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BLOG - ER Ramachandran

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Bradman's 23-ball 100!

The big hitters of the game like Yuvraj singh and Gibbs scored like crazy in 2007 in the first ever twenty 20 World Cup.But is there anything to beat the Original Master, who did a 23 ball 100 on 3rd November, 1931? Don Bradman, while playing for Blackheath against Lithgow, Australia scored 256 runs clobbering 14 Sixers and 29 Fours!But the real beauty is he scored 100 in less than 3 Australian overs! (Earlier, they used to play 8 ball overs in Australia). His partner Wenden Bill also played couple of balls in the third over! Wenden scored 68.The sequence of scoring is given below.

1st over; 6,6,4,2,4,4,6,1.
2nd over; 6,4,4,6,6,4,6,4.
3rd over: 1,6,6,1,1,4,4,6.

To think this was done in an era of uncovered pitches when batsmen were not covered like Egyptian mummies from head- to - toe - with helmets, extra padding from Ribs downwards and hand guards right up to the bat handle! Can anybody ever beat this record?

E.R. Ramachandran
December 31, 2007


  • Talking about Yuvaraj Singh, one might be interested to read about a piece on this prima donna in Sydney Morning Herald which begins as follows:

    "INDIA'S interim coach, Lalchand Rajput, will read the riot act to recalcitrant batsman Yuvraj Singh, whose attitude during the Boxing Day Test infuriated members of the Indian side.

    Yuvraj's air of indifference - not to mention his failures with the bat - look likely to cost him his place in the Indian middle order, with Virender Sehwag or Dinesh Karthik set to be drafted in to open the innings, and the out-of-sorts Rahul Dravid to move into his more customary role down the order.............."

    The Indian 'cricket stars'who are feted like God's incarnates by their countrymen have a lot to learn from the life of the great Don. As far as I am concerned I am happy to watch a game of football (soccer) where the players are forced to exercise skills and quite a bit of effort in the field doing the 90 mins of play, unlike 'Prince Ganguly' in the pitch as a fielder during the Boxing day test.

    By Anonymous Ram, at 5:24 AM  

  • I've seen the bats of yore. They were a thin strip of well seasoned and oiled willows, unlike the meaty compressed willows of today. To hit long shots with those oiled bats required perfect timing, unlike today's - even mishits and edged shots clear the boundary ropes!! Having seen the transition, I can vouch that Bradman's skill as a timer of the ball was magic, not to mention that Bradman was not that successful on those 'stickies' where the great Victor Trumper was a master!! 'Uncovered picthes' of course was what they got to play, but that does not mean that it was a bad wicket. The wicket he scored that 23-ball ton could have been a good one too. Only rain and natural wear and tear of the wicket came into play to affect the condition. There are a few biggest hits recorded in the biggest grounds in Australia before the 60s and considering those bats available those days, one can imagine the power and timing both combining to send the ball soaring away!

    Full credit to Bradman's skill of timing the ball as per his wish. He preferred to play his shots mostly along the ground as he himself had said that if you hit the shot in the air, you are increasing the risk of getting out.

    The bats of today contribute to the big hits we see. I've seen balls connecting on one lateral half of the bat clearing the ropes and those that get in the meat, clears the ropes by many yards! Bats are made meaty these days where it should matter and is manufactured as per the players' individual preference and balance. The players of yore had none of those, even though Bradman got his bats made by a company to suit him, not many were able to get that previlege.

    Protective gear: They did not need much extra - they had the technical faculties to counter dangerous balls and also bowlers used fair tactics to get batsmen out. Though 'bodyline' comes to mind! Even in that, Bradman was the highest with a 50+ average, which by his terms was a failure. Gary Sobers at times used to bat in the nets to Griffith and Hall with no leg gaurds on! And he rarely used a thigh guard in matches!! Come to think of today's armoury. Of course, things have changed - an injury to a player means loss of money and place in the team, unlike before.

    You must lay your hands on 'Images of Bradman', a pictorial book brought out I think by the Bradman Foundation.

    Bradman's skills, records and abilities is very hard to compare, though Bill O'Reilly will always disagree - he was a 'Bradman hater'!

    By Blogger Dinakar KR, at 7:39 AM  

  • While commenting on the batsman's protective gear, think of what happened to Nari Contractor in Jamaica. I have seen how fast Wes Hall could bowl. The sight of this tall athlete galloping towards bowler's end was enough to send shivers down the spine of any batsman. Griffith his mate some say was a chucker.

    Reverend Hall, the preacher now must be chuckling reminiscing about it.

    By Anonymous Guru, at 9:52 AM  

  • The Englishmen are renown for tagging a bowler that they can't play as a 'chucker'. They have said that Karsan Ghavri, Bishen Singh Bedi and even Charlie Griffith as chuckers. That tactic worked against Griffith as he was never the same after he saw that in the press on that tour [1965-6 I think]. Both Bedi and Ghavri were never affected. Griffith knew he chucked occasionally, but it was purely unintentional and he tried to study the action through films. But it happened very occasionally. Players did not cheat as much as they do now! The one that hit Nari Contractor was not a bouncer. It was a short ball that did not rise high as Nari expected. So in his instictive movement, he bent forward thinking the bounce [because of the shortness of the length] would take it safely over his back/head through to the 'keeper, but since it did not bounce as he expected, it hit bang on Nari's skull. It may be of interest to note here that it was Frank Worrell who helped Nari's condition by donating his blood.

    Now to avoid more controversey, they measured the angle of the arm at delivery and allowed more angle! Quite ridiculous! A bent arm delivery is always seen as unfair. Without chucking those 'Doosras' of today cannot be bowled! Prasanna, Venkataraghavan or Gibbs never chucked, yet they bowled the one that went the other way so effectively. Such was their skill and control of the ball. Venkat was known for his 'leg cutter'! The older generation deceived by pure skill, the newer generation uses short-cuts to skills to deceive!

    By Blogger Dinakar KR, at 6:31 AM  

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