Posted by: nestaquin | December 30, 2009

Australia v Pakistan First Test: Quick Review

Pakistan slumped to their seventh consecutive Test defeat on Australian soil at the MCG this afternoon after the Australian attack skittled them for 251 two overs after lunch.

It was another dismal day for the tourists where they lost 71/7 in 27 overs but credit must go to the winning team for they bowled good lines and fielded very well and they’ll be looking to wrap-up the series with a similarly dominant performance in Sydney next week.

While this Test will be undoubtedly overshadowed by events at Kingsmead it was a match that saw Shane Watson’s maiden Test century, Nathan Hauritz snare his first five-for in professional cricket and Ricky Ponting, in perhaps his finest performance as skipper, become the most successful captain (42 wins) and player (93 wins) in the history of Test cricket.

There are other talking points but I’ll leave that for discussion in the comments section as the beach and a crisp and clean left-hand break beckons.

Stay Human



  1. Did someone kidnap Mitchell Johnson’s brain and replace it with one that recognises stumps? He bowled very well, I can’t remember the last time he was so neat.

    I really thought Pakistan would put up more of a fight.

    Great that Punter gave Hauritz reasonably attacking fields. If only he would give the quicks more than 2 slips…

  2. Two finger spinners running through sides!

  3. Wasn’t the finger spinner meant to be an endangered species? Fair play to Hauritz.

    I caught only a few over of Doug Bollinger and like the cut of his gib. Has a bustling look about him of someone to whom the delivery is only a mild interruption to his stride through the crease rather than someone like anderson who explodes into his action a lot more.

    • Hard to believe that it’s the same bowler who was so innocuous when he played county cricket – and I’m not just talking about the hair.

  4. Good bowling but wasn’t the second innings batting a cause for concern? Millionaires from the first innings, but still, not a good habit. Another step along the road I guess. It will take a while to rebuild.
    Watson is starting to become seriously impressive. Never mind this nonsense about falling short of 100, he’s been scoring big consistently and taking wickets too. But more than the scores, it’s his technique that has impressed.

    • Yes, Fred, I am starting to believe in Watson for the first time ever. He’ll probaby always annoy me, but there is no denying that he can bat and is a handy fifth bowler if he is fit enough to bowl.

      I hope Aamer pitches it up to him at Sydney, I’d like to see how he copes if the kid gets going again.

      Bolly has been pretty impressive too. He is a bit like Siddle, full of punchiness. Alongside them MJ seems so unaustralian as a fast bowler.

      • I’ll see your MJ and raise you a Harmison.

        • You are damn right that Harmison is unaustralian. Thank God.

          • Why does Watson annoy you Lou?

            • His relentless self-promotion. His boorish behaviour. The Gayle thing was just the latest, he is can be a bit of a dick generally on the field. In the World Cup 2007, he was a berk.

              However, he has real talent with the bat and is a handy fifth bowler, so I shall attempt to put aside my prejudice against him when the matches are on.

              • Lou
                fair enough. I hadn’t really noticed, but I haven’t been following too closely. I know he had a run in with Gayle, but Gayle is a bit special too. I thought the biggest story with Watson was someone endlessly struggling with injury, and ultimately winning the battle. I read somewhere he became a teetoler in order to give himself the best chance, that’s impressive!
                Anyway, was just curious because I hadn’t seen anything outrageous from him. But if we don’t have someone at least a bit rude, the English will have no one to froth at the mouth about.

              • Actually I take that last comment back, they’ll always find something to froth about:)

  5. l’m with Lou. His over the top intensity/relentless self interest is pretty well known from back to his Qld days.

    Playing exceedingly well though. Perhaps success will help him relax.

  6. Currently 6 for 52 after winning the toss…

  7. Seven down at the end of first session!

    There will be those that blame the pitch but it isn’t doing too much. Poor shot selection and a general lack of responsibility from the middle order is the main reason Australia have most likely lost the match in the first session.

    Not taking anything away from Pakistan who have bowled very well but there is something amiss about Australia’s attitude today. If I needed to describe their mindset I’d say arrogant and reckless.

  8. 50/50 for me. l reckon they have bowled very well (excellent length) in very very useful conditions – pitch and weather. They were planning on having a bowl had they won the toss.

  9. I was there at the ground and it was an enjoyable half-day’s cricket. But yes, a strange decision to bat, great bowling and poor shot selection just about sums up the day. It was incredibly green even to the naked eye. Hughes and Ponting’s shots just about sum up the day.

    Catching John and Janette Howard (leaving the ground at tea I may add) really made the day a depressing one.

  10. Poor form to leave at tea when the home team is doing badly!

    200 odd behind on the first innings. Is it possible that someone could score a double hundred giving Australia a 250 lead?

    I doubt it but strangely I’m more hopeful at stumps on Day 2 than I was on Day 1.

  11. Same here, nesta. The bowlers for one thing didn’t bowl that badly and beat the bat a lot. Sometimes is just doesn’t go your way.

    Ask James Anderson, the king of beating the bat.

    I didn’t feel that there was the wilful disregarding of good sense with the bowlers like there was yesterday. Plus the Pakistan openers played with admirable discipline as did MoYo. Showed our lot up big time. I’m not sure they played a cross bat shot in the first session.

    I didn’t see any of the match but when I got to the highlights, saw the wicket and the conditions, then heard Punter talking such rubbish in his post-toss interview, I realised that delusion is flourishing in the Oz camp as much as ever.

    Hughes is not a test opener at the moment and it was wrong to plunge him into that situation first game back, we all would have expected him to chuck his wicket away. Punter was worse though, with his experience to go out like that first ball was embarrassing. Punter just didn’t think past his own ego. That is what it seemed to me.

    And Brad Haddin is reckless. He thinks he can hit his way out of any situation. He was backing away from the stumps to try and flog it through the off side. Great technique there, Brad. Did the Ashes teach you nothing?

    I’m hoping that MJ gets another ton to show up the batsmen.

    And lastly, Mohammed Asif is a wonderful bowler, how the test world has missed his guile and smarts.

  12. What I meant was I didn’t see any of the first days play, but I did see most of the second. Bless illegal links.

  13. In years to come people will be asking “Where were you the day Siddle scored a ton then took 5 for?”

  14. Haddin summed up Siddle beautifully in the post match interview. He said with a wry smile, “Sids has no shots so this morning was perfectly set up for him.”

    Amazing win. I’m stoked with the effort and will attempt to write something after dinner.

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