Generic: Sportsmanship vital for every single level

AFL (sourced from Google Images)

It might only be just a small part of sport, yet, in my opinion, may well be the most important part.  I’m talking about sportsmanship: teammates encouraging each other, enthusiasm on the field of play, and being positive to those that surround them.

Having played competitively since the age of 11, I can speak for a lot of people in saying a positive vibe during play is essential.  Chatter on the field, giving others a pat on the back, a small gesture of appreciation goes a long way to cementing an equal and fair playing arena, and a sense of camaraderie.
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Cricket: Scheduling: Who is it hurting?

(cricket.com.au)

It’s been a topic of discussion for several years now.  The cricket calendar is filled with test matches, one-dayers and Twenty20 matches almost all of the year.  Players are becoming more fatigued, have increased susceptibility to injuries, and are spending less time with family.

The addition of tournaments such as the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the Twenty20 World Cup have been squeezed into schedules that scream alarmingly busy.  So the question now stands: what is the go for the future?

There are certainly possibilities to resolve the issue. The International Cricket Council (ICC) could set rules that limit national teams to a certain number of matches per year. Teams and players are racing between countries to get to the next series and begin another routine of training and matches. Continue reading

Cricket: Australian domestic season in full swing

Phil Hughes batting against Queensland, Ryobi Cup (sourced from cricket.com.au)

The Australian domestic cricket season has been in full swing since mid-September, and there’s been plenty of action between the states.

New South Wales, Western Australia, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia have all registered wins in the one-day format, while Queensland must wait until November 14th to have another crack at victory.

Over in the four-day comp, Victoria has snared two victories from both outings so far, its next match starting tomorrow (October 23rd) against Tasmania at the MCG.  New South Wales, Queensland and Tasmania also have wins on the board.
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Cricket: Players In Focus: Michael Clarke and Shane Watson

Michael Clarke batting Boxing Day 2010 (photo mine)

Australia has had some classy players during its last decade of cricket.  Batters, bowlers, fielders, wicket keepers: the country and the world has seen them all.

Since Ricky Ponting stood down as test and one day captain, the Australian team has had a makeover. And so far, it’s going well.  Even with the somewhat constant changing and rotation of players, we’ve unearthed some amazing talent.  But we’ve also retained a fantastic bunch of veterans and experienced players.

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Cricket: Sixers give Yorkshire Champions League hiding

Yorkshire captain Andrew Gale clean bowled by SIxer Josh Hazelwood

It was a no frills game for the Sydney Sixers in the Champions League yesterday in South Africa, the reigning KFC T20 BBL champions slaughtering Yorkshire by 8 wickets in Durban with an awesome display of line and length bowling, followed up by some brutal batting.  The Sixers won with 11 overs to spare, chasing a paltry total of just 97 for victory. Continue reading

Cricket: Players In Focus: Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc

Pat Cummins

Mitchell Starc

Australia has seen many ups and downs since the 2007 Ashes series when the greats Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath, Justin Langer and Damien

Martyn all retired.  Spinners have been tried, tested, then subsequently “trashed”, batsman have come and gone, and the team has slid slightly in international rankings.

It isn’t all doom and gloom, however.  We’re now seeing the next bunch of future stars grace the biggest stage of cricket.  And they’re making an enormous impact.

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Cricket: Australian summer preview: South Africa and Sri Lanka

The Australian cricket international summer series of tests, one-dayers and Twenty20 matches is hammering on our doors once again, and this time the Aussies will be facing South Africa and Sri Lanka.

While the Proteas and Australia are ahead of Sri Lanka in the ICC World ratings, neither team will be pushovers.  Sri Lanka proved that they can take it to the end, collapsing in the ICC World Twenty20 against the West Indies in the final.  South Africa boast the likes of Jacques Kallis, AB De Villiers, Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn.

With the first test set to begin on November 9th, here’s a look at what the Aussie crowds can expect from what looks to be a top-notch summer:

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Cricket: Player in focus: David Warner

 

David Warner in action in 2009

David Warner: little known before his blazing Twenty20 debut against South Africa in January of 2009, where he scored a blistering 89 from 43 balls.

Since then, Warner has come along in leaps and bounds, including his test debut against New Zealand in December 2011, and an Indian Premier League (IPL) cap with the Delhi Daredevils.

An exciting and explosive cricketer with a bullish like nature to his batting, Warner has come a long way since being pulled from relative obscurity and limited experience.  However, his aggressive nature, and tendency to reach for the big shot can see Warner be very inconsistent. Continue reading

Cricket: ICC World Twenty20: Australian Team Review

 

George Bailey at the ICC Twenty20 World Cup

Australia’s ICC World Twenty20 Tournament came to a close on Friday night on the back of a large 74-run loss to the West Indies.  Chris Gayle led the charge and helped the Windies post 205.  Australia never looked like threatening them, aside from a knock of 63 from captain George Bailey.

After scintillating and crushing form in their first four games, the Aussies seemed to “tone” things down against Pakistan, scraping through to the semi-finals on net run rate.  Against the West Indies, the firepower of Gayle was the key in setting up a monstrous victory.

Having come into the tournament ranked 9th, the Aussies looked the goods until their Super 8 match against Pakistan, where the question was raised: ‘what do Australia care about?’ after their appalling loss to Pakistan.

It will also serve as a reasonable base coming into the Australian summer, which commences next month.

Here is a review of each player that took to the field for Australia: Continue reading

Cricket: Not So Much The ‘Gentleman’s’ Game Anymore

Shaun Marsh in action against India in 2011

The first game of Test cricket was played in March 1877, between Australia and England.  Charles Bannerman scored the first ever Test century-165 not out-and Australia won that game by 45 runs.  (The first international match was played between Canada and the United States in 1844)

What a way we’ve come since then.  We’ve had the addition of cricket-playing nations (there are 10 now), new technology, one-day cricket (and coloured clothing), rule changes, third umpire, the white ball, and numerous other items. Continue reading