हिन्दीಕನ್ನಡമലയാളംதமிழ்తెలుగు

Warne's dramatic exit an opportunity for the rest

Written by: Mamatha Maben
Published: Wednesday, February 12, 2003, 5:01 [IST]
 
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Bangalore: World Cup 2003 has already turned out to be a cracker of a tournament in every sense of the word; be it on the field or off it.

The tournament's just three days young and we already have five marvelous centuries; of which Symonds' and Lara's are absolute standouts - not to forget Klusener's magic, Akram's awe inspiring spell and the breathtaking opening ceremony. Add to it the contracts row, England and New Zealand's boycott calls and top that with Shane's 'shocker' it feels like you've already been served up your main course.

Bangla's defeat too adds to the fervour.

India is yet to step into the center stage and when that happens the party is going to hit a crescendo.

Setting the rest of the excitement aside and coming to the 'news' of the day, Warne's departure has dealt Australia a body blow and has, most certainly, opened up this tournament further.

Although Pakistan was outdone Warne's absence is bound to tell as the days unfold. If the opposition happen to see off the opening three bowlers with out losing much then Australia is going to hurt. Don't forget it was Shane Warne's performance in the semi-final and final that had a major hand in Australia's crowning glory.

With West Indies threatening, Sri Lanka slipping into form, India beckoning, South Africa looking to bounce back, Pakistan lurking, New Zealand vying and England good for the count, this tournament is as open as it gets - not to forget Zimbabwe.

Australia better beware; there are quite a few queuing to pull the rug of its feet.

But mind you Australia's greatest strength is its ability to fight. If there is one thing that was showcased in today's encounter versus Pakistan it is the 'character' of the team.

Most teams would have being numb from the 'drug' effect, but the way the Aussies performed barely a few hours upon hearing the devastating news is ample testimony of the strength and character of the team.

It is not going to be easy because you can rest assured that the Aussies are not going to throw in the towel that easy.

However, there is a definite chance here and it remains to be seen if any team will make it count.

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