Temporary place to blog while I get the old one up and running...
Monday, 9 February 2009
NZ vs Australia - SCG - 3rd ODI
No big party last night, alas.
Although we did take it closer than some thought and hushed the crowd towards the end of the match.Bowling first, again, after Dan won the toss on a track that looked pretty good for a One Dayer; and it was.There was a change at the top of the Australian order with Warner missing out and Haddin opening; what a week for him.
Haddin and Clarke played with more positivity than we'd seen so far in the series at the top.They played well, hit the bad balls, and turned good balls into boundary options by moving around the crease.I think they trusted this pitch a little more too, or gambled harder, hitting some good balls, through the line and over the top.
My first spell wasn't too bad.We had planned on being quite aggressive with our lines and lengths and to take wickets as early as possible.I ran in hard and bowled as fast as I have done, things felt good, I even had to take my run up maker back a foot so that I didn't end up 'no balling'.I let go of a yorker that slid under Haddins's bat and fizzed past his off stump early in his innings, an inch or so straighter and it could have been a different day.It wasn't until my second spell that I took my first wicket; this was my first over in the 'batters' power play and the third of my spell.The ball change had just happened and it was a really hard and newish looking ball.It was certainly an opportunity for the batters to score quickly with the harder ball, but also for the bowler to hit the deck hard and see if it does anything off the harder seam.And it did with my first ball, one just jumped a little off the deck and Baz took catch of D. Hussey's edge; the perfect start to the power play.I managed to get through a wicket maiden here with White facing out the last five balls, all dots.That's as good a result as I could imagine at this stage of the match.
Earlier in the innings Baz had been keeping up to Millsy and had worn one, which bounced a little more, on the point of his right shoulder, it flew away as if it had taken the shoulder of the bat.It had been giving Baz a lot of trouble through the innings and at drinks he shot off for a pain killing injection.Soon after he came back on he ran Haddin out with his left hand, his right arm, at the time, wasn't too much use.
I came back at the 'death' and I was tossing up in my head whether to gamble to take wickets or just try to bowl dots.I guess I should have just bowled dots.I got a couple of balls in the wrong place and they ended up at the fence and when I went back to my other dot or one run ball options I was a lot better and picked up a wicket with a yorker, the last ball of my 10 overs.This really annoyed me, why was I gambling, why wasn't I just trying to limit their scoring options and possibly picking up wickets when they made the mistake.It's a fine line between being reckless and economical.It was one of those days that could have been better; a couple of inside edges past the stumps for boundaries, some good balls going for four, that's One Day cricket; ride the luck your making or get hurt trying to make it.
Our run chase didn't start to well, Baz wasn't able to open.In fact, he wasn't going to bat at all had we either got their comfortably or not close at all.Fults stepped up to the opening spot from three and everyone else came up one.Not a perfect scenario but one of those that you just have to get on with.
Fults played well for his 40 and that steady ship gave us a chance in the chase after losing Gups and Rossco early.
We lost three wickets pretty quickly in the middle, Broom, Millsy and Dan fell in a space of about four overs; this really stalled our chase.Timmy came in and hit a couple out of the middle and all of a sudden Baz has his pads on sitting behind Jeets and I.We still needed a hundred odd, but anything can happen with one guy in (Elliott) and Baz at the crease, and it almost did.The crowd was noisy and expectant for an Australian win, they eventually got it, but not without some nervous moments.
It wasn't to be though.Once Elliotts innings came to an end and Baz departing soon after that left Jeets and I to get 30 odd of three overs; a bit of a big ask, but we'd give it a go.I got three bouncers in a row from Hilfenhaus, notsurprisingly.I got under them like a top order player, except that in this form of the game and in this situation we needed runs, not me to not get out.I've worked so hard to get rid of the pull/hook shot from my game that I now have to re learn it to certain situations.
As I mentioned in my last blog Grant Elliott has started up his own bat company with a couple of lads in our Wellington Firebird's team.It's taken a while to get off the ground with getting ICC approval being the hardest task.Finally, "buzzbats.co.nz" is up and away.And there is no better way for TS (Elliott) to be getting his product out there than by scoring 61* in our win that the MCG and then yesterdays amazing 115 at the SCG.His knock yesterday was as good a One Day hundred as you're going to see especially in the circumstances.He was bumped up the order after Baz wasn't able to open to four from five and looked comfortable from ball one.And now in his 14th One Dayer, with an average of around 85 he looks like the international cricketer he has had the potential to be.I'm sure that now he's promoting his own product when he's batting there's an even higher motivation to hang about and raise his Buzz bat.
So here we are in Adelaide, we're 2-1 up with two games to go.This series is important to us and last night's loss was a bummer, losing hurts, no matter what.In saying that we lost a game of cricket, and when you think about perspective it's not that bad at all.Families in Victoria and NSW are losing not only their homes, but their families.These bush fires are horrific.I know one of the Victoria Police that is out there doing their bit to help out, pulling double shifts and giving up days off to work; these fires affect so many people. I just hope as this series goes on we can do something to help the families, the fire-fighters and police and anyone involved with this disaster.
I've just come from our Captains meeting and I can reveal that as a team we are donating a considerable part of our match fee towards this disaster. It's a great thing that we can help out. We are also giving up a signed playing shirt to be auctioned off at the end of the series. Here's hoping that auction makes a small fortune, cause they need it!
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