The Roar
The Roar


Roar Guru

Joined April 2009







Tasmanian born and bred, living in Canberra. One time part-time bush league off-spinner without spin, dip, drift or control.



Roar Guru
Roar Guru

The ICC must not let Zimbabwe wither

While the World Cup final was playing out to its thrilling finish and farcical result, a low-key tour of Europe was finishing up by one of the nations adversely impacted by having a smaller World Cup: Zimbabwe won their final match of the tour to draw their T20 series against Ireland in Belfast.

Roar Guru
Roar Guru

The day-night Test must be abandoned

The pink ball, as it stands, is a failure, and the experiment must be called off. It is that simple. The playing of a day-night Test always looked like it was rushed at the insistence of Channel Nine,and now it looks set to backfire on Cricket Australia in a bad way.

No, its just a ten team finals system with a different name for week one.
Eight is too many as it stands, but obviously the AFL will chase more money rather than less so some extension of finals is bound to happen no matter how ridiculous.

Why the AFL could benefit from wildcard finalists

The price point is an interesting one. In the future could there be “online memberships”? It would take the A-League to make les from sales to Fox/Kayo and FTA in order to offer an “A-League” only product at a lower price point. And a single club only lower still – and could ACL games be included in that, given how difficult it can be to get to those home games.

Could a club like Newcastle use that to better connect to the whole Hunter region, taking their potential fan base from Canberra size to Adelaide size?
Or would the price point be so low as to not bother with, especially given it would to some extent cannibalise the more lucrative options.

Can the A-League persuade fans to look up from their phones?

York Park is not an accredited First Class cricket venue. T20, yes, but not First Class accredited.

What Round 1 of the 2020 AFL season should look like

From now on he is the same as a member of the eleven. He may attempt to bat and attempt to bowl.

Steve Smith withdrawn from Ashes Test with concussion

Wade got a hundred just a match ago, though in between two failures. At least Bancroft is holding catches and seeing out more time than Warner (though still not enough to blunt the new ball).

The question is really, who is more likely to come good, Harris or one of the incumbents? I would have had Harris in for Edgbaston, only because I think he’ll get through the tough period more often; not because he’s likely to get big scores. But there was nothing in it, and remains so IMO.
Selection isn’t the problem. Lack of Test-worthy options is the problem.

Australia must drop David Warner

Carlton and Essendon are supposedly Docklands based teams. So long as they aren’t playing another club with a large Vic following they can play at their home.

And the Bledisloe Cup is only a matter of line markings and goalposts really. It doesn’t need to be super-flat with shorter grass like Association Football; or have a cricket pitch dropped in and pulled up again. They could play Rugby one night and footy the next day, or vice versa. Even if it is wet and the turf gets chewed up a little, its not going to become a bogfest with modern drainage and turf management.

What Round 1 of the 2020 AFL season should look like

Bellerive also likely won’t be available, ODI on 20 March and needs to be kept available in case of a Shield final starting 27 March (Tassie doesn’t have another FC accredited venue) .
GWS might be able to play in Sydney in round one, though probably not as the show starts on 3 April.

What Round 1 of the 2020 AFL season should look like

No matter which sport, I will never understand the mentality of people whose starting point is to kill off clubs.

The best path towards NRL expansion

Archer hasn’t bowled a ball in First Class cricket this year, obviously the WC being part of the reason for that. He does average 23 which is pretty impressive, but it seems a big risk to have him step up to potentially bowling multiple spells on consecutive days.

England name Archer, Leach for second Test

If Western United host a final will that be played at the Melbourne rectangluar stadium, or Kardinia Park if the Cats aren’t at home that weekend, or Ballarat? I’m assuming the MRS.

A-League finally reveals schedule for 2019-20 season

Without going to a 33 round season, multiple teams having the bye in some rounds inevitable. The bye is only for one year anyway.

A-League finally reveals schedule for 2019-20 season

Could the delay in producing a fixture be partly because the A-League is gpoing to be indepeendent. Its a small thing, but maybe having the FFA release the fixture for the newly independent league is seena s a bad look by some.

Others have alluded to Western United’s issues, all their proposed grounds have timing issues. Kardinia Park is only available for the middle portion of the season, Bellerive is primarily a cricket venue and too big a surface for watching Assoication Football (North Hobart Oval would probably be betert for being close to the action and close to the “city” centre; but facilities are run down). York Park is even worse though at least without a cricket pitch square.

If it was only one or two games they could do the schedule with a tba venue, but they likely have to have away games at both ends of the season and talks with the Cats and Geelong council may be ongoing.

Does anyone else think they might struggle to build much of a support base in the opening years with the nomad thing going on? Even WSW, who were frairly well established, had issues without their home.

It's the most important A-League season ever - so let's see a fixture list

County contracts are worth more than Shield ones, and there are a lot more internationals on during an Australian summer. With South Africa and New Zealand usually hosting internationals (and T20 comps) at the time, sometimes India might have a series at home, and Bangladesh having a T20 comp. Anyone who is a regular in more than one format can’t commit to a Shield season. And all those nations have their own FC scene on at the time. One of the reasons the BCCI prohibits Indian players from playing BBL (along with protecting the IPL) is that the Indian FC season is underway at the time.

We only have six FC teams to begin with, so those outside international contention or from the “minor” nations who might be available are usually not going to be in big demand – or can earn money playing elsewhere.

Where do Ireland go from here?

Siddle is averging 20 in County Division One this year and 16.4 last year. Bowling in the UAE and in England are entirely different things. I would have him in the squad for sure, touch and go for the opening Test but a good chance.

28 in Tests in England isn’t great, but its not poor either and he might be a better bowler in those conditions than he used to be.

Let's just make Mitch Marsh Test captain and be done with it

Travelling to Brisbane and Perth in successive weeks is a massive ask, and getting belted would not really be a fair indication. Most non-Vic teams are spared back-to-back travel, some years a Vic club gets lumped with it. (If one was an interstate “home” game, no problems) That said, West Coast would be big favourites anyway.
As for being contenders, even if by a miracle North were to win its too late to make the eight now – much less get into a contending position.

Why North Melbourne are neither as good nor as bad as people think

Interstate U18s finals
Anthem if we must
AFL Grand Final

Who should perform on Grand Final day? The two teams who make it. Everything else is pointless.

Who should perform at the 2019 AFL grand final?

So long as it is white ball only, maybe. Test cricket is its own thing, and not to be diluted by the lesser games.
As for context, would being part of a mixed format really add anything? Its still just a series, albeit one instead of two or three, with little relevance to anything beyond itself.
The ODI Championship is supposed to add that broader context, but few know it exists, fewer understand the ranking formula and even if they did the WC will remain the main event of 50 over cricket regardless. Mixing the 50 and 20 over games together risks losing the distinction between them, without adding anything.
There will be less ODIs over the next little period. This might help the format, as people might be keen when they return in greater numbers – though being hidden behind a paywall, its more likely most people won’t even know they are on.

Multi-format series the key to reviving one-day cricket

I don’t think the headline does the article justice. Yes, England deserve to be favourites; but (as the article suggests) maybe not as strong as they are. Maybe.
Personally, I have England very strong favourites. But the article makes some decent points, in some areas England don’t seem as strong as four years ago.

Starting with that; any games Anderson miss will clearly be a bog loss for England. And when he comes back, he might be underdone and not as his best. He should still be good when available, just perhaps a level down his usual home-nation self. That said, Englan’s bowling stocks are strong; certainly good enough to cause problems against a team who can’t play anything except straight ones which come through quickly. England’s bnatting is up in the air, as it was heading into 2015. If they read too much into white ball cricket and pick Roy that might open up a chance for Australia to regularly get to the middle order early. His First Class record isn’t bad, but its hardly imposing. The batting also looks very Root-reliant, with non-specialists likely starting at six, or even five.
It is important to remember, however, that England were in similar disarray in 2015. That was also after struggling in the Carribean against an even weaker West Indies than the current one.

And Are Australia any better? The batting is Smith, mostly Warner, and a remainder who can’t be relied on to score 50 between them. Last time it still had Clarke, and Rogers was reliable at the top. Much more so than any of the prospects for opening, or Khawaja at three, or anyopne who play five, six or seven. There is no Trent Bridge (all out 60) this time, but there is Edgbaston (all out 136). Apart from gaining the absence of Mitch Marsh, the Australian batting looks even weaker than 2015; albeit with more options at that poor level.
Starc was probably at his peak in 2015, after the World Cup he actually produced some very good red ballc ricket for a while. Pattinson being back, and in form, is better than Johnson. Lyon has improved, but was decent enough by then already. Overall, Australia’s bowling stocks have probably imnproved while the batting may have gone backwards; England has possibly gone backwards in both areas but not enough to lose favourtism at home.

As always, Australia’s best chances are likely to be in London. Both Lord’s and, particularly, The Oval often play less into the home side’s favour. The Oval is almost a smaller outfield, slower, Australian style ground on occasion (maybe early season SCG). Enough rain in the other Tests, and Australia could retain the urn with a drawn series.

Should England be favourites for the Ashes?

Yep. Some forward planning for ODIs is fine, unlike Tests not every ODI counts for anything – only the WC. Wholesale change just leaves the side with too many inexperienced players, and nobody to learn from. There is no hurry, in four years time a lot of the promising looking players now will have been cast aside – probably even by their states. By all means, start the process, but see who retires from the format between now and January first.

Australia should use its next ODI series as a development tour

Ticket sales for day/night games have been OK, but its certainly something worth considering once the novelty wears off and the sales drop away again. I guess the question then becomes whether people who would attend a full day otherwise decide to attend only the cut-price part of the day.

A proposal to save Test cricket

I’m not sure that doing a mass overhaul this far out is the way to go. Given the timing, resting the players from the Sydney Test squad makes sense. Resting, not learning bad habits in the BBL – though senior players should be ablw to manage the change.
There is definite room to swap a few players around, under-performers and those needing a rest. And I can see CA comtemplating sending a weak team in protest over the BCCI forcing the timing; I suspect they would be too scared to do that.

Australia should use its next ODI series as a development tour

“I would prefer to have something from the traditional form of cricket than nothing at all”
Once you start introducing over limits, you don’t have the traditional form at all. Just a two innings limited over game. I seriously can’t agree there.

As for less days, each going for longer. If people aren’t going to go to a seven hour day, or watch it on TV, why will they do so for eight hour day? If anything, that is likely to make things worse.

Sport should be about sport first and money second. Yes, the sport overall needs to pay for itself, but that’s all it needs to do. At the highest level that means Test cricket is paramount. If some of the money from other forms needs to be used to subsidise the core of the game, and the poorer nations to particiapate, then that’s what should be done. Unfortunately, we don’t get that from the administrators at national or international level; and that, after all, was what T20 was originally sold as – a pathway into cricket that was supposed to flow through to other forms.

A proposal to save Test cricket

Glenn Maxwell’s Test career was “cruelled” by Glenn Maxwell’s (apparent lack of) brain. He has the talent, but even at this stage of his career seems to lack the nouse to adjust to situations and play the sensible knock when required.
He has scored heavily in recent Shield seasons, but from the little I’ve seen on the streams he also gets away with things at that level which would not work against the better Test sides.
The one adjustment he ahs shown he can make is that, unlike most, he doesn’t suddenly get a lot worse once he sets foot in Asia. I actually would have had him on the UAE tour last year, as others fall away so badly in those conditions they drop below him – but not in the siude back at home unless he had performed exceptionally well. And Asia might be his way into whites. A brisk 25-30 is more than most Australian batsmen can manage in those conditions. He can do that reasonably often and occasionally more.
Victorians love to claim he’s been hardly done by. Maybe he has a little, but no more than many other players over the years. The complaining over him (and Wade) has been ridiculous.

Glenn Maxwell's Test career cruelled by World Cup flop

There is no doubt the nations problems are much broader than cricket, but to lose one of very few full member nations on the altar of Indian and Australian self-interest would likely be the start of something much more drastic down the track. The ICC should be looking to find ways to aid cricket, without the money filtering to government. That may mean direct funding of some areas that ZC has left to rot.

More assistance to leading Associates would also be welcome, absolutely. Scotland and the Netherlands are both around Zimbabwe level on field, and obviously more stable as nations.

The ICC must not let Zimbabwe wither

The ICC has suspended Zimbabwe, and all payment to ZC, government interference in cricket.

This means players are unlikley to be paid. It is not clear to me how far back they are owed but it would seem at least until the WC qualifiers.

It is also unlikely they will be allowed to compete at ICC tournaments, including both mens and womens T20 qualifiers. Although this is unceratin, as the also suspended Nepal are allowed to compete.

The ICC must not let Zimbabwe wither