"How shit you must be if I got you out twice!"
-Paul Harris to Andrew Symonds, Perth 2008

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Biff's emotional decision

Now that I think about it (actually I knew it then, but did not want to admit it) Biff was utterly stupid in giving Makhaya the last over. Not that it comes as a shock; it is classic Biff. Yep, I am also blaming him for the draw.

As well I should. What the fuck was he thinking? Makhaya had taken 2 wickets in the whole test while de Wet took 5. On top of that he was bowling beautifully. Biff had a problem as you can clearly see. He was deciding between giving Friedel a fifer in his debut test and giving Makhaya a fitting end. That was his reasoning. Over the fact that giving the ball to Friedel would have bettered their chances of winning. Fuckwit? Yes, totally.

Now it seems if Dale is fit for Durban, de Wet will STILL get the chop over Makhaya or Morne because...

Because Makhaya is an out-of-form legend and Morne lets Biff poke his ass.

Morne wasn't sensational, but he was a bit better than Makhaya. When Shaun Pollock had reached that place in test cricket where his wicket-taking abilities were being questioned, there was nobody to replace him. Plus, he could contribute with the bat.

Makhaya can bowl all day. Makhaya is an inspiration. Makhaya has done extraordinary things before. But Makhaya can't take wickets at the moment. And Friedel can.

I did not know emotions were a critical part of selection decisions. You learn something new everyday.


Vim said...

It was a weird, maybe overly romantic, decision. Captains lose the plot at vital moments. But I suppose he was considering Ntini's experience as well.

Reminds me of Punter at Cardiff, he seemed to forget for the last hour that our best bowler for the match, Hilfy, existed. At least Biffy only effed up for one over.

Wes playforcountrynotforself said...

Heartfelt thanks for this post, I just choked on my tongue when skimming through the news.
But... Maybe you listen to the cricinfo podcasts sometimes, in the latest Switch Hit show they discussed exactly this (that was before Smithy assured Ntini he would be playing), that we saw a political decision in the last over. And had Ntini taken that last wicket they could have safely dropped him for the second test as he would have gone out with a matchsaving heroic bang. But he didn't. That's why he'll be there.

Of course... not being from South Africa we probably have a more rational view on Smithy's dilemma. But I am telling you Purna, he didn't even have a choice. I still don't get why Morne doesn't get axed, though. Maybe they think Friedel is a one hit wonder. But I certainly wouldn't want to do without him. This is getting more and more Australian.

Purna said...

Vim, yeah that's what I told myself at first. I thought, maybe Friedel would have crumbled under the pressure. But what kind of pressure can Onions put him under? I was so surprised that Ntini did not try a single yorker. Whatever happened to pelting number 11's with bouncers and yorkers the old fashioned way?
Biff and Punter should be best friends yes?

Wes, Political decision? Interesting. But that would still mean Biff was banking on him to either draw or get the wicket. Which is my problem. Why the either? Why not just 'Friedel, here's the ball. Get me the win'?
Maybe I am putting too much faith on Friedel, but damn he was so good with the new ball.
What I am scared of is that Durban will be washed out. Then we will have only 2 games...both do or die. That is quite nerve-wrecking.

Wes playforcountrynotforself said...

No no

you are not putting too much faith in Friedel

no no


Still no Steyn news. The wait is gruelling :/

Well if you have half an hour and half an ear to listen to the mumblings of some cricket mumblers,
here's the show, they are really pretty frank about the whole Makhaya issue...