South Africa in Australia 2012-13

Siddle, Hilfenhaus put on ice

Daniel Brettig

November 27, 2012

Comments: 68 | Text size: A | A

Peter Siddle is exhausted after the draw, Australia v South Africa, 2nd Test, Adelaide, 5th day, November 26, 2012
Peter Siddle bowled 63.5 overs in Adelaide and was exhausted by the end of it © Getty Images

Peter Siddle and Ben Hilfenhaus will not bowl another ball before the first morning of the third Test against South Africa, beginning on November 30 in Perth, as Australia try to freshen up the exhausted fast bowlers after their unstinting but ultimately fruitless efforts in Adelaide.

Siddle's performance was particularly noteworthy, pushing through crippling fatigue to take the hosts to within two wickets of a 1-0 series lead. Those exertions mean both he and Hilfenhaus are in considerable doubt to be recovered in time for Perth, leaving open the possibility of a dramatically recast bowling attack that may feature Mitchell Johnson, Mitchell Starc, John Hastings and Josh Hazlewood.

Australia coach Mickey Arthur indicated that a wholesale swap of bowlers for Perth was a distinct possibility, granting the captain Michael Clarke a far fresher line-up of bowlers while South Africa continue to rely on the same quartet they brought for the tour. The visitors have been helped by the stout batting display that not only secured a draw but also gave Australia's bowlers an enormous workload while their opposite numbers reclined in the Adelaide Oval dressing rooms.

"It's certainly something we need to look at," Arthur said. "I think both Hilf and Sids have been outstanding, especially Sids - I thought there was a huge effort, a really warrior-like effort. We've got a couple of days off, I can't see them bowling any balls at training, so we've just got to see how they pull up, see how they come up in Perth.

"Hence we've given ourselves cover, in case they don't pull up well we're in a position where we could go with a completely different attack into Perth. That will depend on how Hilf and Sids travel, and we've had Mitchell Starc with us and we know he's ready to go as well.

"The training becomes more individualised now with such a quick turnaround. We've got a lot of new bowlers coming in, those bowlers will be very keen to impress I'm sure. So the quality of bowling around the nets is going to be first rate - and I'm sure our bowlers are going to get a really good hit out and be ready to go, come Friday morning."

Johnson's return to the squad for the first time since he suffered a serious foot injury while batting during the dramatic Johannesburg match a year ago is a nod to his formidable record in Tests at the WACA ground - 30 wickets at 18.13 in four matches - but also an acknowledgement of his improved consistency this summer.

"That does play a role, he's had good success at the WACA ground but he's just shown really good progression through the whole summer so far and it's really good to have him back. He gives that little bit of fire and if selected sure he'll be ready to go," Arthur said. "I thought Mitchell was outstanding for us in the one day series in Pakistan, he bowled superbly, arguably one of our best bowlers there during that one day series.

"He's been making good progress through Shield cricket, I went and had a look at him at the WACA just last week and he looked in fairly good touch ... so I think he obviously thoroughly deserves his place and we're very lucky we have a lot of depth in this bowling department right now. These two guys [Siddle and Hilfenhaus] have given it their all and we can have a look at how everybody comes up and make a really well-considered decision for Friday."

Another decision Arthur described as well-considered was that to play James Pattinson at Adelaide Oval after he pushed through 53 overs in the first Test of the series at the Gabba. Having bowled only 9.1 overs in South Africa's first innings in the second Test, Pattinson was forced off by a side/rib injury that ended his Test summer. 
"He's a young fast bowler, he's going to get injured," Arthur said. "Medical reports were that he should be ok, ultimately myself and Michael [Clarke] and the selector on duty make the call and we wanted to go with Patto because we thought he had bowled really well in Brisbane. Unfortunately, young fast bowlers get injured so it was disappointing to lose him during the Test match."

One of Arthur's chief tasks will be to ensure his team looks beyond the disappointment of Adelaide, emphasising the positives of dominating the world's No. 1 team for extended periods of both Tests rather than mulling over the two wickets they were unable to take to secure victory.

"We've had a quick chat about that - it took a massive amount out of the blokes and I'm just so proud of the effort each and every one of them gave. The guys are gutted we didn't pull this Test match off," Arthur said. "We spoke to them about it, hopefully we can put that behind us now and it all starts again for us first ball in Perth on Friday."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Posted by Meety on (November 29, 2012, 1:02 GMT)

@SDR_ on (November 28 2012, 18:14 PM GMT) - I agree with what you say about Bird. However, I would say that Hastings is a different bowler since his shoulder injury, & his stats this summer have been every bit as impressive as Bird's. I also disagree about Copeland. I do believe he is Test standard, although I say that mindful of him not being able to secure a place in the NSW bowling line up atm.

Posted by SDR_ on (November 28, 2012, 18:14 GMT)

I don't understand where the selection of John Hastings and Josh Hazlewood has come from. Yes Hastings has had a okay start to the Shield and Domestic season, but is he really Test quality? One thing is for sure Trent Copeland is not Test quality, we tried him and he just isn't at that standard. Same goes for Hastings. He's had a shot at the international level, recently, and he wasn't up to it. If you really want him around, let him prove himself again over time with consistency. And Hazlewood, I can understand the selectors wanting to bring a youngster into the squad, but at least bring someone in who is performing and is a real shot at being our next attacking option. Hazlewood is not there yet, but Jackson Bird is. The Tassie opener has taken 27 wickets already this year at an average of 20 and striking at 38, aligned to his overall record of 87 wickets at 19, striking at 39, and with 6 5-wicket innings and 2 10-wicket hauls. Swing, cut, pace & deadly accuracy, its what we need.

Posted by handyandy on (November 28, 2012, 17:10 GMT)

Four fast bowlers plus Watson will lighten the workload on Siddle. At Perth the spin can be handled by Clarke and perhaps Warner.

Hopefully Watson can also shore up first drop and Ponting will reward the selectors faith in him. If Ponting fails this will probably be his farewell test.

Posted by JimDavis on (November 28, 2012, 15:32 GMT)

It makes much more sense to bring in fresh bowlers, given that all our bowlers are of similar quality anyway. I'm very worried about Siddle in particular, he gave so much in Adelaide. What happened with SA last time in Perth should also come into consideration. If Siddle and Hilfenhaus only last 3.5 days not even a 300 from Clarke would save us. Just because the SA bowlers will be no fresher than ours is no reason not to use home advantage and rotate the bowlers.

Posted by WC96QF on (November 28, 2012, 13:36 GMT)

As a neutral cricket fan watching this series, these 2 teams have provided another great advert for Test cricket. AUS batting has been awesome. Dale Steyn, who is the No.1 Test fast bowler in the world seems to have been completely neutralised. At the same time, I cant help feeling that if Warne and McGrath were stl around, they surely would have got those last 2 wickets. Du Plessis did a great job for SA ! So kudos to both teams. SA did not really look like a World No.1, dominant team. Overall AUS has dominated more sessions. They will be really aggressive at Perth as well, and have a 60:40 chance of pulling off a series win. Will that mean the 4th No.1 Test team in the world in abt 18 months ??!!!

Posted by iDontLikeCricket on (November 28, 2012, 13:17 GMT)

(cont...) For the record, I agree that Australia have by far had the better of the two tests. But the stats have been skewed by Clarke's amazing run, the freak that was Day 1 of the second test, South Africa playing two innings missing a top order batsman (which means batting stats are skewed more towards tailenders), various in-match injuries to both teams, the match positions (strategy of attacking vs defending), etc. They can't be used to accurately sum up the series.

The way I see it, if this was a boxing match Australia have won the first two rounds convincingly on points. But going into the third round either team could deliver the knockout blow. If it's a draw, Australia can claim the moral victory. Not sure either team wants that

Posted by iDontLikeCricket on (November 28, 2012, 13:16 GMT)

@Marcio, you said 'AUS will come out fighting in Perth, and I see no reason why they cannot continue their domination via bat and ball'... seeing as you like statistics, consider that after the first two tests during the previous tour between these two in Australia, SA had a run per wicket average of 53.5 and Australia were 33.4. So 20 runs behind. Similiar to the current statistic you presented. However, Australia managed to overcome that domination to win the final test. Could you see a reason for that happening?

Putting stats aside, perhaps there were other reasons for the turnaround, and that is the point. Firstly, stats do not tell the whole story. Secondly, just because one team has dominated, doesn't mean they will continue to do so against another team that has similar abilities. I think these two are evenly matched. (tbc)

Posted by Marcio on (November 28, 2012, 12:34 GMT)

@Thom Nienaber, I'm glad at least one Saffa shares a similar perspective to me! I am not "spewing obnoxiousness" as Wesley Lazarus seems keen to believe, just offering a biased but rational take on the series to date. Next game starts from a clean slate, bring it on!

Posted by DrTchock on (November 28, 2012, 12:16 GMT)

Oz have dominated the best side in the world for much of this series, granted. But doesn't that just show that the margins are so small? One individual performance can make all the difference - look at KP, when he does his genius thing, England can do anything. Without it, they can be quite ordinary. And that is why I can't help thinking, if SA can actually manage to get Pup out, then we will see that they deservedly are the best side in the world, by winning the match and the series. If the brilliant individual performance comes from a Saffer this time - and Dale Steyn is seriously due - then despite all Oz's dominance, they will finish second.

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 28, 2012, 12:03 GMT)

Be surprised if both Sidds & Hilfy miss this Test if fit & if Watson is fit to bowl... Sidds/Hilfy; Starc; Johnson/Hastings; Lyon; Watto - be happy with either combinations... The Doctor is a big help to swing but a pain to bowl into (afternoon) - thats where you need a Watto & Lyon to put in some long spells - a spinner can get some decent hauls with Hauritz picking up 4 wkts in his only Test there as did Kumble when India beat us... Starc has had a 5 week build up for this Test & looks to have really developed since last summer so is ready to go - hope he gets a bag full...

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 28, 2012, 12:02 GMT)

@Daniel Brettig... If Oz bat first, then the Saffa bowlers will be no fresher than us & after a long flight any injuries carried can be exasperated - Kallis, Philander & possibly Steyn - so if anything, the Oz bowlers will be in a better condition come Friday morning... Never liked quick turn-arounds in Tests with long flights in between (from an injury point of view) - the football codes have been well aware of this issue for a number of years now...

Posted by   on (November 28, 2012, 10:52 GMT)

It,s all to play for in Perth. @crh8971 You must remember, Brisbane was 11 v 10. Adelaide was a great toss to win. Faf's first innings score could well have been a 100 if he had had a fit partner. How many singles were turned down because Kallis couldn't run? If the Saffa's had won the toss and batted with a fit Kallis? The first innings deficit would have been a lot less with a fit team. So Aussie dominated the stats. Let's not get ahead of ourselves. Any team can win in Perth. Should be a cracker! Bring it on!

Posted by   on (November 28, 2012, 9:52 GMT)

We have been completely outplayed in every department in both the tests thus far and everybody seems to forget that SA only just held the Aussies out after their bowling attack was reduced to just 2 seamers and a spinner and we had all the luck in the world___I am only honest and can for the life of me, not see Australia not winning in Perth!

Posted by   on (November 28, 2012, 9:10 GMT)

Johnson is the spiritual successor to Brett Lee in the Australian side, the fact they're considering him for the test shows how perfect his bowling is in those conditions. Ultimately though the sort of bowler Johnson is will always make him better suited to the short form of the game.

Posted by Andross on (November 28, 2012, 8:31 GMT)

On those people saying horses for courses, the trouble is you know what 'course' its going to be, but not what track conditions are going to be faced in the match. I mean, in a situation like in Adelaide, the problem was that Siddle was the only 'strike bowler' for AUS in the last innings, a situation that someone like Mitchel Johnson with plenty of runs behind him could have excelled in. BUT If on the last day, AUS are bowling to defend a marginal total, I think most people would prefer to have Hilfy than an expensive and erratic bowler in Johnson in the side. Maybe Starc can be the middle ground between the two. As for Siddle, if fit, he should play. He's been our best bowler apart from Patto, and even when he's not getting wickets, he's applying pressure.

Posted by Marcio on (November 28, 2012, 8:26 GMT)

@Greatest_Game, is it really that hard to realise that "here" refers to this site in general, not this article? Go back and read the hundreds of comments that appeared after the last day of the 2nd test. All the old favourites magicallly materialised: @FFL, @snick_to_backward point, @ Rednwhite army... the usual stuff from Indian fans so on. I don't need to summarise their, ahem, "findings". Every single post is simply a rehashing of the same odious theme. Maybe they are the same poster, as they don't appear to have an original thought amongst them, and display no capacity to analyse a game or provide intelligent insight. But you know thst already. You are just annoyed by the way I back up my points with facts and figures. @HARCOURT, that cliche is a nice way to avoid the simple truths that those indisputable figures reveal. But you are right in that the figures are unnecessary: anyone who has watched the games so far will be aware of why they are so massively skewed in AUS' favour.

Posted by Cantbat.Cantbowl.CantField. on (November 28, 2012, 8:14 GMT)

Not too worried who bowls in Perth- Aussies will win 1-0. It's science.

Posted by HatsforBats on (November 28, 2012, 7:18 GMT)

@Meety, yeah the SA quicks will be firing. I can't imagine they would risk Kallis though. Quiney is out so Watson will definitely play, Hastings isn't a strong enough bat to replace either. I would like to see Hastings replace Hilf though.

Posted by   on (November 28, 2012, 6:33 GMT)

Marcio - The team that takes 20 wickets deserves to win it is how it has always been, going around everywhere spewing obnoxious fanboism is entirely a different matter. Were India a poor number 1 after they surrendered it 4-0 to England after holding it for 2 years odd, were England poor after surrendering it 2-0 to us earlier this year? The fact is being number 1 doesn't make the situation any more different to being number 8, you still have to get the results. What was achieved at Adelaide gives us the chance to go to Perth with a clean slate and th opportunity to take a series when we haven't been at our best, is that no something a good test side will do?

Posted by HatsforBats on (November 28, 2012, 4:02 GMT)

@ SurlyCynic, that chip on your shoulder must be obscuring your vision, didn't you notice the Australian batsmen scoring double and triple centuries last summer? The pitches played well and rewarded good batting & bowling, neither of which India could do. Why can't you just accept that in losing 8-0 last year India were pathetic, and they seem to be continuing the trend. What do you think? Hmmm?

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (November 28, 2012, 3:45 GMT)

Not sure why we care, as Siddle and Hilfenhaus are far from Australia's best bowlers. We have 4 other replacements, so if these two are too tired, then play the others instead. Starc and Hastings at least are certainly much better bowlers than Siddle and Hilfy.

Posted by xylo on (November 28, 2012, 3:36 GMT)

Mitchell Johnson's return surely means that quality is going up a notch. That was some sarcasm by Mickey Arthur. He seems to be Australia's Irfan Pathan - touted as an allrounder, and delivers once in a blue moon, but is rubbish on most days.

Posted by crh8971 on (November 28, 2012, 2:43 GMT)

@Zulu_Flow_lion - Are you serious? Lillee missed a full two years with a back injury and Thommo had a major shoulder injury. Gee a lot of people post here with almost no real knowledge of cricket. @Marcio is right. The Aussies have dominated the two drawn tests so far on every statistical measure. Heading into Perth what does that actually mean? Nothing! I hope the Aussies can maintain the momentum. The two pitches so far have favoured the batsmen but it is also fair to say that without losing day 2 in QLD and perhaps if Pattinson hadn't gone down injured in Sa we would have had results in both. Both pitches were absolutely consistent with what has been prepared at both those venues for the last ten years so to say they have been deliberately prepared as flat tracks shows a complete lack of knowledge. Groundsmen in Australia are given instructions to try and produce pitches that generate a result on the fifth day. This has tended to mean pitches are flatter than they once were.

Posted by HARCOURT_CUMBERBACH on (November 28, 2012, 2:34 GMT)

Mario, 40% of people know that statistics can be used to prove or disprove anything 87.5% of the time.

Posted by Asadpk on (November 28, 2012, 2:23 GMT)

Rotation is the norm in Baseball (where one pitcher starts and often finishes the game unless a relief pitcher or closer is required) so it wouldn't be a bad idea to save Hilfi & Siddle for the 4th Test and the next series. Johnson (horses for courses), Starc and Hazelwood (both future stars) will still be a very good attack at WACA.

Posted by challagalla on (November 28, 2012, 0:55 GMT)

@Biggus. Man you are priviledged to have watched that test live. Those days cricket in India meant radio commentary only. We had no TV coverage in India. Some writers compared that knock of Fredericks to that of Stan Mccabe in 1932 bodyline series. Andy Roberts bowled one of the most astonishing spell of fast bowling in Madras [ Chennai now ] and this I saw live. West Indies had toured India the previous year 1974-75 and won 3-2. They had a miserable time in Australia.

Posted by Meety on (November 28, 2012, 0:45 GMT)

IMO - Oz can't select Watto - no match fitness, (one innings in 5 or 6 weeks), & we need 5 bowlers. So Starc in for Patto, Hastings in for Quinney. If either of Hilfy or Siddle are not up to it, I have no drams with MJ coming in. I would however, go Hazlewood for Lyon if there is not much chance that a spinner will be used. @HatsforBats on (November 27 2012, 11:07 AM GMT) - I think Steyn & Morkel have the benefit of an extra day to recover. I would expect both will be fit to play (agree that Steyn has NOT been as menacing as expected & am genuinely surprised at how good/great Morkel has been). I'd be a bit surprised if Kallis plays - if he does, IMO the Saffas should get no sympathy if he re-injures himself.

Posted by Greatest_Game on (November 28, 2012, 0:35 GMT)

Marcio - G'day mate. I'm trying to understand your comments. Yours is the third past here, and you start off by writing "Of course the usual suspects bash the AUS bowlers."Pablo123 wrote nothing about Oz bowlers. Pras_Punter wrote nothing about Oz bowlers. They both commented about both the teams, so they can't be the usual suspects.

Who could the suspects then be? Micky Arthur or Dan Brettig. I don't see anything by them bashing the Oz bowlers. They discuss the bowlers, but don't bash them.

Were comments previously posted and then removed…..or comments I cannot see - I see 29, Starting with Pablo123 and ending with Biggus? If not, I'm stumped. What is Marcio talking about. Who are the "usual suspects?"

Someone please fill me in, as I'm getting a little worried about my mate Marcio. There must be something I'm missing because reading his posts it seems as if he is replying to people who have not posted anything. It's like there are imaginary people whose posts offend him.


Posted by dinosaurus on (November 28, 2012, 0:12 GMT)

@Surly Cynic,

You seem to have only one tune, that Australians manipulate their pitches to suit their needs. I've taken an active interest in cricket since the 1950s, and the Adelaide pitch has always been exactly as it was this week. Adelaide is famous fro fifth day victories or for tense draws just like this latest match. And the Brisbane pitch was certainly not doctored either. Look at the sustained bounce right through the match. You forget that these are two teams that play tough hard cricket and are raised on fast bouncy pitches. Don't rubbish Aussie curators; be in appropriate awe of both teams' performances. And to answer your specific question, the Adelaide pitch this year was almost identical to the Adelaide pitch last year, just a little *faster* on the early days that's all.

Posted by chippymunk on (November 27, 2012, 23:59 GMT)

@Scube: You obviously don't understand this great game. Firstly, good on South Africa for fighting to a draw. A credit to them. However, that does not hide the fact that there was only one team that could have won this test or the one in Brisbane, Australia. Clarke has no obligation to give South Africa any sniff of a chance at victory. They DIDN'T deserve ANY chance of victory. The only reason Australia didn't win was a) South Africa fought really well b) We were a strike bowler short. And still we were only two wickets from victory after SA went into their shells. Statistics is what makes cricket great. It told the story not only in Australia taking more wickets, scored more runs, but also that we scored them faster when the game was there to be won. SA's run rate in second innings not taken into account because they didn't want to win doesn't hide the fact that in the first innings they also scored much slower than oz. Only on team dominated. too bad they couldn't win. On to pert

Posted by johnathonjosephs on (November 27, 2012, 21:55 GMT)

If Siddle continues long spells like these, he will become accustomed to it at one point and will not be prone to injuries. You can't run a marathon on your first try

Posted by Liquefierrrr on (November 27, 2012, 21:02 GMT)

@SurlyCynic - did you see the mountains of runs we scored against India? The pitches were the same, India are just horrible away from home. The fact you see it as backfiring suggests a bias against Australia. It also discredits how well SAF played to enable that draw. The stats shown by Marcio cannot be ignored, no matter how badly you want to, and ultimately Steyn & Co have looked more toothless, day 5 of Adelaide aside, than Australia's lineup as is reflected by the runs per wicket each side is averaging. Nice try though, but you are ill-informed about India - we massacred them because we were the better side.

Posted by mixters on (November 27, 2012, 20:29 GMT)

@Scube You have to look at the run rate of both teams to see the intent of there tactics. Or if that is not an indicator of there intent it is an indicator of the quality of the batting and bowling. So its saffas bad batting Aussie good bowling? Or was it SA bad bowling and Aussie good batting? It seemed to me SA have very little desier to win they seem to be waiting for other teams to lose. @marcio all opinions based on facts are facts therefore you opinion is totaly correct. People hate the fact card when it proves there opinion wrong but thats bad luck for them keep up the truth it makes the knockers crazy

Posted by peeeeet on (November 27, 2012, 19:51 GMT)

@Ankit Saigal - hopefully they won't go in with all seamers, particularly with Watson there. The WACA is nowhere near as fast as it used to be so an all out pace attack won't really work. Also we can't expect Clarke to captain the team, score gargantuan amounts of runs AND be the main spinner too, so Lyon will play. He does a great job at the moment - bowls tight, creates a few chances, and allows the seamers to attack. I still don't understand Johnson though. Yeah he has a great record in Perth tests, but it's Johnson! I don't get the ravings about his Shield form. 17 wickets at 29 does not seem enough to warrant selection. I think all the bowlers will pull up fine and we'll see Starc and Watson as the only change.

Posted by stormy16 on (November 27, 2012, 17:40 GMT)

Interesting thought this - Siddle and Hilfy tried but just couldnt get through SA and there is the possibility that SA have worked them out. I think it will cath SA out - surprise ellement. I am not sure about two left armers but there is a fair chance that Aus will play 4 pace men which will add variety.

Posted by yankinsa on (November 27, 2012, 16:35 GMT)

I certainly believe that OZ have shot themselves in both feet (4 feet to be precise - Hilfenhaus and Siddle). Do you really think that they have that many " world class" fast bowlers to now suddenly recover (or be replaced) and win the Perth Test - at a venue that has always favoured SA. Clarke and Hussey have been magnificent but can they keep it up ?? The rest of the OZ line up - especially the top order -have been less than reliable...and this against an attack that does have class but has definitely under performed...... so far. And remember, SA are yet to field a full bowling line up. No - my money is on the proven class of the SA fasts against the limping and/or hyped OZ second stringers.

Posted by Rally_Windies on (November 27, 2012, 16:28 GMT)


When you are quoting facts , you estimate statistics based on the performances of all 22 players on both teams. You come to the conclusion that Aus bowlers are dominating the SA batsmen.

but truth be told, if you minus Michael Clark from the mix and look at 21 players, the stats would be much more even (or even give SA and advantage)

Australia has wasted 2 good opportunities. If you expect Aus to dominate the 3rd Test that means you expect a 3rd double century from Clarke.

If Clarke goes cheaply, Aus will be bundled out for 250, easily giving SA a chance to win the 3rd Test.

Lara could not single handedly hold the WI batting together EVERY game; Clarke won't be able to keep this up forever.

Posted by Biggus on (November 27, 2012, 14:55 GMT)

@challagalla-That knock of Roy Fredericks at the WACA in 75/76 was one of the most astonishing innings I've seen, and the WACA was REALLY fast in those days, far more so than today. Factor in no bouncer limits or protective headgear and it seems all the more amazing in hindsight, and then Andy Roberts, one of my favourite ever quicks went through us like a dose of salts, getting something like 7-57. Was a great game.

Posted by Jonathan_E on (November 27, 2012, 14:41 GMT)

Why bowlers are getting injured more these days than they used to?

My belief is it's too much of the wrong kind of fitness training and not enough actual cricket.

Although, in fact, Lillee *did* get injured early in his career, and pretty seriously too, to the point that nobody was sure he would bowl really fast again. Unfortunately for England in 1974-75, he did...

Posted by bumsonseats on (November 27, 2012, 14:20 GMT)

siddle was over bowled but going for the win fully understandable as for the other guy not sure why. siddle reminded me of bob willis at headingly in 81, were they would never have got the bowl out of his hands. great effort from a whole hearted bowler who always gives his all.

Posted by Daiya on (November 27, 2012, 14:17 GMT)

jkaussie - Touring sides are only allowed to replace injured players as the squad is named for the test series. Home teams name squads on a test by test basis.

Posted by SurlyCynic on (November 27, 2012, 14:00 GMT)

Don't worry Marcio, keep looking at your stats and the you won't have to think about how Aus have prepared flat tracks in home tests to negate the SA bowlers, which has now backfired with the series level heading to SA's favourite Aus venue. Would Aus have prepared these pitches for India? Hmmmm.

Posted by   on (November 27, 2012, 13:53 GMT)

"Unfortunately, young fast bowlers get injured " seems to be a self-fulfilling prophecy.. I never heard of a young Ambrose and Walsh, Lillee and Thommo "getting injured" as much as the young fast bowlers of this era.. Have fast bowlers become soft or what? with all the technology and support staff these days you'd expect bowlers to have more stamina and conditioning not less.

Posted by RoJayao on (November 27, 2012, 13:38 GMT)

Agree Ankit Saigal, it's worked the last two perth games, nothing in Adelaide indicated to me that Lyon should be there for Perth. I'd be surprised if one or both of Hilffenhaus and Sid were not rested though, which is a pity, especially Sid missing. Don't want Johnson back, but on the other hand he is the one guy the Saffers least want to see back for Perth. Let's just hope it's the good Johnson and not rubbish Johnson that turns up!

Posted by V-Man_ on (November 27, 2012, 13:36 GMT)

i really hope we see a better pitch than the last two. i think the australian curator done this intentionally to blunt the SA pace attack. but now it seems like they have shot themselves on the foot. top effort by siddle by the way. i know how he feels. once i sent down 37 overs in 24 hours. but siddle will be fine fo waca. i think aussies will pick siddle, hilf, lyon and the guy who bowls to both sides of the wicket Johnson.

Posted by Marcio on (November 27, 2012, 13:27 GMT)

I suppose i should actually do the math before posting! The actual runs per wicket = SA: 37.94, AUS: 60.02. So the difference is over 22 runs per wicket. Again, that just huge, and just reinforces the point I was making about appreciating what the AUS bowlers have done this series so far, and the genuine domination of Australia's batsmen in the series. I hope I can actually post this without getting a heap of angry responses. Some people round here really don't like being told hard facts, and we are all entitled to base our opinion on those facts.

Posted by Scube on (November 27, 2012, 13:12 GMT)

@ Marcio: I think your posts prove how statistics can sometimes be used to lead to self-gratifying results taking the bigger picture out of context! Do you really believe that SA really had a chance to play any differently in their 2nd innings in both the tests? With 2.5 sessions left in first test and trailing by 100+ runs, they couldn't score a quickfire 300 and set a target for Aussies! Same goes for chasing 431 in 4 and a bit sessions! So, obviously they had to shut shop in both games and Aussie bowlers would indeed have great economy rates to show for! If Clarke was right not to set a challenging target of around 375 because he was short of one bowler, so are Saffas to shut shop from the first ball rather than showing bravado with a key batsman injured! With this background, bowlers, economy rates, runs per wicket, batsman strike rate, etc. etc. will all be loaded against SA! Hmm..if only such statistics could be used to demand the #1 ranking from ICC!

Posted by challagalla on (November 27, 2012, 12:39 GMT)

How good are these two guys , Hastings and Hazlewood ? I cannot imagine a fast bowler going through 63 overs in the test and still being fit. But Siddle is strong and I think he will show up. I saw the last hour play of the last day and you could see siddle straining every ounce to deliver. Fantastic stamina and effort from him. He must have lost atleast 3-4 kgs in weight. I hope he plays in the only pitch responsive to pace in Australia today,the pitches are so slow elsewhere. I was listening to Radio commentary of a test at Perth between Australia and West Indies, in 1975-76. Roy Fredericks blasted the Aussie pacers to all corners of the ground.Who does that to Lillee and Thomson. WI won that test and lost all the others. Not many tourists could have played a knock like Fredericks did. Raw courage backed by great reflexes. Thats the kind of knock I want to see in Perth coming Nov 30th. It was so exciting just listening on Radio and thats all we discussed in school the next day.

Posted by PFEL on (November 27, 2012, 12:29 GMT)

"Nice play by SA. Made AUS exhausted over two tests and dismantled their bowling across two tests. " . . . wow i really hope you are joking

Posted by Marcio on (November 27, 2012, 12:20 GMT)

@TopC, I'm just telling it like it is, and backing it with the statistics. You cannot just explain away such a massive differential in the runs per wicket and per over (see my other post) by saying your change bowler pulled up lame. These stats are for the full two games, including the period when Pattinson - who is the strike bowler not a change bowler - was out. The differential is undeniable. Fortunately for SA, Smith is under not such delusions. But if you think SA is just going to rock up to the WACCA and stroll away with a victory, you are in just as much denial as the posters at the beginning of the series who were singing the same song. Wouldn't it be smarter to actually acknowledge what has been going on in the field, rather than just saying the same thing over and over while the game tells a different story? Sooner or later the painful truth will have to hit home. SA is not superior in these conditions.

Posted by   on (November 27, 2012, 12:18 GMT)

I think people are forgetting that both sides in this series have very good batsman and that the wickets in Brisbane and Adelaide have been batsman's paradises. I believe the groundsman where directed to make the wickets like this because of the fear of the sides bowling attacks ripping through the batsman and tests finishing up in 3 days. Seems they have made the wickets too good and thus we have had two draws. Don't be too quick to put down the bowlers on either side in this series they are working against very good batsman on flat tracks.

Posted by jkaussie on (November 27, 2012, 12:08 GMT)

@Darshan Dias Abeysinghe incorrect, the touring sides can fly in any player they wish, there is no restriction on that at all. You wouldn't be intimating that Australia is cheating would you? I hope not.

Posted by Marcio on (November 27, 2012, 12:07 GMT)

@Pablo123, you mean you hope "Australia are deflated". You simply do not know their mindset. AUS will come out fighting in Perth, and I see no reason why they cannot continue their domination via bat and ball. There is definitely a strong element of denial in many of the SA fans over what has happened so far in the series, and the end of the last game can't mask the fact that SA was into damage control after being blitzed, and the team has not looked remotely like winning any of the 3 games on this tour so far. I certainly make no predictions for the last game, but to pretend what has happened so far on tour is merely an anomaly to be replaced by "superiority as usual" would be very naive indeed.

Posted by Marcio on (November 27, 2012, 12:00 GMT)

I suppose I should have added that in this series the AUS bowlers have also gone for an average of a massive 3 runs per over less than the SA bowlers - as well as 15+ runs per wicket less. So think before you bash - although there doesn't seem to be a lot of thinking that goes into some posts around here. If Pattinson had been on board (not even mentioning if Watson was there) AUS would have won the game well before tea 95% of the time. You should really keep that in mind before ripping into guys who busted their guts in very difficult circumstances. The SA bowlers, considered the best on the planet, have struggled in all three games on tour, with all opponents racking up big runs at amazing pace for long format games. Three times is too much to be a mere coincidence. So far at least, the AUS (& AUS A) batsmen have feasted on the SA attack. Just one more thing to consider before bashing Hilfy, Lyon & Siddle (by way of comparison).

Posted by   on (November 27, 2012, 11:49 GMT)

Did anybody consider the option of going in with four pacers... Siddle, Hilfy, Starc and Johnson ... its Perth we are talking about ... any takers?

Posted by SudharsanVM on (November 27, 2012, 11:41 GMT)

Nice play by SA. Made AUS exhausted over two tests and dismantled their bowling across two tests. There were loses on SA side also. Kallis and philander. Now can go on attack AUS.

Posted by   on (November 27, 2012, 11:40 GMT)

This can only be done by the home side, cause the touring side is unable to change their whole attack unless they are within the 15 member squad.

Posted by RandyOZ on (November 27, 2012, 11:31 GMT)

There is no way Hilfenhaus should be anywheree near the team in Perth. One good summer in a career of mediocrity does not get you a fixed place.

Posted by TopC on (November 27, 2012, 11:20 GMT)

@ Marcio...isn't it time you came back to reality? Have you forgotten that Australia were 3 for 50 odd when Kallis pulled up lame? Perhaps, Australia would have been all out by lunch, if only he had been able to bowl 9 overs.... hahaha.

Posted by HatsforBats on (November 27, 2012, 11:07 GMT)

I would not be suprised to see a complete change in lineup. There is no way Siddle will be sharp enough after his mammoth effort, and Hilfenhous hasn't been penetrative enough. I'm even more interested to see if Steyn will show up this time, he's been very disappointing as the best bowler in the world. Philander is slower than I thought but Perth will reward him well I think. Morkel has bowled some absolute beauties without reward, things just might go his way at the Waca. Predicting a SA win and a Clarke failure; I hope I'm wrong.

Posted by edgie on (November 27, 2012, 11:02 GMT)

ahhhhh MArcio, give up bro, the aussie bowlers could not get the job done, plain and simple. They had one and a bit days to bowl the proteas out but they didn't. And yes, only two wickets, but that will forever show that they were prevented the win, and not that they coudl not get it, they were not allowed the victory. So chill out, grab a beer, and savour the draw...

Posted by mattboosa on (November 27, 2012, 10:28 GMT)

Has anyone heard the latest on Harris? Last I heard he was probably going to be right for the SL series. It would be good to have him back. Needs a shield game or two before being considered. I think they should still take 3 seamers and Lyon into the Perth test not the 4 pace men, it just depends on who it will be!

Posted by dalboy12 on (November 27, 2012, 10:04 GMT)

This series was cracked up to be the battle of the two best bowling attacks --- yet so far the batsman have gone well. Aussie have so much depth at the moment when it comes to quick bowlers, what other team even SA could field a completely new quick attack. Perth will be a great battle again, be interesting to see what the pitch is like as it seems to have got more batter friendly lately.

Posted by PrasPunter on (November 27, 2012, 10:04 GMT)

@Marcio, love that take on things Mate, just that it feels bitter that we couldn't go past the line. Wish that happens in Perth !!

Posted by Marcio on (November 27, 2012, 8:56 GMT)

...and given that Pattinson was only able to bowl 9 overs in the game, it is an even more remarkable achievement that they came within 2 wickets of a huge win over what is described as the best batting lineup in the world.

Posted by Marcio on (November 27, 2012, 8:53 GMT)

Of course the usual suspects bash the AUS bowlers, but the fact is they are doing much better than thier SA counterparts - a full 15 runs per wicket! You'd think the bashers might find time to also find fault with that opposition attack, but no. One bad day when the strike bowler is out is all you need to launch an attack.

Posted by PrasPunter on (November 27, 2012, 8:22 GMT)

the sooner we put behind us the disappointment of not winning in Adelaide, the better. SA will be pumped up for sure, so we got to brace ourselves to face a charged-up SA team. We responded from the lows of scoring a certain 47, so don't think why we can't pick ourselves from a better position. Go for it, give it all, do a Siddle !! God bless Aus !!!

Posted by Pablo123 on (November 27, 2012, 8:18 GMT)

Micky - Perth is going to be tough for you guys. I see it this way. SA were on the ropes, AUS punching them left right and centre, they just kept standing, taking it. Now that AUS are deflated, you can expect a massive counter attack by SA in Perth.

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Daniel BrettigClose
Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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