As the World Cup starts I realize I’m liking ODI cricket more now than I used to in the last couple of years. The key thing for me, I think, is the second coming of classical batsmen to One Day Cricket.
The problem with ODIs in the mid 2000s was that it had become a slambang game. Too many slambang players, with dodgy techniques were dominating the scenes. Boundaries got pulled in and pitches became flat (these two are still a problem I must say) and it just degenerated into slugfests. It was, to use a famous phrase, just not cricket.
In a way, I think the coming of T20 has actually helped make the ODIs a more classical game. What it has done is to make the slambang guys specialize in the even more slambang version (it has helped that there is a lot of money to be made by being good at T20).
Suddenly the slambang guys have figured that they’ve lost the skill of building an innings, which is something crucial for the one day game. If your team has to score 300, it is very likely that at least one batsman has to get something like a 100, and scoring 100s is out of the skill-set of the slambangers.
So you see the likes of “holding players” like Hashim Amla and Jonathan Trott coming good at ODIs, while in the mid-to-late noughties they would’ve never been selected for what was then the “shorter form of the game”.
Also, the quality of cricket in some recent ODI series (RSA-Ind, RSA-Pak, etc.) has been encouraging, and if not for the idiotic format I would’ve been really looking forward to the World Cup.
A couple of months back, Bryan Caplan had written:
1. Jet lag. What’s the best way to cope with jet lag? Most people sleep on the plane, then gradually adjust to the local time once they reach their destination. The problem: It often takes a week for people to get a decent night’s sleep. By the time they’re feeling themselves again, they’re almost ready to go home.
My alternative: Do not sleep on the plane. At all. When you arrive, do not sleep – at all – until a locally normal bedtime. Pay the fixed cost without cheating. When you wake up eight to ten hours later, you will be refreshed and in sync with your new time zone. In exchange for less than a day of sleep deprivation, you will feel fine for the rest of your trip.
So I decided to practically test out his advice. When I was flying in to New York over the weekend, I took a conscious decision to not sleep on the flight beyond 7 am New York time. It was hard, and I had to watch drivel such as Sankat City in order to keep myself awake, but after a day of work in New York, I think it is working well. It’s hardly 10pm and I’m feeling insanely sleepy now but I suppose this can be classified as “normal” sleeping time itself.
I also saw Kaminey on the flight. Extremely well-made movie, and the lack of length helps. And I finished reading Jonathan Wilson’s Inverting the Pyramid also during the flight.
New York city is insanely cold, and windy! It is ar eally scary experience wehn the wind hits your face, and there is the chance that your nose might just break and fall off ! When i had gone for dinner last night, I ended up running backwards! Only to save my face from being hit by the wind. Thankfully today the weather was better and I managed to roam for a bit after work.
I hope to update this blog more frequently while I’m here in New York. And doo read all of Bryan Caplan’s article.