The Fine Leg

Soos bo genoem ons gaan dinge probeer interessant hou so ons gaan probeer om ‘n ingeligte dog betekenins volle opinie…ek herhaal opinie oor van die week se sport gebeure. Een van ons skrywers wat gereeld vir ons gaan skryf oor die week se krieket gebeure is Juan “The Naaige” Nagel. So hier is ook sy eerste van vele insette op The Fine Leg…

 

THE BATTLE OF THE SUPERPOWERS
The ebb and flow of a series is the dream of any cricket supporter and how have our dreams become reality with the current Protea and Ausie series. The first ODI was dominated by the men down under and the second, while winning comfortably enough, the South Africans looked shaky chasing a very below par score.
As South African supporters we ask a few questions: Where are our all-rounders? Why does JayPee leave such a huge whole, is there no one who can fill his boots? Why the continuing struggle to face bowling that is up-around the nose at 140+ clicks? What was up with the poor fielding performance in the first ODI?

These are only some of the questions which probably will never be answered if you are like most of the cricket fans just a plain guy trying to enjoy the game.
Let’s try and figure out some of these questions. We have a problem in depth, looking at our opposition who have mountains of talent in Mitch Marsh, Johnson, Coulter-Nile and even Steve Smith who can turn his arm. Our all-rounders in McLaren, who was dropped after the first ODI, injured Duminy and… well Philander, Fudge and uhm, no one else down under. Looking at the performance of our “all-rounders” we can say with a straight face that we are not impressed. Where is Chris Morris? Injury done and over with, breaking world records at home and I believe he will be very usefull in the land of Oz.

Our batting line-up looks frail and fragile at best. Q. de Cock is vulnerable outside off all of a sudden, the # looks like getting out every ball against Johnson, Faf has been bounced out and won’t learn, AB and Miller (at long last Miller takes his opportunity) our only hope. Fudge is something you eat after a nice meal and not something that can bat, Riley looks the part but needs opportunities. McLaren must come home to mommy and sort out his fear of the short one, like most of our line-up. The rest are not allowed to pad up… ever! Perhaps for Philander but the rest must bowl!
The fielding performance of the First ODI was quickly forgotten after the second ODI where the Protea’s looked streets better. Catches win matches boy’s. That we have heard a few times before. Why this happens… no one knows. When it goes wrong, it goes wrong doesn’t matter who you are.

I am sure the SA team has a team psychologist who can help the lads get over the fear of the short ball but it doesn’t look like it. Get in the nets and let someone throw from 15 meters at your throat to get use to it, man up! There is also an evident difference is tactics. The Auzies love going short and being aggressive where the Protea’s love themselves a full swinging ball of a length.

Now where from here? The proteas must step up and get the balance of the team right without a Duminy. I don’t think Behardien is our answer. The Auzies still look on paper to have a better balance. The SA boulers must continue their good performance and the men from down under who throw the white rock will be happy with the fear they strike in all the batsmen perhaps for AB and Miller. Both teams will be looking for more consistent performances with one eye on the world cup and the Auzies have a head ache when it comes to selection options with the great amount of depth they have and the South African’s must look at the lack of all-rounder’s.
We are all waiting in bated breath for the third ODI and looking forward to which team will either nock the others socks off or fold miserably, we might be in for a beauty! Who knows?

Till the next toss…..Stay inside the wide lines

-“The Naaige”

 

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