Tag Archives: Jacob Oram

Engine Trouble

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118 balls is quite a few. It’s two less than the entire number you get in a Twenty20, and 34 more than India won by in the last ODI when Sehwag became the world’s fastest Indian. But  Short Of A Length Punter’s Biggest Fan Blog devoted seven of their eight paragraphs to analysis of Dhoni’s captaincy… Interesting way to look at it. Particularly given that the main gripe, that Mahendra took the bowling powerplay immediately after the first ten overs, is a marginal one anyway in my opinion.

I feel like Dhoni could argue that taking the powerplay at that point, defending such an abysmal total, meant that there was more pressure on the batsmen. The way Guptil and Ryder were batting, having men clustered inside the circle waiting for a miscue was as valid a tactic as spreading the field and hoping to stifle. ANYWAY. I’m not going to be drawn into the blame-the-Indians debate. This was New Zealand’s pride-salvaging first win in the ODIs, and deserves celebrating.

So why do I think we won? Because the Indians have only got one gear…

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Indian Summers

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Having been shivering my way through England and Scotland these past couple of weeks, with the only cricket news being that monumentally cool (if on another level ineffably sad) Stanford scandal all across the front pages – one I’m gonna try and approach that this weekend – it was something of a culture shock to arrive back to last night’s Twenty20.

Our friends over at Short of A Length have challenged us to something of a blog war over the course of the series, so I suppose it would be remiss of me not to have a good long gloat at the result of the match, one which went decidedly against forecast, and hopefully sets up a fine battle over the coming weeks. The thing I find most pleasurable about the outcome, from a very parochial perspective at least, is the extent to which I see the same gnawing issues in India’s play that plagued them during that infamous series last time they toured here. Continue reading

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Rating the Also-rans

Daniel Vettori and the least-coveted trophy in international sport

Daniel Vettori and the least-coveted trophy in international sport

So this oddly interminable tour is finally over. Given that only about three hours of cricket was possible between showers, there was more entertaining cricket than we had any right to expect, and the West Indian side, chiefly through the unholy batting of Gayle and Chanderpaul, fought harder than they have in a while. Perhaps that was because they sensed that, in the Black Caps, they finally had come up against an opponent they had a shot at.

In the end, it wasn’t to be. They split the test and Twenty20 ‘series’ (insofar as two games of anything can be called a series) and lost the ODIs by the slenderest of margins. In amongst it we saw some sparkling debuts, some mediocrity maintained, and one player in particular leaning too heavily on a reputation not-quite earned. Here are DeadBall’s ratings for every New Zealander who participated in the tour.

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Guest Post: Cometh The Hour

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Yesterday’s fifth day of the third and final test between Australia and South Africa tells us a thing or two about the state of world cricket. It also provides a useful yardstick for comparison with the current NZ team.

First, on the cricket. The state of Australian cricket is not quite as bad as some commentators have made it out to be. Yes it’s true that Australian teams of the last 15 years probably would have put the Jaapies away more quickly and efficiently than was done yesterday, but let’s not forget that you’ve essentially got a completely brand new bowling attack. Any player, even future greats, requires time to find their feet in international cricket. Having said that, there does appear to be one major difference between the current team, and those of the past. Spin. Continue reading

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Fidel Edwards: An Extremely Gangsta DeadBall Icon

New Zealand’s current series against the West Indies, two of the more ordinary sides in international cricket, has been, a few sessions aside, pretty uneventful. The expected fireworks from Gayle, some extremely composed innings from Chanderpaul, New Zealand struggling along like a three legged dog… But I’ve kept watching, and enjoying it, largely because of one man.

Fidel Edwards has got to be one of the most entertaining cricketers in the world right now. Unfortunately he plays for the West Indies, so he gets no support from the other end, and his average is a very tawdry 38… But damn, he’s cold. And this isn’t about his figures so much as his presence on the pitch. Check out this over to South Africa:

Not particularly effective (though worthwhile for audience response alone), but just feel the heat coming off the guy. His resemblance to a better-looking Marlo Stanfield, the  murderous drug kingpin from The Wire is surely not coincidental. Continue reading

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The Jersey vs. The Individual

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Steve Williams, perhaps New Zealand’s highest paid non-sporting athlete, drunk a little too much at a charity event the other day. Ended up calling Phil Mikelson a “prick“. He also relayed a particularly embarrassing story regarding Mickelson’s man boobs. When defending his statement Williams remained oddly cavalier, stating, “I don’t particularly like the guy myself. He pays me no respect at all and hence I don’t pay him any respect. It’s no secret we don’t get along, either.”

Switch tack to the Black Caps. Our good friend Craig McMillan has called Jacob Oram out for being “wrapped in cotton wool“. Oram latter delivered a terse response,  like a refined character from a F. Scott Fitzgerald novel .  “I understand people who have never bowled a ball in anger in their lives having a bit of a go at me for potentially being on the soft side, but it’s extremely disappointing to come from an ex-teammate,” he said. After which he sighed, took a sip of whiskey and turned his attention to the guests at the dinner party.  Seems like a dark cloud has descended over the gentleman sports. I say,  good show!

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