Well, it didn’t take too long for the good feeling of the Proteas World Cup run and #ProteaFire to come crashing down. Just after the semi-final loss to New Zealand there was noise that Vernon Philander was selected over Kyle Abbott because of racial quotas. Cricket South Africa and Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula were quick to deny that there was any type of racial quota being observed in the selection for the match. Mbalula has reiterated his stance that quotas played no part in Philander’s selection on Monday.
Category Archives: Cricket World Cup 2015
And just like that, the 2015 Cricket World Cup is in the books. An unbelievable bowling performance from Australia sealed an easy victory over New Zealand inside a packed Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Although, New Zealand won the toss and elected to bat first, from the first ball of the day the result never looked much in doubt for Australia. Brendon McCullum’s aggressive batting at the the top of the order has propelled the Black Caps at times this tournament, particularly in their semi-final win over South Africa. Yesterday however, McCullum was simply too risky against an excellent Mitchell Starc. On the fifth ball of the match, Starc bowled McCullum off stump for a duck and New Zealand were sitting 1-1. Martin Guptill was bowled out by Glenn Maxwell leaving the visitors at 33-2 after 11.2 overs, while less than an over later, Mitchell Johnson bowled and caught Kane Williamson. 35 overs in, Ross Taylor was bowled by James Faulkner and caught by the wicketkeeper Brad Haddin leaving the visitors 150-4 and in a world of trouble. The floodgates opened then for Australia’s bowlers, dismissing Corey Anderson and Luke Ronchi for ducks. The Kiwis were 167-6 when Mitchell Johnson bowled Daniel Vettori, the veteran Black Cap was out for a measly 9. Matt Henry was gone for a duck and shortly thereafter Tim Southee was brilliantly run out after 45 overs with New Zealand putting up a paltry 183 in their inning.
A final of New Zealand and Australia feels a bit inevitable, doesn’t it? South Africa was always going to find a way to lose—painfully. India had the air of a paper tiger throughout the tournament. At no point during the competition did Pakistan seem convincing. And that’s to say nothing of a West Indian side that seemed to take glee in tiptoeing on the edge of a precipice; a Bangladeshi squad punching above its weight; and a team of Sri Lankans that have already taken to blaming their woes on a lack of cardio. The less we discuss Zimbabwe, the better.
Only 100 overs remain in the 11th Cricket World Cup and for a second straight tournament the hosts square off; New Zealand versus Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground for the title of World Cup Champions.
Much has been made over the course of the 2015 ICC World Cup about the performances by AB de Villiers, Martin Guptill, and Kumar Sangakarra. And rightfully so, all three have been spectacular to watch as they’ve lifted their teams with magic at the crease. Another player worth heaping praise on has been Steve Smith of Australia. Don’t remind anyone on the subcontinent, though they aren’t likely to soon forget, Smith has 5 centuries in 7 matches against India this summer, including 105 in last night’s semi-final win over MS Dhoni’s men. Steve Smith has knocked in 921 runs, an average of 115 versus India in those matches. And to think, the Aussie wasn’t even in the ODI first XI when the summer began.