Game Day
Super Series Aus vs Rest of the world

ICC’s dream cricket - The Super series kicked off yesterday. Dish network had scheduled a 11.30pm start, however maintaining “their tradition” the actual telecast started only at 12.00 midnight. For 30 painstaking delayed minutes it was Kenny’ G sax! Music “Good Lord”

This game was played at the Telstra Dome, a gorgeous indoor stadium that has a floating roof and a capacity of 40,000 seats for Cricket. The capacity can be increased based on the event; it seems for a rock show they can hold up to 70,000. However the sad part was it was not even filled to its 25% capacity. Given the prelude and the hype for this game, it was a big let down by the locals. May be most preferred to go to work; but in the thin crowed I did spot Indians with giant size flags. “சங்கு சுட்டாலும் வெண்மை தரும்”

The rest of the world 11 [+ 1 super sub] line up was star studded. The Shaun Pollock was captain for the one day squad. The squad: Sehwag, Sangakkara, Kallis, Lara, Pietersen, Dravid, Flintoff, Pollock, Vettori, Muralitharan and Akhtar. Afridi was the super sub. There was a buzz in the commentary box about Andrew Flitoff. Australia had the same side except 2 new faces. Pointing won the toss and elected to bat. Dean Jones and Sunil Gavasker presented both the teams with the official cap.

I felt this through out the game. Over all the captaincy [World team] was kind of not up to the mark for the world 11. I don’t want blame Shaun Pollock right away. It is very hard to deal the chemistry of such a powerful lineup. However the basics never change, he should have got the spinners little bit earlier. Instead he continued the power play and went on with Flintoff. Flintoff was mediocre and his line & length was questionable. Gilly happily singing “apidi pOdu pOdu” whacked him around the Dome. Flint off sucked to the core. Who knows for his poor performance he would not hesitate to blame Pollock however we need to wait for his next book to know about it. Katich managed to score runs but was fragile all through. Finally Kallis got rid of Gilly.

Pointing walked in for a “Kathak Batting Fusion”. His major weakness of “shuffling” was once again exposed. If Gangu dada’s weakness is short ball, Pointing has the weakness to shuffle more than a Vegas poker dealer. Ball hit his pads more than Sangakkara’s gloves. Finally he was pinned down by the Pollock and Kallis, he lost his patience and lifted one to the roof, Lara took a great catch and the dance show thus came to an end. Martin walked in and supplied some food materials for the supper break. He was out for a Duck. In spite of good bowling by Pollock Vettori and Murali, Aussies managed to score 250.

The rest of game for rest of the world was totally out of sync. I felt like watching India playing. Other than Sangakkara no one played to their potential. At the end the powerful star studded team lost the game by 100 runs. Jack “the stubborn” Kallis took the day off. Our own “Dharmer” Dravid was out in an odd fashion while Lambasting Lara was careless. Pietersen hyped resume did not do any good, he was out LBW. Poor Afridi did not have Agarkar or Zahir to hook on to; he was out in no time. Flintoff tried to get some runs however unfortunately for him this is not England where anything over the inner circle is 6-G [granted]. This is Australia where the oval is real and he has to cover more square feet to get the maximum. He will get right sooner or later.

The world 12 fielding was also not up to the standard. Sanjay “the perfect” Majeraker mentioned that the world team did not have great fielders in the squad. This made sense. As mentioned earlier I also felt captain’s attitude makes the difference in the team constitution. I hardly saw any body language from Pollock. The guys were playing because they were asked to play. The whole squad lacked the spirit to perform. Pollock also cannot do much, given their merits it is hard for him to scream at a world class player.

Bottom line, McGrath and Lee were the main force that won the game for the Aussies. Their batting is still fragile. This victory will boost Aussie confidence and can also increase their ego levels. We need to wait and watch the second game; I hope the world team will have its chemistry in place. For now Aussies are one up.