September 20, 2013
Following a successful ODI campaign in England, Australia have announced their squad for the forthcoming one day series of seven ODIs and one T20 in India. There is still no place for David Warner who is joined on the sidelines by leggie Fawad Ahmed and keeper Matthew Wade. 35-year-old Brad Haddin will keep wicket in Wade’s place and there are also recalls for left arm spinner Xavier Doherty and batsman Moises Henriques. Fitness doubts surround skipper Michael Clarke, who is once again suffering from his bad back. One suspects that Clarke, who has struggled to maintain fitness over the last few months, is in need of a rest and that Cricket Australia is waiting for a politically convenient moment to pull him out of the tour.
Zimbabwe have completed an historic test win over Pakistan to square the series at 1 – 1. Save for Younis Khan’s double century in the first game, the series might well have ended in Zimbabwe’s favour. While Zimbawbe can rightly be proud of their achievements, there is no sign of countries falling over themselves in a rush to organise tours with them.
Minor changes have been put in place to the Decision Review System for this winter’s test series. On a trial basis from October 1, teams will be able to claim two reviews after the 80th over of an innings, regardless of how many unsuccessful reviews have gone before. The ICC will be hoping that this change helps to reduce the sort of controversies that marred the recent Ashes series in England. In other moves, a working party has been set up to examine improved use of Hawkeye, Hot Spot and Snicko, while umpires have been instructed “to become far stricter on poor over-rates and time wasting and to maximise playing time in conditions where it is safe to do so.” Umpires with teeth? Let’s see how it goes.
With one round of matches still to come, Durham have clinched the Division 1 title of England’s county championship for the third time in six years. This represents a remarkable turnaround since, with the county languished at the foot of the table, Paul Collingwood succeeded to the captaincy in the middle of 2012. Collingwood has paid tribute to the fighting spirit of his players and has dedicated the title to the Director of Cricket who is making a brave recovery from a mid season heart attack. With no overseas players engaged this year, nine of the victorious team in the last match were nurtured at the club’s academy, which Cook has overseen since Durham were handed first-class status in 1992.
The Scoop 20/09/13