South Africa vs England 4th ODI Review

Just occasionally you get an ODI that’s genuinely gripping. They tend to be usually forgettable and in truth although this was a good example of the format, it still won’t be one that is recalled in a decade. It’s just the disposable nature of 50 over cricket.

Even so. This one see-sawed almost like a Test match, with England getting themselves into terrible trouble at 108-6 with only Hales and Root at that point making any impression on the game. Rabada had ripped through the England top order, not for the first time, and an early finish seemed on the cards.

Root got England up to a half reasonable total, aided by Woakes (who had a good game all round) and Rashid. Root’s century was in the circumstances an outstanding one, quite possibly the best he’s made in short form cricket. But even a total of 262 looked woefully inadequate, especially when the build up had been full of suggestions that 400 was a competitive score.

It didn’t quite turn out that way, as while the South African batsmen all made contributions, England kept chipping away. Broad took out Amla at the top of the order, while Duminy decided that if England couldn’t get De Villiers out then he could, running him out in spectacular style thanks to an athletic pick up and throw from Woakes. 143-5 and 210-8 left England hot favourites but a combination of an astounding innings from Chris Morris and some fairly poor bowling and fielding under pressure turned that around.

Rashid’s removal of Morris with the scores level made it interesting but he’d already won the game for his team, and Imran Tahir applied the coup de grace.

So it’s 2-2 going to Cape Town and all to play for. England will be scratching their heads about losing this one. From absolutely nowhere they got in position to take the series, and then it was taken away from them. That can happen, and they did at least give themselves the chance of a win by continuing to attack even from the wreckage of their innings at the mid point of the first dig. Equally, South Africa will feel that they both nearly threw it away, and also stole a game they had no right to win. How very odd all round.

In other news today, the ECB rather carelessly lost Waitrose as the team sponsor. According to the Mail, the supermarket both felt undervalued and ignored by the ECB, and we’re also unwilling to double the value of it as the ECB wanted. To add to that, they were apparently unimpressed that the ECB were trying to find new partners even before they’d decided not to renew. It is good to know that the ECB treat their sponsors with the same degree of contempt they do everyone else, and perhaps Waitrose too can now consider themselves Outside Cricket with everyone else.

No more Team Waitrose. I’m not sure who will be most relieved.

One other small item that came out of the Mail report was to say that the ECB lost a potentially “lucrative” sponsorship with Johnson’s Paint because of minimal TV coverage of the county game. Whether that means the small number of county matches currently on Sky, or the lack of a wider audience on a more open TV channel is open to question, but it seems both surprising and inept if it’s the former, as persuading Sky to cover additional county matches should have been well within their range of abilities.


34 thoughts on “South Africa vs England 4th ODI Review

  1. SimonH Feb 12, 2016 / 8:16 pm

    In the second paragraph, don’t you mean Hales rather than Buttler?

    The Wanderers seems to have provided another great pitch for cricket. I wonder if an ICC tournament fixture will ever be played there again?


    • thelegglance Feb 12, 2016 / 8:20 pm

      I do yes. I blame this stinking cold – is that a good excuse? Please?


  2. Mark Feb 12, 2016 / 9:05 pm

    “To add to that, they were apparently unimpressed that the ECB were trying to find new partners even before they’d decided not to renew. ”


    Nice to see an organisation which puts such emphasis on trust, puts so little of it into practice. I wonder if they conducted their search for new partners by text message?

    As to the game today. It’s a measure of how far this team has come that scoring 260 is seen as big disappointment. Unfortunately there will be days like this. Englamd don’t have the bowling attack to bail the batsman out.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. oreston Feb 12, 2016 / 9:06 pm

    Hello, I’ve occasionally commented at TFT but for some reason haven’t previously done so here – although I appreciate this blog a great deal. Re. the ECB news, I think losing sponsors (especially for the sorts of reasons given above) is exactly what needs to happen. Will the penny drop? Perhaps eventually, although I suspect it will only be for narrow commercial reasons. Still, any small cracks in the edifice are welcome.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thelegglance Feb 12, 2016 / 9:11 pm

      Hi Oreston, welcome!

      As it was your first post, it had to be approved, but all subsequent ones should be fine, though for some reason WordPress occasionally spits ones with Twitter links on them back at us.

      On your point, I guess it depends how much money any replacement would cough up. That the England team is largely invisible to casual viewers can’t help the price overly.


    • LordCanisLupus Feb 12, 2016 / 9:33 pm

      Hi Oreston,

      Out on a leaving do tonight but just thought I’d welcome you too!

      Fire away!


  4. Sean B Feb 12, 2016 / 9:33 pm

    I’m hoping Anusol becomes the new England team sponsor. It’s supposedly good for dealing with irritable arseholes and we all know that the ECB is full of them (apologies for the language).

    Liked by 3 people

    • MM Feb 12, 2016 / 11:44 pm

      It really is damn good for dealing with irritable arses. I’d happily wear that shirt.

      Team Anusol! That has (((ahem))) a certain ring to it…. I’ll get my rubber donut.


  5. MM Feb 12, 2016 / 11:41 pm

    Well done, Waitrose. I can now go into your Droitwich Spa store and buy your going-out-of-date veggies and your 2 for the price of 3 posh hummus with a clear conscience.


  6. Escort Feb 13, 2016 / 12:07 am

    The mail are reporting that Alex Swann has been given the tin tac from the editors job at the cricketer magazine.


  7. SimonH Feb 13, 2016 / 8:54 am

    Australia are giving NZ a right pounding. They’ve had the luck that’s been going (very good toss to win, Smith dropped in the 20s, Voges bowled off a no-ball that wasn’t) but have completely out-played the home team.

    I was hugely sceptical when Khawaja was recalled but his batting just oozes class now. Voges has straightened out his technique which had become a little too leg-side orientated. Who’da thought it – a guy with 12k+ f-c runs at nearly 50 can bat a bit? The boors who dismissed him based on essentially two Ashes Tests (his 1st and 3rd – he hardly got a bat in the 2nd and scored runs in the 4th and 5th) will no doubt be dismissing these as more easy runs scored on a road against weak bowling. NZ are on their longest unbeaten run at home, England couldn’t beat them in the last two series and they had their first choice seam attack out. Both still have some hurdles to jump (I’d like to see Khawaja against Ashwin on a turner) but could hardly be doing more at this stage.


    • sidesplittin Feb 13, 2016 / 11:18 am

      I’ve been at the Basin the last couple of days – we’re getting a pants down hiding so far. Guptill got a good one but, as ever, was going really hard at the ball way out in front of his pads. Others in our top order could’ve left balls they nicked.

      The deck has now flattened out and Khawaja is batting like DGB 1930. We’ll have to block for two days to get out of this – can’t see the Trans Tasman trophy coming back our way sadly.


      • SimonH Feb 13, 2016 / 11:55 am

        Hi Sidesplittin – lucky you! How are the ticket prices?

        Watling got a good one I thought. Overall, I had the feeling that NZ were pumped up (possibly after the ODI win? perhaps the rarity of the contest? perhaps the emotion around BMac?) and went too hard at the bowling. It was also one of those occasions (like TB in the Ashes) were there didn’t seem to be much playing-and-missing but virtually every false shot found the edge and every edge went to hand and stuck. NZ are rather were they were against India when BMac scored his triple so they could save this – but one’s got to think Australia will bowl, field and be captained better than India on that occasion.

        Talking of DGB, Voges averages over a 100 after 19 Test innings and I can’t find anyone other than the Don who’s achieved that (the nearest are Herbert Sutcliffe and Mike Hussey both averaging around 75-80).


        • sidesplittin Feb 13, 2016 / 6:48 pm

          We paid $15 to sit on the grass bank – I missed some of the last session as I had a nap on the grass; rather overdid the fluids and jetlag kicked in.

          Watling is seriously underated – he’s such a gutsy player and, like most good ‘keepers, you don’t notice him going about his business in the field.

          Aussies have just played much better than NZ so far, although I can’t deny I’m pissed off about the Voges no ball shambles. Here’s to a better day today.


    • RufusSG Feb 13, 2016 / 12:33 pm

      I couldn’t agree with you more, Simon – Khawaja has been an absolute revelation. The previously nervous twitcher from the 2013 Ashes has been replaced with a confident, classy player who’s got all the strokes and become a gun in all formats for Australia, even in the shorter forms where he’s hardly got an opportunity previously (considering his stupendous Big Bash form I’m amazed that he didn’t get an IPL contract). I really enjoy watching him go about his business.

      Regarding Voges, whilst I feel like his average probably flatters him a bit – my gut instinct alone tells me he seems more like a 45-55 average player in reality – and will come down eventually (and there is no denying that the Australian home international pitches have been depressingly flat of late), there’s no denying the guy can bat, make no mistake about it – his stellar county cricket record suggests he can adapt, and he did show signs of class in that Ashes in between his lower-scoring games. Given the conditions and the quality of the attack, as you hint at, I’d say this has been his best test innings to date, even accounting for the huge slice of luck at the start of his innings.


      • SimonH Feb 13, 2016 / 2:13 pm

        Yes, I’m sure Voges’ average will come down and of course nobody’s saying he’s as good as DGB. Still, it’s a fantastic achievement that hasn’t been given it’s due in some quarters. His debut century was also a tremendous innings – next highest score for Australia was 39 and in the match 74.

        By the way, I’ve since discovered that Herbert Sutcliffe and Neil Harvey both averaged over a hundred some way into their Test careers.


      • Gambrinus Feb 13, 2016 / 10:48 pm

        Can anyone remember the ticket prices for the last England tour of NZ? I was living there at the time and seem to remember picking up a 5 day pass for something ridiculous like 30 bucks. Am I right or just wearing rose tinted specs?


  8. Sherwick Feb 13, 2016 / 1:11 pm

    Awwwww what a shame, heart bleeds and all that: “The latest brutal sacking by magazine The Cricketer saw Alec Swann, older brother of former England spinner Graeme, shown the door after only 15 months as editor. 

    Swann thought he was seeing chief executive Guy Evans-Tipping to discuss the latest edition, only to be told to clear his desk.”

    Right, what’s for breakfast?!


    • LordCanisLupus Feb 13, 2016 / 1:31 pm

      Some nice background on the bloke who sacked Swann. 38 years old. Granddad had a baronet. Uncle doesn’t use title.

      Nice and modest on LinkedIn:

      An entrepreneurial business leader with a strong track-record of delivering results. Formally managing director of Westminster Briefing, part of the Dods Group, the global political information, publishing, training, events and communications company. I have recently joined the Cricketer magazine and Cricket Archive as chief executive. The Cricketer is the worlds best selling cricket magazine and was first published in 1921. Cricket Archive is the world’s largest and most comprehensive database of cricket records.

      I have a proven track record of winning new business in both the private and public sector and spotting new opportunities in changing markets.

      I am no fan of Alec Swann, but this bloke sounds like just the sort of chap I’d share a beverage with. The giveaway is anyone who describes themselves as “an entrepreneur”.

      PS – Andy Afford’s LinkedIN indicates he’s out the door, as mentioned earlier.
      Managing Director
      The Cricketer
      October 2013 – February 2016 (2 years 5 months)
      Responsible for the performance of the business, including the shaping and implementation of company policy leading to strategic, profitable and sustainable growth. Wider remit includes responsibility for operational planning, financial control and the promotion of objectives and standards of performance that are not only understood but owned by the whole business.

      The role involves leading teams in the UK, India and Pakistan.


  9. Sherwick Feb 13, 2016 / 2:58 pm

    Regarding Waitrose being unhappy at the ECB’S possible underhand tactics during the contract negotiations.
    May I just remind everyone of something very important according to Strauss, Flower and Cook:

    It’s all about Trust.


    And not leaking.

    Definitely not leaking.


    You see now?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sherwick Feb 13, 2016 / 3:00 pm

      And that’s from me.


  10. John Etheridge Feb 13, 2016 / 3:06 pm

    Simon Hughes – previously ‘editor at large’ – is replacing Alec Swann as editor of The Cricketer.

    Huw Turbervill remains as assistant-editor. He will do most of the day-to-day work.


    • Sherwick Feb 13, 2016 / 3:13 pm

      John, any news about that picture BTW?
      Am asking in a very trusting manner.


    • MM Feb 13, 2016 / 4:14 pm

      Is that going to improve anything? Nurse, we need that Anusol again!


      • Sherwick Feb 13, 2016 / 6:08 pm

        Well, it’ll improve TMS no end if ‘the Analyst’ no longer gets to ‘entertain’ us with his commentary.


      • Topshelf Feb 13, 2016 / 6:39 pm

        It just means poor Turbervill will have even more work to do. He produces most of the magazine on his own already, can’t see Hughes getting his hands dirty with the day-to-day business.

        Expect articles by Hughes in the next issue about whichever ex-player he managed to collar in the bar during the ODI’s.

        The new chief exec made his career in political “communication”, so don’t expect any rocking of the boat with the ECB. Having met him a few times a long time ago I can confirm he is definitely from the right sort of family.


  11. SimonH Feb 13, 2016 / 7:06 pm

    Good to see Bangladesh finishing third in the U19 WC. Lots of potential there for them to become a force to be reckoned with – if only they can harness it.

    Perhaps the ECB might even reward them with the odd fixture? Something like a Test in Durham in March before the nine Test series against India starts, perhaps?


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