|Rampaul on his way|
In lower league cricket runs in the bottom half of the innings are gold dust. In some teams that FB has graced runs in the top half of the order were gold dust too - but runs in the bottom half of the order are more goldy and more dusty. A lower order batsman only needs to get a score once in his career and he can dine out on it for many a long year. 'Yes I got 23* last time out.............' it doesn't matter that the bowlers were 8 year olds, his audience will expect and demand that they were 6' 8'' W Indians chucking it down at 90mph. He should not disappoint them.
What the newly successful tailender must avoid is being promoted to a middle order position in the next match. The siren call will be hard to resist - it will appeal directly to a man's vanity - 'You got a few last week - you looked the thing - fancy number 5?' the skipper will whisper seductively. But this seduction must be ignored. But the tail ender who has contributed must resist he should demand to be put to the very bottom of the order. He could say that he has forgotten his bat and his pads. If possible he should get get injured while bowling or taking tea. If necessary he should feign injury - he could even attribute this injury to events while batting last week - 'Took one on the knee last week skip, don't think I can get onto the front foot.' The fact that he has never ever played off the front foot in his career is neither here nor there. This is a desperate situation. For lightning will not strike twice and as his stumps are shattered by a straight one from a 9 year old, so too will his illusion of competence be shattered. It can be too hard for a man to bear. Feign injury.
Rampaul's knock yesterday was a top drawer tailender effort. He scored 86* off 66 balls, with 6 6s and 6 4s (he likes the number of 6). W Indies were in dire straits at 119 for 6 when he came in but ended the innings with a respectable 269 which included an undefeated partnership of 99 for the last wicket. Prior to this effort Rampaul has batted 26 times in his 62 ODI matches with a highest score of 26* and an average of 9.47. Sad to say Rampaul's heroics were in vain as India reached the required total with 11 balls to spare.
|Saqlain acknowledges |
his unlikely 100
|Badcock is a Tasmanian hero and here is his memorial|
And finally, it is Zaheer Khan who has the highest Test score by a number 11 batsman when he scored 75 against Bangladesh in 2004. He batted with Sachin Tendulkar to put on 133 runs and set a new record of partnership for India’s tenth-wicket.