Brendon McCullum and BJ Watling hang around for a bit

Imagine Brendon McCullum's actually wearing white and is holding a bat

Brendon McCullum is a positive person; the kind of irritating, upbeat character who can’t understand everyone else’s entirely logical can’t-do attitude to things. When he was joined at the crease by BJ Watling in the second Test against India on day three, he’ll have thought: ‘Okay, if we can just put on 352 runs for this wicket, we’ll be in with a shout.’

So he and BJ promptly put on 352 runs for the sixth wicket. When the two came together, New Zealand were 94-5 and 152 runs away from making India bat again. 123 overs later, when Watling was finally dismissed, they were 200 ahead. At this point, McCullum thought to himself: ‘Okay, if we can just put on at least 125 runs for this wicket…’

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32 Appeals

  1. If NZ win, this will surely be one of the greatest fightbacks ever. Up there with Headingley 1981 and Kolkata 2001.

  2. I went to bed last night thinking “oh, it’ll just be a quick, knock over the tail and smash a couple of dozen runs to win the match” kind of thing.

    When I checked Cricinfo this morning and saw McCullum was still in my first thought was “oh, since when do teams get given a third innings and why weren’t England allowed a few in Adelaide, Brisbane etc.” My second thought was “okay, so it rained all day while I was asleep”.

    It took an embarrassingly long time for my brain to warm up to the point where I could grasp that McCullum had managed to bat all day and score his 2nd double ton in as many matches.

  3. wow… this is great actually, i can focus all my cricket-following on this match and pretend that the aussie revival is just not happening.

    go kiwis 🙂

  4. It’s like Test cricket is a good thing. 94-5 then 446-6 then 571-6. Love it.

  5. Wonderful test cricket.

    But rather negative bowling from India early enough in the day. Perhaps they thought they could bore McCullum and Watling out, but how many hours of defensive-channel bowling does it take to realise that your assumption might be wrong?

    Still, a tremendous achievement by McCullum and Watling and (to a lesser extent) the other fella who batted today and doesn’t get a mention in the article.

  6. New Zealand: the most consistently likeable cricket team?

  7. This is what test cricket is for. Beautiful.

  8. I can’t believe this stupid team still manages to underperform my abysmally low expectations. At 94-5, I thought we’ll have a 100 run target in 2nd innings and could win by 4-5 wickets. Now we are going to get bowled over by the end of second session and lose by over 100 runs.

  9. Spare a thought for Little Jimmy Neesham. he sits around for a-day-and-a-half with his pads on. He’s on debut. He scores 67* as part of an unbroken 100+ partnership and no-one even mentions or remembers his name.

    Jimmy Neesham, I salute you.

  10. McCullum’s father knew he was going to be batting for a while. He booked his return flight to Dunedin for sometime in March.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11204330

  11. Who needs Ross Taylor?

  12. well done brendon mccullum!

    (no hanging around in the nervous 290s for him)

  13. haha, and immediately out. i don’t imagine he will care too much though, just gives them the chance to win the match now

    (302… wasn’t that rowe’s score as well?)

  14. … no declaration?! they still just don’t trust themselves to defend almost 400 on a 5th-day pitch, with the opposition thoroughly demoralised… hmmm

    • Why declare? See it out, series won. No need to give India a sniff. Dhawan and co could chase 400 in 50 overs on their day.

      I know people might say “Michael Clarke would declare” or “You have to be prepared to lose to win”, but they’re idiots.

    • Michael Clarke would declare.

    • Given it’s only a two test series, take the draw and the series win.
      Would love to have seen how this would have panned out over 3,4 or even 5 tests.

    • yes yes of course. but 2-0 sounds a lot better, doesn’t it..? and yes, the indian batsmen could murder that target at home, in an ODI – kohli would probably hit half of them on his own. but they are a long way from home and their bats have not shown much stomach for it… i am just a little surprised that mccullum isn’t showing more faith in his bowlers. anyway fuck it, i don’t have sky and i do have a daugher to get to school in the morning, so i’m off to bed 🙂

    • Before this (NZ) summer “we” hadn’t won a series against anyone other than Bang or Zim since 2005/6. 8 years. You don’t piss around with that kind of history. Not ever, but especially not after 94-5 (etc).

      I don’t want to be too stupid about it but it can be hard work following Test cricket from these parts (47 all out anyone?), so 1-0? … well happy doesn’t quite cover it.

  15. Hi, long time reader, first time poster etc.

    This is why test cricket is the greatest game on Earth. From staring at an innings defeat to one Kohli butter-wouldn’t-melt moment away from victory, with every record and back story you can think of along the way.

    How does one explain the fascination of this game to the uninitiated? When you have to add “it ended in a draw”?

    • King Cricket

      February 18, 2014 at 8:41 am

      It’s for those of us who appreciate the world is painted in various shade of grey (we can’t put a number on exactly how many). However, some people will always see things as being either black or white.

  16. Stephen, too right. What can this team do next? A captain who’s achieved something through shear force of will that caused a nation to take a breath. Two Ben Stokes only better and not ginger. Best batter excluded temporarily to have child instead of permanently cos he’s a tool. As an expat Pom in NZ I hereby switch allegiance for good (or until “we” lose).

  17. A link below to the always great Sportsfreak site, with some brilliant stats porn from the Wellington test.

    http://www.sportsfreak.co.nz/statchat-from-the-basin/

  18. Mark Reason insinuates today that the Indians threw the series. This may or may not be backed up by the extreme hardcore stats porn. They looked like they tried pretty hard to me though may have been seeking some sort of record for most dropped catches. Or NZ might have been actually quite good. Not sure which is less likely.

    Am I right in thinking Mr. Reason got drummed out of the UK for being severely objectionable and deliberately provocative?

  19. @bart

    Mark Reason’s father John was a very good troller; most famous for saying the RWC Final in 87 was the worst game of rugby ever.

    His son has tried to follow suit; albeit more clumsily

    @JonJ: Cheers.

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