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  1. #81
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    @Tusker... you are entitled to your opinion but there is more empirical evidence in favor of the imbalance of the game than the claim that players are simply better now. If batsmen have improved so much, why haven’t the bowlers? You are denying now that the imbalance is a result of batsmen improving and not due to homogenized flat wickets, two brand new balls in an ODI innings (further nullifying fast and spin bowlers) bigger and stronger bats and shorter boundaries?

    Do you seriously believe that’s it’s simply because batsmen are better now?

    Also if that’s the case then why are test match scores not on the same graph as ODI scores now? Using our logic, if 350 is the new 250 in ODIs, why don’t we see the same increase in test match scores?

    Why is it that we see batsmen scoring double hundreds in ODIs but nobody is scoring 400s in tests?

    You will find that you are using flawed logic. Batting has become aggressive, yes.... but only because the batsmen now know that the odds are stacked in their favor.


    Once again, I am not debating this as a difference in quality of batsmanship, I don’t even compare Lara, Tendulkar, Ponting, Border, Viv, etc to ABDV, Amal, Kohli, etc and claim either generation is better than the other because that’s rather subjective. But you have to admit the overall quality is suffering because particularly in LOI cricket, batting is now heavily favored..

    The balance is somewhat there in tests in facts, tests are more excitIng and have better quality (given the pitch conditions are right) than tests of yesteryears, because they are result oriented and faster paced and you see the full skills of batsmen and bowlers on display.

    And last but not least, I believe you have already noticed that most other posters here tend to agree with my point more than yours, if you read the last page or so.
    Last edited by Stewie; 16th July 2018 at 04:30.

  2. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tusker View Post
    You feel there is an imbalance because you grew up watching Test Cricket played at ~2 RPO. You were told that the players who were playing were gladiators because they were experts in leaving alone the good balls and score of the bad balls. We all know is how the old ERA operated. Give the 1st hour/session to the bowler was one of the many mantras with heavy emphasis on defence. There are plenty other such things that went into the psyche of Test Cricket but you get the gist.

    Now over a period of time many a talented batsmen have come up and have dared to change these age-old beliefs. The greatest example is Sehwag. He was one of the first batsmen to look at the New ball as an opportunity to score runs because of the over attacking field settings. He ofcourse had the talent and belief to put that into practice and succeed at his game. This left the traditionalists scratching their heads. Not known for acknowledging their mistakes these "experts" went ahead and started downplaying his achievements but to his credit Sehwag stuck to his style and produced a stunning Test career where his strike rate was good enough for ODI's ( Lara's ODI S/R of 79.5 is lesser than Sehwags Test Match S/R 82.2) and both faced the same set of bowlers by and large due to overlapping careers.

    So therefore the problem here is people measuring todays Cricket using yesterdays yardsticks. Today if anyone bowls like Ian Botham'esque dibbly dobbly seamers they will go for runs even in Test Cricket. No question about that. This does not mean that the conditions are in favor of batting. It means that the skill levels are much higher than what the old era fans want us to believe and this is not me saying it for the sake of argument. It is very much visible in any video footage from the old ERA's. The further back you go in time the larger the difference in standard. There is no longer default respect for bowlers no matter how great you are. The only respect that is given is for the actual bowling quality. Otherwise batsmen back themselves to score off good balls. This does not mean that everyone bats like this. There are still the Pujaras and Azar Ali's but unlike in the past such players will no longer make it to their ODI sides. In the future they perhaps will not even make it to Test Cricket. Time will tell.

    Conversely for the bowlers just because they are not going at 2 RPO anymore does not mean they are of lower quality because now they have to deal with batsmen who can score off good balls. Hence the emphasis on fielding to help the bowlers. And they quickly realize that better fitness helps fielding which is why the avg cricketer today is significantly much fitter than the cricketer in the past. This why I say that the quality of cricket today is much higher than in the past.
    Just thought I'd log in to pen my thoughts.

    I have come to the conclusion that as time advances, the techniques and methodologies in sports become more advanced.

    Hafeez would have been a success in the 80s provided he could have mastered the fearsome Windies quartet but it seems highly unlikely (considering he couldn't even master Steyn on flat pitches nowdays). But I believe in ODI's he would have been a legend.

    I do believe that batsmen over the years have become overly aggressive. Hales, Roy, Maxwell would have created havoc in 80s for sure like they are creating now. Batsmen have less fear of the bowlers and cricket has changed as a game.

    I kind of agree with your views after thinking of it over a long time that in general batting and bowling should improve in current era because that's how sports evolve, not just cricket.


    But one thing I do argue is that nature of pitches has changed which has caused batting to become a tad easier.

    I would like to hear your thoughts about pitches.

    Because if pitches remain the same, the bowlers should still be able to extract venomous swing and seam on them. And we see that even Bhuvi becomes like Imran Khan when the pitch is swinging, but as soon as its a flat pitch, even India drop him.


    And I get so high.. And I just can't feel it....

  3. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tusker View Post
    Some things are better now and somethings were better back in the 90s. By and large I will take current ERA but 90s was not far behind at all. The real comparison should be with 70s and before thats when you start to see significant difference.

    But otherwise Kohli, ABD, Smith, Warner, Root, Williamson, Rahul, Dhawan, Cook, Sharma etc are just as good as anyone from the 90s if not better. And they definitely play more attacking cricket today than ever before in all formats.
    That's interesting but I did suspect you would find the current era much better then the 90s and 2000s given your views in general


    Ah, so this is what it feels like

  4. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by CadPakFan View Post
    This is just what happens when little kids grow up to idolize mindless sloggers.
    Past heroes are burnished by time. Is it not striking that how many historical records are being broken by current generations of players?

    In an era which was supposed to be the easiest ever for batsmen. Ashwin was the fastest in 100 years to 100 and 200 wickets, but had his record promptly broken by Yasir.

    Steyn will go down as one of the best fast bowlers ever, with a SR to best McGrath and Waqar. But he is already being eclipsed by Rabada, who is taking 10fers faster than any great of the 80s.

    Steve Smith has racked up 100 hundreds faster than anyone since Bradman, but he may yet be bested by Kohli, who already has 20 + centuries in just 60 something Tests.
    Last edited by New Yorker; 16th July 2018 at 12:13.

  5. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stewie View Post
    @Tusker... you are entitled to your opinion but there is more empirical evidence in favor of the imbalance of the game than the claim that players are simply better now. If batsmen have improved so much, why haven’t the bowlers? You are denying now that the imbalance is a result of batsmen improving and not due to homogenized flat wickets, two brand new balls in an ODI innings (further nullifying fast and spin bowlers) bigger and stronger bats and shorter boundaries?

    Do you seriously believe that’s it’s simply because batsmen are better now?

    Also if that’s the case then why are test match scores not on the same graph as ODI scores now? Using our logic, if 350 is the new 250 in ODIs, why don’t we see the same increase in test match scores?

    Why is it that we see batsmen scoring double hundreds in ODIs but nobody is scoring 400s in tests?

    You will find that you are using flawed logic. Batting has become aggressive, yes.... but only because the batsmen now know that the odds are stacked in their favor.


    Once again, I am not debating this as a difference in quality of batsmanship, I don’t even compare Lara, Tendulkar, Ponting, Border, Viv, etc to ABDV, Amal, Kohli, etc and claim either generation is better than the other because that’s rather subjective. But you have to admit the overall quality is suffering because particularly in LOI cricket, batting is now heavily favored..

    The balance is somewhat there in tests in facts, tests are more excitIng and have better quality (given the pitch conditions are right) than tests of yesteryears, because they are result oriented and faster paced and you see the full skills of batsmen and bowlers on display.

    And last but not least, I believe you have already noticed that most other posters here tend to agree with my point more than yours, if you read the last page or so.

    My post was mainly dealing with Tests and you do get many a high scoring matches except that the high scores are made in shorter time due to fast scoring rates and therefore there is still time to get a result. Best example was the last Ind vs Eng series in India where Eng made 400+ runs twice (Mumbai and Chennai) in the 1st Inngs and still lost. ( Those two were Epic test matches BTW Eng made 477 in Chennai and still lost by an inngs !!). But sadly instead of appreciating it people look at it from the age old outdated view points and come to the conclusion that since India scored at well over 4RPO the pitch must be super flat. So silly !

    Coming to ODIs - Have a look at the 1979 WC Final scorecard(just as an Example) ... chasing a stiff target Eng openers batted like it were a TestMatch and scored 140 runs between them but took 40 freakin overs to get there. I can assure you that even if you played ODIs today using Testmatch rules no team would bat that slowly in a WorldCup Final today!. Just will not happen. This is the difference between now and then.

    So therefore instead of running down the current generation please take a moment and realize where the problem lies. And to reiterate: the problem lies in looking at Todays cricket from Yesterdays perspective. Just because Boycott and Brearely took 40 Overs to score 140 runs does not mean that everything was insanely difficult from Batting perspective. The single biggest reason is the lack of skillset to score against fast bowling and the mindset needed to adapt to a different format. And BTW this is very clearly visible in the footage of that match.


    Sydney Bangalore Manchester Centurion Durban Jo'burg Mohali Colombo Dhaka Adelaide Kolkata

  6. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tusker View Post
    My post was mainly dealing with Tests and you do get many a high scoring matches except that the high scores are made in shorter time due to fast scoring rates and therefore there is still time to get a result. Best example was the last Ind vs Eng series in India where Eng made 400+ runs twice (Mumbai and Chennai) in the 1st Inngs and still lost. ( Those two were Epic test matches BTW Eng made 477 in Chennai and still lost by an inngs !!). But sadly instead of appreciating it people look at it from the age old outdated view points and come to the conclusion that since India scored at well over 4RPO the pitch must be super flat. So silly !

    Coming to ODIs - Have a look at the 1979 WC Final scorecard(just as an Example) ... chasing a stiff target Eng openers batted like it were a TestMatch and scored 140 runs between them but took 40 freakin overs to get there. I can assure you that even if you played ODIs today using Testmatch rules no team would bat that slowly in a WorldCup Final today!. Just will not happen. This is the difference between now and then.

    So therefore instead of running down the current generation please take a moment and realize where the problem lies. And to reiterate: the problem lies in looking at Todays cricket from Yesterdays perspective. Just because Boycott and Brearely took 40 Overs to score 140 runs does not mean that everything was insanely difficult from Batting perspective. The single biggest reason is the lack of skillset to score against fast bowling and the mindset needed to adapt to a different format. And BTW this is very clearly visible in the footage of that match.
    I still didn’t get my answer.. seems to me you continue to Insist I want to debate past players vs modern players. I have made it clear that I have no opinion on that matter. I don’t care what you think of Brearleys and Boycotts vs Kohlis and ABDVs.

    I want to ask you about why you think I am incorrect about the imbalance in the game resulting in degraded quality of LOI cricket?

  7. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stewie View Post
    I still didn’t get my answer.. seems to me you continue to Insist I want to debate past players vs modern players. I have made it clear that I have no opinion on that matter. I don’t care what you think of Brearleys and Boycotts vs Kohlis and ABDVs.

    I want to ask you about why you think I am incorrect about the imbalance in the game resulting in degraded quality of LOI cricket?
    Because your standard for measuring quality is no longer applicable. Just because batsmen can easily score at much high RPO does not mean that bowlers are useless and pitches are flat. Instead the way to look at it is by realizing that batsmen have found ways to score runs in ways that were previously frowned upon and sternly discouraged ( I gave you Sehwag's example ).


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  8. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tusker View Post
    Because your standard for measuring quality is no longer applicable. Just because batsmen can easily score at much high RPO does not mean that bowlers are useless and pitches are flat. Instead the way to look at it is by realizing that batsmen have found ways to score runs in ways that were previously frowned upon and sternly discouraged ( I gave you Sehwag's example ).
    And what evidence do you have to suggest that? It is not conjecture or disputed that the pitches are flatter and homegeneous, boundaries are shorter, bats are bigger and stronger and rules that favor the batsmen.

    Do you deny any of those arguments? Do you insist they have zero impact on the net result and the ONLY reason behind more runs or batsmen dominating the game now is that “batsmen have found more ways to score runs” ? (just to paraphrase you..)

  9. #89
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    Some of the rules that favor the batsmen:

    1. limited bouncers
    2. All leg side deliveries are now wide
    3. No ball free hits
    4. Two new balls per ODI games. Reverse swing out of the equation
    5. Field restrictions

    Some other factors:
    - White balls with suppressed and narrow seams that inhibit swing
    - drop in pitches..
    - nature of pitches becoming homegeous all around the world I.e they are not retaining their original or traditional nature.. such as spin friendly tracks in India, fast and bounce ones in aid and SA, and green and seaming in ENg and NZ.. now they are all usually flatter and provide even bounce and typically non existent seam movement..
    - smaller boundaries.. they are again, A Fact!
    - bigger bats.. even edeabgo for sixes now with the smaller boundaries helping them.



    All I stated above are FACTs, backed by solid empirical evidence which you seem to favor so much, @Tusker.. and all you have in counter argument is that “batsmen have found more ways to score”!!!!


    Seriously!???

  10. #90
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    I have a lot of relatives, colleagues who watched Cricket from 80s to 2000s and most of them admit that Cricket in 90s was at its best. A lot of competitive teams, almost every team having 2 of their great bowlers 2 Ws, Walsh-Ambrose, McWarne, Donald-Pollock-Fanie, Kumble-Srinath,Vaas-Murali and Lara-SRT-Waughs.
    So it is not about romanticising the past but actually the level of Cricket has declined.
    ICC kept tweaking the rules in favour of batsmen to make the game more "entertaining" in LoIs and as a result not many kids want to take up the bowling. Hence we see no great bowlers.

  11. #91
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    The ICC went out of its way to hunt down mystery spinners, using the 15 degree angle rules and whatnot and putting the entire legality of the “Doosra” in question.
    Reversebseing is almost killed in LOI but ICC took ages to standardize bat requirements. And still it’s not enough.

    The art of taking wickets, due to these policies, is now dying.. we are in an era of slow ball bouncers and wife Yorkers just to cut down runs conceded and not to take wickets.. this results in the imbalance.. where the value of a wicket is not even that much anymore...

  12. #92
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    Look at the current Zimbabwe ODI team against Pakistan - compare it with Zimbabwe teams of the past.



  13. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saj View Post
    Look at the current Zimbabwe ODI team against Pakistan - compare it with Zimbabwe teams of the past.
    Don't think aberrations should be counted as norm. Else a case cud be made for Bdesh or Afghanistan of 90s and current bdesh/Afghanistan team are so much better.

    Zimbabwe has an all together diff kinda political issues and the best players have left the country. It's not that they stopped producing good cricketers.

  14. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by happydavy View Post
    Don't think aberrations should be counted as norm. Else a case cud be made for Bdesh or Afghanistan of 90s and current bdesh/Afghanistan team are so much better.

    Zimbabwe has an all together diff kinda political issues and the best players have left the country. It's not that they stopped producing good cricketers.
    But if we are talking standards then this current Zimbabwe team is frankly a joke of a team.



  15. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr_Bassim View Post
    Just thought I'd log in to pen my thoughts.

    I have come to the conclusion that as time advances, the techniques and methodologies in sports become more advanced.

    Hafeez would have been a success in the 80s provided he could have mastered the fearsome Windies quartet but it seems highly unlikely (considering he couldn't even master Steyn on flat pitches nowdays). But I believe in ODI's he would have been a legend.

    I do believe that batsmen over the years have become overly aggressive. Hales, Roy, Maxwell would have created havoc in 80s for sure like they are creating now. Batsmen have less fear of the bowlers and cricket has changed as a game.

    I kind of agree with your views after thinking of it over a long time that in general batting and bowling should improve in current era because that's how sports evolve, not just cricket.


    But one thing I do argue is that nature of pitches has changed which has caused batting to become a tad easier.

    I would like to hear your thoughts about pitches.

    Because if pitches remain the same, the bowlers should still be able to extract venomous swing and seam on them. And we see that even Bhuvi becomes like Imran Khan when the pitch is swinging, but as soon as its a flat pitch, even India drop him.
    The reason you have that perception about pitches from the past ERA's is due to the blatant self promotion by all the vested interests. Don't take my word for it go have a look at footage on youtube and let me know how many clips you can find that meet your description of "venomous swing and seam". Very few. I don't think the art of pitch preparation has changed in the last few decades. And also reverse swing as we know it did not exist till the 80s.


    Sydney Bangalore Manchester Centurion Durban Jo'burg Mohali Colombo Dhaka Adelaide Kolkata

  16. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saj View Post
    But if we are talking standards then this current Zimbabwe team is frankly a joke of a team.
    Fair point, hard to disagree

  17. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tusker View Post
    The reason you have that perception about pitches from the past ERA's is due to the blatant self promotion by all the vested interests. Don't take my word for it go have a look at footage on youtube and let me know how many clips you can find that meet your description of "venomous swing and seam". Very few. I don't think the art of pitch preparation has changed in the last few decades. And also reverse swing as we know it did not exist till the 80s.
    I second that. I strongly believe that ex-cricketers control the narrative thru commentary and most of them are a jealous lot. Look at Sanjay Manjrekar. For 10 years now he keeps repeating the same point abt how bat quality has improved and he says that in a condescending manner. Same with Michael holding who questioned Pollard as a cricketer. Even if u don't like someone's skills, why would u humiliate that person on commentary, you do that only when you are jealous for some reason.

    Recently saw an interview of Viv Richards, when asked how the game has changed in the last 30 years and his response was brilliant. He said batting and bowling still remains the same, same skills and though strike rates have improved but that's fine since there are times when batting rules bowling and vice versa. He thought the only noticeable change is fielding, which is nowhere close to what it was in 80s. You would never see true legends like Richards, Lara, srt, donald, wasim etc complaining abt the evolution of game, only the insecured ones do

  18. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stewie View Post
    Some of the rules that favor the batsmen:

    1. limited bouncers
    2. All leg side deliveries are now wide
    3. No ball free hits
    4. Two new balls per ODI games. Reverse swing out of the equation
    5. Field restrictions

    Some other factors:
    - White balls with suppressed and narrow seams that inhibit swing
    - drop in pitches..
    - nature of pitches becoming homegeous all around the world I.e they are not retaining their original or traditional nature.. such as spin friendly tracks in India, fast and bounce ones in aid and SA, and green and seaming in ENg and NZ.. now they are all usually flatter and provide even bounce and typically non existent seam movement..
    - smaller boundaries.. they are again, A Fact!
    - bigger bats.. even edeabgo for sixes now with the smaller boundaries helping them.



    All I stated above are FACTs, backed by solid empirical evidence which you seem to favor so much, @Tusker.. and all you have in counter argument is that “batsmen have found more ways to score”!!!!


    Seriously!???
    Again I was using mainly Test Match Cricket examples to prove my point because that format hasnt changed much in terms of playing conditions. Most of these points do not apply there yet we have much higher run-rates and significantly lower % of Draws today.

    The only ones that apply are bigger bats. Now big bats does not automatically mean runs. Because if you cannot get it in the middle of the bat the edge is also going to carry a lot further. Its a double edged sword and is most certainly evened out by superior fielding which you conveniently ignored. Then there are things like LBW law and DRS which benefit the bowlers. There used to be a time when it was difficult for spinners to get LBW's like they do today. Infact until 1980 the lbw law allowed you to deliberately pad away as long as the impact was outside off. And if you go furtherr back the ball had to actually pitch in line with the stumps for a bowler to get a LBW decision lol. I dont see anybody ridiculing those era for some reason. Why?

    So once you factor in all these things it more than evens out yet the batsmen are scoring at a higher rate. How do you explain that ? Well so far the tried and tested strategy is to just blatantly rubbish anything modern using red herrings. Its the fashionable thing to do and it will stick as long as people dont bother to question and do some basic fact checking.

    And the only country that uses Drop-in pitches regularly is Aus (Not all grounds though) and maybe NZ once in a while.

    Also not true is the oft repeated story that claims pitches back in the day were difficult to bat on. Just isnt true unless you are talking about early days of Test Cricket in the 19th Century.


    Sydney Bangalore Manchester Centurion Durban Jo'burg Mohali Colombo Dhaka Adelaide Kolkata

  19. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tusker View Post
    Again I was using mainly Test Match Cricket examples to prove my point because that format hasnt changed much in terms of playing conditions. Most of these points do not apply there yet we have much higher run-rates and significantly lower % of Draws today.

    The only ones that apply are bigger bats. Now big bats does not automatically mean runs. Because if you cannot get it in the middle of the bat the edge is also going to carry a lot further. Its a double edged sword and is most certainly evened out by superior fielding which you conveniently ignored. Then there are things like LBW law and DRS which benefit the bowlers. There used to be a time when it was difficult for spinners to get LBW's like they do today. Infact until 1980 the lbw law allowed you to deliberately pad away as long as the impact was outside off. And if you go furtherr back the ball had to actually pitch in line with the stumps for a bowler to get a LBW decision lol. I dont see anybody ridiculing those era for some reason. Why?

    So once you factor in all these things it more than evens out yet the batsmen are scoring at a higher rate. How do you explain that ? Well so far the tried and tested strategy is to just blatantly rubbish anything modern using red herrings. Its the fashionable thing to do and it will stick as long as people dont bother to question and do some basic fact checking.

    And the only country that uses Drop-in pitches regularly is Aus (Not all grounds though) and maybe NZ once in a while.

    Also not true is the oft repeated story that claims pitches back in the day were difficult to bat on. Just isnt true unless you are talking about early days of Test Cricket in the 19th Century.
    No evidence, once again it’s all conjecture on your part and you seem to be dismissing the expert opinions I shared with you earlier as well. You are dismissing some straight forward facts. Now you seem to be making up your own. Uncovered pitches were in play till the 1960s, not the early days of the 19th century. You seem to enjoy an alternate reality.

    Have another read:

    http://mobile.abc.net.au/news/2015-1...ricket/6977816

  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stewie View Post
    No evidence, once again it’s all conjecture on your part and you seem to be dismissing the expert opinions I shared with you earlier as well. You are dismissing some straight forward facts. Now you seem to be making up your own. Uncovered pitches were in play till the 1960s, not the early days of the 19th century. You seem to enjoy an alternate reality.

    Have another read:

    http://mobile.abc.net.au/news/2015-1...ricket/6977816
    What part of my post was conjecture according to you ? And what evidence did you provide to back up your points ? Anil Kumble making recommendations is not evidence of anything that is being discussed here as Iam talking mainly about Test Cricket whereas his recommendations are mainly for LOI Cricket IIRC.

    Yes I know Uncovered wkts were around till the 60's but the topic here is about 80s and 90s vs current era. And when I spoke about the 19th century it was not in reference to uncovered wkts. It was in reference to the overall art of pitch making which was very crude in those times.

    And speaking of uncovered wkts - what difference does it make if it does not rain ? Will it not be the same as a covered wkt ?


    Sydney Bangalore Manchester Centurion Durban Jo'burg Mohali Colombo Dhaka Adelaide Kolkata

  21. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by happydavy View Post
    I second that. I strongly believe that ex-cricketers control the narrative thru commentary and most of them are a jealous lot. Look at Sanjay Manjrekar. For 10 years now he keeps repeating the same point abt how bat quality has improved and he says that in a condescending manner. Same with Michael holding who questioned Pollard as a cricketer. Even if u don't like someone's skills, why would u humiliate that person on commentary, you do that only when you are jealous for some reason.

    Recently saw an interview of Viv Richards, when asked how the game has changed in the last 30 years and his response was brilliant. He said batting and bowling still remains the same, same skills and though strike rates have improved but that's fine since there are times when batting rules bowling and vice versa. He thought the only noticeable change is fielding, which is nowhere close to what it was in 80s. You would never see true legends like Richards, Lara, srt, donald, wasim etc complaining abt the evolution of game, only the insecured ones do
    True said. Sadly this trend will continue because enough gullible people around who buy these narratives without thinking about what is being said. Anyone questioning these will run into some violent opposition and if you stand your ground they will quietly walk away only to emerge on a different day in a different thread and redo the same thing again.

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