The View From Down Here #67 – More Cricket

More sport from down under? Of course! After all, that’s why you’re here, isn’t it?

Cricket
International
Australia-India Series

            My bad – it’s actually a 7-match series…
            And I am still holding on to my promise to dispense with the Ponting-bashing.
Game 2: India v Australia
            India 7/354; Australia 255 (48.3 overs) – India won by 99 runs
            Well, that’s a bit of a turnaround! India, beaten well in the first game, came back with a vengeance in the second. Already excuses are starting for the Australians – injuries caused by their over-reaching schedule, tiredness, etc. But after such a good few months, to hear the old whingeing Aussies come back is rather disheartening. Yes, there were some injuries, but Australia seemed to actually give up as if they had their excuse and, by God!, they were going to live to it. Disappointing…
Game 3: India v Australia
            Australia 5/229; India 4/230 (48.2 overs) – India won by 6 wickets
            More injuries, but at least the players coming over from Australia are some good younger guys, not previous discards. However, knowing the Australian selectors, they’ll only have to fail once and not be given a chance before they’re back in the domestic competition. I hope I’m wrong, but Australia’s selectors have proven this is their mind-set time and time again. Having said that, Australia were competitive, but India did just enough to win.
Game 4: India v Australia
            Australia 250 (49.2 overs); India 226 (46.4 overs) – Australia won by 24 runs
            This is one of the few times I’ve seen in one-day cricket where both teams were bowled out! Quite the bowlers’ wicket, then! But an amazing match, and it was tense all the way through. No one person really dominated, and Australia were let down by four run-outs in their innings. Having said that, Tendulkar’s dismissal was a little dodgy; full credit to Indian captain Dhoni who refused to lay the blame for their defeat on that umpiring mishap. But it was a great game nonetheless that now levels the series at 2-apiece.
Sheffield Shield
South Australia v Victoria
            South Australia 292 & 3/340; Victoria 9(dec)/643 – match drawn (points – Vic 2)
            Victoria lost it. South Australia saved themselves. South Australia bowled on day two without fire and Victoria took full advantage. But they batted too long, and then they bowled without much oomph either. And South Australia’s stand-in captain Daniel Harris – Manou having been sent over to India to play for Australia at the last minute, literally – hit a captain’s knock of a patient 166 not out on the last day to force the draw and keep South australia’s Sheild hopes alive.
Ford Ranger Cup
Queensland v Tasmania
            Queensland 9/233; Tasmania 209 (48.3 overs) – Queensland won by 24 runs (pts – Qld 4)
            Strong win for Queensland in this one against a class side in Tasmania. But Tasmania’s series of run-outs – 4 in the innings – was what really cost them; poor running between the wickets, matched only by Australia in India…
New South Wales v Western Australia
Western Australia 179 (44.1 overs); NSW 3/184 (36.4 overs) – NSW won by 7 wickets (pts – NSW 5)
            The invaluable experience gained in the Twenty20 Champions Trophy has helped the NSW team on its return to domestic duties, and poor WA were the recipients of such a defeat that NSW received a bonus point. NSW are going to be hard to beat this year, I feel.
Women’s National Cricket League Twenty20
Australian Capital Territory v South Australia
            South Australia 7/128; ACT 4/130 (19.2 overs) – ACT won by 6 wickets.
            Another strong win for the ACT.
Western Australia v Victoria
            Victoria 6/133; WA 59 (16.3 overs) – Victoria won by 74 runs
            Only one Western Australian reached double figures. They will need to improve greatly to have any chance this season.
Queensland v Tasmania
            Queensland 6/139; Tasmania 63 (18.2 overs) – Queensland won by 76 runs
            Dominant performance by Queensland, and like WA, Tasmania needs to improve their game.
Women’s National Cricket League
Australian Capital Territory v South Australia
            South Australia 3/301; ACT 267 (47.1 overs) – SA won by 34 runs
            After their Twenty20 form, this is something of a come-down for the ACT. But South Australia were damn impressive with a huge score on the back of centuries from Nitschke (119 n/o plus two wickets) and Rolton (in my opinion the best female cricketer in Australia).
Western Australia v Victoria
            Victoria 6/302; Western Australia 159 (49.3 overs) – Vic won by 143 runs
            As in their Twenty20 match, WA needs to bat much better when faced with the sort of pressure Victoria applied.
Australian Capital Territory v South Australia
            ACT 3/309; South Australia 9/220 – ACT won by 89 runs
            What a difference a day makes! The next day and the score is virtually reversed! Well done to the ACT for making the comeback after the defeat, but for South Australia, this indicates we could be looking at an up-and-down season…
Western Australia v Victoria
Western Australia 141 (47.4 overs); Victoria 5/142 (24 overs) – Vic won by 5 wickets
            A repeat of their first match, only Victoria didn’t have to bat for their full 50 overs… in fact, less than half of them as it turned out. The Vic women look in damn fine form.

Soccer
A-League – Round Thirteen
Brisbane Roar 1 drew with Newcastle Jets 1
Central Coast Mariners 0 drew with Adelaide United 0
Gold Coast United 0 def by North Queensland Fury 2
Perth Glory 2 def Melbourne Victory 1
Sydney 3 def Wellington Phoenix 1
            The results from this round prove just one thing – damn, but this is a close competition! And Australia are getting ready for the World Cup by playing dull, defensive football at all levels…
W-League – Round Five
Melbourne Victory 2 def Newcastle Jets 1
Brisbane Roar 6 slaughtered Perth Glory 0
Central Coast Mariners 1 drew with Canberra United 1
Sydney 6 embarrassed Adelaide United 0

Basketball
NBL Round Six
Melbourne 94 def Gold Coast 88
Wollongong 77 def Cairns 67
New Zealand 99 def Adelaide 91
            Adelaide were down by 18, took back the lead, and then died at the end. Weird game…
Townsville 94 def Melbourne 87
            Melbourne look like they are going to be having a yo-yo season. This will frustrate their fickle fans no end.
Perth 87 def Wollongong 80
Adelaide 87 def Cairns 81
            Considering the road trip, a good result for Adelaide.
WNBL Round Four
Sydney 91 def AIS 50
Perth 69 def by Bulleen 103
Adelaide 75 def Dandenong 66
AIS 45 def by Bendigo 94
Townsville 92 def Logan 64
Canberra 64 def by Bendigo 76
Adelaide 70 def by Bulleen 79

Rugby League
International – Four Nations
            It has been decided. The next sacrificial lamb… uhh, participant in the four nations will be Papua New Guinea. Good luck, guys!
England 16 def by Australia 26
            A game of 2 halves, with England asleep in the first and fighting fit in the second. In fact, at the half time break, Australia had a 26-0 lead. England came back, but Australia did just enough to hold them off. In order to win in the final (if Australia make it that far) they are going to have to lift their game – a draw against New Zealand and a bare win against England are not good omens.
France 12 def by New Zealand 62
            All too easy for New Zealand as every time France started to find their feet, the Kiwis just stepped up a notch until they were humiliated and soundly beaten.

Rugby Union
Bledisloe Cup Test
New Zealand 32 def Australia 19
               Played in Japan! But Australia have started their northern hemisphere playing series with yet another loss to New Zealand (their seventh in a row), whose all-conquering All-Blacks just seem invincible right now, except when they get too arrogant in their playing style. (I know New Zealand are ranked second, but stats sometimes lie.) Having said that, Australia went into the half-time break 16-13 up before New Zealand came out in the second half as if a different team. Now, why Japan? This was done to promote the sport in that country ahead of the 2019 Rugby World Cup to be held there. And having New Zealand come and show how to do it is not a bad way to showcase the game.

And that’s another view in the bag!

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