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Jonathan

When was there last a Shield final between teams getting there with 44 and 38 points respectively?

Lou

This thing about averaging 60 before you get into the test team is Punter rewriting history. Neither he or Clarke had to average anything of the sort.

So what if they are bowler friendly wickets in Aus? You get that in England and it didn't stop their bowlers making mince meat over here of our batsmen on our supposedly batsmen friendly pitches.

Yobbo

Before the go ballistic at groundsmen they need to take a look at the format.

The shield gives 2 points for first innings points and 4 for outright wins, so an outright win is the equivalent of 2 first innings victories. Of course they are going to prepare greentops under those rules, along with contrived results.

David Barry

That points system has been in place for 20 years though. Either this isn't a new problem, or the states are perfectly capable of not making pitches to order.

shep

We have just had the wettest summer for a generation. Might that not have something to do with all these greentops?

Tony

Shep, now that you mention it, well observed. This last summer has been a Godsend for seam & swing bowlers.

Now we need Russ & DB to appear with the figures for mean diurnal rainfall Oct to March, relative humidity, penetrometer depth v. time constant, anemomic variance and cumulo-nimbic ball weight derivatives (adjusted for seam height & ball maker stamp area as a percentage of total ball surface area).

shep

Obviously been wet here in Brisbane and in Melbourne, but a quick google suggests Perth has had it's wettest summer since 1984, Adelaide wettest in 37 years and Australia as a whole the second wettest summer in 111 years.

Conspiracy this ain't....

Professor Rosseforp

It couldn't be pitch-doctoring because it's axiomatic that Australians would never interfere with the rules or the outcome of a match.

Bruce

Maybe this is the right thread to start this point.

The Shrees knocked over for 86 in about 2 hours on the last day to lose in England after making 400 in the first dig.

This was the 45th occurrence of a test side being dismissed for less than 100 since the turn of the century. Compare this to 15 times in the '90s, 14 times in the '80s, 13 times in the '70s and only 9 times in the '60s.

Sure there are a lot more tests being played these days and the sample set for the 2000+ is slightly larger but no way does that account for the fact that occupying the crease for the long haul seems to be a dying art. Kumar at #3 and Jayawardene are usually pretty good in this regard, but the rest of them have probably only been practicing clearing the hip and swinging hard.

Tony

Good call, Bruce. The current Australian side could not stonewall its way out of a paper bag.

Russ

Comparative percentage of games with sub-100 by decade, starting with 2010s: 12.2%, 7.7%, 3.5%, 5.4%, 4.6%, 5.0%, 15.1% in the 1950s. Especially odd given the consensus opinion is that bowling is worse. Except for Australia's disgraceful effort in Melbourne all the occurrences in the past year and a half have been in England.

My theory, the reduction in batting quality is in line with a reduction in international batsmen having experience in county cricket. They don't know how to leave, and they chase it as it moves away.

Russ

A follow-up, the number of overs per wicket has declined steadily since the 1940s: 12.6, 11.1, 11.7, 10.7, 9.9, 9.6, 9.24, 9.21 in 2010s. The last time it was this low was the 1910s (also the only time before 2000 that run-rates were above 3). Truly we have entered another golden age.

Tony
They don't know how to leave, and they chase it as it moves away.

And don't we know it. Collapso Australia reminds me of the Demons. You know they are going to play bad, and they do.

Hangover Black

The Dees can use injuries as a partial excuse. I don't think Kat's achilles or Punter's thumb made any difference whatsoever to the Oz Ashes performance.

Lou

Injuries won't make any difference in the future. Chappell has made a point in the press about Warner being a possible long format player for Aus in the future and they used Smith at 6 in the Ashes. They want attacking players. Even if there are players with the temperament to sit on the splice - ala Wes Robinson - they are going to be laughed at in this environment.

Luckily, I enjoy a good collapse and I expect the Aussies to continue to provide them.

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