Adelaide Test – Day 4: One-sided cricket is no fun

“Can you believe it? Clarke has declared overnight!”

I am at my son Brendan’s under-17 Sunday cricket match. It is inevitable, and so comforting, that discussion about what is transpiring on-field in today’s junior game will be interspersed with reports and park-bench analysis by the players (and their dads) of the events of Day 4 in Adelaide.

“You would have thought that he might let Warner hit out for half an hour or so to let him get his ton!” But one of the dads soon announces that Cook is out cheaply, and England is 1 fa in only the second over. “Not such a bad decision after all, I suppose.”

Brendan’s team has lost the toss and are invited to bat. In a brutal contrast to the Englishmen’s start, our team’s openers pile on 78 for the first wicket against what is a clearly undermanned opposition. It is looking like another good day for our boys.

“Carberry’s gone. Caught off Sidds. The Poms are 2 for 20”. Things are going to plan for Michael Clarke and the Australians. But Root and Pietersen dig in. “KP looks like he is trying to make up for that crap shot he played in the first innings”.

Our boys are monstering their opponents. The openers make 44 and 50* respectively, whilst the number 3 makes a classy 46. He bats so well today that I reckon he may well have made a few against Mitch Johnson and his cohorts. Unfortunately our number 4, who is in desperate need of time in the middle, strides to the crease, shows the spinner no respect, and skies one off the first ball he faces. He has missed the party, and spends a bit of time in the change-rooms contemplating the opportunity gone begging. The rest of Brendan’s team do not miss the boat – at least, those who get a bat. The final score of 5/262 off 36 overs is a sizable target to chase in anyone’s language.

Once again, Pietersen proves to be Siddle’s bunny. There are nods of agreement when someone says “KP is not the player he was”. England is stumbling. And when Bell, England’s best batsman, comes in and gets out to Smith’s part time donkey-drops, it is as if all the fight is draining away from a team which lorded it over Australia only a few short months ago. “They’re just about gone now”. But Root is providing the visitors with a little stoicism.

Our boys take the field, with more than a little interest being bestowed on the greying sky above. But there is no need to worry. The lads are “on” today, making short work of a younger and less experienced batting line-up. They skittle the opposition for 63, in a little more than 18 overs. The boys are happy – and good on them. But I am disappointed for their opponents, who showed mettle, but were outclassed by a far better team. In truth, the win is a little hollow, but I don’t tell Brendan this. Let him enjoy every victory; who knows what the future holds? However, the early end to proceedings allows a few hardy dads to head back to our clubrooms to take in the final session of the Test.

To the sounds of chortling: “England are five down…they could be all out by the time we get back to Williamstown.” We arrive just in time to see Stokes despatched by Ryan Harris who, over the past two years, has become easily my favourite player in the Australian team. England, at 6/210, are just about ready for the last rites. But it is enjoyable to see Prior and Broad showing some resilience.

How long will they last tomorrow? I am hoping for a session or more. For even when your son is playing, one-sided cricket matches are less than satisfying.


About Darren Dawson

Always North.


  1. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Well combined report , Smokie and while I agree with you in general re one sided matches we do owe the all nations side some pay back . While the , 3 nil scoreline flattered them re the series in the , UK it is remarkable how quickly and how much they have rapidly fallen apart . I reckon it shows how important , Strauss was as a player and as a leader . I thought , Cook tactically was average in the , UK series and in a lot of regards was lucky you also must wonder if , Warner hadn’t been a moron would we be about to retain the urn ? The remaining question from this article are Brendans results re bat and ball ? Thanks Smokie

  2. Dips O'Donnell says

    Smokie – couldn’t disagree more. I hope we belt them every Test. This Test has been pure joy. What you’re saying is a bit like suggesting that a one sided smashing of Collingwood is no fun! That’s pure joy too.

  3. Thanks Rulebook…
    I was careful not to get too carried away with the u/17 boys’ win as the opposition was terribly undermanned. For the record, Brendan made a handy 21, bowled 2 overs (0/9), and took a blinder of a catch at first slip.
    Don’t you remember that old joke about what’s better than beating Collingwood by 10 goals?…beating them by a point. Same goes for the Poms!

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