Friday 14 December 2012

Mini-session Analysis 1st Test, Australia vs Sri Lanka, Hobart 2012/13

Here is the final mini-session analysis for the first test between Australia and Sri Lanka at Bellerive Oval, Hobart, Australia

A mini-session is (normally) half a session, either between the start of the session and the drinks break or the drinks break and the end of the session. Occasionally a long session will have 3 mini-sessions where it will be broken up with 2 drinks breaks.

1-1aAustralia 49/1 off 14Australia
1-1bAustralia 48/1 off 12.2Australia
1-2aAustralia 39/0 off 15.4Australia
1-2bAustralia 57/1 off 15Australia
1-3aAustralia 43/1 off 16Sri Lanka
1-3bAustralia 63/0 off 17Australia
2-1aAustralia 27/1 off 12Sri Lanka
2-1bAustralia 38/0 off 12Australia
2-2aAustralia 65/0 off 14Australia
2-2bAustralia 21/0 off 3draw
Sri Lanka 21/0 off 7
2-3aSri Lanka 24/2 off 10Australia
2-3bSri Lanka 42/2 off 12.1Australia
3-1aSri Lanka 70/0 off 17.5Sri Lanka
3-1bSri Lanka 30/0 off 9Sri Lanka
3-2aSri Lanka 31/0 off 19draw
3-2bSri Lanka 31/1 off 15Australia
3-3aSri Lanka 67/2 off 15.4Sri Lanka
3-3bSri Lanka 20/3 off 3.5draw
Australia 27/0 off 14
4-1aAustralia 60/0 off 18Australia
4-1bAustralia 59/2 off 17Sri Lanka
4-2aAustralia 63/3 off 14Sri Lanka
4-2bAustralia 69/4 off 10.5Australia
4-3aSri Lanka 37/1 off 18Australia
4-3bSri Lanka 28/1 off 19Australia
5-1aSri Lanka 45/0 off 17Sri Lanka
5-1bSri Lanka 34/1 off 16Australia
5-2aSri Lanka 25/1 off 14.2Australia
5-2bSri Lanka 17/0 off 9.4draw
5-3aSri Lanka 62/4 off 21Australia
5-3bSri Lanka 7/2 off 4.2Australia

Final update, click here

Australia win the mini-session count 18 - 8

First drinks, Day 1: Australia lead the mini-session count 1-0

A perfect first hour of a test. The batsmen have struggled at times, and have thrived. The ball swung, and did a bit off the seam, but the bad ball was generally put away. Cowan fell victim to some clever captaincy, where Mahela got into his head by leaving a massive gap for him on the leg side. He was dismissed trying to hit a ball into that gap that should have probably been cut instead.

Lunch, Day 1: Australia lead the mini-session count 2-0

That was a fine test fifty from David Warner, ended with an unfortunate run out. It has been a good first session of cricket. Sri Lanka have generally bowled demanding lines and lengths, and the batsmen have been generally patient. There was one small scare for Australia when Warner edged a good ball from Welegedara through the recently vacated third slip, but other than that the pitch looked quite friendly for the batsmen.

Middle drinks, Day 1: Australia lead the mini-session count 3-0

Australia are doing well here. They have seen off the new ball, and are playing sensible, low risk cricket. Sri Lanka need a breakthrough or else this game is capable of getting away from them very quickly.

Tea, Day 1: Australia lead the mini-session count 4-0

Australia just won that hour, but it was close. Sri Lanka have taken a wicket off a no ball. That is really the ultimate sin. They have now bowled 9 no balls in 2 sessions of cricket. To put that in context, they bowed 5 no balls in the entire series against New Zealand. It makes me wonder if the harder ground in Australia causes the bowlers to spring forward more in their run up.

Final drinks, Day 1: Australia lead the mini-session count 4-1

Sri Lanka just keep chipping away the wickets. They will now be looking forward to the new ball. If they can pick up another one by then, things could really start to get interesting. A good innings from Hughes, he certainly proved me wrong, because I expected Kulasekera to really trouble him.

Stumps, Day 1: Australia lead the mini-session count 5-1

Clarke and Hussey are just in devastating form at the moment. Their average partnership so far this year is 107.9, having put on 1187 runs together in 2012. That's the second highest contribution in a calendar year by one non-opening partnership ever. And they still have a potential 3 innings left this year. They are still 343 runs away from Younis Khan and Mohammed Younis in 2006, but catching them is a distinct possibility now.

First drinks, Day 2: Australia lead the mini-session count 5-2

Shaminda Eranga bowled a magic delivery to dismiss Michael Clarke. He came wider on the crease and angled in towards Clarke's off stump. Then the ball moved away off the pitch, and Clarke was possibly the only batsman in the world good enough to actually hit that one. The Australians managed to rebuild well, but the wicket was such an important one that the hour goes to Sri Lanka.

Lunch, Day 2: Australia lead the mini-session count 6-2

A very good hour for Australia. This isn't a pitch where we are likely to see 60 runs in an hour too regularly, so 38 runs in 40 minutes represents a good return for Australia. Sri Lanka will rue the missed chance, where Randiv missed a difficult chance to catch Wade. They have now missed at least 3 chances, and they could be crucial. If Australia get to 450 on this pitch the game is effectively over for Sri Lanka.

Middle drinks, Day 2: Australia lead the mini-session count 7-2

Another missed chance for Sri Lanka. They may be good enough to take 20 wickets cheaply against Australia. However I'm not sure if they can take 24 or 25 wickets cheaply against Australia.

Tea, Day 2: Australia lead the mini-session count 7-2

While Australia scored much faster than Sri Lanka, the Sri Lankans managed to survive the first bite of the new ball. Often the ball plays tricks for the first 5 or 6 overs, then again overs 13-20. Karunaratne looked particularly impressive.

Final drinks, Day 2: Australia lead the mini-session count 8-2

Two wickets in the hour for Australia, and Sri Lanka are now in trouble. This is the innings that they really would have been targeting to score their runs in.

Stumps, Day 2: Australia lead the mini-session count 9-2

Sri Lanka are in trouble here. They will need a very good day tomorrow to avoid this match ending very badly for them. They still have two solid batsmen left with Mathews and Jayawardene, but they don't have much room for error left. While Sri Lanka won the first 3 overs of the day, the rest of the day was very much Australia's.

First drinks, Day 3: Australia lead the mini-session count 9-3

What a fantastic fight back from Mathews and Dilshan. They need to keep this going for another couple of hours, but they have scored quickly, and put pressure on the bowlers.

Lunch, Day 3: Australia lead the mini-session count 9-4

Dilshan is scoring beautifully. He's brought up his hundred and is looking sharp. Matthews seems to have gone into his shell. He's scored only 10 runs in the last 9 overs.

Middle drinks, Day 3: Australia lead the mini-session count 9-4

Mathews has continued to stagnate. After his solid start he has not really looked likely at all. He's scored only 11 runs in the last 19 overs. For Australia the real bright light with the ball has been Shane Watson. He has kept the batsmen under pressure, and in two minds. While he is at the crease the pitch looks like a minefield.

Tea, Day 3: Australia lead the mini-session count 10-4

Mathews fell to a ball that moved off the seam. This pitch is starting to play some tricks. Dilshan has taken a turn going into his shell now. This time he has scored only 11 runs in 15 overs. Australia have replicated what Sri Lanka did on the first day: kept the scoring down despite not making much progress against the batting.

Final drinks, Day 3: Australia lead the mini-session count 10-5

Good positive play by Prasana Jayawardene has advanced the game in Sri Lanka's favour. They are still behind, but they are getting closer.

Stumps, Day 3: Australia lead the mini-session count 10-5

Australia cleaned up the tail, and their openers managed to survive, but they didn't score many runs, and despite having a chance to start to build an imposing lead, they batted without much intent, and let the game slide somewhat.

There are a couple of possible scenarios for the game tomorrow. One option is that Australia go on to score about 250, then bowl Sri Lanka out on a wearing pitch. However another option is that they take too long to get their 250, and Sri Lanka bat out the final day to draw the test.

First drinks, Day 4: Australia lead the mini-session count 11-5

Great work this morning from Cowan and Warner. This would be one of the most restrained innings I've seen from Warner, similar to his second innings at Hobart last year. Sri Lanka are bowling quite well, and are trying to keep the Australians tied up. Clarke is an aggressive captain, but he will be aware of the power of the Sri Lankan line up, and is likely to make sure they are chasing well over 350.

Lunch, Day 4: Australia lead the mini-session count 11-6

That was a good hour of cricket. Wickets, runs, both teams playing positive cricket.

Middle drinks, Day 4: Australia lead the mini-session count 11-7

Herath looks like a completely different bowler once he has a right-hander to bowl at. The Watson dismissal was a classic orthodox spin wicket. He drew Watson out with the pace, deceived him with the flight and dip, spun past the outstretched bat, and then Jayawardene produced a very sharp stumping. It was almost poetry.

Tea, Day 4: Australia lead the mini-session count 12-7

If Herath can do that against Australia on a pitch that isn't taking turn, what will he do on the SCG? Australia have set Sri Lanka a target of 392. It's an unlikely target, but not an impossible one. Sri Lanka will have to bat well, but they have 5 phenomenal batsmen in their team. Only South Africa at the moment have a reasonable claim to having a better batting line up.

Final drinks, Day 4: Australia lead the mini-session count 13-7

The pitch is starting to look quite tricky to bat on. It looks positively unplayable while Shane Watson is bowling. Some bowlers know how to get the worst out of a pitch, and Watson is certainly one of those.

Stumps, Day 4: Australia lead the mini-session count 14-7

While Sri Lanka have made it to the end of the day only 2 down, Australia are now odds on to win this match. The pitch is quite up and down, and even a good go with the heavy roller in the morning isn't going to make much difference. There is one thing that could make it a lot easier for Sri Lanka, and that is that there is rain forecast for tomorrow. However there's probably not enough rain tomorrow to actually make much of a difference.

First drinks, Day 5: Australia lead the mini-session count 14-8

A very good hour for Sri Lanka. If they have 5 more like that they will win the test. However there were some promising signs for Australia, They managed to get some reverse swing, and drew one false shot out of Jayawardene.

Lunch, Day 5: Australia lead the mini-session count 15-8

The Australian bowlers really dominated that last hour. The key moment was the hopefull review by Sangakkara that turned out to be a good decision. Another interesting thing was the way that the Australian fielders made a point of walking between Sangakkara and Samaraweera whenever they tried to have a chat. I'm not sure what the thinking behind that behaviour was, but perhaps they feel Samaraweera is a little weak mentally, and relies heavily on his batting partner. If that's their tactic, then I think they've done their scouting badly, because Samaraweera is about as tough as they come mentally.

Rain break, Day 5: Australia lead the mini-session count 16-8

Sri Lanka are fighting hard, but Australia are gradually taking the game. These two and Prasanna Jayawardene are quality batsmen, but the pitch is playing too many tricks to expect them to last until stumps.

Tea, Day 5: Australia lead the mini-session count 16-8

Great effort from Mathews and Samaraweera. They have mostly seen off the new ball despite things being really quite difficult. The bounce has been eratic, and they have had their concentration interrupted by rain breaks. Australia are probably still favourites, but I think the draw is starting to look a lot more likely.

Final drinks, Day 5: Australia lead the mini-session count 17-8

Surely Australia can't fail to wrap this up. Could they?

End of match Australia win the match and the mini-session count 18-8

The end had a certain inevitability about it. Sri Lanka fought well, but Australia win the match. Australia played the better cricket and deserved the win. Peter Siddle in man of the match, and he was a fantastic performer, but I think this game was mostly won because Michael Clarke made such a bold declaration at the end of the first innings. He was my man of the match for that.

1 comment:

  1. 'What a fantastic fight back from Mathews and Dilshan.'

    They were fantastic. Especially this morning when they completely took it to our bowlers and made us look very much second best.