Sport

2012: A titanic year on the world's cricket fields

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Kevin Pietersen, Ricky Ponting, the Sydney Sixers, Chris Gayle and Michael Clarke.
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Kevin Pietersen, Ricky Ponting, the Sydney Sixers, Chris Gayle and Michael Clarke. Getty Images

RETIREMENT, runs and rows - it all happened in a titanic year on the world's cricket fields.

A legend retires

RICKY Ponting had some immense battles against South Africa over the years, but even the Proteas stood in awe of his incredible career when he walked out for his final Test innings at the WACA in December.

Ponting, who amassed 13,378 runs at an average of 51.85 from 168 Tests, was given a guard of honour by the South African team.

While the batting legend could survive only 41 minutes for eight runs, his career was something to treasure.

The gritty Tasmanian, who possessed one of the best pull shots in the game's history, left the sport after captaining Australia to two World Cup victories, although he also had the dubious record of leading the country to two Ashes losses (in 2005 and 2009).

Ponting made 41 hundreds in Testsand 30 in one-day internationals.

Clarke's Bradmanesque 2012

IT WAS something not even Don Bradman could achieve.

Michael Clarke's breathtaking 2012 included four double centuries, making him the first man in the history of Test cricket to achieve the feat.

Clarke recorded scores of 329 not out and 210 against India last summer, and 259 not out and 230 against South Africa this summer, to cement himself as a true superstar of the game.

The Australian captain's sublime year has put him second highest in the world rankings, behind evergreen West Indian Shivnarine Chanderpaul.

Clarke could possibly have passed Matthew Hayden's Australian record of 380 and West Indian Brian Lara's 400 not out during his incredible 329 against India, but unselfishly declared to allow his side to go on and win the second Test.

Michael Clarke of Australia hugs team mate Michael Hussey at the close of play during day two of the Second Test Match between Australia and India.
Michael Clarke of Australia hugs team mate Michael Hussey at the close of play during day two of the Second Test Match between Australia and India. Getty Images

Sixers crowned the world's best

WINNING the inaugural Big Bash League last summer was not enough for this star-studded Sixers side.

The Sydney outfit went on to be crowned world champions in October, belting the Highveld Lions by 10 wickets in the final of the Champions League tournament in South Africa.

It was the team's 12th straight victory, with English import Michael Lumb blasting an unbeaten 82 including eight boundaries and five sixes.

The victory came on the back of a seven-wicket win against the Perth Scorchers in last summer's BBL final at the WACA.

Pietersen's spat with the ECB

Kevin Pietersen
Kevin Pietersen AAP

KEVIN Pietersen's stoush with the England Cricket Board appeared long gone after he scored 186 in game two of the recently completed series against India, which the Poms won 2-1.

Pietersen rated his innings in Mumbai as his best, but it came after a bitter chain of events that led to his retirement from the England one-day and Twenty20 teams after he was criticised by Sky Sports commentator Nick Knight.

Pietersen then had a change of heart, but went on to admit he had inexcusably sent provocative text messages to members of the South African Test cricket team about his captain Andrew Strauss, who subsequently retired but said he had made the decision prior to the Pietersen issue.

The divisive batsman was dumped as a result, but "re-integrated" by the ECB for the series against India.

Windies dance to the Twenty20 crown

THE West Indies won their first title since the 50-over World Cup triumph in 1979, at Sri Lanka's World Twenty20 championship in October.

And they were so thrilled about it, they broke into a team Gangnam Style dance following the 36-run win over the host nation.

The Windies scored a modest 6-137 on a spinning wicket at Colombo's Premadasa Stadium, helped greatly by Marlon Samuels's 78 off 56 balls. But Sri Lanka could score only 101 in reply in front of a silenced packed house, with offspinner Sunil Narine taking 3-9 from 3.4 overs.

Australia came into the tournament ranked 10th in the world, below first-round opponent Ireland, but performed well to make the semi-finals.

Topics:  cricket editors picks kevin pietersen michael clarke ricky ponting



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

STABBING: Man rushed to hospital with chest wound

Police at the scene of an apparent stabbing at Redbank Plains this afternoon

Police investigate apparent domestic incident

Two in hospital after crash - at hospital

Reports driver may have blacked out before collision

Woman's $27k property crime spree

Ipswich Police Station and Courthouse. Photo: David Nielsen / The Queensland Times

She targeted homes she knew had valuable items inside

Local Partners

Chris Pratt fell asleep while babysitting

Chris Pratt revealed he fell asleep during babysitting duties

Kylie Minogue: I want to get married soon

Pop star Kylie Minogue has revealed she hopes to get married soon

Amanda Seyfried lets slip the sex of her baby

Amanda Seyfried has suggested the sex of her baby

Meet the Brisbane breakfast radio king's replacement

Craig Zonca ABC Radio

ABC announces Craig Zonca as the replacement for Spencer Howson

How predictable are your Netflix habits?

Stranger Things is taking the world by storm as a new-age nostalgic Sci-Fi Thriller

The new entertainment binging pattern

Kanye West is on the mend now he's back from hospital

Kanye West is more relaxed since returning home from hospital

Ipswich City Properties asset portfolio retains its value

Ipswich City Council Administration Building, South Street, Ipswich. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times

New website launched by Ipswich City Council

INSIDE STORY: The highlights of your $150 million CBD

GRAND PLAN: The highlights of the Ipswich CBD redevelopment and where they will be located.

Work on city heart's radical transformation to begin next year

REVEALED: Timeline for CBD redevelopment

The new redevelopment of the CBD will take place in stages.

Lindsay gives the good oil on when the work will begin

VOTE IN OUR POLL: Sand mine opponents face serious dilemma

Public meeting for the proposed sand mine at Maroochydore last week.

Coast MP calls on Minister to stop KRA proposal with stroke of a pen

PHOTOS: World class CBD to lift Ipswich

An artist's impressions of the future Ipswich city mall.

Grand plans to transform city heart unveiled today

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!