Sunday, March 18, 2007

6x6=36 as demonstrated by Gibbs

The Cricket World Cup has started well for South Africa. We didn't impress much in the warm-up games but in our first official game the sparks flew. As far as South Africa's performance was concerned the match was an impressive affair with various individual's contributions worth noting. However, Herschelle Gibbs' six consecutive sixes in one over (six balls) was out of this world. He went from 32 at the start of the over to 68 at the end. Sure, the Netherlands is a minor force in world cricket and the field was relatively small. But six sixes in a row remains an incredible feat. While it is not impossible, I'd like to see any other batsman repeat that. If you haven't seen that incredible six shots, have a look below...

South Africa has been a strong contender leading up to world cups since our re-admission in 1992, after isolation brought about by Apartheid. Since that very first world cup we've been disappointed more times than I care to remember. Despite all this 2007 may just be the year. Yes, we've fizzled out many times before - but South Africans are die-hards. We will get there and this may very well be the year.

Just to emphasize why South Africa should never be underestimated I went on a nostalgic trip and unearthed two more gems from YouTube. The first is Jonty Rhodes' explosion onto the world stage in the 1992 World Cup and the second a snippet from South Africa's incredible feet in scoring 438/9 to eclipse Australia's world record score (they batted first) of 434/4 set just hours before (merely a year ago). That's a total of 872 runs in a single one day game. The video's quality is not great but it does capture the incredible tension towards the end of the game. My brother who very rarely attends games was in the stands at the invitation of a supplier at work. I'll be forever jealous of him for having missed out being there to witness that bit of history. The video starts of with Telemachus getting dismissed with the score at 423. All-rounder Andrew Hall is in the middle but the former's dismissal means that we've virtually run out of batsmen. Boucher walks onto the pitch, the perfect guy in this situation. But if another wicket falls only Ntini is left to bat, an incredible bowler but a true fast-bowler-batsman...

For more on the Wanderers game go to Wikipedia.

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