. Remember the 1992 WC (50 overs) semi final fiasco - SA required 22 to beat England off 13; a short rain disruption, back in the game SA required the same but off just one ball.

The Duckworth-Lewis method was first used in the ICC Trophy in Malaysia in 1997 and in 1998 was applied in New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan, India and West Indies. ICC adopted in 1999 WC but it was not brought to play as weather was fine. It has a standard version based on published list of tables and Professional Edition which runs on computers.

In June 2009, WI chasing 161/6 of England, had it revised to 80 off nine; in the present edition England made 191/5 but was revised to 60 off six overs – left Collingwood complaining of the method. Strangely when Pollard got out for a duck stumped off a wide, it actually helped the Windies as they gained an extra run without a ball debit.

The result of a game is better decided on field where it is unpredictable with fluctuating fortunes – not by mathematicians. Almost a decade back V Jayadevan, an engineer from Kerala had prescribed another version taking into account the statistics from the games played in the past. This was adopted in the rebel Indian Cricket League.

With regards – S Sampathkumar.


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