Thursday, January 3, 2019

Cricket fans in Sydney copped the wrath of Aussie legend Ricky Ponting

Cricket fans in Sydney copped the wrath of Aussie legend Ricky Ponting when he took aim over their grim treatment of a global star.


Cricket fans in Sydney copped the wrath of Aussie legend Ricky Ponting

India dominated day one at the SCG as it pursued a historic series win in Australia.
Powered by Cheteshwar Pujara’s 130 not out, the tourists reached 4/303 at stumps.
Here are the main points from the game of the day.

‘DISGRACEFUL’: SYDNEYSIDERS SLAMMED

Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting was among those to criticise sections of the SCG crowd that booed Virat Kohli as he walked to the crease.

The Indian skipper was given a frosty reception when he made his way to the middle after Mayank Agarwal was caught on the fence off the bowling of Nathan Lyon.
“If it was booing then it’s absolutely disgraceful,” Ponting said on Channel 7.
“I said that in the Perth Test as well. Show some respect.”
Broadcaster Tim Lane sided with Ponting.

“I must say I thought the reception he was given as he came out was poor and it was graceless in that he is the captain of a visiting team,” Lane said.
“To welcome a visiting captain like that … is classless.
“He has not done anything wrong, he has just been too good.”
On Macquarie Sports Radio, Lane added: “We should be better than that as a nation. I didn’t like it.

“All Kohli has been guilty of is leading his country in Australia and winning.
“If the people don’t like it, they should at least recognise it and applaud it.”

It isn’t the first time Kohli has been jeered by fans in Sydney. Kohli’s maiden tour of Australia in 2012 was marred by an incident in the SCG Test, when he was in the field and gave some hecklers the middle finger.

The superstar, fined 50 per cent of his match fee for flipping the bird, went on to score the first of his 25 Test tons later in that series.

Kohli, who has previously suggested boos only serve to motivate him, detailed India’s siege mentality on the eve of the fourth Test.
“Kohli said on Wednesday, "This is not the only team against which you are playing, it is in the whole country."
"When you go to bat, you feel that not only 11 people on the field but 40,000 people want your wicket."

Kohli was caught down the leg side for 23 shortly after tea but looked the part in the pink Test that has become a special occasion on the Australian cricket calendar that raises money for the McGrath Foundation.

Kohli had a pink bat grip, pink stickers on his bat and even had pink on his gloves as he played his part in getting into the spirit of the iconic event.

PUJARA PILES ON THE PAIN

Cheteshwar Pujara is proving to be India’s immovable object on this tour and four Tests in Australia still has no idea how to exploit any weaknesses in his game.
The gun No. 3 was at his patient best again on day one of the Sydney Test as he surged to 130 not out, toying with the home side’s bowlers and not giving them a sniff en route to a third century of the series.

After posting 123 in Adelaide and 106 in Melbourne, Pujara cruised to triple figures after coming to the crease when KL Rahul was dismissed in the second over of the day.

Before the series all the talk was about how the Aussies would contain Virat Kohli but Pujara has stolen the limelight from his skipper as he continues to be a conundrum the home side can’t solve.

In registering triple figures for the third time this summer he became the third Indian — alongside Kohli and Sunil Gavaskar — to score three tons in a series on Australian soil.

AUSSIE LEGENDS SLAM CLUELESS APPROACH

Australia’s batsmen have been in the firing line all series but after the Boxing Day Test Shane Warne put the blowtorch on our highly-fancied bowlers, saying they have failed to live up to expectations.

As India’s batsmen dominated our attack at the SCG Warne took aim again, slamming the seamers for bowling too many balls that weren’t going on to hit the stumps — not just in Sydney but across the entire series.
India has taken eight LBWs this summer and Australia has only taken one courtesy of Nathan Lyon, which was evidence to Warne the quicks have been off the mark this series.

"It's not very good, "he said, on the Fox Sports Program Cricket 360, he prepared to give Mitchell Starck and Josh Hazlewoods new pair well below.
 their best.

Adam Gilchrist said it was “unbelievable” not one fast bowler has managed to dismiss an Indian LBW this series.

As India scored freely in the opening 12 overs of the day to reach 1/46 at drinks, a host of Test legends were baffled by the approach of the Aussie attack.
"In the commentary for Channel 7, Ricky Ponting argued that the hosts were playing in India's hands to not test the short-pitched bowling."
“Ponting said, "He has bowled a little bit to everyone."
 “The manner in which they have bowled (in the series), the Indian attack is a bit different.

“Even this morning, they did everything exactly. Let’s have something a bit different.
“What are we eight over, and have we seen only a few hundred? 

When we come to Australia, why do we always want to play in Brisbane and Perth? Because they don’t like the short ball. They don’t like the pace and bounce. We’ve only seen one short ball all morning.”

“They are forgetting to scare the batsmen. “You don’t want to get them up around your throat. Then that whole ball can become more effective as Ricky was saying.”
Fast bowling legend Glenn McGrath agreed. “When Australia bowled small balls (in the second innings in Melbourne) they looked good.

 “I would like to see them more aggressive.”
Pat Cummins finally tested the Mayal of Mayank Agarwal with the first delivery of the 11th over, which is drawing a pinch from McGrath. “It seems they have got pieces of ear, "he said.

The Aussies then unleashed a bouncer barrage in the second hour of the opening session. Agarwal looked ugly as he uncomfortably dealt with the change in tactics that saw him cop plenty of chin music.

LABUSCHAGNE’S DUSTY RETURN

Marnus Labuschagne is set to become Australia’s least credentialed rookie first drop of the 21st century after being named to bat at No. 3 in Sydney — but his Test return didn’t get off to the best start.

Labuschagne was brought into the side because selectors valued his part-time leg-spin on what they hoped would be a spin-friendly SCG deck. But he bowled just one over before tea before being taken out of the attack — sending down three short balls that were sent to the boundary as he had 0/12 from his solitary over.

He came back in the final session but failed to make an impact as India’s batsmen — in particular Pujara — targeted him, and he finished with 0/25 from four overs in the day.
Traditionally reserved for the best batsman in each Test team, Labuschagne’s first class average of 33.17 is the lowest of any player picked for the first time to bat at No. 3 this century.

In total 15 players have been selected in the position this century 2000, dating back to Justin Langer who eventually lost the spot to Ricky Ponting on the following year’s Ashes series.

Others have also filled in for the role, but only as a nightwatchman or for a single innings at a time through injury.

Ponting, Steve Smith, Shane Watson and Usman Khawaja have mostly held the spot with command, but Labuschagne’s selection highlights an Australian side still trying to find their way without David Warner and Smith.

The Queenslander scored just 81 runs in his maiden two Tests batting in the middle order last year against Pakistan at 20.25, and had more success with the ball — taking seven wickets with his leg spin on the tour of the UAE.

“We know how good a cricketer he is, he’s really skilled in all facets of the game,” Paine said on match-eve on Wednesday.

“We saw in UAE that his leg spin has improved, and you are almost bowing at almost the test level as an all-round option, which all-round option, which is a really good package for us.”

Khawaja was moved to opener to replace Aaron Finch as part of the shake up, while Peter Handscomb was also named at No. 6 in place of Mitch Marsh at the SCG. In fairness, Labuschagne has experience batting at first drop for Queensland in his first-class career but his average of 33.17 is still lower than Shaun Marsh, Robert Quiney and Alex Doolan who averaged 37 when brought into the Test side at No.3 in 2011, 2012 and 2014.

It’s also a far cry from the figures of his predecessor Khawaja, who was averaging 51.7 in first-class cricket when brought in to make his debut for Australia at No.3 in 2011.
Former Australian fast bowler Julian and batsman Mark Waugh was shocked. “I thought Shaun Marsh would bat three, "Julian told Fox Sports.
“Is he a Test number three? I don’t think so,” Waugh added. “But he brings changes to prove us wrong.”

The selection bombshell is reflective of how unsettled Australia has been in the past decade as it searches for a team of world beaters. According to cricket statistician Andrew Samson, there have been 58 Test debutants since 2007 compared to 15 debutants between 2000-2007, which shocked Simon Katich.
“That’s out of hand,” Katich told SEN Test Cricket. “If that’s not an indication of the system needing to be overhauled, nothing is.

“To be fair to the selectors, it’s not an easy job at the moment because there’s not a lot of guys dominating the level below, but then the guys that are doing as well as they possibly can, aren’t being looked at.”

DUMPED DUO HAVE EYES ON THE WHITE BALL

Australia’s axed Test duo Aaron Finch and Mitch Marsh will turn their eyes to the one-day series against India after being released back to the Big Bash League.
Finch and Marsh were both left out of Australia’s fourth Test squad, as selectors searched for answers to stop India from claiming their first ever Test series victory in Australia.

Marsh was spotted having a white-ball hit in the SCG nets by the time of the lunch break on the first day, while Finch only narrowly missed being able to return in time to play for the Melbourne Renegades against the Strikers on Thursday night in Geelong.
Instead, he’ll have one T20 match for them against Hobart on Monday, while Marsh will be free to play for Perth against Brisbane on Saturday. The one-day squad, under Finch’s leadership, is then expected to gather in Sydney next Tuesday ahead of the three-match series.

It will kick off a long warm-up process into this year’s World Cup, with Australia playing a return five-match series in India and five more ODIs against Pakistan in the UAE later this summer.

The Aussies desperately need to overturn a woeful recent record in the format, given they have lost 18 of their last 21 completed matches.
Meanwhile Australia’s 12th man Peter Siddle was also relieved of his duties, and will be free to play for the Strikers before returning against the Sydney Sixers on Sunday.