Richly Deserved: Cricket World Cup Report, Days 28-32

DO NOT POST YET. WILL UPDATE

WEDNESDAY: ENGLAND 147 FOR 6 DEFEAT BANGLADESH 143 BY FOUR WICKETS

After their upset of South Africa, Bangladesh returned to earth. Saquibul Hasan gave them a chance making 57 but led by Sajid Mahmood and Monty Panesar, England took wickets at regular intervals and bowled Bangladesh out in just under 38 overs.

Michael Vaughan led the England batsmen making 30 and had a bit of difficulty with Bangladesh’s impressive bowling attack but reaching the low target was inevitable.

THURSDAY: SRI LANKA 222-4 DEFEATED NEW ZEALAND 219-7 BY SIX WICKETS

This is looking like it will be one of the semi-final matchups in a little more than a week. If so, New Zealand will really have to solve Sri Lanka’s bowlers. Veterans Chaminda Vaas and Muttiah Muralitharan took three wickets each. Only Scott Styris (111) was in the crease long enough to have an impact for New Zealand.

Kumar Sangakkara (69) and Sanath Jayasuriya (64) put together a century partnership before losing the second wicket for the winners. But New Zealand did keep themselves in the game as it took Sri Lanka a little more than 45 overs to surpass the target.

FRIDAY: AUSTRALIA 92 FOR 1 DEFEATED IRELAND 91 ALL OUT BY NINE WICKETS

Ireland had lost three wickets after scoring just two runs. Their opening four batsmen combined scored two. John Mooney (23) was the high scorer for a side bowled out in 30 overs. Australia needed just 12.2 overs to get this mismatch done with just before lunch.

The game took 3 1/2 hours, or about the same length of time as a World Series game since Fox took over the broadcast rights.

SATURDAY: NEW ZEALAND 196-5 DEFEATED SOUTH AFRICA 193-7 BY FIVE WICKETS

The best bowling performance of the tournament. Jacob Oram and Bond, Shane Bond, dismissed Graeme Smith and AB deVilliers for just three, and stymied both Jacques Kallis and Herschelle Gibbs so much that they needed 20 overs just to reach 50. Craig McMillan took three wickets. Gibbs ended up with 60 but off 139 balls.

South Africa did make it difficult though. Styris did make 56 and Stephen Fleming 50, but they needed nearly 49 of the 50 overs to make the target.

SUNDAY: Bangladesh vs. Ireland

To give you an idea of how much buzz there was in this monumental clash, organizers closed the ticket window 1 1/2 hours into the match. Then they opened the gates to anyone willing to spend their Sunday afternoon in the Barbados watching two associate nations go at it. It was reminiscent of some Canadian Idol performance shows I’ve been to where CTV staffers approached passers-by on Front Street and asked them to come in and fill the seats.

Attendance has been a problem at this World Cup as organizers completely overestimated how much the locals were willing to pay for tickets and incidentals, but this is truly a ridiculous situation.

As for this game between the bottom-feeders,

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