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Mitchell Johnson dismisses Peter Fulton and New Zeaoland lose their second wicket, Australia v New Zealand, CB Series, 8th match, Perth, January 28, 2007“You make your own luck” in sport they say. Gary Player once said, “The harder I prac­tice the luck­i­er I get” as if things were really that simple.

No team deserves to win a game drop­ping Hayden twice before he’d scored 4 or chas­ing 334 but Lady Luck did not shine her torch on the Black Caps at Perth tonight. Falling 7 runs short with 5 wick­ets in hand is an out­stand­ing per­form­ance in any­one’s book, and more evid­ence that the sum­mer has been turned around since that awful shel­lack­ing by Sri Lanka in December.

But … but … We could have done without Rauf fir­ing Vincent out when he was look­ing in great touch and don’t get me star­ted on the rain inter­rup­tion! It’s hard enough being com­pet­it­ive in Australia when everything from the travel sched­ule to hav­ing to play the best team in the world is stacked against you. For the last sev­en or eight years this Black Cap side has backed itself to score 11+ an over in the final ten if they have wick­ets in hand (and they bat accord­ingly). Duckworth-Lewis does­n’t take that into account (and prob­ably should­n’t even try) but it was the rain break that killed the run chase – and it nev­er seems to hap­pen to Australia IN AUSTRALIA.

[And on the sub­ject of luck: how about los­ing your best striker for sev­en months to a mun­ted ankle in his first ever England train­ing ses­sion. And your new star sign­ing doing his ankle lig­a­ments 20 minutes into his first game for the club – out for sev­en weeks min­im­um. I’d like to see Gary Player explain away that rub­bish.]

Still, we scored 335 against Australia and Oram’s 100 was the fast­est ever by a New Zealander in ODIs. Our luck will have to change soon.