Martin Guptill set the only genuine record at Eden Park

David Lord Columnist

By David Lord, David Lord is a Roar Expert

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    Kiwi opening batsman Martin Gultill became the new world record holder of runs scored in T20 internationals at Eden Park on Friday night.

    In a night where records dropped like Morteined flies, Guptill’s century took him to 2188 career runs from 71 visits, passing his former skipper Brendon McCullum’s 2140 from 70.

    India’s Virat Kohli looms as Guptill’s biggest threat in the future, with 1956 runs from just 51, while Australia’s leading T20 international run-getter is David Warner with 1767 from 69.

    All the other records that fell on Friday night weren’t the result of brilliant batting on a belter of an Eden Park pitch, but puerile, pathetic and incompetent bowling. It was an embarrassment.

    Of the 11 so-called bowlers used, nine were hammered beyond recognition, with Australian left-arm spinner Ashton Agar and Kiwi leggie Ish Sodhi the only ones to just avoid double-digit economy rates.

    Economy? Crap bowling would be far more accurate.

    The Australian attack started the rot with constant half-trackers begging to be smashed all over the park, plus a mixture of full tosses, and little to praise with line or length.

    With runs flowing at will, Marcus Stoinis bowled one bouncer that landed in his half and was so far above the batsman and keeper Alex Carey’s heads on its way to the ropes that it wasn’t even in the frame from the side-on camera.

    Stoinis smiled. Was that from embarrassment or amusement?

    There was nothing funny in the delivery as the Kiwis raced to their highest ever T20 international score of 6/243.

    Marcus Stoinis

    (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)

    But Stoinis wasn’t the only culprit:

    • D’Arcy Short went for 19 off his only over;
    • Andrew Tye went for 64 off his four – economy rate 16;
    • Stoinis was carted for 50 off four – 12.50;
    • Billy Stanlake for 43 off his four – 10.75;
    • Kane Richardson 40 off four – 10.00; and
    • Agar 24 off three – 8.50.

    With the Kiwi batsmen very grateful for being gifted a very early Christmas present:

    • Colin Munro smacked 76 off 33 for a strike rate 230.30; and
    • Guptill’s 105 off 54 gave him a strike rate of 194.44.

    If the Kiwis hadn’t committed batting suicide late in the dig, they would have scored at least 270 and wouldn’t have been beaten.

    The large patriotic Eden Park crowd of 33,692 were constantly on their feet applauding the Kiwi bash-fest, but they were very silent when the Kiwi attack bowled the same crap against the Australians.

    The worst offender was left-arm paceman Ben Wheeler, playing in his sixth T20 international. His seventh will be in the distant future.

    He ‘bowled’ 3.1 overs, costing 64 – an ‘economy rate’ 20.21. He was so bad he bowled two full-toss above waist no-balls to be officially banned from bowling again in the game.

    Colin de Grandhomme wasn’t much better, bowling 3.5 overs for 56 for an economy rate of 14.60. Tim Southee and Trent Boult are world-class pacemen, but even they went for 12 and 10.95 an over. They were bowling too much crap. At least leggie Sodhi bowled four overs for 35 with an economy rate of 8.75.

    The feast was welcomed by Aaron Finch’s 36 not out off 14 for a strike rate of 257.14. Skipper David Warner wasn’t far behind, with 59 off 24 for 245.83, and Glenn Maxwell hit 31 off 14 for 221.42.

    David Warner

    (AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy)

    That left opener D’Arcy Short, who hit 76 off 44 for a strike rate of 172.72, to be named man of the match, being dismissed in the 17th over.

    But Short had a bigger claim to fame than that – the 27-year-old newcomer hasn’t been in a losing Australian T20 side in four starts.

    That stat is far more meaningful than the fact Australia broke the world record for the largest run chase on the way to victory, and the 32 sixes in the game only proved how pathetic both attacks were in equalling the world record.

    That left Martin Guptill’s world record as meaningful and praise-worthy, as was 22-year-old student Mitchell Grimstone’s, who leaned over the railing in the stand to catch a six left-handed to earn himself a $50,000 cheque from the Tui Brewery.

    We’ll drink to that.

    David Lord
    David Lord

    David Lord was deeply involved in two of the biggest sporting stories - World Series Cricket in 1977 and professional rugby in 1983. After managing Jeff Thomson and Viv Richards during WSC, in 1983 David signed 208 of the best rugby players from Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and France to play an international pro circuit. The concept didn't get off the ground, but it did force the IRB to get cracking and bring in the World Rugby Cup, now one of the world's great sporting spectacles

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    The Crowd Says (36)

    • February 18th 2018 @ 6:27am
      ozinsa said | February 18th 2018 @ 6:27am | ! Report

      And yet that same Oz attack had kept the Kiwis and Poms to low scores in the first three games. Maybe better to acknowledge flat track, small ground and brilliant (and some lucky) batting than simply load up both barrels at the bowlers?

      There were 10 international quality guys bowling and only two could remotely stem the flow. Sometimes it just happens.

      Also, singling our the young Kiwi bloke is just cruel David. His first over went for 16 and a Short didn’t hit anything but edge. He then lost confidence and got hammered. Happens to young blokes in any field. Give him a break and hope he’ll be back

      • February 18th 2018 @ 12:17pm
        DaveJ said | February 18th 2018 @ 12:17pm | ! Report

        Exactly, he hit nothing but the edge in that over.

    • February 18th 2018 @ 6:53am
      Targa said | February 18th 2018 @ 6:53am | ! Report

      18 sides and 2 no b

    • February 18th 2018 @ 6:58am
      Targa said | February 18th 2018 @ 6:58am | ! Report

      18 wides and 2 no balls from the NZ bowlers! Disgraceful. I don’t know why Williamson didn’t bowl himself, Chapman or Munro at any stage, especially after everyone else was getting smashed and Munro had bowled 2 overs for just 12 runs a few days earlier vs England.

      • Roar Guru

        February 19th 2018 @ 4:16pm
        Matt H said | February 19th 2018 @ 4:16pm | ! Report

        three extra overs is a lot to make up (from memory Australia gave away one extra over). That’s a 10% difference in balls to be scored from.

    • February 18th 2018 @ 7:02am
      Simon said | February 18th 2018 @ 7:02am | ! Report

      I thought Wheeler looked pretty good. The stats don’t really back that up though

      • February 18th 2018 @ 10:14am
        Interstater said | February 18th 2018 @ 10:14am | ! Report

        Early on, yes. He had Short edging 3 times, for 2 fours and a six

      • Columnist

        February 18th 2018 @ 11:45am
        David Lord said | February 18th 2018 @ 11:45am | ! Report

        Simon, I agree, Wheeler has a very easy approach, and a classic delivery action. His problems started as soon as the ball left his hand.

    • February 18th 2018 @ 7:32am
      Dean said | February 18th 2018 @ 7:32am | ! Report

      Yes poor bowling was an issue for both teams. But not one mention in your article of the fact that Eden Park is simply not fit for international cricket. Ridiculous field dimensions meant distorted stats all around. Would Guptill have scored a ton on a proper cricket field the other night?

      • February 18th 2018 @ 8:30am
        twodogs said | February 18th 2018 @ 8:30am | ! Report

        Maybe that could bring the bat sizes into question Dean. If Eden park for example being so small, maximum bat dimensions directly relevant to the arena dimensions.

      • February 18th 2018 @ 10:15am
        Christo the Daddyo said | February 18th 2018 @ 10:15am | ! Report

        Yes, but when you have a sport that doesn’t have standard dimensions to it’s playing field, there isn’t an easy answer.

        I don’t remember hearing too much criticism for boundary ropes at traditional grounds – even for traditional forms of the game. Hitting a boundary at the MCG is easier now that it was in the 70s.

      • Columnist

        February 18th 2018 @ 12:07pm
        David Lord said | February 18th 2018 @ 12:07pm | ! Report

        Dean, Martin Guptill would have scored his latest ton on any ground in the world, thanks to the worst international bowling I’ve ever seen. The big scores by both sides had nothing whatever to do with Eden Park being smaller than most international grounds, it was simply the constant rubbish that was bowled.

        • February 18th 2018 @ 12:18pm
          DaveJ said | February 18th 2018 @ 12:18pm | ! Report

          Ridiculous comment, half the sixes would have been swallowed inside the boundary on other grounds.

        • February 18th 2018 @ 1:44pm
          Ouch said | February 18th 2018 @ 1:44pm | ! Report

          Disagree David. Guptil would have been out early on most Oz grounds. Some of his 6’s wouldn’t have made the boundary.

        • February 18th 2018 @ 1:50pm
          Swampy said | February 18th 2018 @ 1:50pm | ! Report

          David – can you back that comment up with data? I would like to know how many sixes would have still cleared the rope if they were on a different ground.

          And with the shortest boundaries straight then surely part of the reason the bowling was rubbish was tactical – to avoid pitching up and getting hit down the ground? You could almost block a six straight. It couldnt have been much more than 55m straight.

          • February 18th 2018 @ 6:22pm
            Dean said | February 18th 2018 @ 6:22pm | ! Report

            Additionally, it’s not just a case of which shots would have cleared a 75m boundary. Would the batsmen have even attempted the same shot if a fielder was standing on a 75m boundary versus a 55m one.

            • February 18th 2018 @ 8:50pm
              ThevoiceofReason said | February 18th 2018 @ 8:50pm | ! Report

              And here are Guptill and Finch warning about the danger of trying too hard at Eden Park to clear the boundary. Something that has cost Finch personally a bunch of times in NZ.


              Guptil hits the ball straight as far as anyone in Cricket, Munro’s MO is to flay the ball from ball one. The Aussies had to chase 240 plus, they would have gone for it regardless of the dimensions. Eden Park is traditionally one of the lower scoring ground sin NZ, because usually there’s something in the pitch for bowlers and the ball typically swings. NZ bowlers especially were awful, 20 wides and 2 no balls is another three- four overs bowled and that’s without adding the extra runs. That had little to do with the dimensions of the ground. Ben Wheeler’s confidence wasn’t shot from the ground, only one of Shorts boundaries was a 6, it was that Short could get edges to fly across the turf as if thy were middled from a bat of old.

              I do agree though that something has to be done about dimensions, not so much ground size, but bat size. Of Short’s first 7 boundaries 5 were edges (only one a six) and would have been boundaries on most grounds unless you put a fielder directly behind the keeper. Bats are too large and too dense, particularly their edges. That, along with pitches that are roads, are destroying the game in every form of cricket.

              • Roar Guru

                February 19th 2018 @ 10:11am
                JamesH said | February 19th 2018 @ 10:11am | ! Report

                Usually there is something in the pitch, just not for this game. It was a highway.

            • February 18th 2018 @ 10:15pm
              Swampy said | February 18th 2018 @ 10:15pm | ! Report

              It was 55m straight which means it was 35m behind the wicket. That is not really suitable for cricket

        • February 18th 2018 @ 8:32pm
          Mitcher said | February 18th 2018 @ 8:32pm | ! Report

          “puerile, pathetic and incompetent: The only genuinely accurate statement in this article. Nobody could accuse you of lacking self awareness David.

    • February 18th 2018 @ 8:56am
      BrainsTrust said | February 18th 2018 @ 8:56am | ! Report

      The bowlers feel they are on a hiding to nothing on this ground if the wicket is flat, so they resort to trying too many things to stem the tide. Just accept that you are going to get belted and don;t concede the extras would be better.
      The biggest problem for the opposition is batting first and thinking they are scoring quick enough.

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