Archive for the ‘Big Bash League cricket’ Category

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Chamari Atapattu breaks into Big Bash in OZ

November 3, 2017

ESPNcricinfo News Item

Batsman Chamari Atapattu‘s record-breaking year assumed greater significance as she became the first Sri Lanka player to be roped in by a Women’s Big Bash League franchise. She has been signed by Melbourne Renegades for the third edition of the WBBL, starting December 9, and will join the New Zealand pair of allrounder Amy Satterthwaite and medium-pacer Lea Tahuhu as the side’s overseas recruits.

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Neville floored by Hodge’s Flying Bat, 16 January 2017

February 16, 2017

News Item in Daily Mail. 16 February 2016

Peter Nevill was hit in the jaw with a flying bat on Monday night before being taken off for his second concussion check in just two weeks.  The Melbourne Renegades ‘keeper was playing away to the Adelaide Strikers in the Big Bash League when the painful incident took place.

Brad Hodge smacked a ball away to leg side as the Strikers chased a target of 171 when he suddenly let go of the bat, sending it flying toward Nevill. 111-neville-22

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A Smash-Hit Big Bash Match

January 12, 2017

The Running Commentators’ Summing Up … http://www.espncricinfo.com/big-bash-league-2016-17/engine/match/1023627.html

What a rattling night at the Docklands Stadium! We have witnessed history. Records were written, rewritten and smashed, all in just over three hours of some of the most manic hitting, the likes of which even T20 cricket has not been witness to very often. First, the Renegades put up the highest total in BBL history. Then, we saw the first century of the season. Then, Hurricanes snatched away the highest BBL total record from the Renegades in a manner that could not have been more emphatic. They pulled off the highest successful chase in the BBL and the joint fourth-highest successful chase in all T20 cricket. Thisara Perera conceded the second-most runs in one bowling performance in the BBL. In all, we witnessed 445 runs, 36 fours and 22 sixes, three half-centuries and one century, all in the span of 40 overs. Such was the magnitude of hitting that after a point, it did not matter who was bowling and what the ball was or what the field was, because no matter what anyone tried to do, the ball just kept disappearing into the stands. But let us not forget Sunil Narine. Amid a six-barrage and a shattering of batting records, he sent down a four-over spell that ended with figures of 3 for 27. Unfortunately for him and the Renegades, it did not prove sufficient.

Asim Mubashir: “Difficult to draw comparisons to this game, certainly one of the best amongst several T20s across many competitions across the world. Simply astounding!!!!!!”

Ben McDermott hit the first century of the 2016-17 Big Bash League, Melbourne Renegades v Hobart Hurricanes, BBL 2016-17, Melbourne, January 12, 2017

HH 223/8 (20.0 ov, SCJ Broad 11*, SL Rainbird 1*, SP Narine 3/27) – Match over | Live Scorecard | ESPN Cricinfo

Melbourne Renegades 222/4 (20/20 ov)
Hobart Hurricanes 223/8 (20.0/20 ov)
Hobart Hurricanes won by 2 wickets (with 0 balls remaining)
Big Bash League – 24th match
12 January 2017 – night match (20-over match)

Melbourne Renegades innings (20 overs maximum) R B 4s 6s SR
View dismissal MS Harris c Wells b Christian 25 19 2 1 131.57
4.4 lofts it through long-on and sends it straight down the throat of the fielder there. It was full and Harris walked across early, probably that did not give the room he desired. Wells takes it reverse-cupped in front of the boundary 42/1
View dismissal AJ Finch* c †Paine b Short 63 40 6 2 157.50
14.5 gets down for a huge slog sweep and skews it into the air off the top edge. The ball has been skied and seems to stay up for all of eternity. The midwikcet region is empty and several players run across to it, including wicketkeeper Tim Paine. He calls for it and settles under it before taking it fairly comfortably. But that was anything but easy 155/3
View dismissal CL White c Wells b Reed 34 19 2 2 178.94
11.6 tries to do the same thing as earlier by walking across the stumps and trying to heave it over the leg side. Does not middle it well this time and gets it off the bottom part of the bat, which means he gets elevation but not the distance. It seems momentarily as though it would carry all the way but Wells settles under it at deep square leg and snaffles it. What an entertaining innings from White 116/2
TLW Cooper not out 53 24 7 2 220.83
View dismissal CJ Ferguson c Short b Reed 15 7 1 1 214.28
17.2 slower full ball outside off, drilled hard off the front foot but chips the drive straight into the hands of mid-off. Struck quite well ut does not get enough elevation as he fails to pick the drop in pace 180/4
NLTC Perera not out 28 11 3 1 254.54
Extras (lb 1, w 3) 4
Total (4 wickets; 20 overs) 222 (11.10 runs per over)
Bowling O M R W Econ
SCJ Broad 4 0 39 0 9.75 (1w)
SL Rainbird 3 0 37 0 12.33
View wicket DT Christian 4 0 37 1 9.25 (1w)
4.4 to Harris, lofts it through long-on and sends it straight down the throat of the fielder there. It was full and Harris walked across early, probably that did not give the room he desired. Wells takes it reverse-cupped in front of the boundary 42/1
View wickets JK Reed 4 0 54 2 13.50 (1w)
11.6 to White, tries to do the same thing as earlier by walking across the stumps and trying to heave it over the leg side. Does not middle it well this time and gets it off the bottom part of the bat, which means he gets elevation but not the distance. It seems momentarily as though it would carry all the way but Wells settles under it at deep square leg and snaffles it. What an entertaining innings from White 116/2
17.2 to Ferguson, slower full ball outside off, drilled hard off the front foot but chips the drive straight into the hands of mid-off. Struck quite well ut does not get enough elevation as he fails to pick the drop in pace 180/4
CJ Boyce 4 0 36 0 9.00
View wicket DJM Short 1 0 18 1 18.00
14.5 to Finch, gets down for a huge slog sweep and skews it into the air off the top edge. The ball has been skied and seems to stay up for all of eternity. The midwikcet region is empty and several players run across to it, including wicketkeeper Tim Paine. He calls for it and settles under it before taking it fairly comfortably. But that was anything but easy 155/3
Hobart Hurricanes innings (target: 223 runs from 20 overs) R B 4s 6s SR
View dismissal DJM Short b Cooper 18 11 1 1 163.63
2.2 goes for the same sweep but this one is not full enough. It is on a length and he misses as the ball takes out off-stump. Loopy delivery, sliding in and the angle perhaps did him in as he cannot make contact on a wild attempt at a slog 19/2
View dismissal TD Paine*† c Perera b Cooper 0 1 0 0 0.00
0.3 Perera comes around it at deep midwicket and snaffles it without fuss. Gets down for the slog sweep and skews it off a thick edge. It was given just enough air and slightly quicker. Cooper picks out the deep midwicket region, skies the ball there and Perera runs a few steps to his left before completing good catch 1/1
View dismissal BR McDermott lbw b Narine 114 52 8 9 219.23
15.1 gone, McDermott perishes on the reverse sweep but what an innings. It was slightly short of a length and angling down leg. McDermott was looking to reverse sweep it and gets totally cramped for room. Wears it on the pad. Looked plumb though there was that lingering doubt if it would have missed leg. But the umpire does not think so and raises his finger 170/3
View dismissal GJ Bailey c Harris b Narine 59 42 3 2 140.47
18.6 picks out long-on. Flat-bats this length ball and that never looked like it was going to carry. Marcus Harris gets around it and slides as he snaffles it reverse-cupped 207/7
View dismissal DT Christian lbw b Hogg 12 6 1 1 200.00
16.5 plumb. Hogg has the last laugh. That looked out from the moment it hit the pad. It was fuller and quicker. Given the right amount of air. Christian got down to sweep but it was too straight and there was no way he was going to put bat to it. Gets pinged on the pad and the umpire raises his finger almost as soon as Hogg appealed 185/4
View dismissal JW Wells b Hogg 0 1 0 0 0.00
16.6 two in two. Double strike for Hogg, puts Renegades back into the contest. He’s on a hat-trick but he has to wait until the next game to try and achieve that. He’s done with his spell. Wells moved across and looked for the sweep shot but gets a long way away from the ball. Exposes all three stumps and the ball crashes into them after hitting him on the pad 185/5
View dismissal BJ Webster c Cooper b Narine 0 2 0 0 0.00
18.4 slog sweep. Length ball outside off, has to fetch it from there and does not get hold of it. Skews it off the top edge and the ball goes straight down the throat of Cooper at deep midwicket 205/6
View dismissal CJ Boyce run out (Narine) 1 1 0 0 100.00
19.2 from Perera, full and wide outside off, gets a thick outside edge as he throws his arms at it. Narine dives to his left and gets his hand to it and takes the momentum off the ball. It rolls away slightly and they think of charging back for the second. Narine recovers well and fires a direct throw at the keeper’s end. The batsman is short of his crease but it seems like the wicketkeeper’s glove may have touched the stumps and Boyce has been asked to wait. The third umpire has had a long, hard look at it and decides that the keeper has done fine there 209/8
SL Rainbird not out 1 1 0 0 100.00
SCJ Broad not out 11 4 2 0 275.00
Extras (lb 3, w 3, nb 1) 7
Total (8 wickets; 20 overs) 223 (11.15 runs per over)
Bowling O M R W Econ
View wickets TLW Cooper 2 0 12 2 6.00
0.3 to Paine, Perera comes around it at deep midwicket and snaffles it without fuss. Gets down for the slog sweep and skews it off a thick edge. It was given just enough air and slightly quicker. Cooper picks out the deep midwicket region, skies the ball there and Perera runs a few steps to his left before completing good catch 1/1
2.2 to Short, goes for the same sweep but this one is not full enough. It is on a length and he misses as the ball takes out off-stump. Loopy delivery, sliding in and the angle perhaps did him in as he cannot make contact on a wild attempt at a slog 19/2
XJ Doherty 3 0 30 0 10.00
View wickets SP Narine 4 0 27 3 6.75
15.1 to McDermott, gone, McDermott perishes on the reverse sweep but what an innings. It was slightly short of a length and angling down leg. McDermott was looking to reverse sweep it and gets totally cramped for room. Wears it on the pad. Looked plumb though there was that lingering doubt if it would have missed leg. But the umpire does not think so and raises his finger 170/3
18.4 to Webster, slog sweep. Length ball outside off, has to fetch it from there and does not get hold of it. Skews it off the top edge and the ball goes straight down the throat of Cooper at deep midwicket 205/6
18.6 to Bailey, picks out long-on. Flat-bats this length ball and that never looked like it was going to carry. Marcus Harris gets around it and slides as he snaffles it reverse-cupped 207/7
JL Pattinson 3 0 47 0 15.66 (1nb)
View wickets GB Hogg 4 0 45 2 11.25
16.5 to Christian, plumb. Hogg has the last laugh. That looked out from the moment it hit the pad. It was fuller and quicker. Given the right amount of air. Christian got down to sweep but it was too straight and there was no way he was going to put bat to it. Gets pinged on the pad and the umpire raises his finger almost as soon as Hogg appealed 185/4
16.6 to Wells, two in two. Double strike for Hogg, puts Renegades back into the contest. He’s on a hat-trick but he has to wait until the next game to try and achieve that. He’s done with his spell. Wells moved across and looked for the sweep shot but gets a long way away from the ball. Exposes all three stumps and the ball crashes into them after hitting him on the pad 185/5
NLTC Perera 4 0 59 0 14.75 (1w)

Match details


Toss – Hobart Hurricanes
Points – Hobart Hurricanes 2, Melbourne Renegades 0
Player of the match – BR McDermott (Hobart Hurricanes)
Umpires – PJ Gillespie and P Wilson
TV umpire – JD Ward
Match referee – PL Marshall
Reserve umpire – S Brne
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Kabooooooooom: Bats that smash records

January 23, 2016

Peter Lalor, in the Weekend Australian, 23 January 2016, where the title is Wielding willow never so easy in the age of super bats”

bats Chris Lynn’s is a batsman’s version of a sawn-off shot gun — and just as lethal.

It’s so valuable he has found it in a teammate’s kit bag more than once. There are very, very few of these blades in circulation and they are highly sought after. A man would knife his own teammate for a weapon like that. Davey Warner’s cornered the market in the valuable pieces of willow, but he guards them like a father guards his teenage daughters. Ain’t nobody coming near his babies.

Usman Khawaja somehow managed to let him take one out on a date and broke the bloody thing. “Davey’s not going to be happy,” he said sheepishly. Davey wasn’t happy.

Davey wasn’t happy again this week when it seemed someone had pinched one and was selling it online. He considered calling in Border Force to make sure it wasn’t smuggled out of the country. The Iranians can have the bomb, but you don’t want weapons like that falling into foreign hands. The bats being used this summer are bigger than they have ever been in the history of the game. They are heavy, but remarkably light considering their girth. There is a batch of Gray Nicolls in particular that has teammates, opposition and seasoned watchers absolutely stunned by their size and power. “I have never seen so many balls fly into the top deck of the Gabba,” Lynn told The Weekend Australian.

He should know, he’s the one who has been hitting them there. Dubbed the “King of Six” in this year’s BBL, he has hit 27 balls over the boundary in the tournament. Check out the highlights reel. Marvel at him slogging Shaun Tait back over his head and into the top deck. Be warned that the video is officially classified batting porn and is NSFW (a baggy blue movie). These bats are so rare if Moses knew about them he would have added an XIth commandment: thou shall not covet thy teammate’s bat.

“I will go out for a fielding session and when I come back I find one in Joe Burns’ bag and one in Peter Forrest’s,” Lynn says.

Gray Nicolls bat whisperer Stuart Kranzbuhler handcrafts the willow for the company’s sponsored players. He estimates there are 30 at most in circulation and no guarantee that more will come.

“Everyone wants one,” he says.

Only the very best get them.

Warner has cornered the market in the bat they are calling a Kaboom Signature series. It is the biggest and most blessed beast in the whole of Christendom. The Australian opener has 15 of them and has been reluctant to share.

The Kaboom is 85mm thick at its widest part. You can buy a version of them in the shops and while they are the same dimensions, they are heavier and you will have to be superman to swing the thing.

The few that the first class cricketers have are extra special because they are much lighter.

They are, despite the rumours, not carved from the wood of the cross. Kranzbuhler explains that you can get a piece of willow that big, but it is usually from a young tree which has denser wood and is therefore heavier. Warner and his mates have been allowed to use some rare willow from older trees that allows the bats to weigh in at about 2lb 13oz.

A willow tree is at its best when it is 15 years old, but demand and disease mean few get to that stage and there is only a limited life for those that do as they degenerate soon after.

Warner uses his in Test matches, but most of the others use them only in the T20 because the weight slows down their swing, especially on cross bat shots.

Weight was one of the reasons why Lynn took his to the ground staff at the Gabba and got them to put it in the vice and saw the toe off.

“The theory behind that is — especially with Twenty 20 cricket — you don’t want to hit the ball in that nail length on the top of the bat near the handle, so you take a bit off the bottom and you move your hands up on the grip as much as you take off,” he explains.

“That’s my theory that I am working with at the moment. It might sound complicated but you are not moving your body or anything, it is all levelled out.

“At first it felt a little bit weird but I batted in the club game and batted all day and I got comfortable with it; having that extra bit of willow in the bottom of the bat is a whole new ball game. It’s changed my game, that’s for sure.

“What is so satisfying using the big bats is I have played a couple of pull shots, a couple of drives and cover drives without having to slog. I believe I can use these bats in Shield cricket as well.”

Kranzbuhler admits that Lynn has “got a really, really good one there”.

Lynn explains that he has always enjoyed going big and the key might have been a bat he used in the junior years.

“When you play in the backyard you want to hit the ball as hard as you can,” he said.

“You are always challenging yourself. Sometimes I am thinking I don’t just want to hit this ball for a six, I want to hit it out of the park, you want a story you can tell your mates about how far you hit it and you always want to hit one bigger than somebody else has.

“It has just worked into my game well, I have fast hands when I bat, my old man bought me a bat when I was about maybe 11 or 12 and it weighted 2lb 12oz. It was heavy and back then it was a big bat, nowadays it looks really small. That probably helped strengthen my wrists for batting, your wrists and forearms are the key when you are trying to hit the ball.”

The irony is that the biggest six of this tournament was a 117m heave by Dan Christian who uses a Kookaburra Bubble.

“I think it was further than that to be honest (laughs) … no way have I ever hit one that well before,” he told The Weekend Australian.

“Everything about it, trajectory, the way it came out of the middle of the bat, it just went miles. It was the perfect length and I slogged as hard as I could and timed it perfectly.”

Christian admits his willow is large, but nothing like the monsters Lynn, Warner and Khawaja use.

“I used to think it was big until these new ones that Davey and Lynney are using came out,” he said. “It is pretty worn in, the handle is almost gone so it is quite whippy … it was 2lb 10oz or 2lb 11oz when I first got it, but as they age they lose a bit of weight so it is probably about 2lb 9oz now.”

The batsman ought to enjoy this time while they can because the MCC Cricket Committee is almost certain to act soon and put restrictions on the girth of bats.

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Fans: Evaluating the Success of the Big Bash in Oz

January 23, 2016

Gideon Haigh, in the Weekend Australian, 23 January 2016,where the title is “Trend-spotting: the secret behind cricket’s feelgood hit of the summer”

Writing about the Big Bash League poses challenges unfamiliar in cricket journalism. It grows difficult to single out particular games, so quickly do they pass in its concentrated timespan. Gratification is instant; feats blur; results are rapidly succeeded; even the fixtures breed a degree of uncertainty. At the time of writing, it is unclear who will meet the Sydney Thunder in tomorrow’s final or where it will take place. That encourages a concentration on the phenomenon, which is at this stage, perhaps, what matters anyway. Notable as individual achievements have been in BBL5, and as eye-catching have been many of the skills on show, the standout performer has surely been the continuous one, and also the happiest: the fans.

When the Indian Premier League kicked off almost eight years ago, the numbers that stood out were the eye-watering sums of money — in broadcast revenues, in sponsorship and endorsement fees, and, for the first time, in auction results for players sold.

In this summer of the BBL’s apotheosis, it is the crowd figures, now up around seven figures, that have, to use the phrase of Melbourne Stars’ well-travelled coach Stephen Fleming, sent “shockwaves through cricket”.

Seven of the eight franchises have set attendance records. The Melbourne Cricket Ground’s cap­acity has at last been tested; Adelaide Oval, the Gabba and Bellerive Oval have brimmed for every game; for the improving Thunder, Showground Stadium has proven a vastly more welcoming home.

We’re commonly told that a concentration on crowds is old-fashioned thinking, that it is the ratings that matter because it is television that foots the bills.

Yet crowds retain a powerful corroborative effect. For the home viewer they dramatise that something important is going on worthy of their attention; for the commentator they provide an indispensable part of the descriptive palette (“The crowd’s going wild” etc).

A deserted stadium is likewise expressive: the weird and sterile Test matches that Pakistan host in the Gulf are somehow dismaying whatever the quality of the play.

BBL crowds, moreover, do more than simply spectate; they form part of the spectacle, responding resoundingly to the cues of the ground announcer, good humouredly mugging when the cameras show them on the big screen, leaping for six hits like seagulls scrabbling for chips, and, of course, making a hashtag of themselves by their fruit-eating habits.

It’s an agreeable change, given the killjoy ordinances in operation at international fixtures, and could be argued as demonstrating how unnecessary many of these prohibitions are. Left to regulate themselves, while also needing to be mindful of the presence of so many children, people have proven that they can relax responsibly.

Alcohol, of course, is less of an issue in a short-duration game, while rivalry has yet to become unfriendly. During Thursday night’s semi-final at Adelaide Oval, the camera hovered amusedly over a handful of banner-waving Thunder supporters among the solid ranks of Strikers fans, appreciating the incongruity rather than accentuating a conflict.

What are we to read into the BBL’s crowds, beyond a banal attestation of its popularity, and of T20’s streamlined consumer appeal? In one respect they are a tribute to the deep and abiding Australian love of cricket.

Make the game accessible, regular and cheap, it seems, and the public will turn up and tune in almost irrespective of who is playing.

Maybe cricket is late to this understanding, but it is also building on the endowments of generations. Cricket is summer, summer is cricket, which makes attending a BBL game like dropping in on an old friend and being gratified by their good health.

In another respect, the BBL reflects a public desire to be part of a success, forming, as it were, a virtuous circle: fans are attracted by the publicity and form part of the publicity themselves. There is a cool factor involved. BBL has become the party people want to say they’ve been to.

Over time, cricket has not always encouraged the casual walk-up or the spontaneous patron attending on a last-minute whim. Attendance has instead involved a kind of homage or pilgrimage. In its calculatedly dressed-down way, the BBL makes no such demands. It is cricket for a good time not a long time, a one-night stand on a balmy evening rather than part of a lifetime’s commitment.

Such novelty will not last indefinitely, of course. But as a fit with high summer, competing as it does with silly season news and soporific television, the BBL experience has a good many recommendations.

That being so, what might be BBL’s longer term impacts on the culture of cricket watching? In particular, will it be a gateway to the rest of the game or a substitute for it?

Administrators have always tended to talk up the former, although from a commercial point of view the latter might suit them every bit as well.

After all, cricket based on a domestic autarky would be a good deal more straightforward to manage and to monetise than one based on a web of global relationships, unpredictable nationalisms, conflicting calendars, split revenues. If anything, international cricket is growing harder to build summers round, the list of attractions contracting towards a choice between sackcloth or the Ashes.

Frankly it is too early to tell, and our understanding of the dynamics of the cricket audience has never been great anyway, the stuff of anecdote rather than evidence. Even the market research undertaken by Cricket Australia ahead of the BBL was of a crude, drunk-meet-streetlamp sort, for the purposes of support rather than illumination.

If anything, cricket fans have tended to accommodate themselves to the given, accepting that they live in a market provided for by a monopoly, rather than demanding or leading change. The Boxing Day Test testifies to the commercial value that can accrue from simply leaving something as it is and allowing people to plan ­accordingly.

Here, then, lies the challenge awaiting the planners of the next stage of the BBL, between the culture of innovation and the comforts of continuity. In this sense, tomorrow’s final preludes another beginning.

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Is T20 Cricket suffocating the Test arena?

January 8, 2016

Will Swanton, in The Australian, & January 2016, with the title “Will T20 kill Test Cricket?” …http://www.theaustralian.com.au/summerliving/will-the-t20-big-bash-league-kill-test-cricket/news-story/be5eea4091a313a21cc8ff2232dfaedc

The first international Twenty20 match was a joke. Australia faced New Zealand at Auckland’s Eden Park. Kiwi players wore wigs and fake moustaches. Glenn McGrath replicated Trevor Chappell’s underarm delivery. Umpire Billy Bowden issued a mock red card. Players organised an in-house competition for the best retro 1980s outfit. It was the unveiling of the cartoonish format of a trad­itional and earnest sport.

AAA-WILL S Read the rest of this entry ?

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Travis Head rains sixers on the Sydney Sixers

January 1, 2016

Travis Head reigns

during the Big Bash League match between the Adelaide Strikers and the Sydney Sixers at Adelaide Oval on December 31, 2015 in Adelaide, Australia.

Travis had smashes sixers–Getty

An extraordinary innings by young Travis Head retrieved what seemed like a hopeless situation for the Adelaide Strikers in their BBL match against the Sydney Sixers – an event I was privileged to see. At the end of the 17th over the Strikers were 126 for 5 and needed 51 runs from 18 balls –a strike rate of 17.00!

Well, well. They reached the target in 15 balls! See the details below. It was fundamentally a Head show – since Adil Rashid scored 2 runs from the one ball he faced. …. Michael Roberts Read the rest of this entry ?