The career of Australia’s best batsman since Bradman ended in Perth this afternoon.
Ricky Ponting’s final innings was disappointingly (though not unsurprisingly) modest, as he was dismissed for just eight runs. On the bright side, Ponting did at least manage to double his score from the first innings.
More impressive than Ricky’s performance with the bat was the spirit of the Perth crowd and the attitude of his South African opposition.
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The Cup’s done with for another year, we repelled the overseas horses with one of our own, or at least a horse bred overseas which has lived here for a while, and now it’s time to see if we can do something similar in the cricket.
Unfortunately we’re playing a world class South African team in the first Test starting at the Gabba this Friday. That’s the South African team from South Africa by the way, not the one that plays for England.
South Africa is the bookies’ favourite to win the first Test. That might seem incongruous given Australia is unbeaten at the Gabba in 24 years, and that no member of the South African touring party has ever played a Test at the ground. But the odds make sense when you look at the Test line-ups.
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I’d like to be able to say that sharing the world’s largest radio telescope with South Africa is a reasonable outcome for Australia.
I’d like to be able to say we deserve to be a part of it. I’d like to be able to say that. But I can’t.
We don’t deserve it. We don’t deserve it because barely anyone knows that it exists.
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It was almost rained out, but England beat South Africa in the cricket World Cup semi-final on this day in 1992.
It’s Tuesday at The Punch. What’s on your mind? Share it here.
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“Please tell everyone South Africa’s not as dangerous as they think.” That’s how most of my conversations have started over the past 10 days as I travelled around the country that will host next month’s World Cup.
It’s just 16 years since Nelson Mandela’s election as president signalled the end of the apartheid era, and like a teenager going to her deb ball, South Africa is nervous about being the centre of attention.
Worried that the roads won’t be ready. Worried that the national team, known to all as Bfana Bfana, won’t perform well. But most of all, worried that the country’s reputation for violence will be the ever-lasting memory of this World Cup.
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It was February 10, 1990 Church Square Pretoria, and my mate thought it was a great idea.
We had spent two months travelling around southern Africa in an old panel van equipped with camping gear, spare petrol tanks and an expired canister of tear gas. South Africa was on the threshold of civil war.
This was most evident to us when we drove through the condemned homeland of Transkei. Even though a state of emergency had been lifted in the so-called separate state, it was a war zone. Smouldering cars, milling youth and a clear absence of law and order said to us we were in the wrong place at the wrong time…..but that is another story.
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It’s Thursday @ The Punch
Today in 1967 the first succesful human heart transplant was performed on 53-year-old Lewis Washkansky in Cape Town, South Africa.
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