Hide yer shame with yer Black Caps

I know it’s only a warm-up to a knockout tournament, but losing to the Warriors shows just how weak NZ are in cricket right now. Granted, Vettori took a rest (but had a capable sub in Jeetan Patel) as did Shane Bond, which is odd, given Bond “seemed tired” after just 7 overs according to Cricinfo ball-by-ball commentary in the last ODI he played against India in Sri Lanka. Surely Bond could have done with more warmup in African conditions, and learn to mesh with proven opening pace bowler (in SA) Darryl Tuffey (who took 3 wickets).

The only good was the scores of 3 of the top batting order, despite another McCullum failure (and without keeping to distract him). The odd result was the normally woeful Butler taking 4 wickets. Kyle Mills of course flattered the opposition, with an expensive no wickets taken and a flop with the bat – why is he picked?

Selectors must take responsibility – McCullum is clearly not captaincy material (Tuffey was held back even when the match was dying) and cannot hold his place in the team on batting alone. Mills is just awful – please pick a real bowler (Mark Gillespie or Iain O’Brien would do). The recent all-rounder picks (Diamanti, Broom and Elliott) have not performed – a half-bat and half-bowl does not make a whole performance. I do not lament the lack of Oram – his form is so bad lately that he should be considered not selected, rather than rested.

It would be intriguing if Andre Adams could be enticed back – Tuffey & Bond opening, with Adams and Vettori to follow would give a decent bowling attack. Otherwise, at this rate, NZ Cricket manager Geoff Allott should be grabbing the ball and opening the bowling (fast-med LH; top bowler in 1999 world cup). Seriously.

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