2015 World Cup – Games 31 & 32 – New Zealand v Afghanistan & Australia v Sri Lanka

Two matches tonight, with the unbeaten Black Caps against the feel good guys (despite their record defeat to Australia) and an interesting match to see who will likely finish second in the group between Australia and Sri Lanka.

Comments below.

Sorry for no posts today. Hope I can get something up tomorrow.

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23 thoughts on “2015 World Cup – Games 31 & 32 – New Zealand v Afghanistan & Australia v Sri Lanka

    • SimonH Mar 8, 2015 / 12:43 am

      Afghanistan against NZ have lasted longer than England and Australia and at the time of writing have outscored England.

      Najibullah’s 88m six off Southee on to the roof of the stand the highlight so far. His 85m six off the same bowler from the first ball of the PP wasn’t bad either.

      Like

  1. d'Arthez Mar 8, 2015 / 12:54 am

    Looks like it is a fairly decent effort by the Afghanistan batsmen thus far.

    Sure 144/6 after 38 overs is not great – but a hell of a lot better than the efforts England put in. And at least there was a 50 in the Afghanistan innings. Root topscored with 46 from 70 in England’s innings against the same opposition. Haddin did with 43 for the Aussies against New Zealand.

    Afghanistan may achieve what Australia and England did not: still be playing when the floodlights will be turned on.

    Now, it could get a bit fun in the chase, if New Zealand play in a similar vein as they played against Australia and Scotland.

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  2. SimonH Mar 8, 2015 / 9:52 am

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    • Mark Mar 8, 2015 / 10:23 am

      Yes Arron, on the eve of a vital match for England its good to see Peter Moores spending his time on the important issues. “I think the policy on the KP situation has been made pretty clear by Paul,” Moores said.

      Now of course this could be buck passing by Moores. Saving your own skin seems to be the number 1 requirement for working for the ECB

      James Whitaker, who is currently with the team in Adelaide, has said there is “no way Pietersen will ever get back into an England team”. Whittaker, and Moores should be in line for the sack after the farce selections and tactics so far in this World Cup. Graves should sack Downton. He is the bottle neck in the whole system. Nobody can do their jobs without his say so.

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    • geoffboycottsgrandmother Mar 8, 2015 / 2:59 pm

      It’s worse than that Arron. If Graves exceeded his authority in simply commenting that selection should be on merit, what about Downton exceeding his authority in meddling in selection matters and sacking a player before a Head Coach had been selected and Ashley Giles had been replaced as selector?

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  3. Arron Wright Mar 8, 2015 / 10:29 am

    Meanwhile…

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/icc-cricket-world-cup-2015/content/story/845927.html

    England’s ‘probable’ side is the same one thrashed by all full members, except Jordan for Finn. What Broad and Ballance have to do to get dropped is anyone’s guess. I honestly think we’re watching an even bigger farce than the shenanigans that took place to keep Cook in the side in Sri Lanka. They were halcyon days compared to this.

    I agree wholeheartedly with the second comment below the article.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mark Mar 8, 2015 / 10:49 am

      This is not surprising since Engand have decided that what goes on in the dressing room is more important than what goes on out on the field. KP did not fit in, while Broad does.

      We were told a year ago that now KP was out of the team the performances would improve because team harmony is more important than ability, tactics, and execution. This is obviously claptrap. The England cricket team is not a sports team but a cult. It’s more like the Masons.

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      • Grumpy Gaz Mar 8, 2015 / 11:41 am

        Time to quote Gough again:

        ““And the people making that decision… Paul Downton, managing director, he’s been out of the game for 15-20 years. Pathetic. James Whitaker, lovely man, he always looks smart, nice hair, nice suits. Chairman of selectors – one Test match for England”

        Like

    • LordCanisLupus Mar 8, 2015 / 11:44 am

      I thought you would have to go some to match Andrew Hilditch and Co. In 2010/11..

      Like

      • Mark Mar 8, 2015 / 1:05 pm

        “James Whitaker, lovely man, he always looks smart, nice hair, nice suits.”

        Sums up ECBs England. Broad is now a wine expert picking out the next vintage for the Ashes series. Cook “looks like a leader, captain material.”

        It’s not a cricket team, but a department at Waitrose. Still I’m sure they have done their laptop stock taking, and ground measurement analysis. So nothing can stop them now.

        Liked by 1 person

    • d'Arthez Mar 8, 2015 / 11:46 am

      “What Broad and Ballance have to do to get dropped is anyone’s guess. ”

      a) Score runs
      b) take wickets
      c) get injured to the extent that they struggle to walk
      d) all of the above
      e) none of the above
      f) hire competent management and coaches

      I honestly don’t know the answer to this one, but I’d probably go with “f”.

      I’d make at least the following changes:
      Broad getting a rest and Jordan getting in. I have no idea how Jordan will bowl, but he’d struggle to do worse with the ball, or with the bat. I´d also give Broad a rest for the Caribbean tour, since he does not seem fully recovered. Actually do some proper injury management.

      Finn to be dropped for Tredwell, with the understanding, made clear to Finn, that he needs time away from Saker, and that it is better for Finn that he won’t play as long as Saker is there to ruin him. Letter of dismissal on its way for Saker as well. If firing Saker is more expensive than just paying out the remainder of his contract, just pay out his contract, and set the bowlers free.

      Bring in Bopara for Ballance, and bat him in the lower middle order. A bit of a floating position depending on what the game situation is. The same floating position applies to Buttler, since you’ll want to give him time to make a big score at the end.

      And if possible drop Morgan for Hales. I realize it is unfair to play him completely out of position. Hales should not fear failure, he can play his natural game, and the only way to do that is by making it clear to Hales that this World Cup has been another SNAFU, and that post World Cup, he’ll be given a decent run as an opener. Remove the unrealistic expectations from him, and just tell him (and the whole team), that the most important thing is, to enjoy the game.

      Taylor needs to bat at three. Simple. If the selectors have the courage to drop Morgan, Taylor to captain as well. The guy has a cricketing brain. Root just has the looks. And we know how that ended last Future England Captain around …

      Oh, and bowl Bopara. A few overs from a 6th bowler, leaves a team with plenty of options at the death. So if say Jordan goes like 2-0-40-0, you can bring in someone who has not finished his full quota to bowl Jordan´s instead.

      It is not rocket science.

      Like

      • geoffboycottsgrandmother Mar 8, 2015 / 3:11 pm

        g) Whistle
        h) Look out of window

        ….

        av) Lead young inexperienced players (like young Broad) astray by going out for drinks with them
        aw) Fail to socialise with other players (like young Broad)

        etc

        Spot on about bowling Bopara. He’s been criminally underbowled. He’s England’s variety. He messes with the timing of the batsmen. The other bowlers will bowl better with him in the side and bowling.

        Like

  4. Arron Wright Mar 8, 2015 / 10:47 am

    Deserves a post by itself, but I’m putting it here to minimise the chances of it being missed.

    A provocative article by Russell Degnan, on whether the ICC’s proposed format for 2019 even makes *financial* sense given the context of the Big Three’s other priorities, and particularly the enormously fishy (and under-reported) decision to make the World T20 a quadrennial rather than biennial event.

    http://m.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/843807.html?source=home;objects=843929,843787,843815,843807,822961;type=features;teamSettingId=0;refsource=index

    Like

  5. SimonH Mar 8, 2015 / 10:48 am

    SL needing 105 off last ten overs with six wickets left. Chandimal going like a train. Perera to come.

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    • SimonH Mar 8, 2015 / 11:02 am

      Train derailed – Chandimal retired hurt with probable hamstring tweak (or cramp). Mathews out to a Watto bouncer as well.

      Two new batsmen in who haven’t faced a ball.

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      • SimonH Mar 8, 2015 / 11:25 am

        SL challenge petered out. Looks like a QF against SA for them.

        Starc at the time of writing as an ER of 3.12. Next lowest in the match is 5.75 (Faulkner). Man of the Match? Not a prayer.

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      • d'Arthez Mar 8, 2015 / 11:57 am

        Yeah train derailed. Sri Lanka really looked into it, but in the end a comfortable victory for the Australians.

        And the scorecard will suggest it was another one-sided game. And a good thing too, because I am not sure if I could handle another instance of Dave Richardson’s delusions being aired.

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  6. @pktroll Mar 8, 2015 / 11:45 am

    Yep, if it had been down to me Starc today and Cusack yesterday would have been my men of the match in their particular game. In large scoring games surely the impact of a successful and economical bowler should receive due credit.

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    • SimonH Mar 8, 2015 / 12:01 pm

      To be fair, 102 off 53 balls is pretty special. SL needing 370-odd as opposed to 320-odd made a huge difference. Chandimal’s injury was the other turning point. Chandimal actually made his fifty quicker than Maxwell’s first fifty – whether he’d have been able to go on we’ll never know.

      I’m still ticking about Cusack though…..

      Like

      • @pktroll Mar 8, 2015 / 12:24 pm

        I confess to being very much a bowlers’ man. I was gobsmacked that Cusack didn’t get the award yesterday, even if I like Ed Joyce. Starc offered exceptional economy given the circumstances and wicket-taking threat that eventually saw the Aussies break the back of Sri Lanka. I’d agree it was a very fine effort from Maxwell, though I do think that to get THAT economical is a feat of its own.

        Like

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