Australia vs Sri Lanka ODI match Sydney 8 February, 2008 – A Fun Report
Other possible headlines
– Gilchrist trying to stretch his time
– Is this Jayasuriya’s retirement? Very near?
– Nathan Bracken knocks on the test team’s doors (once again)
– Hopes keeps his foot firmly in the door
We saw a lopsided match as expected. Gilly was not his usual self. He looked as if he wants to spend the rest of his time before retirement on the crease. Aussies played slow and careful and were a little below their average score of 273. However, the other reason is that Sri Lankan bowling has averaged their opposition around 240 in the last year, so when you average both you expect a score of about 256-257 and Aussies were just there.
However, Muralitharan didn’t help the cause by his average contribution, though I believe Jayasuriya should have been bowled, but maybe Sri Lanka thought they were on the top?, is it? Michael Clarke and Hopes were the mainstay of this score. It looks as if Hopes has planted his foot firmly inside the door. Haddin would have to wait for Gilly’s retirement.
For the record, Sri Lankans at least had a gettable score to start with. Since Sri Lanka batting second can expect to score between 241-256. However, on this ground it was never going to be possible. Sri Lankans began with a bang! Actually 2 bangs in 2 balls as both the openers departed. Suddenly, Jayasuriya’s retirement seems to be very near. Wasn’t it only the last year that I had claimed him to be one of the most valuable players in the world? Well, I think let us arrange a farewell party. He deserves a huge party for having changed the way One Day Cricket is played.. The sole reason for him not retiring is – there is no worthy successor. It is a very sad statement to make..
Jayawardene hung around allowing Sangkara to score a few runs before the carnage began in right earnest. Nathan Bracken had recently mentioned that there were too many people like Noffke and Bollinger between him and a test match slot and he was willing to keep reducing the distance. Today it seemed as if he wants to play the next test match. Maybe Staurt Clark’s return inspired him to give his best, and also Shaun Tait’s absence gives him a chance which he was more than willing to grab. Maybe Noffke’s absence also helped. Well for the record, Sri Lanka was knocked out for 125 – however they didn’t drag on but kept a scoring rate of 4 even till the end.
All in all, the Australian crowd must’ve been happy. They’ve seen their team having to work in most of the matches in the recently concluded test series. After that surely a one sided battle is a morale booster.
Well, maybe the Rain Gods should have helped the poor Lankans, that was the most unfair part.
(the above are written in a funny mood and not intended to hurt your sentiment – i doubt if any actual players gets time to read – so please dont (get) hurt yourself defending them)