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Rest of the World

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Post by alfie Sun 18 Dec 2022 - 6:45

First topic message reminder :

Blimey...just flicked back to see Australia making a meal of chasing 34 to win. Warner another fail (is that a strong hint that his time is all but done ?)

But also Smith Khawaja and Head gone...29/4 and extras has made 14 of them !

Only need five more so no problem...but SA might wonder what might have been if they'd been able to produce a bit more resistance in that awful second innings.

Supports kingraf's pitch assessment , I guess Smile

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Thu 29 Dec 2022 - 11:19

Ish Sodhi scoring 65 at basically 2 runs per over and people wonder why folk aren’t watching - I’d rather have my eyes pierced
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Post by alfie Thu 29 Dec 2022 - 11:22

KP_fan wrote:Dunno why NZ declared with more than 20 overs still in the day.
They needed to bat on as long as they could
Every run scored now, they would not have to chase tomorrow

Not sure there will be any chasing...reckon Pakistan will just quietly bat this out. No wickets yet : think NZ needed a couple of early ones because there just isn't enough in this pitch for the bowlers to make a rapid collapse tomorrow even remotely likely.

but hey ! Loose shot...nice catch by sub fielder Phillips and Shafique is gone...47/1.

So : can they grab another one now and open the door ? Shan Masood at three now...

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Post by alfie Thu 29 Dec 2022 - 12:01

Sodhi has Shan Masood now...plumb lbw , playing back to one that kept low. 71/2

Getting interesting. Still 103 behind. Lose another one now and they won't sleep too easy.

Nightwatchman Alert ! Nauman Ali at the crease , surrounded by close fielders...

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Post by alfie Thu 29 Dec 2022 - 12:12

So two down at the close. Reckon NZ have just over two sessions to get the other eight and leave time for chasing down the required runs tomorrow.

Pakistan have a few players well capable of batting time so they will still be confident of making the game safe ; but the ball is turning quite a lot now so a result isn't out of the question. Those two late wickets have put some life into the game after all👍

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Post by sirfredperry Thu 29 Dec 2022 - 16:05

Even getting a couple of wickets before the close may not have been enough for NZ.

Reckon they should have scored more quickly even if it meant getting a smaller lead. Then they might just have had enough time to bowl P out. That certainly would have been the England approach under Stokes.

Two years ago Root watched on as Williamson carved out double 100s, with some saying Joe should not be considered one of the Big Four.

Root then had an amazing 2021 virtually carrying the batting in a poor, and losing, England side. 2022 was also a good year for the Yorkshireman.

Through all this Williamson relatively "failed" in the few Tests he played before today's double hundred. Seems now the Big Four debate centres on Kohli...

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Post by VTR Thu 29 Dec 2022 - 20:02

I don't think the big four has been a credible concept for a long time. Labuschagne and Babar are way above Kohli for the last few years, who has been performing like a Ravi Bopara tribute act

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 5:22

NZ will be happy to have got rid of the nightwatchman with minimal delay this morning...82/3.

Guildford will probably be pleased too : Evil should never be rewarded Smile

The hard work starts again for the Kiwis now though : Imam and Babar might be a tough pair to prise apart...

And a few more solid bats to follow. It's a decent start to the day anyway.

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 5:46

Local press musing on a push by the Melbourne Cricket Club to try and interest India and Pakistan in playing Tests on the neutral ground of the MCG...

I'm sure they would make money on it were such a contest arranged. But I can't really see either board going for the idea. Limited times available in any case...though it would probably be fun.

No fun for Pakistan this morning ! Babar , after progressing easily to 14 , made a horrible mistake then hitting across the line against Sodhi and being so stone dead lbw that his subsequent waste of a review was almost a worse error !

100/4 and NZ are surely right in with a chance of winning now...still good batting (Shakeel , Sarfaraz and Salman) ; but with the fielding side on top and pressing , the ball turning and often keeping low - and the prospect of a new one in the afternoon (forty overs done now) they are under some serious pressure.

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 6:02

Sarfaraz , who has come in ahead of Shakeel , is taking the fight back to NZ. (Sensible , I think. They were in danger of going nowhere , less than two per over , and taking until halfway to tea to wipe out the deficit. Needed some run scoring)
He's been willing to sweep whenever possible , several boundaries and he's raced to 25 from just 14 balls ; while Imam has added only nine runs to his overnight total.

126/4 so just 48 behind now.

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 6:59

This is a very good partnership ...fifty-six added now in some 17 overs ; and Pakistan will be feeling a lot more relaxed as a result.

Still a few balls beating the bat and not too far away - plus a lot of highly optimistic appeals from Sodhi for lbw and/or bat pad catches. He seems to think everything is out Smile

Sarfaraz 42 from 52 has dominated the stand and it's been a vital contribution thumbsup

NZ need someone to make something happen , as the lead is now only 15.

Wagner into the attack for the first time today...

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 7:48

Lunch. 181/4 from 62 , so 7 runs in front. Not completely safe yet (we've seen their tail fold quickly before) ; but Pakistan will feel they can bat this one out now.

NZ need to break this stand - and probably another wicket- well before that new ball arrives , if they're to get a shot at a late run chase. Will be a bit disappointed they couldn't enlarge the break after Babar fell , but Sarfaraz has played really well for his 49. Imam has had a few shaky moments but still there on 81. If they can extend the stand after lunch NZ might start to run out of ideas and momentum. They need a Ben Stokes Smile

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 8:52

Game staying alive...Sarfaraz falling for 53 ...bit self inflicted , nibbling at a wide one from Sodhi. NZ won't care : the break they desperately needed and left Pakistan effectively 15/5...

Salman in ahead of Shakeel now. Left/right combination I guess.

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 9:15

...stuck with two left handers now though !

Sodhi has done Salman like a kipper... Rearranges his furniture and leaves the hosts struggling at 205/6.

Lead just 31. NZ essentially one wicket away from the rabbit hutch - and arguably from a win ?

Shakeel was good against England. Pakistan need him to stand up with Imam now...

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 9:22

And NZ have one hand on the win now as Sodhi and Blundell combine to remove Imam four short of his century !

Does him in flight and a smart bit of stumping...206/7 : five now for Sodhi clap

Was a fine innings from Imam but they really needed him to stay. The last three aren't that noted for their batting...


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Post by guildfordbat Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 10:00

alfie wrote:NZ will be happy to have got rid of the nightwatchman with minimal delay this morning...82/3.

Guildford will probably be pleased too : Evil should never be rewarded
Smile

The hard work starts again for the Kiwis now though : Imam and Babar might be a tough pair to prise apart...

And a few more solid bats to follow. It's a decent start to the day anyway.


In deed. For the record and don't worry anyone if you miss it because I'll be sure to repeat it in 2023, I don't claim that using a night watchman will never work but I am certain that it always brings an unnecessary additional risk.

Meanwhile, this Test is looking to turn into a tight finish. I did feel some were too keen to write it off as a boring draw. It still could be a draw but that doesn't mean tension is missing. Even if Pakistan wriggle off the hook, I reckon NZ have played it pretty well, particularly given the home side scored 430+ first dig.

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Post by VTR Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 10:08

Agree, whatever happens now, this has been a good match, because we're all here going into the last session wondering what the result will be. I think we tended to know the result of all the Australian Tests so far this season after day one!

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Post by guildfordbat Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 10:13

I would have Wagner play some toes and nose music now. 

I do like him, always gives it everything.Assume he's out there - only bowled 3 overs this dig.

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Post by guildfordbat Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 10:21

VTR wrote:Agree, whatever happens now, this has been a good match, because we're all here going into the last session wondering what the result will be. I think we tended to know the result of all the Australian Tests so far this season  after day one!

Cheers, VTR. Yeah, SA were very poor. Typically, they started poorly, looked briefly as they might get back in it and then quickly fell away again. 

Australia merited stronger opposition as did the viewing public. I still got some satisfaction though from seeing such a highly skilled and professional Australian side.

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Post by sirfredperry Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 10:30

A few more runs/overs and P will be just about safe. NZ could still win from here, but I can't help thinking they batted too long and too slowly to give themselves the best chance.

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 11:08

Apparently the Kiwis needed me to be watching...went away for an hour and Wasim has just about saved the game for Pakistan ...

Out now for 43 but the lead is over a hundred so NZ have just about run out of time.

278/8 plenty of overs left - nominally. But we know the light will have the final say.

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Post by VTR Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 11:37

Looking safe now, I know little of Mir Hamza, but looking at his stats, this is a bit like relying on Alan Mullally to bat you to a draw!

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 11:49

Well that's a surprise ! Pakistan declaring ? NZ fifteen overs to get 138...

Can't see that Pakistan has a hope of winning so why has Babar dangled this carrot ? Great for the fans so has to be applauded clapclapclap

Nine per over and I doubt it is possible but better than just shaking hands and walking off.

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 11:51

Incidentally , Pant must be counted a bit lucky not to be damaged worse than we've been hearing : that car wreck looks a total mess !

Hope he recovers soon.

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Post by Duty281 Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 11:55

Looks like the light has almost disappeared anyway, but not understanding that declaration in the slightest.

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Post by sirfredperry Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 11:58

Can't quite understand why P have declared. They have no chance of bowling NZ out and why give them even a sniff?

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Post by Duty281 Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 11:59

alfie wrote:Incidentally , Pant must be counted a bit lucky not to be damaged worse than we've been hearing : that car wreck looks a total mess !

Hope he recovers soon.

He 'dozed off' apparently. Looks lucky to be alive; and I wonder how serious his injuries are related to his cricket career?

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Post by guildfordbat Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 12:01

Duty281 wrote:Looks like the light has almost disappeared anyway, but not understanding that declaration in the slightest.

All I can think of is that Babar reckons there's no way that Pakistan will lose due to the light soon going and wants to try and end this match in the stronger position with a wicket or two to give Pakistan the moral high ground and a boost to their confidence for the next Test.

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 12:04

Duty281 wrote:Looks like the light has almost disappeared anyway, but not understanding that declaration in the slightest.

Yeah it doesn't seem very practical... But they've already dismissed the "nighthawk" Bracewell so maybe Babar believes NZ might self-immolate somehow...

Once upon a time one might have suspected illicit betting conspiracies but I'm not imagining that anything like that is involved here. I think he just wants to "get something" from the match - even if it is just grabbing a few wickets to have a bit of "momentum" going into the next Test.

11/1 off two so the Kiwis are already behind the clock Smile

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 12:06

guildfordbat wrote:
Duty281 wrote:Looks like the light has almost disappeared anyway, but not understanding that declaration in the slightest.

All I can think of is that Babar reckons there's no way that Pakistan will lose due to the light soon going and wants to try and end this match in the stronger position with a wicket or two to give Pakistan the moral high ground and a boost to their confidence for the next Test.

Ha...posted at the same time... It seems we are thinking along similar lines , Guildford Smile

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Post by Duty281 Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 12:13

Commentators talking this chase up, but surely the test is in a position where, if Pakistan look like losing, the bowling side can just put on a seamer and the umpires haul them off for light?

Maybe not, a seamer is coming on and they're staying on.

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Post by alfie Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 12:29

Yes I imagine the light rules will end this shortly - no Mr Bucknor this time Smile

Looking at the scoreboard you'd imagine NZ might just about have got these runs if they'd had their full quota !

And yes , handshakes all round.

No big confidence boost for Pakistan then ; but I suppose Babar wins some points for giving the fans a little late excitement .

A draw : but not without interest . Way better than some of the matches played in Pakistan in past years thumbsup

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Post by guildfordbat Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 12:45

alfie wrote:Yes I imagine the light rules will end this shortly - no Mr Bucknor this time Smile

Looking at the scoreboard you'd imagine NZ might just about have got these runs if they'd had their full quota !

And yes , handshakes all round.

No big confidence boost for Pakistan then ; but I suppose Babar wins some points for giving the fans a little late excitement .

A draw : but not without interest  . Way better than some of the matches played in Pakistan in past years thumbsup

Very much with you there, Alfie.

Even though it didn't result in a win, no criticism from me of NZ for the way they batted or declared. A lot to be said for keeping the fielding side out there - waiting and wondering as they get increasingly tired. Two Pakistan wickets fell yesterday following the declaration - may have been more but could even have been less if NZ had had more overs to bowl then. A lot of credit though to Pakistan's late order resolutely holding out today. 

I always thought the very late run chase was never more than anything to give the broadcasters something to talk about.

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Post by Duty281 Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 13:13

Second and final test starts on Monday.

It'll be Pakistan's last test in this WTC cycle and, with a favourable set of fixtures, it's been a really disappointing return for them, only picking up the series win in Bangladesh so far, and being a fair bit off the pace. This latest draw means they've played seven tests at home and not won a single one. Sadly, barely any test cricket will be played by Pakistan over the next twelve months - a two-game series away to Sri Lanka in July 2023, followed by a three-game series away to Australia in December 2023/January 2024 (cannon fodder), will be their glacial start to the next WTC tournament.

NZ, meanwhile, have gone from being defending champions to only being above Bangladesh in the table, as their decline continues at pace. Still haven't picked up a series win since winning the trophy, but they'll have one more chance in Karachi, followed by a home series against a presumably strongly-motivated Sri Lanka, then they can draw a line under it and start again next November.

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Post by sirfredperry Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 13:18

GBat - Declarations are always tricky, as are the debates about them!

Still think that NZ should have scored more quickly and declared, or got bowled out, earlier in order to have a chance to bowl P out.

They very nearly did, though, which was a credible effort, as was the P rearguard.

Worth noting that Williamson's scores in his last three Tests v P are 129, 21, 238 and 200*.

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Post by KP_fan Fri 30 Dec 2022 - 16:37

Couple of stark realizations from the Pak-NZ game

1. NZ  ran out of time to enforce a win that Eng could have also run out of in all 3 games
But did not because of the RR at which they scored .
It's not a criticism of NZ here but rather an endorsement of the extraordinary efforts of Eng.

2. PAK are a thick minded team, dumb if you want to be unkind.
What did they think they will achieve with a declaration?
Other than a draw or a defeat if full overs were played and if a couple of  NZ guys had a successfull blitz.
I have remarked already about 4 times "nicely" their lack of astuteness ,focus strategy smartness aspects of the game

But even the cover of these nice words has.to be dropped after seeing their "thinking ability" today ( or complete lack of it.
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Post by alfie Mon 2 Jan 2023 - 7:13

Wonder if KP_fan will feel Pakistan are just proving his "thick" description correct by picking two seamers to replace one pace and one spin option for this second Test against NZ ? Dumped are Wasim Jr and Nauman Ali - in came Naseem Shah and Hasan Ali.

But NZ won the toss and Conway and Latham don't seem to have been too bothered by the three man pace attack...119/0 at lunch. And Abrar and Salman have bowled 11 overs of the 30 already...

NZ , by contrast , have kept their three spinners and just swapped Matt Henry in for Wagner.

After batting first , this might end up a good choice , perhaps ?

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Post by alfie Mon 2 Jan 2023 - 8:37

NZ have lost Latham ; but they've kicked on since lunch with some 57 runs added in 12 overs.
Abrar is going at six per over : not a lot there for him just yet . You'd think the Kiwis are on their way to a solid total - and if their run rate isn't quite up with the England Rawalpindi rate it is still pretty decent (177 in 43) so they shouldn't be wasting much time...

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Post by alfie Mon 2 Jan 2023 - 9:16

Hundred for Conway clapclapclap

His fourth in just 12 games. Ultra consistent . 156 balls so no slow coach either...

204/1 in the 52nd over : looking a bit ominous for Pakistan.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 2 Jan 2023 - 10:51

Bit of a mini collapse for NZ - 234-1 to 255-4 now. Maybe on that team selection note, slightly ominous that Salman has picked up two of them...
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Post by alfie Mon 2 Jan 2023 - 11:10

Ha. I go away for an hour and all hell breaks loose...well at least some wickets fall !

Salman has two of them , indeed. It seems he's been better all round than Abrar , today. Naseem was bowling pretty well earlier , at least keeping the runs down : not surprised he was rewarded with one.

NZ faced with a need for some rebuilding now. Game can change quickly , eh ?

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Post by alfie Mon 2 Jan 2023 - 11:37

Nicholls gone now too...given out caught behind on review . Faint spike so I can't see what else it might have been but the batsman seemed extremely disbelieving ; walks off shaking his head vigorously. Presumably very faint tickle that he didn't feel ?

Three for Salman ; 278/5 and NZ running out of bats...

Worse yet ! Bracewell plumb lbw to Abrar for a duck. 279/6.

Reckon we might see a result in this match...

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Post by alfie Mon 2 Jan 2023 - 12:20

Getting close to stumps now with NZ 309/6 , Blundell and Sodhi trying to take back a bit of the ground they've lost in this session with those five wickets falling for just 45.

New ball in use but after only a few of overs of pace Abrar has come back on. With the spinners taking four of the wickets today you'd think NZ might be glad they've retained their three twirlers...

Certainly Pakistan have come back into the game since tea ; but remains to be seen whether it's enough to make up for the two big partnerships earlier. NZ could still turn this into a pretty good score and there may be enough in this pitch for the bowlers to be hopeful. As always , we need to see how both sides bat Smile

That's the close anyway , still 309/6

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Post by Duty281 Mon 2 Jan 2023 - 14:42

Test looks interestingly poised after Pakistan's fightback in the final session.

Sad to see Aleem Dar, once a great umpire, appears to be on his way out with a number of errors made in this short test series.

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Post by alfie Tue 3 Jan 2023 - 5:23

Haven't been able to watch yet this morning but I see Pakistan has made the ideal start to the day with a string of maidens and the wicket of Sodhi without a run added...

Naseem has good figures and I thought he bowled very well yesterday. Ball still not too old now and presumably a little bit of early morning life for the seamers so NZ will want to survive this burst and then try and get up over 350 as the spinners return. A lot up to Blundell now though as Southee hasn't made many lately and the other two are not famous for their batting...

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Post by alfie Tue 3 Jan 2023 - 6:05

Pakistan thought they had Southee then - given lbw but always looked high to me and duly reprieved on review...

Good bowling by Hasan Ali though - banged him on the helmet , then nipped his pad. Not easy for the number nine. Blundell very sound though. Hour gone . 340/7.

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Post by alfie Tue 3 Jan 2023 - 6:11

Ha...sorry , Blundell ... good jinx !

First ball after drinks turns and keeps low and he's played it on ... Bowled by Abrar for a handy 51.

340/8 and just the bowlers left.

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Post by alfie Tue 3 Jan 2023 - 6:27

Smart stumping by Sarfaraz ends Southee's stay .. three for Abrar. But Henry has retaliated by bringing out the long handle and smashing Hasan for 4 4 and 6...

359/9

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Post by alfie Tue 3 Jan 2023 - 7:41

Remarkable last wicket stand giving NZ a strong hand now...lunch at 433/9 : Henry and Patel have added 88 with little trouble as the home side appeared short of ideas.
Wasn't just slogging (though they scored at better than five per over) - just good sensible cricket shots.

Suppose the flip side is that it suggests the pitch is rather good for batting - at least against an older ball. But there has been plenty of turn on offer , although slow - and the odd instance of variable bounce. I suspect this will prove to be a better than par score.

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Post by KP_fan Tue 3 Jan 2023 - 8:45

Give however good or balanced situation to this Pak team, they will manage to dig a hole for themselves
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Post by Duty281 Tue 3 Jan 2023 - 9:50

Pakistan batting like clowns, handing two easy wickets to the Kiwis before tea on what is still a fairly benign surface. Up to Babar and Imam to dig them out, with NZ only four away from the long tail.

Very unusual field off Henry's bowling to Imam - three fielders in a line square on leg side.

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