Friday, 20 April 2007

Some competition needed

After Australia's dissection of New Zealand today, the World Cup is desperately in need of some close and exciting semi-finals and a great final. The tournament has had some surprises and a couple of nail-biting finishes, but has generally been littered with one-sided matches that have been over long before they actually finished.

With Australia sweeping away all before them there is a danger that the World Champions will win their third title on the spin without even being seriously challenged. It is up to the South Africans to finally give them a game and should the Australians triumph then New Zealand or Sri Lanka must make the final a contest.

If not the 2007 World Cup will probably go down in history as the biggest anti-climax in ODI cricket. All the talk of it being the most open tournament in years is already looking foolish, with the gulf between the Australians and the rest widening into a gaping abyss. There is no doubt that the Australians have been by far the best and most consistent team in the competition, but I'm sure even they would prefer to be pushed a little more in pursuit of a third consecutive World Cup. Let us hope that they are and the last three matches provide some cricket to remember.


Tim said...

Absolutely right Nick - though you can't blame Australia for being so good. Two games a day during the Super Eights, at least at times, would have made this WC a little less tedious. But the problem is games involving Bangladesh, Ireland, Aus and even the Windies have almost all been nauseatingly one-sided, something that is unfortunate but hard to blame the ICC for.

Nick Gammons said...

I agree - Australia can't be blamed for being so much better than everyone else and some things were out of the organiser's hands. However, the format and length of the tournament really do need to be revised for next time.

Richard Lake said...

It's interesting that the only time Austalia have looked in trouble to date was the England game, when Bell and KP put together their big stand. I can still see them losing, particularly if SA bat first in the semi.

I like the format of the tournament, but agree it's too long. Two games a day in the Super Eights would seem to make more sense. It seems an eternity since the Irish beat Pakistan.

Given the shocks that there have been with Ireland and Bangladesh winning more games than was expected, it should have been more exciting.