Friday, February 21, 2003

Okay, I missed most of yesterday's Australia v Netherlands game because I spend much of the second half of the game on a train from London to Manchester. However, from what I saw of it, it was one of those games with lots of rain interruptions, and nobody could ever get much momentum going. As an Australian, I was worried for a little while about a potential no result, although not too worried, because Australia likely didn't need the points. (At least not for making the Super Six stage. They might still be needed for making the semi-finals though - anything could happen. I will discuss the points system once we get to the Super Six stage in detail in another post). In the end though, Australia won a rain shortened Duckworth Lewis match by a very comfortable 75 runs. I was perhaps a little concerned that Australia didn't bat a little faster before the interruptions, but playing this kind of match is difficult. If you can get away from the match with a win, this is good. The other thing that was good to see is that Damien Martyn got some time in the middle, scoring a good 67 not out. He is one of Australia's best batsmen, but his form has been a little below par for the last six months or so. Gillespie remains in superb form with the ball, taking 2/7 off three overs. After that it seems Ponting gave him a rest and let the more junior bowlers finish the game off, which they did comfortably.

In other World Cup news, the Shane Warne tribunal met for eight hours and then adjourned, which may mean they are split on whether they believe him or not.

New Zealand did not go to Kenya for today's game. They have officially defaulted the match and the points have been awarded to Kenya. If New Zealand now miss out on the next round, some of their players will be very unhappy. To add a little stupidity, New Zealand all rounder Chris Cairns (a vital player if they are to win the cup) was injured in a "scuffle outside a nightclub" in the early hours of the morning in Durban. Given the importance of the tournament, I don't know why the team cannot stay at the hotel, watch a movie on television and enjoy a good Cabernet, but that is sportsmen for you I suppose.

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