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Australia's time is up, confirms Roebuck


Posted: Dec 31, 2008 at 1240 hrs IST

Sydney: Well known cricket columnist Peter Roebuck believes that Australia’s period of cricketing domination is over, and therefore, it needs to pass the champions baton to the South Africans.

With Australia losing its series to South Africa 2-0, Roebuck says that the matches at Perth and Melbourne showed the hosts letting go of advantages after securing powerful positions.

“Although the official rankings will grant them a few weeks' grace, the unavoidable fact is that Australia has been beaten by a better side,” Roebuck says in an article for the 'Sydney Morning Herald'.

“At such times, it is tempting to examine the causes of the collapse. Perhaps it is simply that Australia ran out of great players and luck, a combination that often goes together. Perhaps, too, it is better to remember the numerous glories of the past 15 years and not their limitations,” Roebuck adds.

He, however, acknowledges that Australia has played attractive cricket under Mark Taylor, Steve Waugh and Ricky Ponting, scoring quickly, encouraging leg spin, fielding balanced attacks, scorning stalemates and not sledging quite as much as might be imagined.

“Australia was ruthless, sometimes unscrupulous, but seldom dull. Taken as a whole, the teams have enhanced the game, especially its five-day format,” Roebuck says.

“Australia may not have been liked but it has commanded respected, sometimes amounting to fear…Nothing lasts forever and now it is someone else's turn. The game will go on. Australia must lick its wounds and fight back,” he concludes.

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