The Ashes 2005

bbloke

Registered
Probably only a thread for other Brits or Aussies out there, but is anyone else following The Ashes (cricket)? Seems like loads of people around me have been very tense while watching it!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/cricket/england/default.stm

http://www.channel4.com/sport/cricket/



For those not familiar with cricket, you can always try the following links:

http://www.abcofcricket.com/cfb1/cfb4/cfb4.htm

http://usa.cricinfo.com/db/ABOUT_CRICKET/EXPLANATION/CRICKET_EXPLAINED_AMERICAN.html

http://bama.ua.edu/~cricket/learncricket.htm

(...but they make it sound complicated to me, even though I already know the rules! ;) )
 

pds

Registered
so - will 703 be enough?

Cricket is the wierdest sport - especially if you only hear the scores or reports on BBC World. The amount of jargon would make a geek blush - tourists, lbw, caught an edge, googlie, pace bowler etc etc. The announcers are always so up-beat about the score - "England is well positioned" - on one broadcast and later in the day "England was clobbered at the crease and has lost."

But I used to visit Guyana from time to time when I lived in neighboring Suriname. Kids play it on _every_ street corner using balls, rocks, paperwads or goat stomaches. It is something to see. I was there once during a major Test series with Australia. The entire country just shut down.
 

bbloke

Registered
Yay! England won in the end, we can breathe again! :D

I went to the shop for food this evening and found an unusual number of people hauling packs of beer... For those who don't know, The Ashes is a traditional rivalry between Australia and England in cricket and Australia have been on a winning streak ever since... 1987. *ahem*

A bit more info...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Ashes
Wikipedia said:
The series is named after a satirical obituary published in The Sporting Times in 1882 following the match at The Oval in which Australia beat England in England for the first time. The obituary stated that English cricket had died, and the body will be cremated and the ashes taken to Australia. The English media dubbed the next English tour to Australia as the quest to regain The Ashes. A small terracotta urn was presented to the England captain Ivo Bligh by a group of Melbourne women after England's victory in the Test series. The urn is reputed to contain a set of burnt bails symbolising "the ashes of English cricket". While the urn has come to symbolise the Ashes series, the name The Ashes predates the existence of the urn. The urn is not used as the trophy for the Ashes series, and whichever side "holds" the Ashes, the urn remains in the MCC Museum at Lord's. Since the 1998/99 Ashes series, a Waterford crystal trophy has been presented to the winners.
And those who want a briefer explanation of cricket can see the well known text at:

http://www.cricinfo.com/link_to_database/ABOUT_CRICKET/EXPLANATION/WHAT_IS_CRICKET.html

;)
 

pds

Registered
OK - now I'm confused :-\

Did someone run out of time? -

Colonial dodgery - the whole sport
 

bbloke

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pds said:
OK - now I'm confused :-\

Did someone run out of time? -

Colonial dodgery - the whole sport
Hi, pds. :)

I don't know how much you know about cricket, so apologies if I assume too much or too little! Basically, The Ashes is a series of five "tests." A test is analogous to a game/match of any other sport, but... each test lasts up to five days! Each side has to have been "in" twice (i.e. "batted" twice, as it were; I'll put some terms in quotation marks when they are correct terms, but they make the point more easily). The idea is that, during the five days, each side has to have "batted" and "bowled" twice each, and the winner is the one who scores more runs. So, the catch is... if you currently have more runs, but haven't got the other side out for the second time and you run out of time... the game is a draw. (This why sides that are "batting" might have massive leads in terms of runs scored, but then "declare" to let the other side into bat, as they have to get the other side out too in order for that lead to mean anything.)

Anyway... the upshot is: Australia were pressing very hard to save the series by winning the final game (if it was a draw or an Australian loss, Australia would lose the series). England were quite nervey and had to get a good score or else just stay in long enough so that Australia would run out of time. In the end, England got a decent-ish score AND time ran out as Australia just started their second and final innings. So, it was a draw and England won the series 2-1 (with two draws, one of which was close to an England win).

Errr... have I made that more complicated than necessary?! :confused:

Cricket still tends to be a bit more of a sportsman-like game than many others, although, granted, no sport is totally clean. You'll find a lot of good relations between some of the Australian and England players, and I believe some play along side each other at club level. As for being colonial, well, sure, the countries that tend to play cricket are mainly ex-colonies of England, but not always (the Netherlands has a cricket team too, for instance). But cricket is hardly a way of England maintaining a hold over these countries, especially as everyone else has been beating England for many years at it! ;)
 

bbloke

Registered
Ooops, a bit of a delayed reply by me, but hey... :)
pds said:
Cricket is the wierdest sport - especially if you only hear the scores or reports on BBC World. The amount of jargon would make a geek blush - tourists, lbw, caught an edge, googlie, pace bowler etc etc.
Thinking about it, I know what you mean, but I guess I take a lot of it for granted now. On the other hand, that is always the way with sports. Talk to a European about a "bunt" or a "short stop" or "stealing a base" and see what reaction you get! Well, perhaps don't use the word "bunt" in front of them... ;) :D

With the terms you mentioned... "Tourists" just means the away side, really. The visitors. I guess they call them tourists because it is always a case of travelling between countries. "lbw" means "leg before wicket," and basically means the batsman used his leg to stop the ball hitting the stumps rather than using his bat; so he should have been out, in effect, and that is why "lbw" does indeed get you out. "Caught an edge" means the ball hit the edge of the bat rather than being hit cleanly, and this usually is a bit heart-stopping for the batsman, as he might easily be caught out; the bats have flat faces, and so there are edges to the bat. A "googly" is a specific type of bowl which is quite tricky for batsmen to hit. See: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sportacademy/hi/sa/cricket/skills/newsid_3207000/3207939.stm

You'll notice that, in cricket, the ball tends to be bowled at the ground so that the bounce (sometimes with deliberate spin) makes the direction of the ball harder to predict. Bowling the ball without making it bounce first is called a "full toss" and is generally avoided, as they can be easier to hit.
(Also, http://news.bbc.co.uk/sportacademy/hi/sa/cricket/default.stm seems quite good in general)

A "pace bowler" is basically a bowler who bowls the ball and goes for speed, not spin. Pace bowlers bowl the ball more-or-less straight and just vary the speed (usually around 80-90 MPH) and height (sometimes bouncing them at head height to intimidate the batsmen). A "spin bowler," meanwhile, just takes a few steps up, rather than a long run, and bowls the ball slowly, but with huge amounts of spin in any direction so the ball does unpredictable things!


pds said:
The announcers are always so up-beat about the score - "England is well positioned" - on one broadcast and later in the day "England was clobbered at the crease and has lost."
LOL

That's the one! England are very good at seemingly doing well and then somehow throwing it all away!

pds said:
But I used to visit Guyana from time to time when I lived in neighboring Suriname. Kids play it on _every_ street corner using balls, rocks, paperwads or goat stomaches. It is something to see. I was there once during a major Test series with Australia. The entire country just shut down.
Wow, I didn't know they were into it so much!
 
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