Drawn series, big wins, but England problems still remain

England's situation encapsulated by Gary Ballance (photo: Getty Images)

England‘s situation encapsulated by Gary Ballance (photo: Getty Images)

New Zealand catapulted themselves to victory at Headingley in the last match of their two-test series against England this week.  One game prior, at the revered Lord’s, they were brushed aside by 124 runs.

Social media was awash with fans giving New Zealand the upper hand headed into the first test.  Continue reading

Harris the weapon, everyone else playing follow the leader

Preparation is key.  Even more so for Australia’s line-up of pace bowlers as the Ashes series in England draws closer.

Some have already cemented their places with some fine performances over the past six months, Ryan Harris included.  Continue reading

England’s dizzy heights, and a new future coach: the time is now

Andrew Strauss & Peter Moores: into the fire (photo: PA)

Andrew Strauss & Peter Moores: into the fire (photo: PA)

After what has been a tormenting and agonising period in world cricket for England, both on and off the field, there’s the slightest glimmer of hope.

Peter Moores, sent packing by the England Cricket Board in the last week, continued to tread on razor-sharp glass shards as each day passed.  Continue reading

Beyond Realisation’s 2015 IPL XII – Part 1 of 2

Brendon McCullum punishes one for six (photo:  BCCI)

Brendon McCullum punishes one for six (photo: BCCI)

Strategy in cricket’s shortest format is key.  There’s barely enough time to scratch out a guard and then face some thunderbolts or eye-poppers.  The battle between ball and fielder is almost always won by the little white pill, especially when a boundary line is involved. Continue reading

All about the cricket in IPL 8

Shane Watson smashes one through the covers (photo: BCCI)

Shane Watson smashes one through the covers (photo: BCCI)

It has taken just one-quarter of the 67 matches in the eighth instalment of the Indian Premier League to show cricket fans just why it was so highly touted in the lead-up.

Rajasthan Royals have blown everyone off the park, including the vaunted Chennai Super Kings, who have looked something of a shadow on their last season.  Mumbai Indians have finally registered a win, and the Delhi Daredevils have been up and down like a yo-yo on a child’s finger. Continue reading

If England want the Ashes – or cricket – back, they can’t do it quibbling over the counter

Peter Moores, Paul Downton and Alastair Cook say it all (photo: Getty Images)

Peter Moores, Paul Downton and Alastair Cook say it all (photo: Getty Images)

Forget that there’s a changeover at the top of the chain in May; England will still look like a pack of seagulls fighting over the last delicious hot chip.  Except that chip isn’t delicious, and the men in blue aren’t close to setting themselves back on the rails just yet.

Welcome to the Ashes 2015, where the most dangerous issue on the table is whether England’s A-team will turn up in Cardiff for the first test.  Continue reading

CWC 2015: Sri Lanka: Mentally tough, physically awesome

Tilakaratne Dilshan plays away on the off side (picture: AFP)

Tilakaratne Dilshan plays away on the off side (picture: AFP)

(In conjunction with Infinity Cricket)

They’ve safely qualified for the quarter-finals.  Only Australia and New Zealand were able to defeat them comfortably; everyone else hasn’t really come close to the high-flying Sri Lankans.

Much of the credit can go to the incredible, well-oiled machine that is Kumar Sangakkara.  Four centuries, an average of 124, and 496 runs during the tournament have made a supreme statement of the class of the 37-year-old that he’s not stopping just yet. Continue reading

CWC 2015: Associates tell ICC cutting World Cup teams is wrong

George Dockrell celebrates in triumph at the World Cup (photo: AFP)

George Dockrell celebrates in triumph at the World Cup (photo: AFP)

‪#‎CWC15‬

Why the associates have sent a strong message to the ICC: “don’t take away our spots in the World Cup.”

It took just five matches before an associate nation decided that sitting in the shadows was going to be a thing of the past.

That team was Ireland, whose emphatic win against the West Indies was a testament to four years of hard work leading up to the World Cup. No longer was such a win an upset, instead the premise of building an organisation that wanted to achieve success. Ireland made the history books well before that though, beating England in 2011 and Pakistan in 2007 – something no-one was expecting at the time. Continue reading

CWC 2015: Chris Gayle absolutely destroys a Zimbabwe outfit with no answer to the onslaught

Chris Gayle goes down the track (photo: ICC)

Chris Gayle goes down the track (photo: ICC)

Here’s some stats about THAT Chris Gayle innings:
-He scored a six off every Zimbabwe bowler
-First 50 took 51 balls, he reached his ton in 105
-100-200 took just 33 balls
-He equalled AB de Villiers record of 16 sixes in an ODI game
-Chris Gayle is the ONLY player to score a T20I century, ODI double century and test triple century
-This is his second ODI ton or better in his last 21 innings Continue reading

CWC 2015: Kiwis are very hard to crack. Cricketers are even harder

Trent Boult screams for an appeal (photo: ICC)

Trent Boult screams for an appeal (photo: ICC)

After just two matches, it is abundantly clear why everyone’s talking New Zealand in this World Cup.

They’re consistent, they’re like glue that doesn’t pull apart, and it’s extremely hard for most opposing teams to breakthrough the top six. However, it wasn’t all smooth sailing.

Scratchy and patchy might best describe the Kiwis road back to confidence. Household names now were just little specs in 2013. The biggest winning margin was 86 runs, whereas in 2014, they had four wins bigger than 50 runs or five wickets – a testament to the hard work the squad made to get back to an ultra-competitive level.
Continue reading