The Roar
The Roar

Munro Mike

Roar Rookie

Joined September 2018










Perhaps they’d done all their negotiations with the Liberal opposition…..

….suddenly it now looks like a further 8 years of ALP at the helm.

BREAKING: FFA board decides on A-League expansion clubs as Team 11 reportedly miss out


Actually back then it was all for the sheep.

All for the sheep.

BREAKING: FFA board decides on A-League expansion clubs as Team 11 reportedly miss out

It’s a variation of ‘Dream it and it might come’ but in the meantime have a reasonable band-aid solution in place.

It’s amazing how often you come back in 5-10 years time and see that bandaid still in place.

While there is ‘in principle’ support – there’s a long way to go to turn the dream into reality. That said – I can understand the lure for Wyndham City to try to claim some significance other than as a residential back block and somewhere you drive past to get to Geelong and beyond; that and what Werribee is most famous for…..

BREAKING: FFA board decides on A-League expansion clubs as Team 11 reportedly miss out

Harris was NOT selected on overall FC average.

He WAS selected on the back of 2 quality seasons and an excellent start to this season. Over that time frame he was a short half head in front of Burns – and both had a similar benefit from one BIG unbeaten 200+ score. For Harris that was his proof that he’s able to kick on with it now – at Shield level at least.

It IS handy to keep tabs on the actual form lines of players. Don’t just rely on career averages. Look at recent/current history/form. Look for players who have overcome weaknesses to learn and modify there game.

It's time for a new Test opener

#Frankie Hughes

His overall first class record is distinctive for the actual lack of first class matches. At 3 years old er and he has less FC matches (81) than a guy like Joe Burns (102).

The schedule induced lack of continuity is a major factor – the selectors selectively understand that and at other times selectively discriminate irrespective (Maxwell).

Finch DOES though have more ODIs than FC matches, and has 11 ODI hundreds and the experience of captaincy that I would suggest is valued by the selectors to assist Tim Paine. (Of course that doesn’t dictate he should open – although it still disappoints me that Finchy didn’t just run with the review for the catch off the pad).

And I agree that Maxwell in particular has been poorly treated in 2018, meanwhile Burns and Renshaw have had multiple opportunities and are still on the look out for another chance. We assume Renshaw’s time will come. Patterson fell away after a good year (and Maddinson somehow got ahead of him a couple of years ago) but has hit form this season.

It's time for a new Test opener

Well – it looked okay for a while – he was able to keep his head whilst those around him…

It's time for a new Test opener


Burns wasn’t a no brainer. If one opener were coming in – at the time of selection then Harris was arguably ahead and Burns was in 2nd place. If 2 openers were to come in – then yep – a no brainer.

re the UAE series – I’d suggest that Mitch Marsh had some help. From big brother in particular.

re Finch costing us the first test. I reckon the following played a role: 3rd session day one (3-107 conceded – awful bowling by the ‘big 3’). Khawaja soft dismissal 2nd inngs – still can’t handle spin! Now 100s – all the starts and no one went on. Starc new ball in this test – he’s not a new ball bowler (presently at least) and is becoming a liability. Flattered much by his final figures. But yes – had Finch survived that last ball before tea (as he should have – shouldn’t have been given out and would the review have saved him? like it did for Cummins?) – sliding doors.

Australian batting woes, Mitchell Starc's form, India's potent attack and more: Five talking points from the first Test


Actually – re Head – his inability to cope with the short ball in the second innings was a concern.

If the Perth stadium has had a pitch designed to ‘channel’ the bouncy WACA characteristics – then I worry for Head.

It's time for a new Test opener

They picked the squad – rightly or wrongly for the first 2 tests.

The irony of the criticism in this article is that outside of a really nervous shot in the first innings and equally nervous start to the 2nd saved by the no-ball – – that from that no-ball on that Finch looked fine. He clearly had a plan – and he was executing very well via good leaves, and full face of the bat and a more positive movement of the front foot towards the ball. It was the spinner who got him (by hook or by crook as it was).

The commentary of some on theRoar sounds like people who didn’t actually sit down and watch. Sure – if Finch had of looked all at sea in that 2nd innings and sure had the LBW been a legal delivery – so, it’s as always a fine line.

What we do see though is just how nervous our test players can be. We know that Shaun Marsh is a horrible starter too. It ain’t easy. I’m more concerned about the shot selection of Uzzie once he’s set (a bit similar to how India would have been dirtiest about Rohit Sharma’s get out shot in the first innings).

The main question for Australia is whether we assume that Warner, Bancroft and Smith will be in the squad for England. If so – whomever opens this summer is a stop gap.

It's time for a new Test opener

The Gabba has been reported as being on the nose for about 3 years now. Do a google on it.

From Sep 2015 the ABC reported “Gabba risks falling behind other Australian cricket Test venues”.

And Robert Craddock reported 12 months ago: “Glorious Gabba at risk of being ‘has-been’ with Test move”

ADELAIDE seems poised to snatch Brisbane’s crown as the launching pad of the Test match summer with the Gabba set to be shunted to a January timeslot.

And James Sutherland effectively spelled out that with Adelaide and Perth it meant the Gabba had pretty well slipped to number 5 in the pecking order – and lost it’s traditional opening test position. The major issues include the lack of public transport and parking and other general amenity.

Australian batting woes, Mitchell Starc's form, India's potent attack and more: Five talking points from the first Test

#Broken-hearted Toy

Ironically Australia was lacking for the ‘Siddle-line’ which is what we saw so much more from a guy like Shami. Keep this in mind when selecting for the Ashes tour.

Starc no longer seems a valid new ball bowler. But is Cummins?

And is Cummins a better ‘all-round’ option than Mitch Marsh?

Australian batting woes, Mitchell Starc's form, India's potent attack and more: Five talking points from the first Test

“And so it proved. Aaron Finch looked lost against the moving ball, escaping a pair only thanks to Ishant Sharma’s long delivery stride.”

On this I though Finch looked massively nervous in the first (likewise S.Marsh!!).

In the 2nd he had that little stroke of good fortune that sometimes is what’s needed and after that I thought he got his feet and head into the right positions and had Ishant Sharma covered very nicely.

It’s just such a shame he was given and didn’t review (although would it have been overturned??) on that last ball before tea. I really felt like he would have done well in that final session.

I still can’t handle the umpiring of Nigel Llong – he gave way too many doubtful decisions which then loads the ‘benefit of the doubt’ in favour of the ‘umpires call’ which means for example that the batter loses the ‘benefit of the doubt’ as a direct result. (which is why it’s a brave call to review an lbw if you don’t feel you hit it). Maybe Finch thought he’d been given LBW???

Australian batting woes, Mitchell Starc's form, India's potent attack and more: Five talking points from the first Test


I’d argue Siddle isn’t actually past it and will definitely be in the frame for England in the new year. He is a wonderfully controlled bowler now with increasing skill.

What stood out watching Shami for India – his control compared to the Australians. We didn’t bowl very good test lines – too much width. It worked in the first innings when India played astoundingly loose shots.

Mitchell Starc must be dropped for the second Test against India


There was no ‘perception of a lack of control’.

MJ was leaky and often got wickets with long hops and other wide/loose deliveries.

He was unable bowl in tandem with a spinner (couldn’t keep it tight). Now and then he was ‘on’ and looked a million dollars.

Mitchell Starc must be dropped for the second Test against India

I now feel somewhat vindicated in my concerns I voiced prior to the test about a trio of big fast bowlers who all had less than ideal ‘off seasons’ (Hazlewood and Cummins with back issues, and Starc with leg and hammy issues).

To be at the top of you game as a bowler you need everything working – it’s such a battle of rhythm and balance.

Starc is ‘off his game’. He doesn’t seem right. And presently – at the very least – he is NOT the new ball bowler.

Such an irony that his 3 fer was his best bowling return since the start of the South Africa tour. Can’t read anything into that.

At any rate – he doesn’t look right to back up in Perth. However – he’d been rested the shield match before. What he perhaps needs right now is to go back and play 3 shield games in a row with whatever reduced load and just build himself back up at that lower level.

Mitchell Starc must be dropped for the second Test against India

Or does Finch go to #5.

As it is – in the 2nd innings Finch was looking pretty good once he got off the mark – just a shame they didn’t review.

The best Australia was looking was at 0-20 odd!!!

The Australian cricket selectors caught between a rock and a hard place


The irony of this line of discussion is that when Chief economist at the Australia Institute Richard Denniss said it was time for both the NRL and AFL to cough up to help pay for infrastructure; I can’t help but wonder what rock he’s been hiding under.

As you said above – “they wouldn’t be building stadiums if they paid tax”. You’re possibly right. But – they do and are building stadiums so I’m not sure where someone like Denniss is coming from suggesting the AFL hasn’t been coughing up???

The Vic Govt has an envied sports precinct with the MCG and Docklands either funded by or now owned by the AFL. And then we look at Sydney……

Sydney is the most embarrassing city in Australia

so… that what’s stopping the other codes??

Sydney is the most embarrassing city in Australia


Ah – now – that’s the choice though – isn’t it.

The NRL still is encumbered by a ‘regional’ footprint. However – just what a stadium in Townsville has to do with Sydney I’m not sure at all??

The AFL has sponsored stadia development in Darwin, Cairns, Alice Springs, 2 down in Tassie (Launceston & Hobart) and Townsville is set to debut for a main season game in 2019. You don’t need a ‘home team’. That’s the AFL. They’ve worked with 3 levels of Govt in some cases and so variously have worked with the Feds, any of those relevant states and local govts as appropriate.

And seriously – the people form Parramatta/Penrith corridor can make their way down to Homebush – don’t worry about Moore Park – but surely to Homebush? (well, certainly the Parramatta folk!!!).

Sydney is the most embarrassing city in Australia


However no one is debating the quality of the stadiums in Cairns, Townsville, the Gold Coast (both an oval and rectangular stadium), Newcastle or Wagga for that matter.

In Victoria there is a lot of investment in the Geelong Kardinia Park main ground (helps being a ‘swinging’ seat), and Ballarat is now an AFL venue. Morwell for many years was an NSL locality!! It’s always interesting – Victoria is seen as small and compact – but in land area is not far off the United Kingdom (Eng/Scot/Wales) but of course with many less people.

However – the comparison of Sydney to other cities to me still reflects back to living in the first half of the 80s. While down in Melbourne in the mid 80s there was a recognition that the old suburban grounds were a danger (healthy & safety) and too small and often too hard to get to, lacked parking/facilities etc etc – – back up in Sydney ground rationalisation never (seriously) happened. This we know. There just seems to still be too many baskets trying to host the eggs.

Sydney is the most embarrassing city in Australia


You’ve touched on a few points here.

Society and sport certainly is changing – and the way it’s consumed and funded.

The ‘playground for millionaires’ is an interesting notion. Private ownership of sporting ‘franchises’ is a far less ‘Australian’ concept and for more accepted in the US and English/European sporting models.

However – Australia has far greater ‘utility’ of venues per capita – Australia seriously must be the worlds most competitive and saturated domestic professional football nation. The 2 Rugby variants, soccer and Aust Football can and do share venues that cricket is currently utilising. This means that public funding to stadia CAN be reasonably justified.

Private stadiums – well – the AFL owns ‘Marvel Stadium’ outright. That’s the grandest scale we see in Australia (outside of Horse racing clubs). The AFL in Melbourne is somewhat unique. Big crowds and counting Geelong – 10 clubs of 18 based in and around one major city. The NRL in Sydney doesn’t quite match up – however were the NRL to private own a stadium then they would have ready co-tenants from Soccer and Rugger. Should the NRL have a crack at it?

What would having a ‘crack at it’ involve? Well – Sydney now reminds me of Melbourne in the 1990s. Then premier Jeff Kennett wanted a Docklands stadium to spark an urban renewal precinct. He also had dreams of hosting a FIFA WC!! His plan – given a lack of Govt funds – was to attract private investors and build a rectangular stadium on the cities door step. It sort of worked. The private investors only came on board if the biggest game in town was there – because – as much as attracting the odd international travelling show……or a once in a life time tournament – the reality is the day to day/week to week pays the bills. The AFL only came on board if they would at some point attain full ownership (what they would be giving up in selling out of VFL Park out at Waverley).

So – could the NRL drive something like this in Sydney? Could the Allianz Greek Ruins be reborn as the ‘DC Centre’ (or the like) – privately funded with a model that would hand over ownership to the NRL in 25 years time.

Is there anyone in Sydney who can make this happen? If Melbourne could do it 20 years ago…..

Sydney is the most embarrassing city in Australia

With Mitch Marsh it’s a continuation of the curse of Keith Miller… one has measured up since!!!

In recent times though – a couple of wonderfully ‘potentially’ talented guys like A.Symonds, S.Watson…..and M.Marsh have been given way, way more opportunity than many others. Mainly because they looked really good on their good days.

Mitch Marsh dropped for first Test as Peter Handscomb gets the nod

It’s not just the colour – green or not – it’s also the amount of grass (how close a shave). The recent Adelaide tests have not been cut as low and with a smidge more grass on the pitch we’ve seen much more interesting battles between bat and ball.

That said – the D/N matches had their evening sessions to stand apart. This test will be days only.

The green Adelaide pitch will favour India

Shaun Marsh is there on the back of a successful home series last summer.

Good form (better than most) in the shield thus far this year.

And Warner, Bancroft and Smith all out of contention.

Take away anyone of those 3 and I doubt he’d be there.

Mitch Marsh dropped for first Test as Peter Handscomb gets the nod


The Melbourne not out was okay – dead flat wicket however – but, he did stonewall for a few hours to ensure safety (Smith made a 100). I was there and it was boring as all get out to watch. Ironically only S.Marsh made a bowler look good that day!!

Mitch Marsh dropped for first Test as Peter Handscomb gets the nod