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February 2008

Dizzy joins the Icicles

In the 1980's, VHS beat Betamax. Just a couple of weeks ago, Bluray was victorious over HD-DVD. Who will be the winner between the IPL and the ICL? One thing that has become clear this week is that the Indian Cricket League is not ready to roll over and die... yet.

Not content with picking up the crumbs of recently-retired Test cricketers, the Icicle seems to be either pouncing on players as soon as they retire, or maybe coaxing them into "retirement".

Today, Jason Gillespie, the only Australian batsman to score a Test double-hundred against Bangladesh, announced that he is retiring from first-class cricket in Australia at the conclusion of the current Pura Cup game between South Australia and Queensland.

Cricket journalism will never be different again

Pardon me while my brain explodes...

"What Kapil and the watching millions witnessed was a day that changed cricket forever"

- Jamie Jackson, The Observer, 24.2.08

"The timeless game of cricket may just have changed forever this week."

- Stuart Barnes, The Sunday Times (UK), 24.2.08

"Wednesday changed the world of cricket"

More on:: 

Not so ridiculous quote-du-jour

"This is the second most important day in world cricket, according to me. The first was in 1994 when the monopoly of Doordarshan came to an end when we won the court case."

- Inderjit Singh Bindra, member of the IPL Governing Committee, discussing the IPL player auction,, 20.2.08

Call me a cynic, but Bindra is not too far off the mark with this self-serving observation.


Why Cameron White is worth more than Ricky Ponting

"Lack of professional expertise in managing a sporting franchise of this magnitude seems to be a glaring gap, especially as a lot of these teams are led by what we call 'casual but rich fans' who are assuming their team will be in the top three."

- Anirban Das Blah, VP Globosport India, from the 3.3.08 edition of Outlook magazine

Today, Victoria were narrow losers in the final of the Australian domestic one-day competition, which this year is sponsored by an automobile with a big carbon footprint. Bowled out for 158 at Bellerive Oval, they lost by one wicket when Tasmania reached a Duckworth-Lewissed target of 131.

Cameron White is the captain of Victoria. Today, White did not bowl. Earlier, he was out first ball, caught by Travis Birt off the bowling of Brad Geeves.

News from the markets

Buyers came away the big winners at the supreme bull sale in Brunswick, WA last Thursday.

A big run of 160 bulls went under the hammer, to sell to $8000 with an average of $3704.

A total of 46 studs offered bulls, with an outstanding line-up from 11 breeds.

The $8000 top price tag was paid for a magnificent Blonde d’Aquitaine from Gerald Bergsma’s Amaroo stud, Mundijong, WA.

A compact 720kg, this June 2006-drop youngster's length, depth, muscle, impressive butt profile and temperament attracted attention from all sides of the shed.

The IPL: Less action, more money

I've been following cricket now for almost four decades, and seen plenty of changes in that time. Some changes have lasted (the World Cup, helmets, the third umpire), some haven't (limited-over cricketers wearing shorts, day-night Sheffield Shield matches, Super Max Eights). I'm not sure which category the Indian Premier League will fall into.

In a way, I'm very excited about the IPL concept. A high-level club competition, devoid of nationalist overtones, based in the blossoming economy of India and attracting the best players from around the world. Such an idea is long overdue.