I don’t have a real lot to say about the axing of S R Waugh, as I don’t care too much for one day cricket. But a few points:
1. Two of the selectors (as we all know) are AB and DC Boon. AB was forced out before he was ready and Boonie was dumped from the one-day side and then told he was told to retire from the Test arena. On the one hand AB and Boonie may have felt for Tugga but on the other they know it’s how it goes. AB said that “after he hung up the phone we felt physically sick” – well that may be true but I doubt he shed any tears. I personally feel more for AB – fancy having to tell Steve Waugh he’s been dropped – doing it by phone was definitely prudent.
And Tubby Taylor and Heals have received similar unceremonious treatment. (And I my opinion, those selection decisions were one of the main reasons why we won the last World Cup. That and the fact that we played Pakistan in the final and they were able to receive quite reasonable odds from an unknown bookie in southern India on an Australian victory…).
2. I’m not sure whether Waughs demise is good or bad. I don’t think it’s a knee-jerk reaction as the team and Steve had not played well in the one-day season. Personally, Steve’s Test summer was not that flash either. I’m not sure how it will affect team morale. I tend to think the players will rally around him and be even more motivated for the Tests against South Africa. I’m not sure about Waugh personally – he is very tough and determined and the Test arena will be his main avenue to press for reselection in the One-Day squad.
3. Steve Waugh is putting on a brave face and talking about pressing for reselection. I tend to think that he should just exit gracefully from One Day cricket. There is NO WAY that he will be reselected as it is completely contrary to the stated reasons for dropping him. And dropping him once has been traumatic enough – reselecting him introduces the risk of having to drop him again!!! We won’t be going there.
4. Mark Waugh should be very worried. Did I say “very”? What an understatement. By starting with the king, it will be very easy to scratch the clown. If Junior doesn’t score some serious runs in the Test series then we may not see him play international cricket on our sunny shores again.
These are my opinions about what I think may or will happen. I’d like to put on record that I love both Steve and Mark (even though they don’t love each other) and will be sad to see them go. I acknowledge that Steve can be a hard, grumpy bastard and that Mark may lack some ethics but they have been great players whom I have watched for many, many hours and they are very much a part of a golden age of Australian cricket which has lasted for over a decade.
Now I’m shedding some tears.
Later, cricket lovers.
PS: Does anyone who lives close to me have Foxtel?