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Thread: The Curious Case of the Don and the Sticky Wicket

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    Cricket Web Owner James's Avatar
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    The Curious Case of the Don and the Sticky Wicket

    The Curious Case of the Don and the Sticky Wicket
    If there is a blemish on his amazing record it is the absence of a significant innings on one of those "sticky dogs" of old - so wrote Wisden about Don Bradman as one of the Five Cricketer's of the Century. Here we see how true that was.

    by Dave Wilson


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    Cricket Web Staff Member Burgey's Avatar
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    Excellent piece there Dave. The difference in his average is really astronomical. Thanks for putting it together.
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    Who's Dave Wilson? Assuming that the majority of "stickies" were in Australia the whole thing is irrevevant. Whilst a batsman with skill and determination can make runs on a sticky in England, the same isn't true in Australia where it's a complete lottery.

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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Uppercut's Avatar
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    It's a very interesting piece of analysis, but I don't think his uncovered pitch average should be used instead of his overall average. Once you go down that road, you would end up having to account for all kinds of advantages and disadvantages of batting in each era.

    For me, they're all too much to decipher, trying to weigh off the difficulty of (say) having to bat against 7 different teams of quality bowlers against the difficulty of having to play on the odd rain-affected humdinger. As far as I'm concerned his average of 99.94 makes him comfortably the best batsman of all time. I'd rather just leave it at that.
    Quote Originally Posted by zaremba View Post
    The Filth have comfortably the better bowling. But the Gash have the batting. Might be quite good to watch.


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    Pleased to see the overrated hack cut down a peg or two finally; we knew he was windy against fast bowling, he's now proven to be clueless against spin on recepetive pitches.

    Nah, seriously, an interesting article, always impressed when someone does the legwork to back up a hunch or contention. Know it would've effectively doubled the work, but a comparison for a contemporary (Hammond perhaps the obvious subject) on stickies might've be illuminating too.
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    Cricket Web Staff Member Burgey's Avatar
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    I have read that Bradman's innings at The Oval in 1930 as played on a partly rain-affected wicket, not sure if that's right though.

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    Cricket Web Staff Member fredfertang's Avatar
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    He was 130* overnight before the fourth day started - there had been overnight rain and Warner described the wicket as "not a sticky but soft on top and hard underneath" - Warner said the ball didn't turn for the spinners nor move sideways for the quicker bowlers but that Larwood did get some lift - this was supposedly the session when the bodyline idea was conceived

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    Quote Originally Posted by fredfertang View Post
    He was 130* overnight before the fourth day started - there had been overnight rain and Warner described the wicket as "not a sticky but soft on top and hard underneath" - Warner said the ball didn't turn for the spinners nor move sideways for the quicker bowlers but that Larwood did get some lift - this was supposedly the session when the bodyline idea was conceived
    What about Old Trafford 1930 ? It did rain but did the wicket become a sticky ?

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    Cricket Web Staff Member fredfertang's Avatar
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    Fender descibes "oceans" of rain falling on Manchester in the days leading up to the match (no surprise there then) but they made a prompt start on the first day - the weather was fine but the sun didn't shine so the wicket was described as "slow and easy paced" - Warner said it started to get sticky briefly in the late afternoon when the sun came out but that that didn't last long - Bradman was back in the hutch by then though

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    Cricket Web Staff Member archie mac's Avatar
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    I think it was Woolley who left Bradman out of his all time team because of his batting on sticky wickets. But tbh I think he was (and I have read it more than once) still able to play an innings if needed
    You know it makes sense.

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    To which someone (I think it was O'Reilly) responded by saying that he'd pick Bradman and take a chance on the weather

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    Cricket Web Staff Member archie mac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michaelf7777777 View Post
    To which someone (I think it was O'Reilly) responded by saying that he'd pick Bradman and take a chance on the weather
    Yes, impressive knowledge

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    Quote Originally Posted by archie mac View Post
    I think it was Woolley who left Bradman out of his all time team because of his batting on sticky wickets. But tbh I think he was (and I have read it more than once) still able to play an innings if needed
    I think his contemporaries often acknowledged Bradman's superiority with some condition attached. Most effective batsman, greatest run-scorer etc, and stopping short of unconditionally calling him the greatest batsman.

    Compared to that, these days acceptance of him as the greatest is almost without question.

    The only (extremely lame, IMNSHO) opinion that you hear against Bradman these days (and that mostly on messageboards) is that he did not play in the subcontinent. If Hazares, Merchants and Modis could regularly average 100+ a season on the dead wickets in India at the time, I shudder to think what Bradman would have done here.

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    International Captain The Sean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michaelf7777777 View Post
    To which someone (I think it was O'Reilly) responded by saying that he'd pick Bradman and take a chance on the weather
    Quote Originally Posted by archie mac View Post
    Yes, impressive knowledge
    'Twas Ray Robinson, actually.
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    Cricket Web Staff Member archie mac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Sean View Post
    'Twas Ray Robinson, actually.
    I won't argue



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