Monday, September 14, 2009

Win is a No-Win? And a Dummy Spit. Not so serene.

So ... the ODI cricket was an easy-looking win for the Australians at the MCC Lord's ground two days ago, for an unbeatable 4-nil lead in the best-of-seven series. ODI stands for One Day International - a crisper format of the game than the 5-day Test Matches which must bemuse followers of other sports. What kind of game lasts five days??! MCC stands for Middlesex Cricket Club. The win was against "the old enemy" - England - as viewed by Aussies from Down Under; slight revenge for losing the Ashes (another story) to the England side earlier in the year, contested every two years in a series of five of those 5-day Test Matches. That's a lot of cricket.

But here's the rub. If one is a "cricket tragic" - I'm not, really - then what is there left in life when the contest fizzles out? When the series is won and lost and three remaining games are to be "dead rubbers". The TV commentators said the English would use the games as practice for an upcoming tournament against South Africa. Oh, dearie me.

But all was well: the jaded viewer was able on this occasion to switch attention to the semi-finals of the U.S. Tennis Open, just in time to learn of Serena (ha!) Williams' dummy spit (tantrum) and obscene abuse of the lineswoman who called a footfault, costing her the last two points, and hence the match, against the amazing come-back Kim Clijsters who then went on to win the Ladies' Championship. Williams later (next day) huffily conceded that "an apology was warranted" - but somehow held back from actually voicing one. One commentator said that this prominent player had "indelibly tainted her reputation". Amen to that.

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