Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

Don’t blame the maths for T20 farces

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CRICKET-TWENTY/Paul Collingwood’s call for change to the Duckworth-Lewis system used to determine a target in rain-hit games was understandable, coming as it did after his England team lost  a match despite scoring three times as many runs as their opponent.

It is not the calculation system that needs revisiting, however, but the broader set-up of Twenty20 tournaments.

Frank Duckworth and Tony Lewis have publicly defended the calculation system that bears their names and while there is something grating about seeing West Indies win after scoring just 60 in six overs in response to England’s impressive 191 for five in the regulation 20 overs, it is not the maths that is to blame.

Over two hours of sunlight remained at a stadium that in any case has floodlights when the officials began reducing the overs for West Indies’ innings. A capacity crowd waited patiently for the chance to see a result and in the end saw just a further 3.3 overs of cricket – enough to deliver a formal result but a farcical end to a game when there was all evening left to play the full 20 overs.

Will cricketers follow baseball sluggers down drugs path?

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CARDINALS/Reports that Major League Baseball will introduce testing for synthetic Human Growth Hormone (HGH) in its minor leagues next season year prompt disturbing memories of the explosion in power hitting in the 1990s headed by Mark McGwire and Barry Bonds.

This year McGwire admitted he had taken steroids when he broke Roger Maris’s long-standing home run record in 1998.

India caught short by England in Twenty20 World Cup

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India's Yusuf Pathan gets ready for the final over of the match against England in the ICC World Twenty20 cricket super eight match in London

In the end, few would have missed the irony. England, their feeble limited overs credentials torn apart after their opening defeat against Netherlands, knocking out holders India from the World Twenty20 with a brilliant execution of strategy.

India were pipped by three runs as England handed them their second defeat in the Super Eights on Sunday, eliminating them from the race for a semi-final berth.

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