We’re half way through our odyssey of describing the ins and outs of (some) cricket statistics, especially as they pertain to the one-day game. You are strongly advised to read parts One and Two before going any further, otherwise you will be as lost as a blind man at a semaphore convention. Slide three, please.
Finally, the Indians have taken an Australian wicket—off what appears to be the last ball of the tenth over. Shane Watson was bowled (“b”) by Ashwin—the guy looking to our right—for 25 runs in 38 balls: slow going on Watson’s behalf. What does it mean to be bowled? It means that Watson’s wicket was hit by the ball, dislodging the bails from the stumps (I told you you needed to go back to Part One!). The line through the P1 tells the viewer that the first Powerplay is over, which means that fielding restrictions will be lifted, unless the batting team opts to exercise the second Powerplay (there are currently three Powerplays per game, the second and third only lasting five overs each). Yeah, it’s complicated—so much so that even cricket commentators get a little fuzzy about what’s permitted by which team.
One little comment? I (Martin) love that the batsman is noted as being “dismissed.” It gives you something of the hauteur that can characterize the noble game. I think we should use the word in baseball. Next time A-Rod swings and misses for the fourth time, just turn to your fellow fan and comment, in your most clipped accent: “A-Rod wasn’t struck out. He was dismissed.”
Wouldn’t it be cool to have the statistics changed so Roy Halliday dismissed 10 batters? Sounds so genteel (and condescending on the part of the pitcher, as in telling the batter, “You are dismissed, sir!).
We can see a wag of the finger accompanying such a gesture. In fact, the umpire signals that the batsman is out by pointing a single finger (not the middle one, thank goodness) in the direction of the batsman, as if to say, “J’Accuse.” In baseball, it’s not such a big deal to strike out: you usually have four, five, or even six chances per game to hit the ball. But in cricket, getting out is a VERY BIG DEAL, indeed. Oh, the pressure!
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