Friday, April 27, 2007

Australia: Threats

Just one more match to go and Aussies will reign supreme officially once again!

Let us put ourselves in shoes of Lankans and see what we have on our plates:
(Aussies in their current form)

Batting :
Matthew Hayden: Clearly, the man of the tournament so far - in the form of his life - their biggest threat if Aussies bat first. (or second, or third...oh, just don't give the bat in his hands)
Adam Gilchrist: As explosive player and more dangerous than Hayden himself! If clicked, a dynamite! Has been inconsistent in the tournament so far, but you never know when he might just come on top again. A threat even though he is not as much in form.
Ricky Ponting: A thorn in flesh of bowlers all around the world - sticks to his wicket in ODI's like the combined efforts of Rahul Dravid+ Jayawardane+ mcMillan+Chanderpaul in test cricket! Currently in the form of his life.
(Do we even need to go any further and analyze the rest of the players?)
M Clarke: Was supposed to step in the shoes of Steve Waugh, and is warming up to the task handsomely. Unbelievably(?), he has the highest average in the entire Australian team in the world cup currently!
Brad Hodge: Started with a , but hasn't got a bat in his hands and played only 1 inning after the century!
Symonds and Hussey: They were supposed to light the world cup up, but have not done much so far - against spinners, both have the ability to turn a match around!
Shane Watson: Believe it or not, no bowler has been able to get him out in this tournament! His 32 ball 65 were any indication, he is a threat as big as Gilchrist!

Bowling :
Glen McGrath: The pigeon is flying higher than everybody else! As accurate as ever, he is the silent assassin. He runs in, throws the ball, ball lands on the off stump line, moves just to take the edge and lands happily in Gilly's gloves! Wicket - after wicket- after wicket! This man is not a pigeon, he is a warhorse! Big big threat. (as always)
Shaun Tait: Not thought of much before, has been the pleasant surprise for the Aussies. Has bowled the new ball extremely well and swung the ball superbly to trouble both right and left- handers. Bowls a lot of wides, but takes a lot of wickets too! Big threat!
Nathan Bracken: They say that the best hunters 'hunt in pairs'. Bracken and Tait have done just what no other pair could do in the World Cup. Bracken almost averages as good as McGrath in this world cup and is in a great form too. Big Threat!
Brad Hogg: Bowling on top of his form. Just to give an example of his current form, here is a small comparison:
Murali : 78 overs - 23 wickets. Hogg: 80 overs - 20 wickets.
Not bad, eh? But if I am a Lankan, I wouldn't be too bothered about Hogg, he is not a threat. If Lankans manage to flay the first 3 bowlers, Hogg would not be a problem.

The only time Sri Lanka have ever won a world cup, that has been against Aussies in the finals.

This time, it only looks tougher!!!

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