Adelaide Test – Day 1: Free George Davis

The Knackery I am sure are wondering what the heck my headline refers to.   Well I bring up the 1975 tour of England when supporters of George Davis vandalized the pitch at Headingley, to draw attention to his allegedly wrongful imprisonment.

Well I say rush these supporters to Adelaide Oval, or get “the terrorist” (Ed: and highly regarded cricket coach) David Atchia to blow up this bloody stupid drop-in crap slow wicket!

On a serious note, why didn’t cricket fight harder to keep the home grown wicket?  Surely at the worst you could have kept two natural wickets and bought in drop-ins to use for some shield games!

Today’s heavily anticipated Test Match ended evenly poised with Aust 5 for 273 at stumps with
Clarke 48 and Haddin 7 to resume tomorrow morning.  Both players already having a let off with Carberry dropping a soda in the penultimate over of the day.  Hopefully Haddin will make the All Nations side pay tomorrow.  Clarke having benefited from Root dropping a much harder catch when he was 18.

Every Australian wicket has fallen really from a combination of poor batting and the sluggish deck.
Warner having cruised to 29 played a nothing shot; neither trying to force or letting the ball go; got himself out caught at backward point off Broad.

Aust were cruising at 1 for 155 and then Watto did yet another Watto and bunted the ball back to
Anderson to depart for 51. Then Rogers in the next over tried to run Swann down to 3rd man; getting caught behind for a well-made 72.  Shortly afterwards Smith’s technique was again brought into serious doubt with a terrible angled bat to be bowled by Panesar for 6.

Australia had lost 3 for 19 to give the All Nations side the initiative. Bailey and Clarke added 83 before Bailey was well caught by Swann pulling off Broad. Bailey continued his impressive strike rate of sixes hit for runs scored; adding 3 more zacs in his 51.  So Aust ended the day at 5 for 273 setting up a huge first session tomorrow.

We hope for warmer weather and a better Australian performance tomorrow.
I fear batting and the game in general will just become an even harder war of attrition as the Test slowly moves forward.

Raj Singh’s mounting yard report :
Today’s cold weather resulted in less fillies; and those present were wearing more clothing than usual out the back of the members stand (although the headlights were definitely on!)  

(Ed: the Almanac has been unable to independently assess if these comments genuinely came from Mr Singh.  Judging on the original spelling we feel Mr R Book may have taken considerable licence.  We apologise to Mrs Singh for any unwarranted concern or offence.)


  1. Rulebook – I love that you always go at it 100 miles an hour. From the little I saw the pitch was as flat and lifeless as a John Worsfold press conference.
    I reckon “Bailey was well caught by Swann pulling off Broad” will go down with “the bowler’s Holding the batsman’s Willey” in sports journalism legend.
    I thought about changing the order or the punctuation around, but I was all grammared-out by then! Letting the free flowing language shine through works better sometimes.

  2. Dan Sergeant says

    273 runs on day 1 of an Adelaide Oval test match!? Surely not. This pitch must be slower than Rulebook umpiring an a7res football game.
    I think that Australia were lucky not to be in more trouble. If England had held onto those catches I think we could well have been fielding on day 1. I agree with you about Watto, but I think that just as much could be said about Dave Warner’s dismissal. In my opinion this is why test match cricket is in decline. Too many batsman trying to do too much. Play each ball on its merits. It’s okay to leave, it’s okay to play a defensive shot, after all test matches last 5 days, with a minimum of 540 balls to be bowled in 1 days play. That’s plenty of time to still make 350+, particularly if you are batting on a road, albeit one that is slow.

  3. John Butler says

    Free George Davis! Free Angela Davis! Free David Davis?

  4. Malcolm Ashwood says

    John this refers to the , 75 tour when , Aust were 3 220 overnight chasing 440 to win when supporters of , George Davis poured oil all over the wicket during the night causing play to be abandoned . Anything to get rid of this drop in wicket

  5. It’s like I was really there!

  6. Early call Malcolm. I thought the pitch took a bit if spin early which augers well for a raging spinner on days 4 and 5. Also, scoring 270 in a day isn’t exactly indicative of a Highway 1 deck a la the decks you find in the sub-continent.

    I recall similar things being said about the last couple of tests in Adelaide; all producing magnificent matches coming down to the wire on day 5.

    Be patient my son.

    Agree wholeheartedly with Raj Singh’s mounting yard comments, very restrained affair. I think Saturday will be the best day to view the form.

  7. Adelaide oval is no longer a cricket ground, it is a stadium for football that they play cricket at!!!
    The drop in pitch is testament to that, cricket will now be the little brother of the Adelaide Stadium.
    A pity, as nice as the new stands look and the nip and tuck to the ground there was something special about the old members and the many hours spent in the magic cave.
    As personality has gone out of cricket players, the personality has gone from the Adelaide Oval

  8. Courtesy of mounting yard report R Singh was forced to sleep on the couch last night. D atchia was sighted last night scoping out the wicket with a large set of keys. Look for some additional movement today when the Aussies bowl.

    Early Mail for today is that an abundance of fillies will be frequenting the Pims tent today with slighlty warmer conditions.

  9. Andrew Starkie says

    Tend to Agree, Imran.

    Credit to the Poms – spinners from either end second session of a Test. Gutsy.

    Poor batting from Aust. Not surprisingly, Warner got ahead of himself after one good knock. A woeful shot. He better be careful, his girlfriend may dump him and return to NRL. She has her rep and career on the fringes of ch9 to consider. CR deserved his ton. Watto was Watto and Smith was found wanting. The wicket of Bailey swung the day in Eng’s favour. Big morning ahead. Clarke and Haddin must push on.

  10. Mickey Randall says

    Good job Malcolm. Harsh, but I reckon fair assessment. Interesting comment about the power struggle between football and cricket. I am still astonished that Fonzie Demetriou and the AFL have been given a half a billion dollar stadium without using any of their own coin. I agree about the pitches too.

    Let’s hope Day 2 and the entire Test welcome the new oval in fitting style.

  11. Nice job Malcolm. Enjoyed it.

    Although I’m surprised at the outrage over the pitch – not just from you but a number of cricket traditionalists.

    5/270 odd is a decent day, particularly allowing for a few rain delays that ultimately didn’t cost overs, but batters always need a little time to play themselves back in after the break.

    Day 1 of 2006 was slower (3/266), scorn was poured on Burdett for a slow dry pitch. This time the drop in is to blame for a slow day. (That Test ended up one of the greatest ever)

    And I don’t think the wicket contributed to any dismissal. Warner fell to a lack of concentration and Watson fell to an over-sized ego.

    Need to remember also this is a brand new wicket – relaid traditional wickets always take a bit of bedding down. I think it was Peter Roebuck who once said : Cricket pitches are like wives, very hard to get right the first time.

    I’m nervous about drop-ins long term, but won’t hang them on what I’ve seen so far.

    All in all yesterday was a good day’s cricket. Both sides had opportunity to dominate – but honours ended pretty even and set up a consuming five day contest.

    As for the Raj Singh Mounting Yard report: recall reading on Stalkbook, Raj was preferring the company of his offspring to the lures of the village green this Test – although I hear a late whisper that Prem may have had to step into the breech so Raj could keep us abreast of the latest market movers.


  12. id give smith a break on that one thats a fairly good cherry that got him the rest were all aussie donations to the col pak combine side. and i just love the mentally fragility of stuart broad to be so concerned about a smart ass Victorian on the hill to take the time to flip him off three times in three sessions! even the barmy army by the third one was giving the poor lil princess some stick! o well young son back off to Zhivago’s for a couple more pregame vodka soda’s pal

  13. Luke Reynolds says

    Great stuff Malcolm. Doesn’t sound like ‘the terrorist’ did any blowing up of pitches in Adelaide. Maybe tonight?

  14. Malcolm “The Oracle” Ashwood – I bet you’re feeling vindicated now with Australia 5/451, and what Terry Alderman is describing as “a bit of carnage” going on out there. However, the beauty of 5 day cricket is the unpredictability of it – Clarke out for 148 off Stokes just now being proof of that! Let’s hope that Australia doesn’t rest on its laurels and pre-empt a reversal of the 2006 result on a turning day 5.

    As for the oval I’m thoroughly looking forward to experiencing it first-hand on Sunday – the TV shots give me the impression that it’s still unmistakably Adelaide Oval with the Cathedral and hill backdrop. I figure drop-ins will only improve in years to come, but I like the idea of a couple of permanent ones either side.

    Looking forward to the day 2 report Book :).

  15. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    The events of 1975 cost Rick McCosker his maiden Test century (which he deservedly racked up a fortnight later)

    I was at a school camp at Victor Harbor (next to the trotting track) when the Headingley test was on, so had to rely on radio reports only.

  16. Matt Zurbo says

    Know bugger all about cricket’s finer points, but love reading your stuff mate!

  17. Troy Hancox says

    I tend to agree with the drop in pitch story.
    NOT a fan, but it is early days, who knows? May improve/deteriorate over time?
    Being a traditional sort of a guy on a traditional oval i liked the old home grown pitch. DAy 1 always has juice in the wicket, rain on the horizon-unseasonably cold. brave decision to bat? NO…. Always bat first! You got em, they gotta get em attitude-always!
    I agree with Peter B regarding your line “Bailey well caught by swann pulling off Broad” almost Playboy Forum like!
    Also agree with Imran’s comments. “it’s now a football stadium that they play cricket on”.
    MCG is a great stadium for both, time will tell if Adelaide Oval will be?

    Great column none the less Rulebook.
    PS. Half through the Footy Almanac! Loving it. Thanks for that mate!


  18. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Imran Totally agree has definitely lost some of it’s aura with out THE MAGIC CAVE
    Duncs The problem with drop ins not only do they lack pace they don’t tend to crack either , 1st session tomorrow will decide if the game will just meander along to a draw
    James interesting re , Broad does seem that he can spit the dummy v quickly
    Luke A v quiet and seedy terrorist today and he is batting way out of his depth and has secured a high draft choice in the female stakes
    Raj spot on some delectable fillies today with the barby doll getting the votes especially when it was revealed with a gust of wind that she may have forgotten to wear under wear
    Bob Matt , and Troy Thank you
    Swish spot on re , McKosker and , Walters was batting well the night before also alas we will never no

  19. Peter Flynn says

    I saw Old Mate Les Burdett after play.

    He is a curator.


    Alderman Clem Jones

  20. Peter Flynn says


    What would Peter Chappell make of all this?


  21. I just can’t understand why there is $2.40 the draw. Even in a best case scenario Australia would never risk their quicks for Perth by enforcing the follow-on….better to let Anderson and Broad toil some more.
    With no rest days, pitches just don’t wear out and change significantly.
    Thus only the modern players’ short attention spans gives hope for collapses and a result.

  22. Nice work mal. Let’s see if the poms continue their poor form with the bat. If pieterson’s shot is any indication they arevin trouble

  23. Seth tonkin says

    I whole hearted agree with most of the article. Smith is disappointing to say the least and pressure needs to be put on Watto. For a guy with the most potential a bit of focus and drive emanating from the stomach is what he needs. Not sure what he would need for motivation but it just doesn’t seem to be there,!,,
    Here is hoping for an outstNdinf performance fornthe rest of the summer!!!

  24. Seth tonkin says

    At the moment I look a complete goose at 9 170 , Johnsons sheer pace and some poor batting have , Australia in a good position
    PF I remember thenamebut can’t remember what Peters claim to fam is please enlighten , Thank you

  25. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Sorry forgot Selfy used my , I Pad , Flynny please explain , Peter Chappel

  26. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Mickey The lack of financial imput from the , AFL is amazing where , Demetriou admin wise is looseing whatever respect and dignity he did have more each day .
    Jeff D sums this up perfectly in his article on footballs punishment paradox and integrity matters
    I no after the , 3rds days play I look like a complete idiot and I must give the curator some praise that there has been a fraction more life in the deck than in the shield games thus far I wonder how much really has got to do with the influx of , 20 20 cricket players do not in general seem to be able to grind out boring hundreds to force draws like they used to the all nations batting lacked focus discipline and guts yes , Good Mitch was brilliant but the pomms and assorted extras were deplorable

  27. I don’t understand why the horses are wearing underwear?

  28. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Very Good Gus ! There were some sensational fillies there yesterday having scorec cards would have been brilliant

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