March 29, 2011

More Than Cricket: India versus Pakistan is always full of meaning. This time, it's a World Cup semi final.

posted by owlhouse to other at 07:37 PM - 23 comments

Yeah, this shit is happening at 5:00 AM Wednesday morning here in Cary, NC. It's gonna get real.

posted by NoMich at 10:49 PM on March 29

Related: Wright Thompson of ESPN on the story of Sachin Tendulkar from the point of view of an American. An incredible piece of writing that will see me do everything I can to make it to the next World Cup. Well worth the time it takes to read. And NoMich, I am jealous. I'll be streaming it on my laptop starting at 4am.

posted by boredom_08 at 12:21 AM on March 30

I'm watching it in a bar somewhere in Hanoi, once my meetings are over for the day. Starts 4 pm local time, and ends around midnight.

For once, I'm in the right time zone.

posted by owlhouse at 03:23 AM on March 30

Wright Thompson needs an editor -- or perhaps I'm too used to cricket writing in the spirit of C.L.R. James -- but once I got past the opening "but what does it mean? what does it mean?" it stopped annoying me.

(Zaltzman gets a mention; he's made it into the ground for the match, and I've been enjoying the travels of his WG doll.)

Sachin is a few months older than me. I remember watching him as a teenager when he spent a year at Yorkshire; he was the one batsman who could stand up to the Australians during their period of utter dominance and has outlasted most of the Aussies to stand as the elder statesman of the world's best Test side. He's 38 next month, and has been playing international cricket for 22 of those years; while the statistics are phenomenal -- a century today would be his 100th in international cricket -- there's always been the sense that his individual greatness hasn't been noticed quite as much outside India, because other teams have been better at the same time.

That's why this one really matters: not just because it's Pakistan, but because India wants to win, on home soil, with Sachin playing, as an endorsement of both the past and the present. (He still walks, which seems almost quaint in the era of the DRS.)

While it's conventional wisdom, India have the edge on paper, but it depends a lot on which version of Pakistan shows up. And I still think Sri Lanka will take the whole thing. But regardless, South Asia is closed for the day.

posted by etagloh at 04:09 AM on March 30

I'm not going to do running commentary, but if Pakistan wanted to take the crowd out of the game, bowling the kind of filth that Sehwag dispatched for five fours in the third over isn't going to help.

posted by etagloh at 05:26 AM on March 30

I've got a friend in Chennai who's tweeting all the announcers' cliches as the match progresses. It's been good fun.

posted by ursus_comiter at 05:36 AM on March 30

Wahab Riaz has been the game-changer so far. And Tendulkar is at least half feline.

posted by boredom_08 at 08:03 AM on March 30

India 260 for 9 from their 50 overs. Doesn't sound like enough.

posted by JJ at 09:08 AM on March 30

Kamran's just out - Pakistan 1/44 in the run chase.

260 might be enough if the spinners can tie them up.

posted by owlhouse at 09:57 AM on March 30

150-6 with Misbah scratching about on a run rate that'd take him about a fortnight to reach a hundred.

As things stand, 160 might have been enough.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:03 PM on March 30

Misbah woke up at the end. Roughly four overs after the score was practically beyond reach.

Sachin vs Murali in the final.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 01:16 PM on March 30

It wasn't as fun as the England-India tie, which came to a ridiculous, pendulum-swinging conclusion. Too much at stake, too nervy and scrappy: Sachin's 85 was scratched out, with a very dodgy overturned LBW, the benefit of the doubt on the stumping, and a few dropped catches. Wahab The Jacket deserved his five-for, and Pakistan bowled pretty well.

I thought 260 was around par, and definitely enough to apply pressure: Mohali hasn't been a 300-run track, though the outfield was zippy. Sure enough, after a lively start, the Pakistan batsmen got squeezed in the Boring Middle Overs, and never managed to switch gears, especially Misbah, and when Afridi holed out, that was that.

I have to wonder now if the Indian team can get itself psyched up again to face Sri Lanka. It's the pundits' preferred final, and while India are the bookies' favourites, I think SL have the more complete one-day side.

posted by etagloh at 07:57 PM on March 30

There are whole sections of etagloh's comment that are completely foreign to me, even though the language isn't.

I watched some Twenty20 Champions League matches on ESPN International when I was on my New Year's Eve cruise in the Caribbean, and it was lots of fun. I'm just completely clueless on the lingo and how to read the box scores.

For example:

Pakistan had done well earlier to peg India back to 260-9 after Virender Sehwag's flying start, with left-arm pace bowler Wahab Riaz taking a career-best 5-46.

What is 260-9? What is 5-46? I assume 260 is the number of runs, but what is the 9? And how does some get 5-46?

posted by grum@work at 10:50 PM on March 30

The 9 is the number of wickets lost for the amount of runs scored. An innings consists of ten wickets, so India had one more to lose before they were "all out". 5-46 is the short version of a bowler's score, showing the same thing that 260-9 shows. Riaz got five wickets for the loss of forty-six runs.

(The long version of Riaz's score for the match is 10-0-46-5: 10 overs bowled, 0 maidens (overs with no runs scored), 46 runs allowed, 5 wickets.)

posted by boredom_08 at 03:01 AM on March 31

Of course in Australia we put always put the wickets taken in front of the runs, for both team scores and individual bowler stats. That is, 9-260 and 5-46.

Always wondered why everyone else does it differently.

posted by owlhouse at 03:23 AM on March 31

There are whole sections of etagloh's comment that are completely foreign to me, even though the language isn't.

I'm in the same boat and sorry to say I had to give up on Beyond a Boundary simply because I could tell I was missing half the story (and 90% of the metaphors). I intend to come back to it once I have the smallest bit of understanding (and it will make re-reading Patrick O'Brian books that much more enjoyable).

posted by yerfatma at 08:17 AM on March 31

I was working on a primer video after someone in here said they were "cricket curious" a couple months ago, but I wanted England to win the Ashes first so that our upside-down friends couldn't say "A Pommy? Giving cricket lessons? Strewth."

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:18 AM on March 31

Strewth indeed, since your South Africans won it for you. :-)

posted by owlhouse at 10:09 AM on March 31

I was working on a primer video

I could also use a video explaining Primer while you're at it.

posted by yerfatma at 10:20 AM on March 31

I could also use a video explaining Primer while you're at it.

When I've finished the cricket one, I'll do it last week.

Strewth indeed, since your South Africans won it for you

Hah! First thing I said when we struggled against the Dutch in the world cup was "well, they have a South African turncoat in their lineup, something no proper cricketing nation would do."

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:06 AM on March 31

No offense, but I thought your video kind of stunk.

posted by yerfatma at 12:34 PM on March 31

I'll go back and explain it to you again.

Although I fail to see what's so difficult about this.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:42 PM on March 31

Sehwag's five-boundary over against Umar Gul.

Always wondered why everyone else does it differently.

I think the underlying logic is that the innings as a whole is viewed from the batting side's perspective (runs before wickets) while bowling figures are described from the bowler's perspective, wickets-before-runs. Aussies like being different.

Strewth indeed, since your South Africans won it for you.

I didn't know Mitchell Johnson was a Saffer.

posted by etagloh at 09:30 PM on March 31

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