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The Pat Symcox theory

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
Fans who have been watching matches involving South Africa have heard the Pat Symcox theory of Three Test Sessions. He says that any team that wins three Test sessions on the trot, wins the Test.

We don't often see that happen, and not surprisingly, there is a correlation. However, we've seen that backfire a few times. Both of these happened in the Ind/Pak Test series going on now.

Somewhere, the Indians won a third consecutive session, and they won the Test. However, in Kolkata, they had secured not three, not four, but seven sessions on the trot, and yet, the match ended in a draw.

Would you agree with this theory?
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
If the theory was only to give a result to a draw I'd sort of see some merit in the idea, but really, it's a bit too gimmicky for me. The draw has always been part of the game when it's not a limited-over one, and to take it out seems, well, the perennial "not cricket" TBH.
 

Jamee999

Hall of Fame Member
A team that wins 3 sessions in a row more often than not does win a match, but it is 1/5 or maybe even 1/4 of a match, so it makes sense, unless they play direly for the rest...
 

NUFAN

Y no Afghanistan flag
A team that wins 3 sessions in a row more often than not does win a match, but it is 1/5 or maybe even 1/4 of a match, so it makes sense, unless they play direly for the rest...
Yeah, which would mean that the other team would most likely win 3 sessions in a row.

It's a stupid theory really. It's just like saying the team who dominates most often wins..
 

Lillian Thomson

International Coach
If the theory was only to give a result to a draw I'd sort of see some merit in the idea, but really, it's a bit too gimmicky for me. The draw has always been part of the game when it's not a limited-over one, and to take it out seems, well, the perennial "not cricket" TBH.
I don't think he's putting it forward as an idea for changing the result of a drawn match. He's merely saying that more often than not if a team wins three consecutive sessions they'll go on to win the match.
 

BoyBrumby

Englishman
There's truth in it, obviously. But there are obvious exceptions. We took the first three sessions in Adelaide in 06/07 for instance... :down:
 

Goughy

Hall of Fame Member
It's a stupid theory really. It's just like saying the team who dominates most often wins..
"Think Global, Act Local."

Its a perfect way for players to approach games. Symcox will be using something they applied as players.

You cant win a Test straight away so breaking it down and aiming to win a session, followed by another and followed by another to bring victory breaks a big thing into small managable pieces.
 

tooextracool

International Coach
I agree with his reasoning for the idea but not for the idea itself. I personally feel that the toss has too much of an influence in a test match. There have been far too many occasions when teams have been at a disadvantage of batting last on a crumbling pitch or facing overcast conditions on the first day only for the opposing side to bask in bright sunshine on days 2 and 3. One example was the trent bridge test over the summer. However, i realise that such inconsistencies cannot be eliminated, therefore it is probably best to leave as is.
 

Craig

World Traveller
Steve Waugh used to say, win the first hour and you win the first session and then you probably win the first day and then win the first Test and probably the series.
 

NUFAN

Y no Afghanistan flag
"Think Global, Act Local."

Its a perfect way for players to approach games. Symcox will be using something they applied as players.

You cant win a Test straight away so breaking it down and aiming to win a session, followed by another and followed by another to bring victory breaks a big thing into small managable pieces.
Yeah I understand that breaking down the sessions makes it a manageable process.

I haven't heard Symcox talk about it, but if it does have this theory it's hardly an amazing idea or anything. Pretty common sense that winning sessions helps you win the game.
 

Burgey

Request Your Custom Title Now!
iirc, Australia won at least 3 sessions in a row in the Test in 01 when they made India follow-on. Unfortunatel, India won 4 or more in a row on days 4 and 5.
 

Top_Cat

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Geez guys, no need to be so pedantic. Some analogies don't bear close scrutiny but all of the contradictions don't invalidate the idea either. It's true that;

1) Winning three sessions in a row and/or;
2) Winning the first session of a Test

make it more likely that you're going to win said Test. It's not an iron-clad 'Idiots Guide For Winning test match Cricket' but just an observation followed by, as Goughy said, breaking the business of winning a Test down into achievable short-term goals. That's all.

I haven't heard Symcox talk about it, but if it does have this theory it's hardly an amazing idea or anything. Pretty common sense that winning sessions helps you win the game.
Indeed it is but that's the point of an idea like this; players often get caught up in worrying about winning an entire game when there's so much to happen between the toss and the final wicket. If your aim is to score 400 in your first innings, the weight of that amount of runs puts pressure on whereas if you aim for 80 per session, it's far easier on the brain. Seriously, it's a relatively new way of looking at winning games of cricket. Same has happened with ODI's; I suggest SA won that 400+ game with Australia because they broke down their scoring into 10-over blocks or something similar because before that point scoring 400 in a ODI would have been through impossible, let along hauling in a total like that to win.
 

Craig

World Traveller
Yeah, just like the ten run partnerships between batsmen should aim like commentators used to say, aim for the first ten runs, and then the next, and so forth.
 

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