Sunday, November 30, 2008

Introducing...the Indian Premier League


The Indian Premier League (also known as the "DLF Indian Premier League" and often abbreviated as IPL), is a Twenty20 cricket competition created by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and chaired by the Chairman & Commisoner IPL, BCCI Vice President Lalit Modi. The first season of the Indian Premier League commenced on 18 April 2008, and ended on 1 June 2008 with the victory of the Rajasthan Royals in the final at the DY Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai.

Teams play each other two times in a round robin system, with equal number of home and away matches. The top four ranking sides will progress to the semi-finals.

The inaugural 2008 tournament started on 18 April 2008 in Bangalore and lasted for 46 days, with 59 matches scheduled, out of which 58 took place and 1 was washed out due to rain

Television rights and sponsorship:

The IPL will bring the BCCI income of US$1 billion, over a period of five to ten years, reinforcing its status as the richest board in world cricket.

All of these revenues are directed to a central pool, 40% of which will go to IPL itself, 54% to franchisees and 6% as prize money. The money will be distributed in these proportions until 2017, after which the share of IPL will be 50%, franchisees 45% and prize money 5%.

Television rights:

On 15 January 2008 it was announced that a consortium consisting of India's Sony Entertainment Television network and Singapore-based World Sport Group secured the global broadcasting rights of the Indian Premier League. The record deal has a duration of ten years at a cost of US $1.026 billion. As part of the deal, the consortium will pay the BCCI US $918 million for the television broadcast rights and US $108 million for the promotion of the tournament.

20% of these proceeds would go to IPL, 8% as prize money and 72% would be distributed to the franchisees. The money would be distributed in these proportions until 2012, after which the IPL would go public and list its shares. Sony-WSG then re-sold parts of the broadcasting rights geographically to other companies.

The official rules for the tournament are here. Some of the Team composition rules are:

  • Total squad strength of 16 players plus one physio and a coach.
  • No more than 8 foreign players in the squad and at most 4 in the playing XI.
  • A minimum of 4 local players must be included in each team.
  • No fewer than 4 players from the BCCI under-22 pool in each team.

    The players accorded "icon" status are: Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Sourav Ganguly, Yuvraj Singh and Virender Sehwag . The total spending cap for a franchisee in the first player auction was US $5m. Under-22 players are to be remunerated with a minimum annual salary of US $20,000 while for others it is US $50,000. Icon players are to be paid 15% more than the highest paid player in their respective teams.

    The winning bidders for the eight franchises were announced on 24 January 2008. While the total base price for auction was US $400 million, the auction fetched US $723.59 million. The official list of franchise owners announced and the winning bids were as follows.

  • Mumbai Indians
    Owned by: Reliance Industries Limited (Mukesh Ambani)($111.9 million)

  • Royal Challengers Bangalore
    Owned by: UB group (Vijay Mallya)($111.6 million)

  • Hyderabad Deccan Chargers
    Owned by: Deccan Chronicle (T Venkatarami Reddy)($107 million)

  • Chennai Super Kings
    Owned by: India Cements (N Srinivasan)($91 million)

  • Delhi Daredevils
    Owned by: GMR Holdings (Grandhi Mallikarjuna Rao)($84 million)

  • Kings XI Punjab
    Owned by: Preity Zinta, Ness Wadia (Bombay Dyeing), Karan Paul (Apeejay Surendera Group) and Mohit Burman (Dabur)($76 million)

  • Kolkata Knight Riders
    Owned by: Red Chillies Entertainment (Shahrukh Khan, Juhi Chawla Mehta and Jai Mehta)($75.09 million)

  • Rajasthan Royals
    Owned by: Emerging Media (A.R Jha, Lachlan Murdoch, Suresh Chellaram)($67 million)

    Future Expansion:
    After the success of the first season, it has been reported that four new franchises will join the IPL in 2010-11, increasing the total number of teams to 12. The new confirmed franchises will be based in Ahmedabad and Kanpur, with Anil Ambani's name associated with the ownership of the Ahmedabad franchise, and Sahara Group is touted as the possible suitors to buy the Kanpur franchise. Other cities being linked with getting a franchisee are Patna-Ranchi joined franchisee or a team from the North-East to promote the sport in the region and possibly one team from the north-western states of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarkhand. A second Mumbai or Delhi team has also been proposed for future expansion of two teams to take place in the 2012-13 season.

    Expansions- 2010-11 Season( 4 new teams)-

  • IPL Ahmedabad
  • IPL Kanpur
  • Any two from the following-

    1. A Patna-Ranchi joined franchisee 2. A team from the North-East 3. A team from the north-western states of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarkhand

    The unselected team from the 3 will be considered for the next set of expansions in the 2012-13 season.

    2012-13 Season( 2 new teams)-

  • The unselected 3rd team from above
  • Possibly a second franchisee from Delhi's suburbs( Gurgaon, Ghaziabad, Faridabad, NOIDA and Greater NOIDA) and New Delhi combined
  • Possibly a second franchisee from Mumbai or a new franchisee from Pune.

    The IPL has been criticised by a few politicians and feminists for bringing in foreign cheerleaders, which is seen by many to not be in the traditional spirit of the game, as well as being against some Indian sensibilities. Two cheerleaders from London were asked to leave the ground at Mohali “because of the colour of their skin” by Wizcraft International Entertainment, which handles the team Kings XI Punjab. Ellesha Newton and Sherinne Anderson, both from London and of African ancestry were allegedly barred from entering the stadium by employees of Wizcraft International Entertainment on the pretext that "people don’t like dark girls here". Both the girls also allege that an employee referred to them with the racial slur ″nigger″.

    Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said a probe would be initiated by the IPL only if the two women officially complain to IPL commissioner Lalit Modi.

    BCCI and IPL officials are surprised that the two cheerleaders did not complain about the alleged racist behaviour while they were in India and spoke about it only after they returned to London.

    "We have not received any complaint from any cheerleaders that they were asked to leave by the Mohali-based Kings XI Punjab franchise recently because of the colour of their skin," BCCI joint secretary M.P. Pandove said in Mohali.

    See also:

  • England - Twenty20 Cup

  • India - Indian Cricket League

  • Pakistan - Pakistan Super League

  • South Africa - Standard Bank Pro 20 Series

  • Sri Lanka - Inter-Provincial Twenty20

  • Australia - KFC Twenty20 Big Bash

  • New Zealand - State Twenty20

  • West Indies - Stanford 20/20

  • Zimbabwe - Metropolitan Bank Twenty20

  • Kenya - National Elite League Twenty20

  • Canada - Scotiabank National T20 Championship

  • Indian Premier League links:

  • Official site for Indian Premier League

  • Indian Premier League at Cricinfo

  • Photobucket

    *Acknowledgements to and owners of pictures and videos used.

    Player Profile(#34)... Ross Taylor (New Zealand)


    Luteru Ross Poutoa Lote Taylor (born 8 March 1984 in Lower Hutt) is a New Zealand cricketer. He has captained the New Zealand Under-19 side in youth internationals. Taylor has scored 132* in the State Shield in 2003-2004, and 184 in the State Championship in 2004-2005.

    International career:

    He made his debut for the New Zealand team in international cricket on 1 March 2006, in a one-day match against the West Indies. He became the second male player of Samoan heritage to play for New Zealand after Murphy Su'a.

    Taylor has been a dominant batsman on the domestic scene for the past couple of seasons. He is a clean striker of the ball, and a useful off-break bowler. Taylor scored his maiden one day century in front of a delighted crowd in Napier, playing against Sri Lanka on December 28, 2006. Unluckily for him, New Zealand were comprehensively beaten in that game, his innings aside. He also suffered dehydration and required a short hospital trip during the second innings. Taylor hit 84 against Australia in their opening game in the 2007 Commonwealth Bank series.

    Taylor's full name is Luteru Ross Poutua Taylor; however, some sources have inaccurately recorded his name as Ross Luteru Taylor. This is because Taylor grew up answering to both Luteru and Ross when playing cricket, and did not realise he needed to write down his full name for the official New Zealand Cricket records when he was asked to fill in a questionnaire at a first-class match early in his career.

    Taylor has also played English cricket for Norwich and Coltishall wanderers in Norfolk. He was their key player and he was consistent in hitting runs.

    Memorable moments:
    His first ODI century came Vs Sri Lanka on 28 December 2006, scoring 128 (not out) off 133 balls. The innings included 12 fours and 6 sixes. Taylor scored his second century in his ODI career on 18 February 2007 against Australia. He scored 117, the 2nd highest score by a New Zealander against Australia.

    He scored his maiden Test century on 6 March 2008 at Hamilton in the first Test of the 2007/8 series against England and went on to be the leading runs scorer in the same series.

    Currently, he plays for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League (IPL) and for his domestic team, the Central Districts Stags.

    Ross Taylor scored a test match career-best of 154* against England at Old Trafford Cricket Ground in May 2008, including 5 sixes and 17 fours.

    More information about Ross Taylor can be found at these links:

  • Ross Taylor Career Stats @
  • profile on Ross Taylor


    *Acknowledgements to and owners of pictures and videos used.

  • Friday, November 28, 2008

    Some famous cricket quotes

    Over the years there have been a number of players that have been known for their words just as much as their cricketing exploits. Some of them will never be forgotten, although some of the players on the receiving end may wish they could be.

    Here are some of the stand out quotes I have come across as of late:

    Glen McGrath (Australia) and Eddo Brandes (Zimbabwe):

    Aussie paceman Glenn McGrath was bowling to Zimbabwe number 11 Eddo Brandes - who was just missing each ball. McGrath, frustrated, went to him and inquired: "Why are you so fat?"Quick as a flash, Brandes replied, "Because every time I make love to your wife, she gives me a biscuit."


    Freddie Trueman & Raman Subba Row:

    Fearsome English fast bowler Fred Trueman extraced an edge from the batsman, which flew straight into the hands of Raman Subba Row at first slip. The ball however went right between Row's legs to the third man boundary. Fred didn't say a word. At the end of the over, Row ambled past Trueman and apologised sheepishly. "Sorry Fred. I should've kept my legs together". Trueman retorted in classic fashion "Not you, son. Your mother should've!"
    "It's been very slow and dull day, but it hasn't been boring. It's been a good, entertaining day's cricket. - BRIAN JOHNSTON"
    "He's usually a good puller - but he couldn't get it up that time." - BRIAN JOHNSTON"
    "He's fat, he's round, he bounces on the ground, Shane Warne, Shane Warne." - Barmy Army.
    Shane Warne : "I've waited two years for another chance to humiliate you."
    Daryll Cullinan : "Looks like you spent it eating."
    "What do you think this is, a f***ing tea party? No you can't have a f***ing glass of water. You can f***ing wait like all the rest of us."
    -Allan Border to Robin Smith.
    "Mate, if you turn the bat over, you'll see the instructions on the back!"
    -Merv Hughes to Robin Smith.
    Merv Hughes : "You can't f**king bat."
    Robin Smith : "Hey Merv, we make a fine pair. I can't f**king bat and you can't f**king bowl."
    "Tufnell! Can I borrow your brain? I'm building an idiot."
    -Voice from the crowd, Newcastle Test.
    "A fart competing with thunder."
    -Graham Gooch on England's chances in Australia in 1990-91.

    In the International Spotlight...Hong Kong Cricket


    The Hong Kong cricket team is a team representing the Chinese Special administrative region of Hong Kong in international cricket. They played their first match in 1866 and have been an associate member of the International Cricket Council since 1969.

    They played their first One Day Internationals in the 2004 Asia Cup and have played in every ICC Trophy since the 1982 tournament with the exception of the most recent event. They played in the ICC Intercontinental Cup in the 2005 tournament, and are currently ranked at 25th in the World by the ICC and are the third highest ranked Asian non-Test nation.

    The sport was introduced to Hong Kong by the English, with the first recorded game taking place in 1841, and the Hong Kong Cricket Club being founded ten years later. The Cricket Club played a number of interport matches against sides on the Chinese mainland, the first taking place against Shanghai in 1866, and in 1890 played Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) for the first time.

    1892 saw disaster when the SS Bokhara, which was carrying the team back from Shanghai, sank in a typhoon with the loss of 125 lives. There were only 23 survivors, which included only 2 of the 13 team members. The other 11 members of the team were lost.

    1948 saw the last game against Shanghai. After the communist take-over in 1949, no more games were possible in China. Jack Chegwyn led the first international team to Hong Kong in 1952, and the first tour by an MCC team was in 1966. The MCC, captained by Mike Smith played one match against the national side, winning by 74 runs. In 1969 the Hong Kong Cricket Association became an associate member of the International Cricket Council, cricket's global ruling body.

    The year after gaining ICC membership, the Hong Kong national side played against an MCC side captained by Tony Lewis, drawing the game, but it was not until the 1982 ICC Trophy when the Hong Kong team next played. At that tournament the Hong Kong team, which featured future England Test cricketer Dermot Reeve, failed to progress beyond the first round.

    Hong Kong took part in the following three ICC Trophy tournaments, again failing to progress beyond the first round in 1986, reaching the plate competition in 1990 and the second round in 1994. They then played in the first ACC Trophy in 1996, failing to progress beyond the first round after finishing third to Bangladesh and Fiji.

    In 1997, Hong Kong returned to Chinese control and the year also saw Hong Kong record their best finish in the ICC Trophy, finishing in eighth place. They played in the ACC Trophy again in 1998, losing to Malaysia in the semi-finals.

    In 2000, Hong Kong reached the final of the ACC Trophy, qualifying for the 2002 Asia Cup, which was subsequently moved to 2004. They failed to progress beyond the first round of the 2001 ICC Trophy and lost to the UAE in the semi-finals of the ACC Trophy the following year. Their first taste of One-Day International cricket came in the 2004 Asia Cup, where they lost both first round matches to Bangladesh and Pakistan.

    Also in 2004, Hong Kong failed to progress beyond the first round of the ACC Trophy after losing in the group stages to Oman and Bahrain, missing out on qualification for the 2005 ICC Trophy in Ireland. They also reached the final of the Fast-track nations tournament, losing to the UAE. Hong Kong played in the Intercontinental Cup for the first time in 2005. They lost to the UAE and drew with Nepal, failing to reach the semi-finals. They finished last in the fast-track nations tournament the same year.

    In 2006, Hong Kong again lost to the UAE in the final of the ACC Trophy, and finished fourth in the ACC Premier League. The following year, they travelled to Darwin, Australia to take part in Division Three of the World Cricket League, finishing fifth, relegating them to Division Four for 2008.

    In October/November 2007, Hong Kong took part in the inaugural ACC Twenty20 Cup held in Kuwait, where they played in Group B against the UAE, Singapore, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Hong Kong finished 4th in their group and failed to make to the semi-finals stage.

    Other links relating to Hong Kong cricket are:

  • List of Hong Kong ODI cricketers
  • Hong Kong national cricket captains
  • Hong Kong Cricket Association
  • Hong Kong women's cricket team
  • Hong Kong Cricket Sixes
  • Independant Cricket Club Association of Hong Kong"


    *Acknowledgements to and owners of pictures and videos used.

  • Wednesday, November 26, 2008

    Life is like cricket, you sometimes score sixes or you get your off stump knocked over...

    Over the years as I developed my enthusiasm for the game of cricket I started to see some similarities to cricket as I see in life in general. For example, when you play cricket you win some and you lose some (games). One day you can be so happy its like you are whacking Muralitharan or Warney for 6's, or you could be so down in the dumps that it feels like you are constantly getting bowled by a complete novice bowler. Or another analogy I've had thoughts of is like when you are happy you think of your home country thrashing the Aussies (for so long they have been dominant in world cricket) by more than an innings in a test and experiencing similar feelings to the elation the winning team would feel, or when you are sad its like if your team, for example, a known test nation like New Zealand, gets thrashed by more than an innings by perhaps a non test playing team such as Bermuda or even the USA.

    Confidence and self esteem is one of the many things that drives us forward and motivates us to succeed in what we pursue. It is also how we pick up ourselves from catastrophic lows and maintain ourselves at the heights of happiness that defines our character. When I relate this to cricket I see a team that has been bowled out well short of a follow-on and they take either two paths: No#1- Sit around and do nothing and dig yourself into an even deeper hole, or no#2- Seek help and advice and work with yourself to climb yourself out of a very precarious situation (and perhaps win despite being forced to "follow on"). You see some cricketing teams get bogged down in examples like this, some just get conprehensively walloped and some do make a miraculous comeback and win, despite being made to follow on. Also as in cricket, you use the help and guidance of people around you to help yourself "win" instead of "lose". A cricket team is like a family or a group of closely-knit friends, they are there to help you through things and to perhaps improve yourself as a person, as you would do with your own cricketing techniques.

    I see cricket as a good way to improve your life. For example there is a cricket team from Compton in Los Angeles USA called The Homiez and The Popz(I have done a post earlier this year that talks a bit about them). A few years ago their team members were gang associates, habitual drug users, even thiefs and ones having numerous other criminal records. Thanks to cricket their lives have perhaps taken a turn for the better. They have even been to the home country of cricket (England) and are working on going to Australia to play some teams there. Cricket has taught them self respect, respect in others, patience, and it takes them away from the often violent worlds they came from. Ted Hayes is their manager and from the work he has done with the team he appears to be infusing the team members with the values, virtues and life skills the game of cricket embodies.

    It is from this little piece I have written that I see that cricket does indeed have a valuable place in society. It is up to us to enthusiastically embrace the game and maintain its values for other generations to come, so that cricket will maintain its unique place in history and remain a legacy.

    Tuesday, November 25, 2008

    Player Profile(#33)... Michael Clarke (Australia)


    Michael John Clarke (born 2 April 1981 in Liverpool, New South Wales) is an Australian cricketer. Nicknamed 'Pup', 'Nemo' or 'Clarkey', he is a right-handed batsman, highly-regarded fielder and occasional left-arm orthodox spin bowler. He is currently engaged to Australian model Lara Bingle. On 10 January 2007, Sydney tabloid The Daily Telegraph indicated that Clarke may have been involved with Bingle as early as September 2006. On 25 March 2008 it was announced that the pair are engaged after Clarke proposed in New York's Central Park.

    He made his debut for New South Wales as an eighteen year old in the 1999-2000 Australian domestic season.

    Clarke quickly began showing his potential, after being fast-tracked into the Australian national team, making his One Day International debut in January 2003 against England. He immediately made a name for himself on the international scene for his aggressive yet mature batting ability.

    Clarke was selected to make his Test debut against India at Bangalore, October 2004, despite having a first-class average below 40. He succeeded on debut, scoring 151 and consequently helping Australia to victory, invoking comparisons to past Australian batsmen such as Doug Walters and Mark Waugh. The innings, felt Peter Roebuck, was especially notable for its aggression and freedom. "Not that the assault was reckless," he added. "Indeed the control was impressive. Clarke calculated the risks and took his brains with him down the track. Of course he need [sic] a bit of luck, was plumb in front in the nineties, but few begrudged him his hundred. And everyone except his weary foes celebrated with him and his tearful family when he reached three figures. After all, he had advanced both the match and the game."

    Clarke went on to play a major part in Australia's 2-1 series victory, their first in India in over thirty years, contributing outstanding bowling figures of 6 for 9 in the final Test of the series. After this, the media dubbed him the "next captain of Australia".

    On his return to Australia he made another debut century, his first home Test in Brisbane against New Zealand, becoming one of the few Test cricketers to have achieved the feat of Test centuries on both their home and away debuts.

    In recognition of his performance in the 2004 calendar year, he was awarded the Allan Border Medal in 2005.


    Clarke's poor form during the 2005 Ashes series and his failing to score a test century for over a year saw him dropped from the Test team in late 2005. Clarke had previously remarked that one of his career aims was to never be dropped from the Test team. In early 2006, after making his first first-class double century and scoring heavily in ODIs, Clarke was recalled for the tour of South Africa. He was then picked over Andrew Symonds for the April 2006 Tests against Bangladesh. Two consecutive centuries in the second and third Ashes Tests while Shane Watson was injured helped Australia to regain the Ashes and cemented Clarke's position in the Test team.

    Clarke then helped Australia retain the World Cup in 2007 in the West Indies where they did not lose a game. After Damien Martyn's retirement he was elevated to number 5 in the batting line up. He had a superb tournament making 4 fifties including a 92 and a 93* against the Netherlands and South Africa. He also made an unbeaten 60 against South Africa in the semi final to guide Australia into the final at Barbados, against Sri Lanka.

    Clarke faced only 4 balls for 3 runs in the ICC World Twenty20, when Australia were knocked out by India in the semi final. Two weeks later he made 130 against India in the first of a 7 match ODI series. He did not maintain that form in the remaining 6 matches mustering up just one fifty. He opened the batting in the final 2 games after a hip injury ruled out Matthew Hayden and he made two golden ducks. In the tour-ending Twenty20 match Clarke dropped back down the order with the return of Hayden, and scored 25 not out in a heavy defeat to the current Twenty20 world champions.

    On 9 November 2007, Clarke notched up his fifth Test century against Sri Lanka in a two Test series. Clarke shared a 245 run partnership with Mike Hussey at the Gabba in Brisbane, Hussey departed on 133 but Clarke went on and had a partnership with Symonds who made 53*, the pair were unbeaten when Ricky Ponting declared the innings, Clarke top scoring with 145 not out.

    On 5 December 2007, Cricket Australia named Clarke as captain of Australia for their one-off Twenty20 game against New Zealand in Perth, after deciding to rest Ponting and Hayden.

    On 6 January 2008, Clarke dismissed Harbhajan Singh, RP Singh and Ishant Sharma in the second last over of the day, with just 8 minutes remaining, to claim the final three wickets and win the test match for Australia (at one stage he was on a hat trick, dismissing Harbhajan Singh and RP Singh on consecutive deliveries). His innings figures were 3 for 5 in 1.5 overs. Australian captain Ricky Ponting had declared that morning, setting India a total of 333 to chase and allowing Australia arguably too little time to bowl out the visitors. Clarke's wickets ensured that Australia retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in 2008 and kept their world record equalling 16 match win streak alive.

    Since the retirement of Adam Gilchrist, Clarke has taken over the mantle as Ponting's vice-captain, but Clarke missed the start of Australia's 2008 tour of the West Indies following the death of Bingle's father, meaning Hussey took over as vice-captain for the start of the tour. Soon after Clarke joined up with the squad, he scored a century in the second Test in Antigua, going on to captain the side in the final two One Day Internationals, both of which were won, in the absence through injury of Ponting.

    To see more info about Michael Clarke visit the following links:

  • Cricinfo profile on Michael Clarke
  • HowSTAT! statistical profile on Michael Clarke


    *Acknowledgements to and owners of pictures and videos used.

  • Sunday, November 23, 2008

    What is Pace Bowling?

    Fast bowling, sometimes known as pace bowling, is one of the two main approaches to bowling in the sport of cricket. The other is spin bowling. Practitioners are usually known as fast bowlers or pace bowlers although sometimes the label used refers to the specific fast bowling technique the bowler prefers, such as swing bowler or seam bowler.

    The main aim of fast bowling is to bowl the hard cricket ball at high speed and to induce it to bounce off the pitch in an erratic fashion or move sideways through the air, the combination of these factors making it difficult for the batsman to hit the ball cleanly. A typical fast delivery has a speed in the range 136 to 150 km/h (85 to 95 mph). The fastest delivery that has ever been officially recorded clocked in at 161.3 km/h (100.2 mph) and was bowled by Shoaib Akhtar of Pakistan during a match against England in the 2003 Cricket World Cup. The batsman on the end of the delivery was Nick Knight who tamely guided it into the leg side.

    In most cricketing countries, fast bowlers are considered to be the mainstay of a team's bowling attack, with slower bowlers in support roles. In the subcontinent, especially India and Sri Lanka, the reverse is often true, with fast bowlers serving mainly to soften the ball up for the spinners. This is mainly due to the condition of the pitches used in those countries which gives more help to spinners than to fast bowlers, but at international level it is also a reflection of the outstanding skills of their spinners compared to their pace bowlers. By way of contrast, the other major subcontinental country, Pakistan, has produced several generations of feared pacemen mainly due to that nation's mastery of reverse swing and having pitches that provide relatively more assistance to fast bowlers.

    Categorisation of fast bowling:
    It is possible for a bowler to concentrate solely on speed, especially when young, but as fast bowlers mature they pick up new skills and tend to rely more on swing bowling or seam bowling techniques. Most fast bowlers will specialise in one of these two areas and will sometimes be categorised as strike, swing or seam bowler. However, this classification is not satisfactory because the categories are not mutually exclusive and a skilled bowler will usually bowl a mixture of fast, swinging, seaming and also cutting balls, even if he or she prefers one style to the others. Instead, it is more common to subdivide fast bowlers according to the average speed of their deliveries, as follows:

    Classification of fast bowlers:

    TYPE (mph) (km/h)
    Fast: 90 + 145 +
    Fast-medium: 80 to 89 129 to 145
    Medium-fast: 70 to 79 113 to 129
    Medium: 60 to 69 97 to 113
    Medium-slow: 50 to 59 80 to 97
    Slow-medium 40 to 49 64 to 80
    Slow: below 40 below 64

    There is a degree of subjectivity in the usage of these terms; for example, Cricinfo uses the terms "fast-medium" and "medium-fast" interchangeably. The fastest bowlers are said to bowl at express pace. For comparison, most spin bowlers in professional cricket bowl at average speeds of 45 to 55 mph (70 to 90 km/h). The ability of some bowlers to deliver a variation ball, faster or slower then their standard, can cause some confusion as they could appear to put them in different categories, e.g. Brett Lee bowls his stock ball at around 145 km/h, making him a fast-bowler, although he will occasionally bowl a slower ball at around 120 km/h. Conversely, Anil Kumble, a spin-bowler, has a quicker ball which can reach 110 km/h. However these are rarely taken into account in determining what category a bowler fits in because these deliveries are variations, intended to surprise batsman, not the standard pace of a bowler.

    The slower the fast bowler, the more they have to rely on the variation techniques listed below to get wickets, while fast and to a lesser extent fast-medium and medium-fast bowlers can often get batsmen out through sheer speed and aggression. In practice, very few specialist bowlers fall into the medium category - bowlers who bowl at this speed are mostly batsmen who can bowl a few overs on occasion. These bowlers are known as medium pacers. The medium-slow and slow-medium categories are mostly occupied by spin bowlers, since a delivery bowled at these speeds with a fast bowling technique, rather than spin, would simply be too easy to hit. Although spinners are sometimes colloquially referred to as "slow bowlers", very few players in professional cricket bowl in the actual "slow" category (below 40mph).

    Technique in fast bowling:
    The first thing a fast bowler needs to do is to grip the ball correctly. The basic fast bowling grip to achieve maximum speed is to hold the ball with the seam upright and to place the index and middle fingers close together at the top of the seam with the thumb gripping the ball at the bottom of the seam. The first two fingers and the thumb should hold the ball forward of the rest of the hand, and the other two fingers should be tucked into the palm. The ball is held quite loosely so that it leaves the hand easily. Other grips are possible, and result in different balls - see swing and seam bowling below. The bowler usually holds their other hand over the hand gripping the ball until the latest possible moment so that the batsman cannot see what type of grip he or she is employing and prepare accordingly.

    A fast bowler needs to take a longer run-up toward the wicket than a spinner, due to the need to generate the momentum and rhythm required to bowl a fast delivery. Fast bowlers will measure their preferred run up in strides and mark the distance from the wicket. It is important for the bowler to know exactly how long his or her run-up is because it needs to terminate at the popping crease. If the bowler steps over this, he or she will have bowled a no ball.

    At the end of the run-up the bowler will bring his or her lead foot down on the pitch with the knee as straight as possible. This aids in generating speed but can be dangerous due to the pressure placed on the joint by this action. Knee injuries are not uncommon amongst fast bowlers: for example the English pace bowler David Lawrence was sidelined for many months after splitting his kneecap in two. The pressure on the leading foot is such that some fast bowlers cut the front off their shoes to stop their toes from being injured as they are repeatedly pressed against the inside of the shoe. The bowler will then bring their bowling arm up over their head and release the ball at the height appropriate to where they want the ball to pitch. Again, the arm must be straight although this is a stipulation of the laws of cricket rather than an aid to speed. Bending the elbow and "chucking" the ball would make it too easy for the bowler to aim accurately at the batsman's wicket and get them out.

    Fast bowlers tend to have an action which leaves them either side-on or chest-on at the end of the run up. While this does not affect the speed at which they bowl, it can limit the style of balls that they can bowl. Although not hard and fast rules, side on bowlers generally bowl outswingers, and front on bowlers generally bowl inswingers.

    A variant on the fast bowler's action is the sling (sometimes referred to as the slingshot or javelin), where the bowler begins his delivery with his or her arm fully extended behind their back. The slinging action generates extra speed, but sacrifices control. The most famous exponent of the slinging action is Jeff Thomson, who bowled at extraordinary pace off a short run up. Current internationals who employ a slinging action include Fidel Edwards, Shaun Tait and Lasith Malinga.

    After the ball has been released, the bowler follows through at the end of his or her action. This involves veering to the side so as not to tread on the pitch and taking a few more strides to slow down. Striding on to the pitch at the end of a delivery can damage the surface resulting in rough patches which spin bowlers can exploit to get extra turn on the ball; doing so is illegal according to the laws of the game. Bowlers who persistently run onto the pitch can be warned, with three warnings disqualifying a bowler from bowling again during the innings.

    Line and length:
    An effective fast bowler needs to be able to hold a consistent line and length, or in common terms, to be accurate. In this context, line refers to the path of the ball towards the batsman, in the horizontal dimension running from the off to the leg side, while length describes the distance the ball travels toward the batsman before bouncing. Length is generally seen as the more important of the two for a fast bowler. The faster the bowler, the harder it is to achieve consistent line and length but sheer speed can make up for the shortfall. Fast bowlers who also manage to be accurate can be devastatingly effective, for example the likes of Australian pace bowler Glenn McGrath and South African pace bowler Shaun Pollock.


    In modern cricket, the line usually aimed for by fast bowlers is the so-called corridor of uncertainty, a term coined by Geoffrey Boycott to mean the area just outside the batsman's off stump. It is difficult for the batsman to tell whether or not such a ball is likely to strike their wicket, and thus to know whether to attack, defend or leave the ball. This technique was historically known as off theory (contrast leg theory), but it is now so routine that it is rarely given a name at all. Of course, variation in line is also important and deliveries aimed at the leg stump can also serve a purpose.

    Precise mastery of the line of the ball is best utilised when a batsman is known to have a weakness hitting a particular shot, because a bowler with an effective line can place the ball in the weak spot time after time. Failing to overcome a persistent inability to hit balls on a certain line has been enough to end the careers of innumerable batsmen once they had been found out by skilled line bowlers.


    Lengths of balls showing name & bounce height:
    A good length ball is one that arrives at the batsman at around waist height. There is no fixed distance to a good length, or indeed any other length of ball in cricket since the distance required will vary with the speed of the ball, the state of the pitch and the height of the bowler and batsman. It should be noted that bowling a "good length" in this sense is not always appropriate - in some situations, on some pitches and against some batsmen other lengths will be more effective. The diagram to the right should help explain what the different lengths mean.

    A ball which bounces a little way before the good length and rises to the batsman's abdomen is said to be short pitched or described as a long hop and is easier for a batsman to hit as he will have had more time to see if the height or line of the ball has deviated after bouncing. A short-pitched ball is also at a more suitable height for the batsman to play an attacking pull shot. A ball which bounces way before the good length and reaches shoulder or head height is a bouncer and can be an effective delivery. Any ball which is short enough to bounce over the batsman's head is usually called wide by the Umpire. Bowling short pitched or wide balls is a bad idea as they are relatively easy for the batsman to defend or attack.

    At the other end of the scale, balls which bounce slightly closer to the batsman than the good length are said to be full pitched or overpitched or described as a half volley. These are easier for the batsman to play than the good length because they don't have time to move much after bouncing off the seam. Closer still to the batsman's feet is the yorker, a very effective length if bowled correctly. If the ball fails to bounce at all before reaching the batsman it is labelled a full toss. It is very easy for a batsman to play such a delivery as it will not have deviated at all from bouncing off the pitch.

    It is because the three effective lengths (good length, bouncer and yorker) are all interspersed by lengths which are easy for the batsman to hit that control of length is an important discipline for a fast bowler. Spin bowlers on the other hand are almost always aiming for the good length but need a much finer control of flight and line to be effective. A fast bowler tries to be physically fit through out his cricket career, which may span more than a decade. Needless to say that is tough to do and needs a lot of discipline and luck.


    Strike bowling:
    Strike bowling is the term usually applied to balls that attempt to get a batsman out through sheer speed and aggression, rather than trying to make the ball move through the air or off the pitch. Against top class batsman, these techniques are usually only successful when employed by genuinely quick bowlers in the fast and fast-medium categories. Slower bowlers occasionally use them, especially against tail-end batsmen, but this can backfire resulting in easy runs for the batsman. However, aggressive bowling techniques can be combined with swing bowling and seam bowling techniques to create nigh-on unplayable balls in the hands of a bowler of any speed. The inswinging yorker is seen as particularly deadly.

    A bouncer is a ball which is aimed to pitch in the first half of the pitch, meaning it has had time to rise sharply to chest or head height by the time it reaches the batsman. This causes two problems for the batsman who receives the ball. If he or she attempts to play it, their bat will be at eye-level making it difficult for them to watch the ball onto the bat and time their shot correctly. If he or she leaves or misses the ball, it may strike him or her a painful blow on the head or chest and occasionally result in injury. For this reason, bowling spells containing many bouncers are said to be intimidatory bowling.

    The usual response to a bouncer is for the batsman simply to duck underneath it, but this requires fast reflexes and a strong nerve and the batsman is sometimes hit in any case. The natural reflex is to attempt to defend one's head with a straight bat but this should be suppressed if possible as the likely result of this will be that the ball flies off the bat at an uncontrolled angle making for an easy catch. Most batsman have panicked and lost their wickets in this fashion several times in their career after prolonged spells of bouncers.

    Physically powerful batsmen often attempt to strike the ball on the rise, even though this obstructs their vision of the ball since it is not uncommon that their sheer brute force combined with the speed of the ball will cause it to fly to the boundary. This possibility, combined with the difficulty that the wicketkeeper will have trying to stop a high ball means that bouncers can be expensive in terms of runs against skilled batsmen.

    The Slower Ball
    The Yorker
    Seam Bowling
    Swing Bowling
    Intimidatory Bowling

    *Acknowledgements to and owners of pictures and videos used.

    What is Spin Bowling?

    Spin bowling, sometimes known as slow bowling, is a technique used for bowling in the sport of cricket. Practitioners are known as spinners or spin bowlers.

    The main aim of spin bowling is to bowl the cricket ball with rapid rotation so that when it bounces on the pitch it will deviate, thus making it difficult for the batsman to hit the ball cleanly. The speed the ball travels is not critical, and is significantly lower than for fast bowling. A typical spin delivery has a speed in the range 70-90 km/h (45-55 mph).

    Spin bowling is divided into four different categories, depending on the particular physical technique used. There is virtually no overlap between the two basic biomechanical techniques of wrist spin and finger spin.

    Off spin
    - Right-handed with finger spin technique. (eg. Harbhajan Singh)
    Leg spin - Right-handed with wrist spin technique. (eg. Shane Warne, Anil Kumble)
    Left-arm orthodox spin - Left-handed with finger spin technique. (eg. Monty Panesar)
    Left-arm unorthodox spin - Left-handed with wrist spin technique. (eg. Brad Hogg)

    Depending on technique, a spin bowler uses either predominant wrist or finger motion to impart spin to the ball around a horizontal axis that is at an oblique angle to the length of the pitch. This sort of spin means it is also possible for the Magnus effect to cause the ball to deviate sideways through the air, before it bounces. Such deviation is called drift. The combination of drift and spin can make the ball's trajectory complex, with a change of direction at the bounce. This variety of trajectories achievable by a spin bowler can bewilder inexperienced or poor batsmen.

    Spin bowlers are generally given the task of bowling with an old, worn cricket ball. A new cricket ball better suits the techniques of fast bowling than spin bowling, while a worn one grips the pitch better and achieves greater spin. Spin bowlers are also more effective later in a game, as the pitch dries up and begins to crack and crumble. This again provides more purchase for the spinning ball and produces greater deviation.


  • How to bowl Leg Spin like Shane Warne (video)
  • How to bowl Off-Spin (video)

    *Acknowledgements to and owners of pictures and videos used.

  • In the International Spotlight...Sri Lanka Cricket


    Sri Lanka Cricket, formerly the Board for Cricket Control in Sri Lanka (BCCSL), is the controlling body for cricket in Sri Lanka. It operates the Sri Lankan cricket team and first-class cricket within Sri Lanka.

    Domestic competition:
    Sri Lanka Cricket oversees the progress and handling of the major domestic competitions: the First-class tournament Premier Trophy, the List A tournament Premier Limited Overs Tournament and the Twenty20 competition Twenty20 Tournament.

    In 1938, the first domestic competition was established when 12 teams competed for the Daily News Trophy. The tournament's title was changed to the P Saravanamuttu Trophy in 1950-51 and then the Robert Senanayake Trophy in 1976-77. After Sri Lanka began playing Test cricket in 1982, the inevitable sponsors came on board and the tournament was rebranded as the Lakspray Trophy for the 1988-89 season when, for the first time, it was designated first-class.

    Subsequently, the title of P Saravanamuttu Trophy was resurrected from 1990 and since 1998 it has been called the Premier Trophy.

    The Sinhalese Sports Club has won the tournament a record 29 times to 2006.

    Sri Lanka Cricket oversees the progress and handling of the major domestic competitions: the First-class tournament Premier Trophy, the List A tournament Premier Limited Overs Tournament and the Twenty20 competition Twenty20 Tournament, in which all of the following First-class teams take part:

    Bloomfield Cricket and Athletic Club (Colombo)
    Burgher Recreation Club (Colombo)
    Chilaw Marians Cricket Club (Colombo)
    Colombo Cricket Club (Colombo)
    Colts Cricket Club (Colombo)
    Galle Cricket Club (Galle)
    Moors Sports Club (Colombo)
    Nondescripts Cricket Club (Colombo)
    Panadura Sports Club (Panadura)
    Ragama Cricket Club (Katunayake)
    Sebastianites Cricket and Athletic Club (Moratuwa)
    Sinhalese Sports Club (Colombo)
    Tamil Union Cricket and Athletic Club (Colombo)

    They also organise and host the Inter-Provincial Tournament, a competition where the above first-class do not take part but rather teams represent four different provinces of Sri Lanka:

    Basnahira - Western Province
    Kandurata - Central Province
    Ruhuna - Southern Province
    Wayamba - North Western Province
    Uturu-Meda- North Central Province

    Premier Limited Overs Tournament:
    The first limited overs cricket tournament in Sri Lanka was the Brown's Trophy in 1988-89. Only four teams competed in the inaugural competition: Sinhalese Sports Club (winners); Nondescripts Cricket Club (runners-up); Galle Cricket Club; Bloomfield Cricket and Athletic Club. The tournament was renamed the Hatna Trophy in 1990-91 and then given its current name Premier Limited Overs Tournament in 1998-99.

    The competition to date has been dominated by three teams: Bloomfield Cricket and Athletic Club has won five times; Sinhalese Sports Club and Nondescripts Cricket Club have won four times each.

    Sri Lanka, formerly known as Ceylon, has an age-old civilisation. It came under European influence and control after Dutch colonists arrived in the 17th century; although the interior hilly region of the island remained independent for over a century with its capital at Kandy. The British East India Company established control of the island in 1796, using war with France as its excuse for commandeering Dutch territory. Ceylon was declared a Crown Colony in 1802, but the island was never to be officially connected with British India. The fall of the kingdom of Kandy in 1815 unified the island under British rule.

    As everywhere that the British arrived in numbers, cricket soon followed and it is reasonable to assume that the game was first played on the island by 1800.

    Ceylon was renamed Sri Lanka in 1972.

    Early developments:
    The earliest definite mention of cricket in Ceylon was a report in the Colombo Journal on 5 September 1832 which called for the formation of a cricket club. The Colombo Cricket Club was formed soon afterwards and matches began in November 1832 when it played against the 97th Regiment.

    In October 1882, Ivo Bligh's team played an odds game in Colombo en route to Australia, where they famously "recovered those Ashes". In 1888-89, an English team led by George Vernon toured Ceylon and India, including an 11-a-side game against All-Ceylon at Kandy. In 1890, the Australian team en route to England played in Colombo.

    First-class cricket in Ceylon became restricted to games against visiting touring teams, notably the English and Australian teams who used Ceylon as a stopover on the long voyage to each other's country. Douglas Jardine's infamous "bodyline team" was there in 1932-33. Occasionally, teams representative of Ceylon played matches abroad, especially in India.

    From 1953-4 until 1975-6, the Ceylon Cricket Association played a first-class match against Madras (latterly renamed Tamil Nadu) for the Gopalan Trophy. This fixture was played in Colombo roughly every two years, with one further fixture in 1982-3, alternating with the fixture being held in Madras.

    Current Contracted Players:

    Malinga Bandara
    Tillakaratne Dilshan
    Dilhara Fernando
    Sanath Jayasuriya
    Mahela Jayawardene
    Prasanna Jayawardene
    Chamara Kapugedera
    Nuwan Kulasekara
    Farveez Maharoof
    Lasith Malinga
    Muttiah Muralitharan
    Kumar Sangakkara
    Chamara Silva
    Upul Tharanga
    Chaminda Vaas
    Michael Vandort


    *Acknowledgements to and owners of pictures and videos used.

    Friday, November 21, 2008

    Could this be the Black Caps chance to shine against the Aussies?

    With the Aussies losing their last Test series against the Indians, it has been said that they will be a bit vulnerable against their trans Tasman rivals the Black Caps. While the Black caps have a relatively in experienced side who knows what suprises they could pull out of their magic Black Cap.

    Imagine what will happen if the Kiwis defeat the Aussies. We havnt won a test series since 1985 when the great Richard Hadlee was perhaps in his prime and took legendary bowling figures of 15 for 123 in the Brisbane test that series (where New Zealand ultimately won 2-1). Since that series it has not beaten Australia in 18 test matches. It has, though, never been cowed psychologically in the manner of more talented England, Pakistan and South Africa teams. Being unimpressed by Australia and its sports teams is part of the New Zealand national psyche.

    Perhaps if the Kiwis manage to pull off a miraculous series win they will be instilled with immense confidence and who knows what that could do for cricket in New Zealand, perhaps produce more talent they really need and to maybe become the next "Australia" in world cricket. They will only achieve that with more consistent performances and the ability to psychologically outsmart the opposition.

    Player Profile(#32)...Jesse Ryder (New Zealand)


    Jesse Daniel Ryder (born 6 August 1984) in Masterton is a New Zealand cricketer. A left-handed middle-order batsman and right-arm medium bowler, he plays Test and One Day International cricket for New Zealand. He has previously represented his country in the Under-19 Cricket World Cup of 2002. Ryder plays his domestic cricket with Wellington after crossing there from Central Districts in 2004 and is a member of their first-class and List A teams.

    In late May 2007 announced that he was considering changing his allegiance to England due to his frustration at not getting full international honours for New Zealand. Later that month, Ryder backtracked on his earlier comments and currently remains dedicated to playing cricket for New Zealand.

    Since both of Ryder's grandfathers were English and his father was originally from England, he would in fact qualify as a non-overseas player in the English County Championship.

    Ryder first gained national selection in December 2007, representing the New Zealand XI against Bangladesh in a Twenty/20 charity match. The New Zealand XI contained nine Black Caps and two up-and-coming players, Ryder and Tim Southee. Unfortunately due to injury he was unable to play the match.

    On January 30 2008, Ryder was chosen in the 12-man Twenty20 squad and the 13-man ODI squad to play England. New Zealand Cricket Selection Manager, Richard Hadlee said "Jesse has the potential to provide an explosive start alongside Brendon McCullum at the top of the innings in both forms of the game." Ex-cricketer Adam Parore subsequently hit out at the selector's decision to pick Ryder, claiming that he is "too fat" and "in no fit state to play for New Zealand."

    In his first two Twenty20 games for NZ against England, Ryder scored 22 and 12 as New Zealand went on to lose both games heavily. In his first two ODI games Ryder scored 31 and 79* in vastly improved New Zealand performance. In the second ODI, he and Brendan McCullum set a new partnership record for any wicket against England with a combined total of 165 in 18.1 overs and New Zealand won by ten wickets. The previous record was Martin Crowe and Geoff Howarth's 160 at Eden Park in 1984. McCullum scored more runs (80*) off less balls (47) but Ryder (79* off 62) was named player of the match.

    Ryder's 2007/08 season ended on 24 February 2008 when he badly cut his hand trying to break into a toilet at a Christchurch bar at 5:30am the day after NZ had won the one day series against England. NZ Cricket's general manager, Lindsay Crocker said:

    "...this behaviour is unacceptable and we will have a serious discussion with him to ensure situations like this do not occur in the future. ...Ryder will pay for the damage and apologise to the bar owner. No further disciplinary action will be taken as Jesse's injuries should serve as enough of a lesson on this occasion."

    It was later revealed that Ryder had been drinking until 1:30am the night before the fifth ODI against England (Ryder scored 24) and had been rude to staff at Christchurch hospital, demanding preferential treatment when he was being treated for his hand injury.


    *Acknowledgements to owners of pictures and videos used.

    Tuesday, November 18, 2008

    A special tribute to my blogroll and visitors


    Hi everyone,

    Just would like to make a special tribute to all of the members on my blogroll, I appreciate you maintaining my link on your sites and have already increased the number of visitors and readers for this blog, and also the Google Page Ranking. Much appreciation goes out all members on my blog roll! :)

    Also I have exceeded my own expectations for this site. Am well on the way to exceeding 10,000 visitors for the site, and have also done more than 100 posts, and have a Google Page Ranking (which I know will definetly increase in time). I was expecting to achieve all these goals on the 1st anniversary of my site (which is on 13th January 2009), but as I have said I am exceeding all expectations. Now I can keep the momentum going and hope for much more success.

    If you have a cricket related website/blogsite etc and want to become a valued member of my blogroll feel free to send an email to me at include the name and web address of your site (also tell me the name you would like your link to appear as on my blogroll- usually your site's name) in the email. You must place my site on yours as part of the exchange. My sites details are below:

    Site name: Cricket, the Brilliant Game!
    Link name: Cricket, the Brilliant Game!

    Also just a friendly warning any spam won't be tolerated. I know of particular software that scans sites for email addresses and spams them or sells them to email farms etc or something like that. It is a criminal offence and anyone that it happens to has the right to take action. This is not a threat but just a friendly warning :)

    Would also like to make a special mention to all the visitors that have maintained their patronage and visits to this site. It is very much appreciated and only encourages me further to maintain this site and keep it going. I originally created this site because of my love of the game and it is really great to see so many people out there also interested in cricket in general :). I hope you all keep coming back and sharing your important ideas with me.

    In the meantime wherever in the world you may be, be it India, Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan, USA, Canada or anywhere else, I hope you keep your eyes out for a cricket game near you. This could be a club game or even in your very own backyard battling your friends for cricketing supremacy. All in all I hope you all keep enjoying cricket, the brilliant game!

    *Acknowledgements to the owner of the picture used.

    Sunday, November 16, 2008

    Stick Cricket


    Stick Cricket is an Adobe Flash cricket game website. The game was developed originally by Cann Creative, a company from Sydney, Australia. Cann Creative later partnered with Advergamer, a company from London, England to further develop Stick Cricket into an internet phenomenon. The principles of these two companies formed Stick Sports in July 2006 to expand their stable of free online sports games. Stick Cricket runs from any web browser which has the Adobe Flash player plug-in and Internet access. The website also publishes news and other articles about cricket. In Australia, the Stick Cricket website forms part of the Fox Sports (Australia) site, owned by News Limited.

    The current version of Stick Cricket is version 8. Released in November 2008, the scorecard has drastically changed to feature in the top corners instead of along the top of the screen. The scorecards are now also animated and as with every summer, fast food giant KFC release their sponsoring on the Stick Cricket website. Head2Head has also undergone a transformation.

    Current versions of Stick Cricket have human batsmen. However, the batsmen were really sticks before the Stick Cricket game was moved from the servers of Cann Creative to its own website. Other websites have a modified (usually outdated) versions of Stick Cricket, though some are now offline, for those feeling nostalgic.

    Game Modes:

    All Star Slog: Play a 5, 10 or 20 over match against the Stick All Stars team, made up of cricket greats. Registered users have the ability to play as their own created team, and play 50 over matches, saving at 10 over intervals.

    World Domination: Version 7 saw the return of World Domination where you have to beat 16 international teams in 20 over matches, starting with the easiest team (Bermuda) and finishing with the hardest (Australia). Registered users can use their own created team in World Domination.

    Multiplayer (BETA): Released on 12th December 2007, Multiplayer pits you against real opposition from around the world. Players log in to the "clubhouse" and play 5 over matches against people from all over the world. The aim is to get your skill as high as possible, keep your reputation and be the best Stick Cricketer in the world. Multiplayer can be used by both registered users and guests. Quitting a game lowers your rep and you are temporarily banned for 15 minutes. Racist or abusive comments means your I.P. address is banned for life or until further notice.

    Head2Head: Play the current matches going on right now. You now compete in every match in the current series rather than just one. Twenty20's are 5 over matches, ODI's are 10 overs, and Tests are 20 overs. Head2Head is only playable when the actual match is going on at the time of real life. Whoever wins the most times for their selected country wins the match and points are added to the Head2Head table.

    Super 8: The knockout stages of the "Stick Sports World Cup" where you choose your country and lead it to glory. 5 overs for each game and was especially created so you could "win the World Cup in your lunch break."
    Club Challenge: A completely different game mode where you choose a domestic side from anywhere in the world and get 10 balls to hit as many runs as possible. If you don't hit a boundary, you lose a ball and wickets cost a ball and -5 runs.

    Other options:

    Live Cricket Scores: Live scores from domestic and international matches around the world.

    Cricket Fixtures: Takes you to the same page as Live Cricket Scores.

    Community: The Stick Sports forum, where you can talk about all the Stick Sports games if you have an account.

    Help/FAQ: A help page where normally only the stupidest questions make it through. It is pointed out that it is very unlikely they will actually answer your question.

    Hall of Fame: The Stick Cricket honour board featuring records from the All Star Slog game mode including Highest Team Total, Highest Individual Innings, Highest Strike Rate, Most Perfect Overs and Most Sixes Hit.

    My Stats: If you have an account you can view your career batting stats from All Star Slog and World Dom as well as your career run rate chart.

    My Team: Registered users can here create their own team's players, kits, name, skin colour, and what hand they bat with as well as view their stats.

    My Leagues: You can join leagues from around the world if you have an account. 5 or 6 Public Leagues are normally open for anyone to enter but Private Leagues can be created for just you and your friends to enter, needing a League ID and password. In a league you normally have 4 or 5 days to submit a 10 or 20 over All Star Slog score. Once all scores have been submitted using a custom scoring system a ladder is created and points are awarded to the best players.

    Up arrow or "W": Straight drive, defend, let go.
    Left arrow or "A": Cow corner, pull, hook.
    Right arrow or "D": Cut, off drive.
    Down arrow or "S": Duck (used for bouncers)

    To play Stick Cricket, go to their officlal site at

    *Acknowledgements to and owners of pictures and videos used.

    In the International Spotlight...Kenya Cricket


    The Kenya national cricket team is the team that represents the country of Kenya in international cricket matches. They are considered one of the strongest of the associate member nations of the International Cricket Council, especially since reaching the semi-final of the 2003 Cricket World Cup. They currently have One Day International status until the 2009 ICC World Cup Qualifier.

    Early days:
    Kenya's international cricket started in 1951 when regular matches against Tanzania (then Tanganyika) and Uganda began. Touring teams of varying standard continued over the years, including a team of South African Non-Europeans captained by Basil D'Oliviera in 1958. The South Africans won both matches against Kenya on the tour, in addition to a match against East Africa.

    East Africa team:
    Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda combined to form the East Africa cricket team, which became an associate member of the ICC in 1966. They continued playing amongst themselves, and were joined by Zambia in a quadrangular tournament played annually between 1966 and 1980.

    India toured East Africa in 1967 and played a three-day match against Kenya on 5 August, which was drawn. Various tours of, and by, East Africa continued, including a tour of England in 1972 and a first-class match between East Africa and the MCC at Nairobi Gymkhana Club in 1974 before East Africa took part in the first Cricket World Cup.

    The 1975 Cricket World Cup took place in England, and East Africa were one of two non-test teams invited to the tournament, the other being Sri Lanka. Kenya provided half of the fourteen man squad for the tournament. After warm-up matches against Somerset, Wales, Glamorgan and various club sides, they played in the same first round group as England, India and New Zealand, losing to all three. The World Cup was followed by a first-class match against Sri Lanka at the County Cricket Ground, Taunton.

    East Africa then took part in the 1979 ICC Trophy, the first ICC Trophy tournament, but did not progress beyond the first round, thus missing out on qualification for the 1979 World Cup.

    ICC Membership:
    Long considered the strongest part of the East Africa team, Kenya broke away in 1981 and joined the ICC in their own right as an associate member, shortly after a tour of Zimbabwe in 1980/81. They played two three-day matches against Zimbabwe on that tour, losing both. Kenya played in the ICC Trophy in their own right in 1982, 1986, and 1990, also playing their first first-class match against Pakistan B in September 1986.

    1996 World Cup:
    The 1994 ICC Trophy was hosted in Nairobi and Kenya finished as runners-up to the UAE, thus qualifying for the 1996 World Cup. Kenya then played at home against India A in August 1995, and went on a tour to South Africa in September/October that year, before playing in the World Cup, which was to bring Kenyan cricket to a much wider audience, and catapult them into the spotlight.

    Kenya were in the same group as Australia, India, Sri Lanka, the West Indies and Zimbabwe. In what at the time was described as the most startling upsets in the history of the World Cup, Kenya bowled out the West Indies for just 93 and won by 73 runs.


    ODI status:
    Following their World Cup performance, Kenya were given full ODI status by the ICC, and hosted a quadrangular tournament against Pakistan, South Africa and Sri Lanka in September/October 1996. The Netherlands toured in December, playing four one-day matches, with the Kenyans winning them all. They played in the quarter finals of South Africa's Standard Bank Cup in March 1997, losing to Natal by 104 runs at Kingsmead. Following this was the 1997 ICC Trophy, hosted in Malaysia. Kenya reached the final, where they lost to Bangladesh by two wickets. This was followed by a tri-series against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe in October the same year in Nairobi.

    England A were the first opposition in 1998, touring Kenya in January. A three-day match was drawn, with England A winning the only one-day match that was not abandoned due to the weather. After this was another spot in the quarter final of the Standard Bank Cup, this time losing to Gauteng by 8 wickets. Kenya visited India in May, playing a triangular ODI series against Bangladesh and India. In the final match of the round-robin stage, Kenya beat India by 69 runs. Kenya then competed in the cricket tournament at the 1998 Commonwealth Games. Drawn in the same first round group as New Zealand, Pakistan and Scotland, Kenya only beat the Scots, and finished third in the points table for the group.

    Kenya warmed up for the 1999 World Cup with a triangular series in Bangladesh against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. In the 1999 World Cup itself, they were placed in the same first round group as England, India, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe. Following warm-up games against Somerset, Gloucestershire and Glamorgan, they lost all five of their games in the tournament proper. Following the World Cup, they played a quadrangular tournament at home against India, South Africa and Zimbabwe, again losing all their games.

    The 21st Century started for Kenya with a visit to Zimbabwe to play in the ICC Emerging Nations Tournament against Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, Scotland and Zimbabwe A. Kenya won the tournament and took this form onto a seven match tour of India on which they lost just one game. Pakistan A toured Kenya in July, playing a five match one-day series and a four-day first-class match. The four-day match was drawn, and Kenya won the one-day series 4-1. The 2000 ICC KnockOut Trophy was played in Nairobi in October, with Kenya falling to India at the first hurdle.

    The first opponents for Kenya in 2001 were Sri Lanka A, who toured Kenya in January, playing two first-class matches and four one-day matches. Both first-class matches were drawn, and Sri Lanka A won the first two one-day games, with the final two being abandoned. The West Indies came in August for two first-class games and a three match ODI series. The first first-class game was won by the West Indies, with the second being drawn, and the three ODIs all went the way of the visitors. Kenya then played an ODI triangular tournament in South Africa in October, playing against India and the hosts, and picked up a second ODI win over the Indians. Zimbabwe A toured Kenya towards the end of the year, losing a first-class series 1-0 and a one-day series 3-2.

    Kenya toured Sri Lanka in early 2002, playing three first-class and three one-day matches against Sri Lanka A. Sri Lanka A won all three of the first-class games, but Kenya won the one-day series 2-1. The MCC toured Kenya shortly after this, playing one three-day match and six one-day matches against the national side. Five of the one-day matches went the way of the Kenyans before the sixth one-day match and the three-day match were abandoned. Kenya then played in the ICC 6 Nations Challenge tournament in Windhoek, Namibia, playing against Canada, Namibia, the Netherlands, Sri Lanka A and Zimbabwe A. Kenya won the tournament, beating Sri Lanka A by 3 wickets in the final. In August/September, Kenya hosted an ODI triangular tournament against Australia and Pakistan, losing all four of their matches. This was followed by a place in the 2002 ICC Champions Trophy, though Kenya lost to the West Indies and South Africa, failing to progress beyond the first round.

    Namibia toured Kenya in November, playing four one-day games. Kenya won the series 2-1, with one game being abandoned. Kenya then toured Zimbabwe to round off the year, playing three one-day matches against Zimbabwe A, and a three-match ODI series against the full Zimbabwean side. Zimbabwe won the ODI series 2-0, with one match finishing in a no result, and Zimbabwe A won their series against Kenya 2-1.


    2003 World Cup and decline:
    The 2003 Cricket World Cup was to be Kenya's finest moment in international cricket to date. The tournament was to be held in South Africa, with Kenya hosting their two matches against Sri Lanka and New Zealand. The tournament started with a defeat to South Africa, but Kenya bounced back with a four wicket win over Canada in Cape Town. New Zealand forfeited their match against Kenya in Nairobi due to safety concerns, but Sri Lanka did visit Nairobi and lost by 53 runs. The tournament continued, back in South Africa, with a win over Bangladesh and a defeat to the West Indies. Kenya had done enough to qualify for the Super Six stage, becoming the first non-test nation to progress beyond the first round of the World Cup. In the Super Six stage, they lost to India and Australia, but beat Zimbabwe by seven wickets, qualifying for the semi-final, where they lost to India by 91 runs.

    Kenya's World Cup success was rewarded with a spot in a quadrangular tournament at the Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium against Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe, but they lost all three of their games.

    Kenya's failure in the above tournament is perhaps indicative of how they failed to capitalise on their World Cup success, though it must be said that not all of that failure was on the field. Although Kenya were given plenty of matches against national A sides, and played in the Carib Beer Cup in the West Indies in 2004, Kenya only played two ODIs in the three years after the Sharjah tournament, against India and Pakistan in the 2004 ICC Champions Trophy.

    Off-field setbacks also occurred. Maurice Odumbe was banned for match-fixing in August 2004, and a series of strikes by players led to a weakened Kenyan side being eliminated from the inaugural ICC Intercontinental Cup at the semi-final stage by Scotland. By the end of the dispute in 2005, Kenyan cricket had no sponsors and was in virtual international isolation. At that stage the governing body had dissolved internally and Kenyan cricket opportunities were limited and international cricket for them had virtually ceased.


    A rebuilding process began in 2005. The player strikes ceased, and Kenya again reached the semi-finals of the Intercontinental Cup. They warmed up for the semi-finals in Windhoek with a tour of Zimbabwe, to play two first-class and one one-day match against Zimbabwe A. They won all three of those games, and drew against Bermuda in the semi-final of the 2005 ICC Intercontinental Cup but lost to Ireland in the final, despite scoring 404/4 in their first innings.

    In early 2006, the Kenya Cricket Association was disbanded and replaced by Cricket Kenya. The rebuilding process was in full swing as Kenya began playing ODI cricket again. Their return to ODI cricket was a five match series against Zimbabwe, which was drawn 2-2 with one match abandoned. This was followed by a four match ODI series against Bangladesh, with Kenya losing all four matches in that series. Their 2006 ICC Intercontinental Cup campaign got off to a poor start with a draw against the Netherlands and a defeat to Canada, but they bounced right back with two ODI wins over Canada at the Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club. Bangladesh toured Kenya in August, winning all three ODIs, before an Intercontinental Cup draw against Bermuda and three ODI wins over Bermuda.

    A triangular tournament in Mombasa against Canada and Scotland began Kenya's 2007 and Kenya won the tournament. They then hosted Division One of the World Cricket League at three grounds in Nairobi, playing against Bermuda, Canada, Ireland, the Netherlands and Scotland. Kenya also won this event, beating Scotland in the final. This was followed by the 2007 World Cup, Kenya's fourth World Cup. Kenya beat Canada in the first round, but lost to England and New Zealand, thus missing out on the Super Eight stage.

    In October 2007, either side of Intercontinental Cup games, Kenya hosted Canada and then Bermuda in ODIs. Kenya won five straight matches, with strong bowling performances setting up relatively comfortable chases batting second.

    In August 2008, after a break of 9 months without an One Day or Twenty20 International, Kenya toured Ireland, Scotland and the Netherlands for various series. Rain and poor Kenyan batting performances were the main theme and overall it was a disappointing tour for Kenya.

    Kenya initially participated in the 2009 ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier in Belfast, Northern Ireland, the associate qualification tournament for the 2009 ICC World Twenty20. One of the favourites at the start of the tournament, Kenya finished second in Group B with a loss to the Netherlands and a win over Canada, before crashing out at the knock out stage to finish fourth with losses to Ireland and Scotland and Kenya failed to qualify for the 2009 ICC World Twenty20.

    Following the Twenty20 tournament Kenya participated in three ODI series across Europe. Kenya had two ODI wash outs against Scotland, before losing a rain affected one off match to the Netherlands and a three match series 1-0 to Ireland with two matches affected by rain.

    Since the World Cup, a team known as Kenya Select has taken part in Zimbabwe's Logan Cup competition, but did not win a game, also losing to Zimbabwe A.


  • List of Kenyan ODI cricketers

  • List of Kenyan first-class cricketers

  • Kenyan national cricket captains

  • Kenyan women's cricket team

  • Cricket Kenya

  • National Elite League Twenty20

  • *Acknowledgements to, owners of pictures and videos used.

    Friday, November 14, 2008

    Player Profile(#31)...Jason Krejza (Australia)


    Jason John Krejza (born January 14, 1983, Sydney, Australia) is an Australian cricketer. He also plays for the Tasmanian Tigers and Leicestershire. Krejza's father was a soccer player from Czechoslovakia and his mother was born in Poland. His nickname is "Krazy".

    Krejza is an all-rounder, contributing to the team mainly as a right arm off-break bowler, but also as a right handed lower-middle order batsman. He became a regular in the NSW team in 2004/05 but lost his place in 2006/07. However solid form for Sydney Grade team UTS-Balmain led to his inclusion in the NSW limited overs team towards the end of 2006. On December 21, 2006 Krejza announced that he would leave the New South Wales Blues to join the Tasmanian Tigers due to being considered 4th choice behind spinners Stuart MacGill, Nathan Hauritz and Beau Casson in the selection process.

    After crossing over mid-season to Tasmania [2006-7 season], Krejza played in 2 Pura Cup games, claiming 5 wickets and scoring a disappointing 17 runs in two innings. In the Ford Ranger Cup competition, however, he made his mark, taking 8 wickets in 4 games whilst also scoring 83 runs, with a top score of 53 not out.

    During the off-season, his cricketing career was placed at risk after being caught speeding and drink-driving by Hobart police. He was subsequently suspended from Tasmania's pre-season training and warned to stay away from alcohol by his team's leadership group.

    His renewed dedication to cricket saw him excel in the 2007-8 season. In the Pura Cup, he played 7 games and scored 289 runs at an average of 36.12, with a high score of 63. He also took 18 wickets at 47.11. The only downside to his season was that he did not break into the one-day side, with incumbent Xavier Doherty being Tasmania's sole spin bowler in the one-day arena. He played only one game, and was named 12th man in Tasmania's competition victory against Victoria.

    Before being named to Australia's A Team tour to India in August, Tyler Bedurke claimed him and then he was selected for Australia's Test tour of India. With his selection, Australian chairman of selectors Andrew Hilditch said, "Jason Krejza had a good season for Tasmania last year but is a selection very much for Indian conditions. The selectors felt right-arm finger spinners would perform well in India and Jason now has a chance to prove himself at the international level."

    Krejza was seen as the second spinner in the squad behind Bryce McGain. However, McGain was sent home injured. Krejza was attacked by the Indian Board President's XI in a tour match, conceding 0/199 in 31 overs, and he was then excluded from the first three Tests at the expense of McGain's replacement, Cameron White. This was despite captain Ricky Ponting frequently hinting that Krejza would play and predicting that India's senior batsmen would not have the gumption to attack him.

    Krejza eventually made his debut in the fourth test in Nagpur, which Australia must win in order to draw the series and retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy. He came in at the expense of fast bowler Stuart Clark. Rahul Dravid became his first wicket. He went on to claim 8 wickets for 215 runs in the 1st innings. In the process, he became just the 14th Australian to take 5 or more wickets in an innings on debut and also created the unenviable world-record of conceding the most runs for any bowler on debut, while also taking most wickets in his first test match innings. It has also beaten his best first class bowling of 4 for 91. In the second innings he took a further 4 wickets for 143 runs, leaving him with figures of 12 wickets for 358 runs in his first test.

    To view Jason Krejza's Cricinfo profile click HERE, also his supporters' site at is a must see.


    *Acknowledgements to, and the owners of pictures and videos used.