What a fall, Aussie cricketers are really down under

By Kersi Meher-Homji

In a spineless display last night [Tuesday, April 3, 2018], Australia lost to South Africa in the Johannesburg Test by 492 runs. And with that defeat Australia lost the series 1-3.

What a fall after their Ashes triumph only three months ago and their triumph by118 runs in the first Test of the current series against South Africa last month! Their 492 run thrashing last night is the biggest in Test cricket in terms of runs, for any team since 1934. There have been three loses by a margin of over 500 runs before 1934.

The biggest loss in Test history is also suffered by Australia, by 675 runs. They fell to England in the December 1928 Brisbane Test. It is interesting to remember that the great Don Bradman had made his debut in this Test scoring only 18 and 1 and was dropped in the next Test.

Back to the present. I received this disheartening but clever poem from an English friend:

Musings of an ingenious word Smith

Australia is so morally Bancroft

What they did is in Starc contrast to the spirit of the game

Didn’t anyone Warner about it?

Couldn’t they see it CumminUs man?

Even a Lehmann

would have known.

They are no longer Lyons

They are sinking in the Marshes

Oh my Josh! They are Shaun of any respect now

There is so much Paine now.

 

In the just concluded series, Australia not only lost. They were thrashed, shattered and humiliated.

Just look at the stats.

In the final Test at Johannesburg, South Africa’s opening batsman Aiden Markram scored 152 runs in the first innings and skipper Faf du Plessis, 120 in the second. Both of them outscored Australia, a total of 119 runs in the second innings.

In the series, the top five run-scorers were South Africans; Markram (480 runs at an average of 60.00), AB de Villiers (427 at the highest average of 71.16) and opener Dean Elgar (333 at 47.57).

Five centuries were scored in the series, all five by South Africans; 152 and 143 by Markram, 141 not out by Elgar, 126 not out by de Villiers and 120 by du Plessis. Add to it the unbeaten 95 hit by Temba Bavuma.

The highest score by an Australian was 96 by Mitchell Marsh.

Only two bowlers took six wickets an innings and both were S Africans; Vernon Philander 6-21 and Kagiso Rabada 6-54. The only bowler to take 11 wickets in a Test was Rabada, 11-150 in Port Elizabeth.

Three of the four top wicket-takers were S Africans; Rabada 23 wickets, average 19.26 at no.1, Keshav Maharaj 17, average 33.64 at no.3 and Philander 16, average 16.81 at no. 4.

Australia’s Pat Cummins comes at no.2; taking 22 scalps at 21.45. Call it a consolation prize for Australia.

Three of the four Men of the Match were S Africans; Rabada in the second Test at Port Elizabeth, Morne Morkel in the third at Cape Town and Philander in the fourth at Johannesburg. In the only Test Australia won – the first in Durban – Australia’s fast bowler Mitchell Starc was adjudge the Man of the Match.

For his outstanding performances, Rabada was the popular choice as the Man of the Series.

Will Australia minus Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft bounce back in the next few months?

Short URL: https://indiandownunder.com.au/?p=10753

Posted by on Apr 5 2018. Filed under Community, Featured, Sport. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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