Bowlers still exist

That’s the surprising conclusion we’ve drawn from the last few weeks of cricket. More on this and a review of Australia’s win yesterday in our final World Cup column for the Mumbai Mirror.

We’ll maybe have a few points to make about the tournament as a whole in coming days (not today, we’re taking a day off), but we’d just like to say that in general we’ve really enjoyed it. Some of it was flat, but it didn’t seem as lifeless as a few of the previous instalments and in New Zealand, Mitchell Starc and India’s bizarre surge in seam bowling ability, there were some great stories to follow.

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29 Appeals

  1. most of the best XIs seem to consist of many from NZ&AUS making it a very boring exercise. here is my alternate akd best of the “not-best” XI
    Tillakaratne Dilshan
    Sarfaraz Khan
    Aaron Finch
    Misbah ulHaq
    Grant Elliott
    Suresh Raina
    Moeen Ali
    Wahab Riaz
    Josh Hazlewood
    Imran Tahir
    Mohammed Irfan

  2. my highlight of this cup was Pakistan’s bowling. Due to the undeniable incompetence of his batting line-up, Misbah had no choice but to go on all-out attack with his bowling.
    Also PAK benefited from playing in some of the lesser venues where the pitch was more livelier. The PAKvsZIM match in Brisbane(Gabba) was an all-time classic and also happened on a week-end I vaguely remember.

  3. Every tournament I can remember has a defining moment or image in my mind.

    87: Gatting reverse sweep
    92: 22 off 1
    96: Neil Smith got sick on the pitch
    99: Donald didn’t run
    03: Ponting went ballistic
    07: Woolmer died/farcical finish in the dark
    11: Dhoni wins it on his own

    Any suggestions for 2015?

    • McCullum getting beaten and out in 3 of 3 balls to Starc

    • Morkel & Irfan’s fantastic mini-spells which reversed the momentum of their matches

    • and Warner’s nick to missing second slip in final because it was a total exception to whatever went before it

    • Guptill/Williamson getting out to Maxwell…
      but Vettori didnt get a wicket for Kiwis
      This was basically a Pace-bowler’s world-cup
      but saving grace was McCullum’s Kamikaze approach and the gentlemanly way he led his team.

    • to summarize this, Starc the bowler defeated Mad-Mac the batsman
      but as a captain & cricketer, McCullum was cool as cucumber and the NZ managed to win over the world with their wonderful attitude

    • King Cricket

      March 30, 2015 at 2:02 pm

      All wrong. The correct answer is Wahab Riaz to Watson.

    • but but that spell didnt make an iota of difference to the outcome of that match or the cup?

      ironically it boosted Watson’s stock in Australia, I think.

    • So basically there was no single defining moment on which we can all agree.

    • If India could have replaced Jadeja with Tahir UmeshYadav with WahabRiaz and MohitSharma with MhdIrfan and Rahane with ABdV then I think they would have been a match for Australia/NZ

    • King Cricket

      March 30, 2015 at 3:26 pm

      Not sure Neil Smith vomming on the pitch was hugely influential to the outcome of the ’96 tournament either.

    • That wasn’t my criteria. It’s the images I personally remember when I think of each tournament.

    • King Cricket

      March 30, 2015 at 3:36 pm

      That’s why we suggested Wahab.

      Although we’ll admit it was rather a big call to claim that we know what you’ll remember.

      Maybe if we keep on writing about it, we can wield some influence.

    • Visually what left an impression on me was the effectiveness of the giants of pacebowling such as Irfan Morkel and Starc

    • Maxwell had a ball with bat, ball and fielding
      Debut century
      Getting wickets of 2 top order batsmen in finals when they were playing for turn
      And run-outs and direct hits
      If he were an NZ-lander I would have greatly enjoyed it
      Now I am trying to forget this as fast as possible like a bad dream

    • McCullum chasing the ball manically, trying to close impossible distances. that’s my lasting visual.

    • My image of the world cup is always going to be Elliott clubbing that length ball from Steyn into the stands. Can we all just pretend that was how the whole tournament ended?

    • Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli are back together and walk hand in hand in airport.

    • we can do away with the knock-outs entirely (since only 1-in-7 was competitive). then we can all go home with happy memories of Brendon Taylor scoring a World-Cup century in his farewell match for Zimbabwe.

      Honestly, I think, Brendon Taylor seems to have the ideal qualities to be an England ODI captain. http://www.theroar.com.au/2015/04/01/my-world-cup-xi-mccullum-starc-and-smith-but-no-room-for-faulkner-or-dhoni/

  4. So, I’m searching for some more cricket, to help me procras- er, amuse myself until the WI series starts. Any suggestions about overseas first-class teams to follow? I seem to hear a lot about Otago over in NZ – are they any good?

  5. I love matches with good bowling and given Pakistan’s almost total dependence on it, their matches were always fun.

    All the positive statements from various pundits on McCullum’s aggressive batting in the final and other games, would it be impolite to point out that he was rash and reckless in the final? I don’t buy the “that’s how he plays” stance, it was foolish to start hitting to full swinging balls from the best bowler in the world cup in the very first over?

    You can an aggressive but manage the risks.

    • King Cricket

      March 30, 2015 at 3:28 pm

      Think it was a very conscious ‘him or me’ attempt to put Starc off his game. It was a calculated risk, but a risk nonetheless.

    • Can we say that McCullum 100% backed himself
      Or he didn’t trust his defense unlike Sangakkara who trusted his defense in QuarterFinals?

    • I don’t buy the “Game over in three balls” narrative. I’m haunted by 150/3 from 35 overs and will be for a while yet. McCullum did what he does and the approach of the rest of the batting lineup throughout the tournament wasn’t contingent on his success or failure.

  6. I’m with KC that Wahab v Watson was the iconic moment of this World Cup.

    And it did potentially make a huge difference to the end result. Had Watson not been dropped (off Wahab) when Watson was on diddly-squat and Wahab was still fresh, the Aussies might well have collapsed and lost the quarter final.

    It was possibly the only “passage of play” in the whole tournament that might have stopped the Aussie juggernaut.

    Looking back on it, you’re probably thinking “a lot of ifs”, but at the time the prevailing view of the commentators and the savvy observers was “this could very well be a match-winning spell from Wahab”.

    • Potentially, yes, I see the point when it is put that way.

      But I am afraid, given the utterly one-sided final, I will be haunted till my death by DeVilliers botched run-out in Semis. If, iF, if only iF – life is full of so many “If”s

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