NEXT week, the Australian international cricket season kicks off with the first Test against New Zealand. The Kiwis will play two Tests and then India will play four more, beginning in December. Next year, Australia, India and Sri Lanka will play a triangular limited overs tournament.
Australia is in the midst of a transition but it remains to be seen to what extent the new set of selectors are prepared to experiment. Ricky Ponting and Michael Hussey are both well into their 30s and not exactly setting the Nullarbor on fire when they go out to bat. Mitchell Johnson has been erratic to put it mildly, with more downsides than upsides.
And Brad Haddin has shown an inclination to throw his wicket away at the worst of times. His keeping is pretty poor too.
Continue reading Time for Australia to blood new cricketers
BASIL D’Oliveira died on November 19. I remember him because of the fact that he was a principal actor in what was the first international series of cricket which I followed on the radio. Later, when I was much older, I realised the significance of the role that he had played in exposing apartheid for the evil it is.
The year was 1968 and I was 11 years old. Back then Sri Lanka — which was known as Ceylon — was not yet an international cricket-playing country. That would take another 13 years. But the interest in the game was phenomenal, so much so that the local radio station was able to find a sponsor to cover the charges of broadcasting BBC commentary on the Ashes series that year.
Before the series even began, the South African prime minister John Vorster had told Lord Cobham, a past president of the MCC, at that time the body administering the game in England, that if D’Oliveira was selected for the forthcoming tour of South Africa, the tour would be cancelled.
Continue reading Farewell D’Oliveira, a man who changed the system
AUSTRALIA is putting itself in a dangerous position by agreeing to be the meat in the sandwich between the US and China.
The US, realising that it cannot stand up to developing powers on its own, has devised a deal called the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement; this enables the US to act as a parasite and live off eight other countries.
But over and above this, the US wants to use Australia as a proxy staging ground for displaying whatever military might it has left and trying to hold off China from claiming its rightful place as the supreme power in the Asia-Pacific.
Continue reading Desperate US gets set to take advantage of Asia
After being in force for seven years, the free trade agreement Australia has with the US has yielded the former little benefit. The US has been the net beneficiary – last financial year imports from the US totalled $26 billion while exports were $9 billion. 
The figures for 2004-05 were $21.4 billion and $9.2 billion respectively.
Given this, one would naturally conclude Australia would be wary of further deals that would expose it to being taken advantage of by the US.
Continue reading Australia gets ready to bend over for the US – again
NEWSPAPERS are dying.Circulations are dropping and owners are desperately trying to find new business models to keep their companies afloat.
One of the reasons that people in the US despise the written word is because of the amount of spin that is transmitted by journalists.
And here is an excellent example of the kind of garbage that makes people ask whether journalists are in possession of their senses.
Continue reading Why journalists are treated with contempt