Posts Tagged ‘Australia’

Inconsistent Kiwi cricket selectors

March 5, 2009

Aaaargh! Can someone please explain to me how the NZ cricket selectors are consistent in picking their ODI squad? Wicketkeeper Brendon ‘mouth’ McCullum aggravated a thumb injury in the Napier ODI, so will likely bat only in tommorrow’s 2nd ODI between NZ and India at Wellington. His replacement is supposedly Peter McGlashan from Northern Districts (McCullum though, has a history of keeping and batting even if injured, so McGlashan may yet dip out).

The question arises because, in the just completed Chappell-Hadlee ODI series against Australia, NZ flew Gareth Hopkins over as cover for McCullum when he was injured then. So what has happened to make the selectors revise their views on the superiority of Hopkins over McGlashan? It’s not unavailability of either player due to domestic matches, as all 6 Kiwi provincial sides are playing on the same day as the 2nd ODI (surely a scheduling & marketing stuff up?)

I make no claim as to which keeper is better – Hopkins or McGlashan – just that there should be clear reasons for changing selections over such a short timeframe… Perhaps it is this from Glenn Turner:

“Peter McGlashan is a good improviser with the bat in the middle order, and also gives us cover for Brendon McCullum as wicketkeeper.”

But that comment was to justify swapping Hopkins for McGlashan when shifting mode from ODI’s to a Twenty20 match.

Oh, and wasn’t it nice to see the players straight back from injury/exile perform so well against India in the Napier ODI? No, you weren’t impressed by the ducks of Oram, Butler & Mills? You must have been distracted by the mere 190* of Jamie How in the first class NZ A match against the English A side. That’s the way to regain your place at the top level!!! (of more concern is James Franklin and Trent Boult not taking wickets – though the wicket may have been a tad flat).

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Crumpled Black Caps

February 16, 2009

Vettori is right to be peeved – his team performed poorly chasing down 150 in last night’s T20 Sydney match. But there was always doubt about Elliot’s ability to accelerate above ODI scoring pace of 6 an over, so if they wanted to win perhaps they should have kept Ross Taylor (maybe with a runner for his hamstring twinge).

The Chappell-Hadlee series draw reflects the balanced teams – Oz has slumped and NZ risen to a similar level, though those pesky Ozzies are already bouncing back up the skill ladder. So are NZ, but we are still hamstrung by bizzarre selections like repeat failures Peter Fulton and Craig Cumming. Hopefully the selectors have now got the message… though it appears not, with the feeble Ian Butler reselected for the T20 match. Sigh.

The good, the bad and the Black Caps…

December 1, 2008

And so ends another eminently forgettable test series against the neighbours, with results all too familiar to Kiwis. Not the farewell Bracewell would have wanted as coach, but a clear signal to new coach Andy Moles of the challenges he faces.

(more…)

Freedom of religion? Not in Victoria!

September 25, 2008

Update: Sadly, this ‘abortion as a human right’ bill has been passed by the State of Victoria in Australia. Abortion is now considered to be an entirely legal action – no longer even considered the ‘acceptable’ taking of a life, it is not even deemed the taking of a life anymore. It seems some Australians think unborn children not worthy of recognition as humans. Which begs the question – what do Victorians consider the point where life begins, and why?

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I shouldn’t be surprised, but am, at how venal the anti-life bigots are. The state of Victoria in Australia has passed (in its Lower House; they also have an Upper House) a draconian pro-abortion law that actually forces doctors & nurses to perform an abortion – even if abortion is against their religion – if the mother’s life is “at risk”. What is deemed “at risk” is subjective, of course.

(3) Despite any conscientious objection to abortion, a registered medical practitioner is under a duty to perform an abortion in an emergency where the abortion is necessary to preserve the life of the pregnant woman.
(4) Despite any conscientious objection to abortion, a registered nurse is under a duty to assist a registered medical practitioner in performing an abortion in an emergency where the abortion is necessary to preserve the life of the pregnant woman.

Interesting to note that the law itself revises the Crimes Act to change the definition of ‘serious injury’ to include:

15(2)(b) the destruction, other than in the course of a medical procedure, of the foetus of a pregnant woman, whether or not the woman suffers any other harm;”.

So, you’re guilty of causing serious injury if you destroy an unborn child, but not if you kill the child by aborting them… And causing serious injury to who? The Crimes Act is all about injuring people – this is a tacit admission the unborn child is human – just not one we are too concerned about when the mother doesn’t want them, but concerned if the mum does want to keep her/him. Nice.

The stunning thing is the vile stream of verbal vomit that spouts forth from those anti-life campaigners. No Right Turn posits this is Catholics somehow ‘killing’ a mother whose life is at risk from the continued pregnancy or birth of her child. Total lies!

Any doctor & nurse has a duty – which no religion opposes – to try and save both mother and child. What anti-lifers want is for Catholic hospitals, doctors & nurses to be forced to kill the unborn child to ‘save’ the mother’s life, while ignoring the option of trying to save both lives.

Pure bigotry – the anti-life campaign is openly stating that freedom of religion is now ‘trumped’ by their imposed standard of the ‘wishes of the mother’, i.e. the convenience of the mother.

While the tiny proportion of mothers who genuinely face risk to their life from continued pregnancy or birth are in an unenviable position (which includes a friend of mine), I support the medical staff who uphold the Hippocratic Oath and do everything in their power to save the lives of both mother and child.

Otherwise, the logical corollary is for those getting treatment for cancer caused by passive smoking, say, to force the doctors to kill their smoker family members who ‘posed the risk’ to the patients life (by causing the cancer, and probably continuing to smoke and pose the risk). Crazy? Yep, and that’s the anti-life position.

I hope the Victorian Upper House has the brains, courage and compassion to vote down this evil law for ‘abortion on demand’ that tries to overrule our long established human rights freedoms – the right not to be killed, and the right not to be forced to break our religious beliefs.

Will the anti-life religious police crucify doctors & nurses who won’t obey? Or just throw them in jail to rot? What humanitarians…

Gloveman Gilchrist goes

January 27, 2008

And so Australian wicketkeeper Adam Gilchrist leaves the game (cricket, for those unfamiliar) he has graced for the last decade and more, with a flair few matched behind the stumps or with bat. He will be missed – especially by Ricky Ponting 😉

Making a monkey of the game

January 11, 2008

I’ve finally got over my shock (though not surprise) to comment on the drama in the Australia-India test series being played out over the ditch. To recap events from the 2nd test:

  1. Oz win test 2 using dubious umpiring decisions, claiming dubious catches, and generally pysching the Indians out, not least by charging Harbhajan Singh with racism for allegedly calling Andrew Symonds a ‘monkey’.
  2. BCCI (Indian cricket board) spit the dummy, suspend the tour, demand removal of West Indian umpire Steve Bucknor and that an appeal against Singh’s 3 match ban must find him innocent.
  3. ICC (international cricket board) boss Malcolm Speed drops Bucknor from the Perth test, appoints an appeal judge (literally – a Kiwi high court judge) and generally prostrates himself before the dollar signs. Then claims new-found courage … see how long that lasts!

To this punter, the ICC board must fire CEO Malcolm Speed immediately, censure the BCCI, and run a proper appeal for Singh. The BCCI have brought the game into disrepute (as has Ponting and team with their antics) by trying to blackmail an appeal outcome, and engineer the removal of a neutral umpire.

Far worse though, is the gutless, craven cowardly actions of Speed in giving in to the BCCI bullying. He has actually broken his own organisation’s rules (which prohibit countries demanding removal of neutral umpires), and exposed the ICC to legal action by Bucknor (similar to that of axed umpire Darryl Hair).

None of this is to say Bucknor (or Hair) should not have been axed – just that the ICC should have rapidly followed their employment agreement with the umpires to do a performance review, and sack if they failed to be up to scratch.

As for Ponting – don’t sack him, but Cricket Australia should make it clear to them they don’t want a repeat of silly and crude efforts to pressure opponents, and they expect a higher standard of honesty in claiming catches!

If the BCCI don’t like it, cancel the tour. They cannot be allowed to hold sway over all other cricket countries, even if the Oz team behave badly. 

A humorous montage and quotes are at Tumeke, while Cactus Kate offers an insight after the last NZ-Oz ODI:

The good news is that we avoided the follow on. The bad news is that it was a one day match.

But the best article about the whole messsy business is this Indian correspondent’s view. Suresh Menon correctly highlights the danger Speed has put the ICC in; cricket may truly suffer if this is not sorted carefully.

Brace yourself for it…

December 21, 2007

… the Kiwis get spanked again by the Ozzies! Yes folks, it was another drubbing at the hands of ‘punter’ Ponting (134no). View the misery on the Cricinfo scorecard or summary bulletin.

At least Scott Styris dragged himself back from a small form slump on the South African and Australian tours, to punch 75 quickly. Nice to see Mark Gillespie plunder a few quick runs with the bat too, as revenge for his expensive, though useful, bowling.

Back home, the knives seem to be sharpening for the coach, John Bracewell, from journos and the Beige Brigade. That is a little unfortunate, as despite some blunders, ‘braces’ is far better in my view than lamentable former coach Steve Rixon, who recently made a hamfisted effort to finesse his way back into the Kiwi coaching job. While a blind badger could have accurately made the same predictions as Rixon, the Ozzie had clearly paid too much attention to Canterbiury (and now Wallaby) coach Robbie Deans in the latter’s efforts to pry retained All Black coach Graham Henry from his job. Now Deans gave a PR job to watch 🙂

Anyway, I hope NZ coach and selectors take the Bangladesh tour opportunity to build a strong confident Black Cap squad based around experienced players, not U-19 emigres that catch selector Hadlee’s eye as ‘the next Tendulkar’.

Giving Gillespie, Martin, and Michael Mason a chance to form a quick bowling team with Oram would be good (anyone note Mills failed again to break through the Oz lineup), while Jeetan Patel has a chance to show his mettle against players who know spin intimately. Most of all though, a solid top-order batting line up must be worked on… Good luck to ’em!

Chappell-Hadlee Cricket series – match 2

December 16, 2007

Aaaargh! Instead of a friendly greeting to start with, the first post is to draw (shamefaced) attention to the annual NZ-Australia ODI cricket series.

Only problem is – NZ are getting tanked, again. Thank goodness we control the weather gods, and have dropped a bit of the wet stuff to delay Kiwi wickets tumbling! 

Take a look at Cricinfo’s live updates, for the grim news:
Cricinfo Livescore

Predictably, Matthew Sinclair was dropped in favour of Gareth Hopkins, but Lou Vincent will have to buy the coach drinks a lot to keep his place for the next match, given he has just made another single digit score.

Kiwi wicketkeeper McCullum has embarrased himself with just 5 runs after claiming Ozzie quick bowler Tait did not have the figures to back up Tait’s claim the Kiwis couldn’t handle his pace… oh, dear. McCullum didn’t even last until Tait came on to bowl.

Update: Ah, the blessed sound of rain. Match abandoned, after a dire start from NZ. Good intentions from Vettori (set a score) but batsmen looked unable to fulfil that. The ironic thing is; another rainout at the final match in Hobart will mean NZ retain the Chappell-Hadlee trophy 😉