Friday, July 08, 2005


Australia once again finished as the losing side in the first of the three Natwest Challenge matches. England put up a commanding display to overhaul the total with 9 wickets and plenty of balls to spare. Trescothick led the successful chase with a century. But the victory was made possible by the superb effort of the English bowlers. They restricted Australia to a low score. Even with the Leeds wicket offering the assistance, McGrath and company could not make an impression.

The body language of the Aussies does not show the arrogance and the swagger that they are so proud of. Ricky Ponting appears as clueless as the boy whose candy has been snatched away. Is there now any credence to the argument that the Aussies have no worthy opponent to play! Matthew Hayden might post a large score against hapless bowlers from Zimbabwe and Bangladesh and then his supporters proclaim him as the best batsman in the world. Michael Clarke does not appear to be anywhere near the class of a good international player. It is a tribute to Indian bowlers that Clarke was allowed to score a 100 on his test debut. Now Justin Langer has become completely silent. Before the start of the tour, there was Langer who predicted the trashing of England.

Instead of making remarks against the English players, John Buchanan should be setting his house in order. The Auusies have been vulnerable in the one-dayers even though they won the world cup in 2003. Pakistan ran them very close in the VB Series before the batsmen blew it away. Even the Indians matched them on their last tour down under. No longer the English batsmen are worried over the reputation of the bowlers nor are they fazed by the batsmen of the opposing teams.


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