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Swalec Stadium

Does the Swalec Stadium deserve Test status?


  • Total voters
    20

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
It doesn't. How poor his poor performances are has absolutely nothing to do with how good his good performances are. Each match is separate. Once someone has done well in one match, that good performance can never, ever be detracted from by anything that happens subsequently or has happened previously.

Clark has been massively polarised in recent times. Not outstanding, not dreadful. Massively polarised.
 

oitoitoi

State Vice-Captain
Reckon clark is the bowler's equivalent of a flat track bully, very effective when there's a bit in the surface for him, next to useless on flatties.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
Generally referred to as green-top bullies. :p Well, not entirely I don't think - he's already demonstrated that he can perform on non-seamers - but it's hardly unusual for a seam-bowler to be far, far better on green wickets than bare ones.

We'll wait and see how Clark's career pans-out but I've always said that those looking for him to be the next McGrath were asking far too much. I don't think anyone should really doubt that he has plenty to offer in Test cricket though - plenty.
 

Uppercut

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Generally referred to as green-top bullies. :p Well, not entirely I don't think - he's already demonstrated that he can perform on non-seamers - but it's hardly unusual for a seam-bowler to be far, far better on green wickets than bare ones.

We'll wait and see how Clark's career pans-out but I've always said that those looking for him to be the next McGrath were asking far too much. I don't think anyone should really doubt that he has plenty to offer in Test cricket though - plenty.
He's 33, remember. It's a bit strange to be waiting for the career of a 33 year old fast bowler to pan out.
 

rivera213

U19 Vice-Captain
Well, if Clark doesn't have a successful Ashes (in terms of how he bowls, not necessarily how many wickets he gets or Avg etc), then I think CA may look elsewhere- being that he is almost 34 years old.

Ditto for Brett Lee, though a bit younger.

Those 2, like Jason Gillespie in 2005 are obviously past their best, injuries are telling their toll and both are well into their 30's.

Johnson, Hilfenhaus and Siddle seem to be in the long term plans for CA. I don't know how good Bollinger is since I've seen precious little of him. I don't think Watson is free of injury long enough and McDonald is simply not good enough to be the 4th seamer. Tait doesn't seem to be the man for them either.

Without a Shane Warne at 1 end bowling for long periods and taking wickets, Australia really need a 4th seamer (or 2 spinners of "good" level. Krejza is 1, though he's very expensive and Michael Clarke's back isn't great).
 

Son Of Coco

Hall of Fame Member
Reckon clark is the bowler's equivalent of a flat track bully, very effective when there's a bit in the surface for him, next to useless on flatties.
Interesting observation to make after one poor series in India in which he may or may not have been carrying an injury.

He seems to have been reasonably effective up-to-date.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
He's 33, remember. It's a bit strange to be waiting for the career of a 33 year old fast bowler to pan out.
I reckon he's still closer to the start of his career than the end - or, if not, then the amount we've passed the middle point is minimal.

He was 30 before he made his Test debut.
 

oitoitoi

State Vice-Captain
L;ook at his record at various grounds, has basically only been poor (very poor to be frank) on the flatter or slower surfaces. Conversely he's been very effective on grounds with a bit of bounce, basically he's very reliant on conditions.
 

oitoitoi

State Vice-Captain
I reckon he's still closer to the start of his career than the end - or, if not, then the amount we've passed the middle point is minimal.

He was 30 before he made his Test debut.
Another year or two and he'll be surpassed in the pecking order by the likes of Hilfenhaus and Bollinger, he's not particularly sharp as it is, another 2 years and he'll be even slower.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
Well, if Clark doesn't have a successful Ashes (in terms of how he bowls, not necessarily how many wickets he gets or Avg etc), then I think CA may look elsewhere- being that he is almost 34 years old.

Ditto for Brett Lee, though a bit younger.

Those 2, like Jason Gillespie in 2005 are obviously past their best, injuries are telling their toll and both are well into their 30's.
Gillespie was only 30 in 2005 - he just seemed older because a) he started very young and b) he bowled so utterly diabolically and c) he ended-up being pensioned-off thereafter.

Clark also has shown no signs of decline - as Gillespie didn't really. He was poor in NZ in 2004/05 - how poor I don't know as I didn't have access to the series - but no-one could possibly have imagined he'd be so utterly dreadful as he was in England. Came completely out of nowhere. He'd been as good as ever up to the end of the home summer of 2004/05.

I can't see Clark having such a steep, instant decline, purely because virtually no-one ever does. Cases like Gillespie's are extraordinary rule-exceptions.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
Another year or two and he'll be surpassed in the pecking order by the likes of Hilfenhaus and Bollinger, he's not particularly sharp as it is, another 2 years and he'll be even slower.
That depends on Hilfenhaus and Bollinger being any good - Hilfenhaus certainly has promise but I've never thought that much of Bollinger TBH. Also, while Hilfenhaus is relatively young he's not a rank spring chicken - 26 now. Bollinger, meanwhile, is getting on himself - 28 in a few months' time. Seamers like him cannot expect to be bowling well much beyond 30.
 

Noble One

International Vice-Captain
Nevermind the challenge of Bollinger and Hilfenhaus. Watch out for Clink McKay in two years time.
 

rivera213

U19 Vice-Captain
Gillespie was only 30 in 2005 - he just seemed older because a) he started very young and b) he bowled so utterly diabolically and c) he ended-up being pensioned-off thereafter.

Clark also has shown no signs of decline - as Gillespie didn't really. He was poor in NZ in 2004/05 - how poor I don't know as I didn't have access to the series - but no-one could possibly have imagined he'd be so utterly dreadful as he was in England. Came completely out of nowhere. He'd been as good as ever up to the end of the home summer of 2004/05.

I can't see Clark having such a steep, instant decline, purely because virtually no-one ever does. Cases like Gillespie's are extraordinary rule-exceptions.
Gillespie, although his stats aren't bad from the 2004/05 season didn't bowl well through both New Zealand series and the Pakistan series.

It didn't come as any surprise to me that he was so poor in 2005 tbh.

He was very good in India then it seemed as soon as he went back to Australia (only 2 weeks after or something ridiculous) he turned into a mediocre bowler. I don't know what happened in those 2 weeks, maybe he got a bad injury in training which he hid from the other players but it was insane how it happened.

Clark is already on the decline IMO. Not entirely his fault because it looked like he was carrying an injury (how serious I don't know) throughout last season. But that's part of the problem. Getting an injury at 34 is normally very bad news. Not many bowlers (or sportsmen in general) who are injured in their 30's come back well at all.

The same for Brett Lee. It'll be interesting to see how both go in the Ashes, I am not optimistic at all.
 

rivera213

U19 Vice-Captain
Nevermind the challenge of Bollinger and Hilfenhaus. Watch out for Clink McKay in two years time.
This guy presumably: Cricinfo - Players and Officials - Clint McKay

2 years time would make him 28, although there are late straters, given the fact Australia aren't blessed in the seam bowling department, I think he'd be in consideration now if he was at that level unless they're seeing if Clark and Lee are both finished before slotting him in?

What's the buzz in Australia, is he being earmarked for the 2010/11 Ashes?

I think 1 of the 2 (Boll and Hilf) you mentioned will be part of the Aussie attack (probably Hilfenhaus since he seems to be more in favour) for 10/11.
 

pasag

RTDAS
Everyone was writing Lee off after his pre-WC injury and then he had one of his best summers ever vs SL and India. Still remember the vicious articles calling for his head (for Tait of all people iirc).

After dealing with much better batsmen in SA, I'm pretty confident our attack will be able to do the business against a lesser lineup, although the flat pitches may present a bit of a problem.
 

rivera213

U19 Vice-Captain
Everyone was writing Lee off after his pre-WC injury and then he had one of his best summers ever vs SL and India. Still remember the vicious articles calling for his head (for Tait of all people iirc)
I still think he can do the biz in the limited overs forms of the game. He was hitting 93mph in the IPL.

I just don't think he will be able to handle a tough 5-test series bowling 18+ overs per innings.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
Gillespie, although his stats aren't bad from the 2004/05 season didn't bowl well through both New Zealand series and the Pakistan series.

It didn't come as any surprise to me that he was so poor in 2005 tbh.

He was very good in India then it seemed as soon as he went back to Australia (only 2 weeks after or something ridiculous) he turned into a mediocre bowler. I don't know what happened in those 2 weeks, maybe he got a bad injury in training which he hid from the other players but it was insane how it happened.
Nah, don't agree TBH. I saw most of that Australian home summer and he was bowling really well, mostly without luck (never forget that Test where McGrath got the second-innings eight-for - Gillespie beat the bat time and again and the minute Kasprowicz came on he knocked batsmen over).

As I say, I don't have a clue how badly or not-so-badly he bowled in New Zealand but at home to New Zealand and Pakistan he bowled pretty much the same as he ever did.
Clark is already on the decline IMO. Not entirely his fault because it looked like he was carrying an injury (how serious I don't know) throughout last season. But that's part of the problem. Getting an injury at 34 is normally very bad news. Not many bowlers (or sportsmen in general) who are injured in their 30's come back well at all.
We'll see. I can't say I'm expecting bad over good.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
After dealing with much better batsmen in SA, I'm pretty confident our attack will be able to do the business against a lesser lineup, although the flat pitches may present a bit of a problem.
The flat pitches which may or may not happen. Lord's Test against West Indies was the most seam-friendly pitch I've seen in this country since Lord's 2005, and the most I've seen the ball swing since 2000.

The only ground I'd be confident will produce a flat deck is The Oval, because it usually does. The others could all easily have something in them for seam or spin.
 

rivera213

U19 Vice-Captain
The Lord's wicket has been pretty batting friendly in county cricket tbh. I agree the test vs W.Indies was a different wicket form the normal Lord's wicket, but I think the wicket will be batting-friendly for the Ashes test unless we win the 1st test.

Swing for the most part is atmospheric and quality of grip and our bowlers bowled well.

I think there will be results at Cardiff, Edgbaston and Headingley for sure and maybe at Lord's with a nailed-on draw at The Oval.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
Swing for the most part is atmospheric and quality of grip and our bowlers bowled well.
Nah, swing is almost all about the ball. A good ball in the hands of a good swing bowler with a good grip will swing regardless of the atmospherics. Equally, a poor ball in the wrong condition won't swing however damp the atmosphere and however good the grip of the bowler.

The encouraging thing is that the ball swung far more in 2007 than at any time since 2000, and though there was some regression in 2008 things are looking good again this year. England with a ball that doesn't swing just doesn't feel remotely right to me.
I think there will be results at Cardiff, Edgbaston and Headingley for sure and maybe at Lord's with a nailed-on draw at The Oval.
The strange thing about The Oval is that however flat it tends to be - and it's usually flatter than anywhere in the country except Taunton (which, thank God, doesn't host Tests) - there's still been just one uninterrupted draw there since 1995, and that was in 2007 when India would almost certainly have won if they'd tried to.
 
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