The View From Down here #74 – Short One

It’s Christmas, so not a lot to report, I’m afraid. And with everything else happening (especially my birthday on Friday – Amazon wishlist, people!) and no job lined up for 2010 and the wrong time of year to be looking, and so feeling not too good about life, this is brief. Again.

Cricket
International
West Indians Tour Of Australia

Australia 7(dec)/520 & 150; West Indies 312 & 323 – Australia won by 35 runs
            Australia won, and only just, on the back of a good first innings. But not one Australian scored a century this series. Australia’s second innings was woeful and the Windies fought well but seemed to be in too much of a hurry. However, even though they won, Australia also lost. They lost respect and they lost what was left of their good name. Their behaviour was verging on childish, the way they interacted with the West Indian players was almost bullying, and the fact no-one had a stand-out performance makes the next 3 tests against Pakistan, starting on Boxing Day, nothing like the foregone conclusion many in the media thought it would be three months ago…
International
Pakistan Tour Of Pakistan

Tasmania v Pakistan (3-day match)
Pakistan 437 & 4/141; Tasmania 193 – match drawn
            This is Pakistan’s only warm-up match before the Boxing Day test. Having said that, they looked very impressive with both bat and ball. They will definitely five the Australians a run for their money, and after the West Indians have put the Aussies on the back foot mentally they could well come away with the win.
Sheffield Shield
South Australia v Western Australia
            Western Australia 401 & 2(dec)/198; South Australia 6 (dec)/249 & 246 – WA won by 104 runs (WA – 6pts)
            Yet again the state captains make sporting declarations in order to force a result. And win, lose or draw, this makes everyone look good. And this made what could have been a dull game of purely first innings played in a boring manner into an engaging and tense contest. SA needed more than 300 on the last day to win and even though they fell short, it was a great battle. And, again, congratulations to the captains.
New South Wales v Victoria
            New South Wales 8(dec)/390 & 3(dec)/306; Victoria 311 & 3/144 – match drawn (NSW – 2pts)
            NSW dominated, but unlike so many other matches the win was not played for. Victoria are stumbling a bit suddenly, and this match showed they are struggling in many areas.
Ford Ranger Cup
Victoria v South Australia
            South Australia 7/339; Victoria 290 (43.5ov) – SA won by 49 runs
            Victoria lost because their batting failed. Apart from Rogers scoring a magnificent 140, the next highest scores were both in the 40s, and then the next highest score was extras with 27. South Australia on the other hand had man-of-the-match Cosgrove scoring 104 while Borgas and Cooper both got into the 70s. It’s taken a while, but South Australia seem to have finally hit their straps in the one-day form of the game, giving the same performances as they have been in the 4-day Shield competition.
Women’s National Cricket League Twenty20
Women’s National Cricket League
            No women’s cricket for a week or so.

Soccer
A-League – Round Nineteen
            A split round, with one match this week, one next, the rest in the new year.
Brisbane Roar 2 def North Queensland Fury 0
W-League – Grand Final
Sydney 3 def Brisbane Roar 2
            The come from behind win was an exciting game. And I will say it again – the best soccer this year came from the women. Exciting, attacking and played hard. It’s actually going to be a disappointment to only have the men’s game to watch until the end of the season, with their dull defensive tactics and stifling play.

Basketball
NBL Round Thirteen
            Apart from Melbourne, literally any of the teams can make the finals this year. A close call and rather exciting… except that old Melbourne bias creeping back in is still a concern.
Adelaide 91 def Gold Coast 81
New Zealand 80 def by Townsville 87
Cairns 71 def Wollongong 70
Perth 70 def by Adelaide 82
Melbourne 68 def by New Zealand 77
Gold Coast 88 def Wollongong 84
WNBL Round Eleven
Townsville 89 def Sydney 80
Canberra 83 def Dandenong 60
AIS 51 def by Dandenong 102
Adelaide 96 def Perth 74
Bulleen74 def Bendigo 67
Logan73 def by Sydney 75

Other Sport
Aerobics: After finishing 5th, 4th, 3rd, and 2nd, Kylie Thomas won the Individual Female Sports Aerobics title. I must admit to some bias here, as one of Australia’s previous world champions in this sport – Patsy Tierney – I had a very small involvement with in coaching (as well as having gone to school with her). Also, I really enjoy competitive sports aerobics as a spectator sport. So well done to Kylie!

That’s this view – December 13 through 21.

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