Posts Tagged ‘brian lara’

Mahela Jayawardene has announced that he will step down as Sri Lanka captain at the end of the two-test series against Pakistan. His record as captain stands up well – he has been the most successful Sri Lankan captain by a number of measures, and his batting average as captain is better than those of Sobers, Ponting, Lara, Gooch or Hammond.

In tribute to his achievements as captain, enjoy his remarkable 374 against South Africa from back in 2006:

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Whilst the official Bangladesh side was getting in a bit of practice on the Bloemfontein pitch where they have just suffered an innings defeat, the unofficial ICL version took on a World XI in the ICL World Series.

Admittedly, this was the sort of World XI that includes Paul Nixon and Chris Harris, rather than the sort that includes Lara, Tendulkar and Muralitharan, but it’s still worth a mention. Much as the Lahore Badshahs captured the imagination of Pakistani cricket fans when the PCB side wasn’t playing much, a competitive Bangladeshi ICL side could prove a serious rival to the official side for the affections of the average cricket fan in Dhaka.

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Sachin Tendulkar has finally done it, breaking Lara’s record on his way to 88 for India against Australia (youtube here).

Meanwhile, Sourav Ganguly, in his final Test series, finished the day on 54 not out, his 50th Test score of at least fifty and a good base for a potentially game-changing innings.

Today belonged to Tendulkar; tomorrow could be Ganguly’s day.

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With Sachin Tendulkar poised a mere 15 runs away from Brian Lara‘s total – who is the greatest?

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Were Australia too defensive?

Is their bowling attack up to scratch?

Were India too defensive?

When will Sachin Tendulkar finally break Lara’s record?

Have India finally managed to shake their final day collapse problem?

Where was the needle between the likes of Hayden and Harbhajan?

Answers on a postcard, please…

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Australia take on the Windies tomorrow in the first Test of the series.

The Australian side is potentially the least predictable it’s been in ages, with Hayden a doubt. If, as cricinfo thinks, this means moving Simon Katich up the order, and with Michael Clarke on compassionate leave, then Brad Hodge, or possibly Ashley Noffke, will play.

Another unusual feature of this particular lineup will be the absence of Adam Gilchrist. It remains to be seen whether or not Brad Haddin will crumble under the weight of unrealistic expectations, as is the norm for English wicketkeepers. He probably won’t – he’s Australian.

The West Indies will need to get up to full speed quickly to compete, which won’t be easy with many key players having just returned from the IPL. This is also the first time they’ve faced Australia in a Test without Brian Lara, who often performed cosmetic surgery on the scorecards when these two side met in the past.

The most likely result is a Baggy Green whitewash, but with any luck Chanderpaul, Bravo and company can prevent a total walkover.

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Brian Lara celebrated his birthday yesterday, so in honour of the Trinidadian run machine, here are some of his finest moments.

Lara will, of course, be mainly remembered for his massive scores (the highest-ever first class score, and the world record Test score, to name but two). His retirement in 2007 marked the end of an era, and even Murali reckons that Lara’s the best of the modern era.

He hasn’t always had it his own way, though, as his introduction to Twenty20 cricket (in the ICL), and the fact that he’s been bowled by a woman (not that there’s anything wring with that), shows.

I have to admit that I felt a little lump in my throat when he called time on his international career, but thanks to youtube, many of the great moments are still available to watch.

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