Friday, November 11, 2011

South Africa pins down Aussies at Newlands


The game of Cricket is a great charmer often for its unpredictable ways.  It is a great leveller too..  In the 1980s, there were too many draws (no results) which was driving the spectators away.  Now a days, there are most results and sometimes unpredictable ones at that. 

At Feroz Shah Kotla, India conceded a lead of 95 runs but came back strongly to bowl West Indies out for 180 and then went on to win the match – the debutant Ashwin excelled and got the Man of the Match.

Elsewhere the first day of the match at Newlands, Cape Town was affected by rain and only 55 overs of play was possible.  Aussies progressed to 214 losing 8 wickets with Michael Clarke remaining unbeaten on 107).  There were two debutants Vernon Darryl Philander – but more was spoken about the leggie Imran Tahir.   Philander had made his ODI debut way back in June 2007 against Ireland and played last of his 7 matches in Aug 2008. In June 2007, at Belfast he played against India bowled 8 overs condeding 37 runs without taking a wicket.   Almost a forgotten man one thought !
 
Yesterday at Newlands was different.  23 wickets fell in a single day – on the second day of the Test match – with fortunes wildly swinging.  Australians closed at 284 with Clarke making 151.  That itself looked a small total to defend.    With Harris and Shane Watson slicing through, South Australia was bowled out for 96 giving Aussie a huge lead.
file photo of Philander from cricinfo.com
More drama was to follow. The redoubtable Australians were blown and were in danger of making the lowest total ever in Test cricket.  At one stage, they were 21 for 9 and their obliterating the record low of 26 beckoned for real.   Peter Siddle and Nathan Lyon the last wicket pair took them to 47, still abysmal low.   It still is  their lowest total since 1902 and fourth lowest of all time.  23 wickets on a day is the highest in over 100 years and only 3 times have more batsmen been dismissed in a day all centuries ago.

In a single day, both teams have been bowled out once and four innings have been played.  Sanity was to return as SA chasing 236 were 81 for one at draw of stumps. 

Certainly a great advertisement for Test Cricket

Regards – S. Sampathkumar.

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