Sunday, March 12, 2006

I don't like criket, oh no, I love it!

Aussie disbelief as they score the highest One Day International score ever. And lose.

Whilst England crumble to Kumble in Mohali, a match of unparralelled exictement and high scoring was taking place at the Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg. With a reputation for, and a proud history of, exciting matches things are never dull in the Wanderers. This, however, is something out of pure fiction, apart from that it happened.
Australia posted a humongous 434-4 (Gilchrist 55, Katich 79, Ponting 164, Hussey 81). It was such a startling total. Even with a lightning fast outfield and a short(ish) boundary on one side, the ball whizzed to - and over - the ropes at an unerring rate. So after posting the highest international ODI score ever, the Aussies were then remorselessly thrashed around by South Africa in what must go down as the most impressive innings ever. They won with a ball to spare totalling 438-9 (Smith 90, Gibbs 175, Boucher 50*).
The stats speak for themselves, but despite this I am still going to talk about it because, to reiterate the point, this was a record-breaking match of proportions so epic Castle, Akabusi and Baker could never contemplate.
The two innings scores were the highest ever in ODIs; the toal of 872 runs scored is, therefore, a new world's best ever by over 100 runs. Spare a thought for Mick Lewis. Lewis was called up for the injured Glenn McGrath and was smashed all over the place to have figures of 10-0-113-0. A new worst ever, surpassing Muttiah Muralitharan's recent 10-0-99-0. Even in my worst spell of left-arm, slow, not turning, long hops, donkey drops and full tosses could I do as bad as that. Granted, I've never bowled at anyone good. (In fact my most succesful spell was a few overs bamboozling a 12 year-old before having him snaffled at short mid-wicket). Herschelle Gibbs' 175 enters the top international, individual scores ever. The total of 26 6s and 87 4s over the two innings is also a record.
And if any proof was needed why this wouldn't happen in England allow me to tell of my experience. After getting up at 8:30am to listen to the England vs. India test on Radio 5 live extra (no comment), I went with my girlfriend to Covent Garden and as she entered some cosmetic boutique-thingy, I saw a big screen with the Aussie vs. Proteas cricket on as it was approaching its epic crescendo. Result! Divine intervention to such an extent that I could have been cajoled into believing in God (I think that's more blogger's licence than actuality...) Being a great boyfriend, I tell my beloved to take her time. After a ball (one f-ing ball!) some nob turns it over to the last two minutes of Man Utd vs. Newcastle. What kind of putz would do that???

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