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Sunday 28th October, 2001

GRAND FINAL

England vs Australia


Defending champions England versus Australia.

Australia undefeated so far, England losing all games against Australia and all bar one against New Zealand. It seems like a terribly one-sided affair, and it may very well turn out to be just that . . . ..

. . . . .then again . . . . .

. . . . I don't know, there's just something about a 2-horse race. While Indoor Cricket World predicts a comfortable Australian win (in the New Zealand team's sweepstakes, I have predicted Australia 129 vs England 79), we certainly won't be outlaying a large sum of money on the result . . . . just in case.

The Game: -- posted Sunday 28th October 2001, 11:39pm Perth time (GMT+08:00hrs) --

Australia batted first - Jeremy Homfrey and Gavin Dukes opened.
England were not off to a great start--Ian Lindsey, England's wicket-keeper, dislocated a finger fielding the second ball of the innings. Although the finger was re-set and taped, Ian was hindered by it for the remainder of the game and did not bat in England's innings.
On the other hand, Australia were off to a great start. The openers batted with discipline, losing just one wicket (Jeremy caught), and that wasn't until the second last ball of their partnership. With one's and two's only, they walked off the court with a very solid partnership of 42.

Andy Manion and Bruce Reid batted next. This pair only lost two wickets (Reid runout and Reid caught), and finished with a partnership of 37. Australia were already 79, and England hadn't really made an impression. The least expensive of the English overs, both from Tony Rock, had cost 8 runs apiece, and they had missed many runout chances, especially at the bowler's end.

Paul Lahey and Peter Gladigau batted third, and as he has done many times this week, Andy Walton bowled the 9th over. And it was a good over for England--a runout on the first ball, followed by four "dot-balls" and 8 runs (including a spanking 4 from Gladigau) for a nett 3 off the over. The batsmen recovered with 13 off the second over, then were restricted to just 4 off Stuart Kenney's over. Again the batsmen responded well, taking 10 off their last over for a partnership of 30. Australia's score was 109.

Colin Robertson, who had been sidelined since early in the week, rejoined the playing list and paired up with Tony Panecasio to bring Australia's innings to a close. Tight bowling restricted this pair to 7 off the first over (Ian Lindsey), 6 off their second (Adrian Smith), and just 3 off their third (Mike Barnatt). The last over, bowled by Peter Fairhall, finally saw England's fielding lift its efficiency with 2 runouts. Despite a 5 from Colin Robertson, the over was a Maiden (no score). The last pair had scored 16, and Australia had to be satisfied with a score of 125.

Facing a tough task, England started with Peter Fairhall and Stuart Kenney.
Stuart's injured calf and knee were still causing him problems, and Peter Gladigau's pace just added to it--one run and two runouts, for a nett minus 8 off the first over, bowled by the South Australian paceman. A catch off the second ball of the second over (Tony Panecasio) took England's score to minus 11, and they were in trouble. Jeremy Homfrey gave up just 7 off his first over, and a runout off the second ball of the fourth over put England back into minus territory. Peter and Stuart had to dig deep and, aided by 2 leg-sides from Andrew Manion, they clawed and, in Stuart's case, hopped their way back to a score of 13.

Tony Rock and Andy Walton were next, and England needed a substantial partnership to have any realistic chance of staying in the game. And Australia obviously knew this ..... they hit the English pair with 3 of the quickest overs the Australians have bowled all week.
Peter Gladigau started the attack: a catch off the second ball and a runout off the seventh ball, and the over had cost England minus 2.
Colin Robertson sent down the next eight quick ones. England survived a 'third-ball' situation, but suffered a runout. A solitary single off the over. After 2 overs, the partnership stood at minus 1, and England's total score was 12.
Bruce Reid bowled next. Though not as quick as the two preceding bowlers, he never-the-less has good pace and lots of movement--he is a very attacking bowler. Yet another runout this over, plus the only 'wide' for the whole game--England scored 3 off the over, the partnership stood at 2, and England's score was 15.
Paul Lahey didn't relieve the pressure when he came on to bowl the 8th over either--as with each of the first three overs of the partnership, there was a runout in this over too. 5 runs scored off the over, partnership of 7, England on 20.

In came Mike Barnatt and Naheem Sajjad, their team 105 behind with 8 overs remaining. They batted very solidly for 11 off the over, the first double-digit score off an over for the whole England innings. Then Jeremy Homfrey induced 2 runouts in his over, which cost minus 5, and the partnership stood at 6 with two overs to go. T
his English pair looked to be headed for a low score too.
However . . . Naheem Sajjad decided it was time to put on a show. He faced eight more balls, and scored as follows: 4 * 4 * 2 * 2 * 7 *Runout* 2 * 7 . With Mike Barnatt scoring one or two runs off every ball he faced, this pair took the bowling apart -- they took 17 runs off the 11th over (Andy Manion) and 18 off the 12th over (Paul Lahey) for a partnership of 41 (35 of which came in the last 2 overs). Naheem scored 27 off his own bat (highest of all batsmen in the game), and Mike scored 14, the second highest score in the England team this game.

England stood at 61, still 64 runs behind with just 4 overs left. To tie the game, England needed to score 2 runs every ball, without losing a wicket.

Despite the unlikelihood of this occuring, Australia chose Stuart Kenney to replace the injured Ian Lindsey. Stuart was actually the third highest scoring English player this game, but his obvious leg injury meant he was not going to be able to run at full pace for all of the last four overs. Australia were looking for absolutely any advantage they could find, and were obviously not willing to leave anything to chance.
Adrian and Stuart faced Bruce Reid first up, and lost one wicket (Stuart bowled). The over cost minus 2. They then played Tony Panecasio extremely carefully (and well), scoring 15 off one of the best spin-bowlers of the series. A stumping and a catch off consecutive balls of the next over (Gavin Dukes), which cost minus 1, and a runout in the last over (Colin Robertson), saw this partnership to 15, and England to a total of 76.

Australia had won, beating a gallant England by 49 runs.

(and Indoor Cricket World has blitzed New Zealand's tipping competition, predicting Australia's score to within 4 runs, and England's score to within 3 runs!!!!)

Final Score:

Australia 125 England 76

The new World Masters Champions
© Sheldon Levis 2001

The best of the photographs, including the semi-finals, preliminary final and the Grand Final, are now on display on Indoor Cricket World. Go to the Photo Gallery.

The FULL series of photographs taken by Indoor Cricket World during this series will be gradually added to this site, as thumbnails, over the coming week or so.

Thank you for your interest in this series, and in our coverage. We hope you enjoyed yourself, and with a bit of luck and some generous sponsorship, we hope to see you all back here for next year's World Cup in New Zealand, and the next International Masters (including over-30's Women) in South Africa in 2003. Then there's the 2004 World Cup in Colombo, Sri Lanka . . . the 2006 World Cup in England . . .

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