Ali Asad explores new depths

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There’s the shallow end, there’s the deep end and then there’s the Mariana Trench. Ali Asad didn’t just make a duck against England in the second warm-up match, he didn’t just make a pair – he made a pair in the same innings.

Pakistan A finished the day on 192-12. Baffling. So baffling in fact that even Cricinfo’s scorecard software started asking questions at the fall of the tenth wicket.

pakistan-12Only the scorecard isn’t even right because Mir Hamza wasn’t the tenth wicket. Nor was Ehsan Adil the ninth – Ali Asad was. That was when he was bowled by Plunkett – an event that apparently erased Steven Finn’s earlier dismissal of him (the footage of it no doubt fading away before someone’s eyes, like Dave McFly in that photo of Marty’s).

There are still records of Finn’s wicket though if you know where to look.

‘Where to look’ is the bowling figures, immediately beneath.


But far and away our favourite part of the scorecard comes even further down.

players-per-sideIt’s 15-a-side with 12 batting and 11 fielding and England are apparently an eleven.

Maybe that was because the were fielding. Tomorrow they’ll be England XII and at the end of the match, when the match officials have done the count and double-checked, they’ll presumably transform into England XV.


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  1. To add to their confusion, England’s 15 includes Wood and Anderson who are presumably picked as specialist batsmen since they haven’t bowled a ball. They should help bolster a batting lineup that only includes 11 top order batsmen.

    1. You’ve made a numerical error Ged.

      That game had a side of only EIGHT players! (The survivors at the school of the previous year’s team.)

      1. They were playing an “up and coming” side of SIXTEEN players, supposedly weaker, who were victorious in what was merely an ELEVEN WICKETS WIN! Unsurprising for a two to one ratio perhaps. I do wonder whether the team of eight was given some extra fielders, as happens in the (sadly too rare these days) single wicket cricket competitions where two all rounders would bat/bowl at each other. In the 1700s this single wicket form was even more popular than the team format of the game. (In contrast to this, T20 hardly seems so revolutionary any more does it?)

        As for two to one ratios I think 11 vs 22 was historically very common (perhaps more so in the 1700s or early 1800s before the county game became dominant) where the eleven would be touring, high class players and the twenty two would generally be a weaker local team. I understand the purpose of this attempt to match the teams (skill vs headcount) was to make the betting more interesting – cricket essentially existing as a game to gamble on, rather than support “your” side in. (Oh, look how much progress we have made on that front too…)

        My understanding

  2. The question is whether or not this England XV could do better than the actual England XV at Twickenham. Most likely yes, even if there are only 11 of them

  3. I blame the lack of alcohol. Sobriety is messing with the minds of the Cricinfo boys….

  4. I leave cricket to itself for a few days, and what happens? Cricinfo has gone mad. Kingcricket seems to be in the middle of some kind of incredibly slow motion explosion. HTML attributes? If I wasn’t sitting down I’d think I need a sit down.

    1. Good grief, and now I can see the avatars more clearly. The poo burglar looks less like a Christmas tree than it used to. I think.

  5. The Mariana Trench is named in honor of Spanish Queen Mariana of Austria, widow of Philip IV of Spain.

    I’m not sure she was pleased to have a trench named after her.

    There are single cell amoeba at the bottom over 4″ across.

    Anyone all them battings, I’m hoping Hales and Taylor get 3 or 4 goes each tomorrow.

    1. I think you’ll find that the Marianas Trench was named after Dave Trench, late lamented inventor of the trench coat.

      1. I thought you were joking but he really did invent the trench coat and the trenches on WW1 were named after his coats. They also named trench foot and trench mouth after him, After the war ended he was proclaimed as a hero and the Savoy Hotel made a special cocktail in his honour called Gin and Trench. It was gin with a measure of mud, topped with soda water and a poppy.

  6. A memory of limited overs charity matches gone by…

    …we had a playing condition at one time that a player who scored a duck first time round would get another go if the team was bowled out with some overs remaining.

    I benefited from this playing condition once myself, going on to score quite a few during my second chance. My batting partner for that second chance was the husband of one of our staff and a personal trainer by profession. He had never really played cricket before but was quite good by our low standards. He certainly achieved the “Mr Motivator” effect on me during that knock; all positive talk, no technical content at all.

    Perhaps Ali Asad had a less motivating partner yesterday. Or perhaps he was differently motivated; a pair in one innings is impressive and (as evidenced by this feature) noteworthy.

    1. I’ve always fancied having a go at motivational speaking, so here goes:

      When you get up in the morning, Ged, who do you see in the mirror? Do you see a winner, someone who can take every opportunity that comes his or her way depending on sex? Or do you see a sad loser, a pathetic fool, not standing at the steering wheel of the ship, the ruddy or whatever it’s called, but tossed off over the side of the ship into the currents and whirlpools of life’s waterways and currents? Because that’s what I see, Ged. I see that loser, that complete, total, utter, utter failure. Do you want to be that loser, Ged? Do you want to be the person who everybody sees as a sad, pathetic loser? Or do you want to be that other person, the winner, like me? I don’t get tossed off, Ged, I’m the tosser. You can be like me, a tosser. You just have to truly believe it in your heart of hearts. Because I never thought I could amount to much in life until one day I looked in the mirror. And do you know what I saw, Ged? Do you? I saw you, a complete waste of human flesh. And I thought NO, I will not be that piece of excrement like you are, Ged. I will become a personal motivational guru. I will be a winner. And I believed in my heart of hearts that I could be a winner, and now I am a winner, because I believed it. Do you want to be nearly as great as me, Ged? You just have to believe that in your heart of hearts you can dream of actually being whatever you want to be in your heart of hearts. And then it will come true. So pick that bat up, strap on those pads, adjust that box, get down that end, and in your heart of hearts, BELIEVE.

      As you’ve had experience of this sort of thing, Ged, maybe you can rate my effort in comparison to the real thing. Can you get by without me? Am I to you are everything?

      1. A personal trainer once tried to get the business of a friend by sidling up to him in the gym and saying: “Hey, you remind me of me when I was fat.”

    2. That’s just amazing, Bert.

      I was feeling a bit run down this morning, until I read your motivational piece and now I feel fantastic. I feel so fantastic I am going to switch off this screen, walk to the gym and have a long lunch break of fresh air and exercise.

      Not sure that the bat, pads, box and gloves are quite the ticket for this particular day. Still, the coffin is still here at my flat so I could give that a go. Might turn a few heads in the high street but what the heck?

      No Mariana Trench-like depths for me. Just hidden shallows.

  7. Moeen’s back.

    As in he’s playing a second innings after getting out once. He hasn’t got ankylosing spondylitis or anything.

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