World Cup Game 2 – Australia v England

The old enemies meet at Melbourne. Remember 2013 in the Champions Trophy, when we made beating Australia in a world competition look routine? Not now. We are the team with the lack of class, and Australia are the home team and favourites.

Still, one World Cup match between us two in Australia and we lead 1-0.

Probably the match that hurts the most is this one…

Interesting Stat – no Australian has made a century against England in the World Cup. Ricky Ponting has the highest score – 86 in Antigua.

England have the only centurion in World Cup games between the two. You might know the chap who did it, but we mustn’t mention him, as we’ve moved on. He made 104.

World Cup Match 1 – New Zealand v Sri Lanka

Opening match of the tournament. Remember the opening game from 1992, anyone…

A pretty nonsense copy, if truth be told.

The World Cup kicks off at Hagley Oval in Christchurch.

Some stats. New Zealand record score by an individual in a World Cup match.. 171 not out by Glenn Turner v East Africa in 1975. No Old Man Pringle in that opposition.

Highest NZ score v Full Test Nations in World Cup cricket – 141 by Scott Styris v Sri Lanka at Bloemfontein in 2003.

Here’s this game in 1992…

Some more stats. Sri Lanka record in the the World Cup is 145 by Aravinda de Silva v Kenya in Kandy in 1996. Against full test nations it is 144 by Tillakaratne Dilshan against Zimbabwe in Pallakele in the last World Cup. The highest score outside Asia is 124 by Marvan Atapattu in Durban. Yes. THAT game, Shaun Pollock….

Comments please when the game commences (all non-match related comments to go on my piece below). More will be added here in the run-up to the game.

Definitely Not A World Cup Preview

This is the pattern folks. You lot get to comment all day (or at least until I get a mobile data package, or a wi-fi internet worth a light in the daytime) and I get to write something in the evening. Or if I’m really keen I might do something first thing. It also means that Simon or Arron get to break the world exclusives…

And by that I mean Derek Pringle, getting to tell us the story of how he had Javed Miandad stone dead AGAIN, in the Daily Mail. Now I know that one of their other main writers has a bit of a job on to get our favourite Yellow Book in on time, so there was/is a vacancy at the Mail for all the games our main man Newman can’t cover. So they’ve got Derek in to do his thing, we hope. Indeed, I pray…. This is like Christmas to me. Imagine, I thought I’d never get to fisk an article ever again with his brilliant prose in full effect, but not only might he be back, he might be forming an amazing double act with everyone’s favourite leak repository. This can’t get any better.

Yes, I saw Selfey doing what he does – that wonderful “I’ve heard this rumour” and then admonishing those who think this is pure gossip stirring into the bargain. Arron nicked my line – now Australia can experience what we have been for the last year or so.

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Give me strength. The ECB’s media campaign, which Tickers is going to town on, has this sort of effluent on my feed. It’s absolutely mind-boggling awful. In this one, Ian Bell pretends to catch Paul Newman out of a burning building for leaking that story about his managerial skills, while two other stooges laugh about “Cook’s strutting jawline”. Or some other old tossery.

Nick Knight gives us the insight we know we need…

http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/cricket/cricket-world-cup-2015-if-england-are-to-shine-at-the-world-cup-they-must-start-winning-the-key-moments-in-games–nick-knight-10039665.html

Because losing the key moments is a major strategic plus.

By now England know they can compete against the best sides in the world but what remains uncertain is whether they have yet learned to do it when it really matters. It is a problem of which unfortunately I have first-hand knowledge, for it afflicted the England one-day side I played in. You would look around the dressing room and see all these world-class players, yet when it came to big global tournaments we hardly competed. We did not win regularly enough to engender a winning spirit and although it’s sad to say so, did not really understand how to win. The loss to Australia in Port Elizabeth in 2003 is a perfect example. It was match England were winning, should have won, yet lost.

Because Knight is a one-day guru.

As always, I’ll remind you to fill in your competition entries before the teams are named for tomorrow’s opening game.

Keep the comments coming. At last, some proper cricket to look forward to.