Archive for the ‘tower of strength’ Category


Arjuna the Indomitable: Challenging Aussie Skulduggery in 1995-98 … and More

April 25, 2017

Andrew Fidel Fernando, courtesy of The Cricket Monthly, at ESPNcricinfo … …where the title is “Arjuna Versus”

 January 1999: Sri Lankan supporters show Ranatunga some love outside Adelaide Oval, where he was facing a disciplinary hearing

v Australia, 1995-96
Sri Lanka have played in higher-octane, better contested and far more watchable series, but for pure watershed value none has left its mark on the island’s cricket like this pre-World Cup thrashing in Australia. If Ranatunga had not been at the helm, things might have gone very differently; it was the kind of tour that can run teams aground.

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English Cricket Governors target Kolpak Imports

April 19, 2017

Simon Burnton,  courtesy of THE SPIN, where the tile is “ECB’s Kolpak clampdown is the latest gambit in 100 years war”

News the England and Wales Cricket Board is planning to tighten regulations to prevent county sides becoming flooded with Kolpak imports marks the start of another skirmish in the never-ending battle between domestic cricket’s governing body, the counties and the international sides the latter would like to plunder. The words of Haroon Lorgat, chief executive of Cricket South Africa, when Kyle Abbott and Rilee Rossouw announced their moves to Hampshire in January were particularly striking. “We invest huge sums of money in every individual,” he said, “and if you take Rilee, by way of example, in the last I don’t know how many months we’ve been treating his injuries, we’ve been investing in him. Sadly there’s no return for us in the years to come.”

 Rilee Rossouw, whose Kolpak move to Hampshire was announced in January, along with that of his South Africa team-mate Kyle Abbott. Photograph: Gallo Images/Getty Images

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India’s Rise to Heavyweight Status in Cricket, 1970s-2010s

April 17, 2017

Ian Chappell, courtesy of ESPNcricinfo, 16 April 2017, where the title is “How India became a cricketing heavyweight”

India’s Umesh Yadav, left, Karun Nair, second from left, celebrate with teammates the dismissal of Australia’s Matt Renshaw during the third day of their fourth test cricket match in Dharmsala, India, Monday, March 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)

Watching India defeat Australia in a highly entertaining series reconfirmed how far the home side has progressed as a cricket nation in the years since I played against Tiger Pataudi‘s men in 1967-68. Pataudi led a side that had two fine spinners, Erapalli Prasanna and Bhagwath Chandrasekhar (much like the current Indian team does), and they soon added a third in Bishan Bedi. The one advantage Pataudi’s team had over Virat Kohli‘s group was close catching; no one could match the bravery and skill of Eknath Solkar. He used to field so close at leg slip, you felt like telling him, “Ekky get out of my back pocket.” Read the rest of this entry ?


Absorbing Cricket in Day One at Galle

March 7, 2017

Andrew Fernando, inESPNcricinfo, where the title is Mendis 166* headlines Sri Lanka dominance”

How sweet homecomings can be. Having failed to score 300 in any of their six Test innings in South Africa, Sri Lanka rode Kusal Mendis‘s suave 166 not out to a score of 321 for 4 on the first day in Galle. Along the way, Mendis signed up Asela Gunaratne for a sidekick, forging with him a dominant 196-run fourth-wicket stand, of which Gunaratne’s share was 85.

Kusal & asela embrace

This Galle pitch deserves a first-  innings total of at least 400, so although Sri Lanka’s position is strong for now, it is certainly not an unassailable one. Read the rest of this entry ?


Cricket Riveting Cricket!! Valentine and Ramadhin Rise Again at Pune

February 27, 2017

Gideon Haigh, in The Australian, 27 February 2017, where his chosen title is Pune shock a victory for the true believers”

This was one for the true believers, and it’s fair to say that these were heavily outnumbered in the vicinity of MCA Stadium last week, especially once the pitch, as dry and scarred as the lunar surface, was rolled out. When Steve Smith spoke warmly ahead of the first Test of “the great challenge” of playing in India, and of the future possibility of team members looking back on a series win as “the best time of our lives”, he was indulged, but sceptically. Young captains must say such things, mustn’t they? The forebodings of a chorus of greats resonated more loudly.

Australia's captain Steve Smith bats during Third day of the first cricket test match against India in Pune, India, Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

Australia’s captain Steve Smith bats during Third day of the first cricket test match against India in Pune, India, Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

But when Smith opined of his tough summer’s cricket that “you probably learn more from losing games than you do from winning”, it turns out he was not kidding. In Pune, he and his team evinced a quality in which Australian cricket has not always abounded: humility. Read the rest of this entry ?


ASELA fades away from Mark Nicholas

February 19, 2017

For Asela, Henriques, Cummins, Rabada, Chris Morris et al are not a major concern, But Mark Nicholas is! He has a microphone and words of praise!

Yuk! Fearsome! Terrible?




Asela the Slayer

February 19, 2017

ASELA in Sinhala is pronounced “A-Say-La”and living up to the implications of his name in English, he flayed and slayed the Aussies and Moises Henriques (that is “Hawnreeks” or something like that  in Portuguese speech) for three sicxes in one over — doing  a Dunkn really (that is, emulating Ben Dunk who dunked three sixes off a Munaweera over earlier in the day).

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 14: Asela Gunaratne of Sri Lanka poses during a Sri Lanka headshots session at the Realm Hotel on February 14, 2017 in Canberra, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)


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