Sunday, March 7, 2010

Luck shifts from NZ to OZ

Finally, yesterday in the 2nd one dayer between Australia and New Zealand, it was Australia who was finally declared winners after the last New Zealand wicket fell and not until the last legal Aussie delivery bowled. This is quite obvious when all the odds namely the weather, the opposition and the team itself favors only one team and aides its victory. Fortunately, for Australia it was also the toss that they won which helped them level the series 1-1 at present. Added to that was Ponting chose to bat first on a pitch where chasing a decent total would not have been that difficult.

The pitch to a greater extent suited the batsmen which saw all Aussie batsmen but Ponting and Michael Clarke contribute with the willow. The Aussie batting progressed in a slow and steady manner with even the pinch hitter Mitchell Johnson providing his share by scoring at a rate of more than run a ball during his unbeaten score of 16 runs from 13 balls. On the otherside, even the bowlers from the New Zealand side did not lag far behind in showing some sort of discipline in their bowling by making use of the Australians' fear for spin bowling when Vettori bowled 10 overs.

Bad luck struck the New Zealand side when play was suspended for a small duration owing to rain delays on two occasions and as it always happens, the side batting second always has to pay a heavier price for no mistake of theirs. The number of balls was reduced by 30 and the number of runs required to win the match was reduced by just 9. And, the time has not yet come for anybody to dispute the Duckworth Lewis method which has seen so many deserving teams lose out to non deserving ones. However, this time luck had to favor the Australian side no matter what.

The situation was the same like the one in the first one dayer where a slog shot from Styris saw the ball clear the fence and ensure a win for the Kiwis. The same slog shot could have even been a miscue and landed safe in one of the eleven Aussie fielders' hands. Or, Styris could have been beaten and in the process the stumps rattled. But, it was luck that batted for New Zealand in the form of Scott Styris. And this time, it should have been the top order batsmen to have made things easier for New Zealand and not the late middle order in Vettori trying to settle down issues.

Finally, there was a reason for the Kiwis to smile when Daniel Vettori was awarded the man of the match for his contribution with both the bat as well as the ball. Otherwise, New Zealand never deserved anything much.

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