Posted by: nestaquin | February 9, 2009

Chappell/Hadlee Series Game Three Observations

elliot-haddinIt is hardly a coincidence that on the same day the Australian selector’s dalliance with David Warner was exhausted the team won in what was, sloppy fielding aside, a vastly improved and gratifying performance.

With the opposition trapped in the ring, a brisk and solid beginning is vital if not essential at the early stages of a ODI innings and Warner’s schoolboy approach to batting is potentially affordable in T20 but folly in any of the longer formats.

This fact could hardly be better illustrated than by Clarke and Haddin’s controlled and mature 23 over opening partnership that garnered 135 runs at the top of the innings under a blazing sun this afternoon in the third match of the Chappell/Hadlee Trophy.

Centuries are important too, and as rare this Australian summer as an idle bush firefighter, making Haddin’s 109 as welcome as it was sensible. He played himself in before displaying his repertoire and his shot selection was exact, his driving over the top especially so.

His opening partner Clarke scored an unremarkable near run a ball 64, the seeming ordinariness of the knock a reminder of his class and consistency.

With Hayden now retired the Australian vice-captain appears the logical opening replacement and like his childhood hero Mark Waugh, Pup has the required attributes to make the position his own. Nonetheless, with Marsh’s return and Haddin’s success the selectors may choose to delay his ascension for the sake of middle-order stability.

Ponting, who demanded selection after the team went two down in his absence, fell cheaply in the middle overs trying to push the run rate as did Cameron White and David Hussey who is wearing the selectors and supporters patience thin with his lack of a meaningful contribution.

It takes much more than a solid opening foundation to defeat a team as well drilled and motivated as Vettori’s Black Caps and Michael Hussey with able assistance from the impressive Callum Ferguson produced a partnership that enabled Australia to score beyond 300, an impregnable target at a floodlit SCG.

Hussey arrived at the crease with 12 overs remaining with his team teetering at 200/4 and his innings showed that he is approaching his best form after a series of improving knocks in the last fortnight. His 51 was scored from only 32 balls and apart from the first delivery and the last he scored from every ball faced and neither edge nor slog was seen.

It may be wishful thinking but Hussey’s nearly year long form slump has mirrored the team’s and with Mr Cricket firing there is a reasonable chance of better performances to come.

Steve Bucknor, curiously wearing spectacles after having none in the previous match, took an instant dislike to Callum Ferguson first giving him an official warning for running on the wicket when he took two steps down the track, turned and scrambled back to his ground after Hussey wisely declined his invitation for a single and then giving him out lbw off the bottom edge of the willow when the South Australian attempted to sweep Vettori.

Ferguson looks entirely comfortable in the national squad and his performance with bat and in the field would have pleased the selectors who chose him from among several potential candidates.

A few overs later Bucknor then warned Mitchell Johnson for also running on the pitch and because it was the second warning of the innings his two runs to mid-off were not recorded in the book.

Johnson was fuming and rightly so for it was a gross injustice and as Bucknor walked down the pitch wagging his finger in admonishment Mitch approached the Jamaican umpire and made his distaste for the decision and Bucknor public by objecting with, ”That’s bullshit and you know it”.

In cricket, respect is earned not demanded and surely Umpire Bucknor’s time is nigh for not only is his decision making appalling his disrespect for the players is unconcealed and increasingly and deservedly the contempt is mutual.

The Kiwi chase suffered a setback before it began when McCullum succumbed to a shoulder injury suffered while standing over the stumps to Kyle Mills early in the match.

He proved he is as tough as any All Black by finishing his ‘keeping duties in considerable pain and then almost stealing the match coming in at No. 9 and scoring a 27 ball 36 with only one arm in a stunning counterattacking partnership with centurion Grant Elliot that had Ponting’s brow furrowed and many an Australian interrupting their premature celebrations.

Elliot, much like his rookie middle order team-mate Neil Broom, looks very comfortable at the international level and his innings was the best of the match and quite superb with his footwork clean and assured and his placement and timing exquisite.

New Zealand have a very capable and polished cricketer in the skinny right hander and Australia are still to find a method to disrupt his silky aggression with the bat.

His bowling was fruitful too as his quality wickets of Clarke and Ponting attest. Although his brief Test career has yet to blossom, in 14 ODIs he is averaging 82 with bat and 15 with ball and they are figures of significance that deserve recognition.

At the toss, Ponting sincerely promised that on this most terrible and despairing weekend in the nation’s memory that his charges would give the country a reason to smile again however briefly or insignificant.

The lads played their hearts out and duly delivered and the cricket community is now organising to bring more than good cheer to the thousands of families that lost their homes and much more importantly, their loved ones in the fires.

Cricket Australia has already donated in excess of $100,000 and each State Association $25,000. Additionally, all proceeds from the fourth Chappell/Hadlee match in Adelaide on Tuesday will be donated and I’m sure our ANZAC brothers and sisters across the ditch will be most enthusiastic in coming to our assistance.

It is a serious situation and unprecedented in our history. Entire families perished, trapped in houses, sheltering in dams, pools, spas and sheds, fleeing in vehicles, women, children, the elderly, few escaped the storm where fire fell like rain from a black sky and the radiant heat, carried on blistering 100kph winds, literally melted and stripped flesh from bone. Entire communities, whole towns were wiped off the map. And the firefront still rages destroying all in its path.

The selfless volunteers of the Bush Fire Brigade, basically every able man and woman in rural Victoria, are doing their utmost to fight the fires and evacuate the region, many at grave personal risk, but the storm is so intense at its centre that mankind hasn’t the tools or the power to temper its fury.

Scores are confirmed dead, hundreds are missing, thousands more burned and millions in shock and mourning.

Australia rarely asks the world for assistance, the boot is usually on the other foot. In this instance I beg you all to give. Please help. If you’re skint, skip morning tea or your daily coffee, juice or beer and throw the cash our way. Any amount no matter how small will aid in the recovery of so many shattered lives.

If you have a heart, please donate here.

Stay Human.



  1. It was very disappointing and sad to know this tragedy happening in Sydney, and I must say that Ponting and his men has given their countrymen more than a reason to smile because of this win.

    Even though I can’t donate as I am a 14 year old, I pray a healthy recovery for the victims of this bushfire, and those who missing.

    P.S: I have blogrolled you.

  2. Thank you risbabh. So polite, articulate and compassionate for such a young man. Your family should be proud!

  3. Impossible for us Brits to imagine the scale, but we can imagine the loss, but also the bravery of our Australian brothers and sisters.

    Fine gestures from CA and the players – there’s a little gesture from South London too.

  4. Nesta: All best to all the affected families and firefighters. I have a couple of friends in the New South Wales Central Coast and I always worry about them when I hear about bushfires out there. Their houses are right in the bush. All best to the Vics and the Aussie nation.

  5. What in the world does Bucknor earning respect have to do with anything? There are enough umpiring mistakes without getting upset when they do follow the rules.

    Doesn’t matter who the umpire is, you’ve gotta respect the laws.

  6. Ah! Demanding Steve Bucknor’s removal, are we? Now, the senile idiot has started wagging fingers at Australians, is it? Idiot! Doesnt he know that he can only afford to do that against Indians and Asians?
    Anyway, Indians will be relieved now. For long, Bucknor has been doing to India exactly what riled you yesterday because he did that to Aussies, Mr Quinn. Never heard much murmur from Aussies about his removal then. Now that he has started doing that to Aussies, we have started hearing the murmur. And I am sure now he will be retired by ICC. For all that we hear about India’s influence in ICC, this affair will tell us who calls the shots in the ICC: Becausse, Mr Quinn, will you agree that all that India being the “take bat ball home guys” is bullshit if now Bucknor is retired? Because he did that for many years against India(twice he cost us sydney tests and with that series wins in australia), and despite India’s so-called Influence and might, survived as an ICC umpire. Now that he has riled Australians, let us see if he survives. and if he doesnt, can we expect a sympathetic aritcle from you, mr Quinn? For the ‘victimised’ Bucknor?
    In circumstances such as this, ask yourself how you commented when Bucknor did it against Indians and they made their displeasure public. Did you decry them? If not, did you decry those who took potshots at Indians for that? If not, why are you so proud about Johnson dissenting to Bucknor?
    (I hope this opens your eyes to yourself)

  7. btw, sympathies for the bush fire victims. I have kin in Melbourne so all the more feel for the victims.

  8. Could Bucknor have been wearing contacts in the earlier matches? Perhaps they’re starting to irritate his eyes so he returned to the glasses…

  9. Johnathon, I think that when umpires start berating grown men like infants trouble of the Emerson/Ranatunga or Gatting/Shakoor Rana kind will surely follow. Best to avoid those sorts of incidents in my opinion.

    GooseyGander, I cannot remember writing anything about Bucknor in the past. If I did a link to remind me would be gratefully accepted. I don’t really understand your objections when it appears we agree.

    I was astounded to see Bucknor umpiring in Australia these last few weeks as I thought that he was sacked a year ago.

    I do hope your family is safe and believe me when I say that I have the greatest respect for Indian cricket as much of my writing during the IPL and the Border/Gavaskar Trophy illustrates.

  10. oneforgooseoneforgander,

    Actually, what this shows is that everyone who said Bucknor’s hand gestures reflected some form of racism was speaking out of their rear end.
    Bucknor has been wagging fingers etc to everyone for ages. Noone really cared until he made some bad decisions as well.

  11. @nesta, he was only sacked from officiating matches with India in them, kind of like Darrell Hair except he was labelled incompetent rather than racist.

    @goose, personally I disagreed with his being blocked from officiating matches with India ; if he’s not up to ‘elite’ standard then he shouldn’t be officiating any matches. Letting individual boards select officials and trying to maintain an air of impartiality is insane.

    The censure should come from an internal ICC umpire reviews, as opposed to one member nation chucking a hissy fit cause he made a bad call. The guy was born in 1946 and is clearly past his prime.

  12. Thanks for the info, Mo. My lack of knowledge on the issue just goes to show how disinterested and naive I am about administrative cricket politics.

    That won’t be changing anytime soon either for there’s enough happening on the field to satiate my cricketing curiosity.

  13. Cheers Nesta, you often satiate my desire to grow my vocabulary.

    My wife works at AMP, apparently they gave 1mil to the bushfire appeal today. Top effort that.

  14. Well, everyone, the good thing is we all agree now that Steve Bucknor is past his prime. The sad thing is that this has to affect Australia before something is done about him. Just wait and see if he officiates for Australia matches again or even if he is allowed to stay in the job – I like the way ACB handles this – they move quitely in the background rather than making big noises like BCCI. That way they can have their objective of removing inconvenient officials and not getting censure for that or ridicule from bloggers.

    Mr Quinn, it is not so much commission as omission. Do you even remember that Bucknor once sledged Dravid, by pretending like he is scrubbing the ball when the latter came on to bowl? Were you offended by that?
    The question I have for you guys is this(not so much nestaquin – I happeneed to see his blog in full and agree with him, he tries to be fair in general, not a bigot at all – but others who like to take cheap potshots at India saying they couldnt handle one wrong decision from Bucknor and threatened to take bat and ball home. I know otehrs are thick in the head and jingositic and xenophobic but I feel that atleast nestaquin might be able to view tha symptahteically when I post this here now)
    Now, nestaquin, look at this:
    1. Steve Bucknor makes some pathetic decisions, most of them going against India, in Sydney, 2003, and costs them a rare, unprecedented series win in Australia.
    2. He wags his finger at Parthiv Patel and humiliates the latter, a 18 year old boy, who could surely be treated more sympathetically. He treated Patel as if the latter were a fly in his tea.
    3. Rahul Dravid is falsely implicated of ball-tampering(When Cameron White does it, we have aussie bloggers painting a ‘it happens’ picture to it), in the next test when he came on to bowl, Steve Bucknor made some gestures like picking the ball, thereby implicating that Rahul was guilty even though Rahul was never found guilty.
    4. In 2007 Sydney, again Bucknor costs India a test.
    5. After years of suffering from this particular guy, Indian players protest and use the clout they have now gained to remove him.
    6. Aussie newspapers and bloggers, many of whom have commented here, rise up in indignation at India’s using its muscle. As if Steve Bucknor was victimised
    7. Now, tell me, nestaquin, you couldnt tolerate one match of poor officiating by Bucknor and support Mitchell Johnson’s publicly humiliating Bucknor. So, what makes you berate or allow comments from other people here ridiculing Indians for their intolerance of Bucknor, that too after years of suffering? Isnt that one rule for goose and another for gander?
    8. You seem to be a good man who doesnt consciously discriminate, but your answer to this will tell me how sincere you are about your principles. I dont expect others here who have commented to have the same level of unbiased, non-partisan approach. But you have raised my expectations that an Aussie blogger can be unbiased and non-partisan. Let me see if you can live up to it.

  15. beerandsport, I dont really respect you as much as I respect nestaquin. But honestly ask yourself this – during the 2008 January episode, werent you indignant that India refused to take Bucknor shit? Can you even sympathise now that you have faced the brunt of Bucknor’s incompetence. I can see already you can – now you are talking about his senility. We talked about his senility in 2008 Jan, and I think if I remember correct, you were on his side then.
    How things have changed!

  16. One nation will make hissy fits if it continually suffers from the same umpire – you can onyl understand this if some umpire constantly victimises Australia with his incompetence/bias. I am pretty sure how you guys will react then – heck, for one match of incompetence, see nestaquin’s reaction on Bucknor. I cant imagine what his reaction and worse, people like you, b&s, (because atleast he tries to be fair consciously)if you suffered such incompetence/bias for years. Hysteria to the power of infinity is waht I bet we will see from you.

  17. nesta, thanks, my family have told that currently, they dont see any danger. Touch wood, that should remain so.
    Appreciate you despite some of the differences we have – I think that you have not bothered about admin politics but now that you are feeling the brunt of it, readers like me will appreciate if you can see our POV.
    I dont hold a candle for the current Indian cricket team( I was following cricket because of certain gems of my generation like Dravid, Sachin, Laxman, Kumble and Saurav – I dont have the same feelings towardss the current team) but I think what infuriates me about Aussie cricketers and bloggers is their thick head(save for some exeptions like you and jrod), their refusal to acknowledge other nations, their total arrogance and one-for-goose-one-for-gnader approach -for the same crime, they will appreciate with some vagure reasons if it is an Aussie and berate if it is some one else. Hypocrisy could be redefined as Aussie Crickter or blogger almost, it would seem

  18. Goose,
    Your assertion that something happens about Bucknor now that it “affects Australia” is does not appear to have any basis in fact. I doubt CA is interested in a hand gesture. Same for your comments about Nesta “not tolerating” Bucknor. This post is a very good example of how it is possible to criticise an umpire without “demanding” anything. It’s worth remembering that many of the people who criticised the Indian management last year also criticised Bucknor (not to mention some of the Australians) at the time. It’s possible for both parties to be in the wrong!

    I reckon anyone offended by a finger wagging ought to spend a bit more time in the company of Jamaicans old enough to be their parents, but perhaps it should be avoided. In any case, you didn’t simply refer to the gesture, but said that the decision required by the laws of the game was a “gross injustice”. This is the part I don’t understand.

  19. I think there was another incident where he made a shushing gesture to Kumble when the latter asked (politely) why a decision was not given. In recent year, he’s struck me as a cantankerous old bas*** and cricket is well rid of an incompetent and crotchety character like Bucknor. Indians have a special beef against him as they’ve borne the brunt of his incompetence. But I don’t see anything inherently wrong in non-Indians not baying for his head as it’s natural, cognitive assonance and all that, that you’d remember slights against your team much more. I don’t remember Indians (not the board, but normal bloggers, men on the street etc) being up in arms against Darrell Hair in 1995 or in 2007 after the Murali and Oval incidents.

    So, let it lie goosegander. You have a point, but let’s agree that Bucknor is past it, and move on.

  20. GooseyGander, there is much to address and I doubt I’ll satisfy you despite my good intentions.

    Firstly, judging a man by his omissions is more than a touch unfair unless it is directly consequential. It is impossible to document everything, if they are indeed related, that encompasses every subject.

    Life, and cricket, isn’t a portrait but a tapestry and the threads are infinitely complex and no man could possibly write an article in an hour or two and cover every possible tangent even if they occurred to him.

    If, as you say, Bucknor sledged Dravid, in disrespect not jest, well that is reprehensible.

    As for the Johnson incident, I described what eventuated and suggested that Bucknor is past his best because his attitude and competence is questionable. You may consider it an omission but as I was writing the paragraph last year’s Sydney Test was remembered but in the terms of the article which is about the Chappell/Hadlee trophy I considered it incidental. If I wanted to make a song and dance about it, as you are, I would have used it to emphasise the point.

    For example, if my name was Cohen and I was reporting on the civil war in Sri Lanka would it be fair to attack my character because I never mentioned Gaza in an article. As you can see, I hope, your charges of deliberate hypocrisy are misplaced at 99.94.

    If I may, perhaps a little advice to avoid further conflict here and elsewhere in this oh so short bittersweet existence. There are saints and sinners and many more inbetween in every society and team for that matter. Lumping almost any group of people under the same banner and judging them by the behaviour of a few only causes further suffering to us all.

    I’m going to give you the benefit of the doubt and presume that would never be your intention when you tar Mike Hussey, Ben Hifenhaus and even Sir Donald Bradman with the same brush as you would Ponting or Haddin.

    I have given this matter enough of my time and I request that in future that you read the words, comment on them if you please, but not on some imagined hypocrisy that is hardly relevant within the context.

  21. The injustice from my perspective, Jonathon, which I readily admit is far from perfect, was that Johnson never ran down the middle for more than a few steps and even though off balance did his very best to get to the side of the pitch.

    Also, I felt it was grossly unfair because if what Mitch did deserves censure then every batsman in the match deserved the same. If that happened fair enough, book the lot of them, but making examples of players is not the best way of enforcing the law in my opinion.

    Additionally, Johnson should have been fined regardless. If he walked down the pitch and confronted the umpire in the same aggressive and contemptuous manner when given out he surely would of been.

  22. Fair enough, Nesta – I didn’t realise that you were saying that Johnson was trying not to run on the pitch. I have to admit that at that point I was not near a working tv, so I am relying on the radio commentary.

  23. Haddin has still not been punished for cheating. Rashid Latif was done in for much less. Doesnt this say much about the ICC? Dont hide u nder NZ didnt complain etc? If the whole world can see the cheating, why cant the ICC take cognisance? We do see that the European Football guys voluntariuly review on-field incidents and punish obvious cheating without waiting for complaints?

    So, the ICC which seems to be able to punish the Latifs for “not recalling a batsman when he had reasonable grounds to know that the batsman was not out” is not able to punish an obvious cheater?
    And this doesnt bother you at all nestaquin? if it doesnt bother you, how can you call yourself unbiased?

  24. It does bother him, and if you’d taken care to read his post on game 1, you’d know that he called Haddin out for his blatant cheating. Enough with the chip on your shoulder man, especially when it’s baseless.

  25. What the ICC do or don’t do is not my concern. I am merely an observer not a participant of international cricket. I’m sensible enough to not waste this precious life worrying about things that I cannot change.

    Plato, are far wiser soul than I once said, “Nothing in the affairs of men is worthy of great anxiety.”

    I can see the wisdom within those words and apply them accordingly.

    Another juicy quote that you may like to ponder is,” Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something.”

    My view on the Haddin incident has been documented and I fail to see why you have chosen to attack my character continually.

    Build a bridge mate and get over it.

  26. beerandsport, I dont really respect you as much as I respect nestaquin. But honestly ask yourself this – during the 2008 January episode, werent you indignant that India refused to take Bucknor shit? Can you even sympathise now that you have faced the brunt of Bucknor’s incompetence. I can see already you can – now you are talking about his senility. We talked about his senility in 2008 Jan, and I think if I remember correct, you were on his side then.

    Thanks Goose, your respecting me less encourages me and feeds my integrity. However, rather than let your memory taint what was actually said in January 2008, here are my public comments at the time posted in the comments area at

    Posted by Moses on 2008-01-08 17:40:15
    I agree his [Bucknor’s] time has past, though removing him now and leaving him on the elite panel seems to be curtailing to Indian demands.

    He did have a deadset shocker in Sydney, so I think a short rest was definately in order. Bring on Billy.

    This post by me shows my acceptance of Bucknor’s senility, but also shows how I would rather an independant ICC panel review and appoint umpires rather than pandering to the requests of an individual board, no matter how rich they are. Umpires are human, and will always make mistakes. The way we react when these mistakes invariably happen says a lot about us. There is a review process in place and I don’t believe political pressure should come into it.

    Posted by Moses on 2008-01-08 19:56:57
    Re Benson, give him a chance.. he only made one mistake (Hussey’s lbw) that I’m aware of, and is only in his 2nd year as an umpire. He’s only 49 so will grow into the position and should be good for another decade

    Here I stand up for a Pom! Keep that on the record.

    Moving on, I notice that the Aussie team are donating their match fees to the bushfire appeal today (Source).

    Apparently that constitutes $67,000 … unless Ponting stuffs around in the field too much and they’re fined for slow over rates again!

  27. Isn’t 67,000 a tad low for a XII? Or is this the match fees on top of the guaranteed fixed amount in the central contract? I guess must be the latter.

    On principle, I agree with you that no team should browbeat an umpire, but I can’t help putting my India hat on :) I think if it were possible for David Barry to do a statistical analysis on his howlers, he’d reach the conclusion that Bucknor was biased against India. Certainly seemed so.

    On Bowden, I’m not a big fan actually – he’s way too conservative on lbws, and though you usually only hear howls of outrage when umpires give batsmen out wrongly, the Type II error is also equally egregious. He’s a great character, but I’d rate him far below the likes of Taufel on account of this failing.

  28. All contracted players are on a minimum base of 155k (2007/08) scaling up to Ponting who’s retainer is circa 1mil. Add in lucrative endorsements and IPL deals and match fees is a pittance of their total remuneration.

    As such the token efforts of 10%-20% match fee fines for slow over rates is an absolute joke. Personally I’d support run penalties for slow over rates.

  29. I think if such an analysis were possible, and lets face it, at best it would be dependant on DB’s opinion and inherently not scientific, I believe you’d find the distribution of his incompetence against different national sides to be statistically insignificant.

    My gut feels the same way about Aleem Dar umpiring against Australia, and I reckon Damien Martyn would agree with me, but on the balance I reckon they even out.

    Besides, would bad umpires have time to weigh their prejudices into the decision making process? I’d like to believe they are still impartial, something my captain will vouch for after I gave him out LBW last weekend.

  30. Oh, I’m not saying such an analysis is possible, just idle thoughts. Like I mentioned earlier, you tend to remember slights more, so it’s possible he’s been equally incompetent against everyone, but I would tend to remember the incompetence against my team more. And this is why I brought statistics in – just because there is a relationship doesn’t imply causation – i.e. if it were proven Bucknor gave (statistically) significantly more bad decisions against Indians than would be the norm, it doesn’t translate that he’s consciously biased against India. That’s the beauty of statistics – you can never reach a firm conclusion. Lies and damn lies indeed.

    Do note the tone of my posts – I’m not seriously railing against him or anything. Just idle thinking-aloud.

  31. b&s, the fact that I do respect nq but not you should tell you that not being respected me is not a certificate of honour. You can hardly think that you are more respectablet than nq, can you? :-)

    Anyway, more than decisions made by Bucknor, it was the way he treated Indian players, like Dravid and Parthiv that I quoted and in general, the tendency of ICC match referees to independently take action if they found Indian players slightly in violation of rules but hiding behind “umpire didnt report to me:” even when the camera caught people like White picking at the ball, Warne making inexcusable gestures at the umpire, Ponting taking the law in his fingers, Ponting trying to intimidate umpire s- all these leave a sour taste in Indian mouths. On top of it, when you accuse India of trying to bulldoze ICC, it only makes us laugh. Then how come that obvious misdemeanours by aussie players arent documented?
    This is the crux of my problem – I dont care if you call it a chip on my shoulder or whatever – this is a standard sledge designed to make the receiver defensive -but I am not going to get defensive. Let me be whatever – try to answer the points I raise honestly. Why wasnt Slater hauled off for, get this, sledging Venkatraghavan the umpire. If a Gambhir does that to Taufel, do you think he will be spared?

    My anguish is that even decent people like nq try to avoid this issue. This sort of partisan behaviour from ICC has to be questioned instead of pretending that only India flouts rules – nq himself said that there are sinnerrs and saints everywhere but only Indian sins are documented and questioned – why dont some of you not even remember Slater’ disgraceful behaviour in Mumbai against an umpire? Will any of you forget harbhajan singh’s disgraceful behaviour in Sydney? I remember that and condemn him even today? I am honest enough to admit the failures of some of my country men – why not you?

  32. Just a word on Michael Slater. At the time of that incident he had an undiagnosed mental illness. He was dropped immediately after, if memory serves correct, just to add to the poor sod’s confusion.

    He now has to take medication on a daily basis to prevent him from being insane. A heavy burden to bear I reckon and he should be congratulated for rebuilding his life after it was in tatters.

    Obviously he couldn’t have done it without the support of the Australian cricket community which is full of terrific people who have forgiving hearts and generous spirits.

  33. So, was there any substance to the rumour that Slater had a thing with Gilchrist’s wife? I seem to remember there aws some friction between the two at that time about something tawdry like this, and was startled to hear them both doing the commentary together in the SAF series.

  34. No RK. A complete beat-up by the tabloids that was at the time very destructive to both the Gilchrist and Slater families.

    While on the gutter press, Warne has asked the Victorian police to press charges against a paprazzo for stalking his family and although still in the judicial process it could end up setting a legal precedent.

    If some bloke was following my wife and kids around I’d want something done about it too.

  35. Thanks for clearing that up – I always wondered about it.

  36. Finally it took NQ to quote Plato to calm Goose! I am a die hard fan of Indian cricket too mate but you have to let this slide. You are preaching to the choir. I can attest to Nesta’s unbiased opinions and views and the fair coverage he has given to almost all cricket. But I can sort of see where he is coming from – a group of fans that have been suppressed for so long are only bound to come detached at some point. But these days with the advent of blogging, fans from other countries also see the unjust treatment most of the times.

    I don’t think RD thought about that sledging a week after that happened because he is bigger than that and the game is bigger than Bucknor. I agree with Jonathan that if he is incompetent to stand in matches with India, how is he not so for others? That implies something fishy and almost like ICC agrees he is biased against India.

    Mitch certainly has to be reprimanded verbally atleast as you are not supposed to show dissent on the field.

    Slater has come a long way since then if indeed the mental imbalance claims are true. He is turning into quite an OK commentator and more tolerable than the likes of Healy and Taylor.

  37. I’ll shorten myself to goose since that is a convenient short name for all concerned.
    ” I agree with Jonathan that if he is incompetent to stand in matches with India, how is he not so for others?”

    The point is if India can get him banned completely for his incompetence, do you think they will hesitate? If BCCI had that much power, be assured, that is what will happen. The fact that after his incompetent show, India could only press for not posting him in their matches shows who else was batting for him.Not India surely? So, why is this India’s or BCCI’s fault – I mean the prevention of Bucknor from only India’s matches, that is clearly the fault of other member countries in ICC – then why were people after India on Bucknor’s behalf?

    Nesta, so the mental thing would excuse Sreesanth then?

  38. “Mitch certainly has to be reprimanded verbally atleast as you are not supposed to show dissent on the field.”
    But that is my point – he hasnt been and he will not be. How is that fair? Mitch should have been reprimanded for his laughable sledging of Laxman. He wasnt, even by bloggers, let alone ICC.

    Why should Slater be let off for his mental state. If he can play Cricket for Australia in that state, either he or the people who let him play are responsible for his actions. What if he had gone mental and spiked Venkat or Dravid with a stump? Would you excuse him saying he was mental at that time?
    See, even now, you are not able to say one word agains this on-field behaviour? Just excuses. why?

  39. Goose shortened his name and is making more sense now! May be Slater was under some sort of roid rage claimed a catch he grassed and yelling at the batsman and umpire for it. NQ was not making excuses hopefully and wasn’t this a one-off with Slater? Like NQ mentioned he was not a Ponting or a Haddin. A lot happens on the field and when the players get on with it, why can’t we? Clearly should not promote this kind of behavior and excuses but can’t harp on them for so long. Trust me it does make my blood boil still to this day to watch Slater act like that toward Venkat and RD but if that helped him get a grip on his personal life, then I’m glad that it did not happen again. Without these incident cricket might as well be played by gentlemen wearing bow ties and sipping actual ‘tea’ in the middle of an intense day of cricket.

  40. Goose is a more than appropriate moniker. It is common though. Have you considered Galah?

  41. nestaquin, is that an insult? If so, it didnt register :-). What is a galah, btw?
    (I am just an anobymous cyber entity – how would an insult affect me? I am more interested in bringing to your attention a different perspective of the same incidents. If that makes you think before the next time you want to make fun of India on the Bucknor-2008Jan affair, then my purpose is accomplished. As you can clearly see, India is less to blame on Bucknor than other countries. Can we safely assume that others backed Bucknor precisely because he was riling India at that time?

  42. Naren, sure, we have to move on. Rahul Dravid surely did. Now, that man, what a gentleman and a nice human being. Can Ricky Ponting ever reach that level of respectability?
    To be fair, I suppose Aussies will see Saurav Ganguly the same way I see Ponting. But while I recognise that fact, I wonder why the equal-opposite cannot be acknowledged?

  43. Lest it is not obvious, nestaquin, let me state that I do believe you try to rise above partisan considerations – that is obvious to anyone who goes through your blog. I do so respect you. I wouldnt call you names even if you call me names

  44. An insult? No, just a light-hearted sledge to give the readers a chuckle.

  45. How bout Flamin’ Galah…

  46. Goose, a quick look at your IP address reveals that you use the exact same computer as the contemptible and slanderous raj.

    I suspected as much due to the similar trolling and ranting. Get a life pal.

    I’ve offered you conciliation previously but it won’t ever be forthcoming again.

    What does it say about a man who wildly accuses others yet refuses to stand in the light himself?

    I’m sure all our readers know the answer to that question.

  47. The return of the raj as a goose… How the mighty have fallen :)

    btw. Why is raj posting as the goose?

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