Colin de Grandhomme has once again been called into question after a baffling dismissal on day four of Australia’s victory over New Zealand in the third Test.
De Grandhomme was widely slammed during the second Test at the MCG when he got out playing a wild shot when he should have been trying to get batting partner Tom Blundell to his century.
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And there was similar scenes at the SCG on Monday.
With rain approaching and Australia closing in on victory, De Grandhomme was at the crease with BJ Watling – the former facing over 100 balls and refusing to throw away his wicket in case the weather somehow allowed the Kiwis to salvage a draw.
But it was a different story for De Grandhomme, who refused to put away his usually aggressive ways and went about trying to put Nathan Lyon in the crowd.
It worked a number of times, but things went pear-shaped when De Grandhomme holed out to Joe Burns at deep mid-wicket just after reaching his 50.
Cricket greats Brendon McCullum and Ricky Ponting were gobsmacked in commentary that De Grandhomme would be so reckless.
“I don’t know what to say, really, lads. I’ve seen some bizarre dismissals from Colin de Grandhomme throughout this series, but this one it really really does take the cake,” McCullum said on Channel 7.
“They’ve put on a partnership, fought so hard, you have BJ Watling who is prepared to bat for the remainder of the year if he has to to see his team to safety.
“They need to salvage something out of this tour, that promised the country so much and has delivered so little.
“You have the opposition guessing, wondering, waiting, the clouds are rolling in, who knows what tomorrow’s going to bring.
“This is just absolute madness. Three men out on the fence and all he’s done is chip it straight down cow corner’s throat. All the hard work Colin de Grandhomme has done comes to nothing.
“There needs to be some answers.”
Ponting was equally as scathing, saying: “You can’t tell me he’s thinking about the team one little bit.”
Kiwi fans were equally as furious.
Two unforgivable ways to go out for De Grandhomme in this test. Dumb, dumb, dumb Cricket. #AUSvNZ
— D (@terryrwrist) January 6, 2020
De Grandhomme can’t be serious. Rain forecast tomorrow, survival most important thing today. Out there batting like it’s a 20/20. Goodness me.
— Matt Jackson (@Mjackson_racing) January 6, 2020
Careless from Colin de Grandhomme. BJ Watling has every right to be furious about that. #ausvsnz
— Sim Howe (@SimHowe) January 6, 2020
Is Colin de Grandhomme the most brainless player going around? Man that was a dumb shot. #AUSvNZ
— Scott Gumbleton (@scottgumbleton) January 6, 2020
While a good knock, his dismissal is why de Grandhomme remains an infuriating player. With 10 overs to go in the day, what’s the need to go for another six? https://t.co/dRNkgG2zWT
— Rahul Warrier (@rahulw_) January 6, 2020
Into final ten overs of the fourth day, who the hell knows what Colin de Grandhomme and Todd Astle were thinking there. We deserve to lose this test match tonight and for it to pour with rain all day at the SCG tomorrow. 🤦♀️ #AUSvNZ
— Michael Appleton (@michelappleton) January 6, 2020
As it turns out the rain did hit Sydney just after the Aussies wrapped up the victory and there’s more forecast for Tuesday.
Aussies set sights on India after perfect summer
Australia have set their sights on next season’s heavyweight home series against India after finishing off their most dominant Test summers by flogging New Zealand.
The Aussies completed their perfect Test summer at the SCG on Sunday, pummelling the Black Caps by 279 runs to take the series 3-0.
It marked just the 10th time in their 143-year history they have maintained a perfect record by winning each Test through a summer.
But they know things will be much more difficult in the next year after a tour of Bangladesh in June.
India toppled them for the first time ever in Australia last summer, while the return bout also shapes as a top-of-the-table World Test Championship clash.
“We’ve obviously got our eye on next summer,” Paine said.
“It’s a pretty mouth-watering series for players and for fans (against India). It’s hard not to be looking at that.
“We’re certainly a different side to what they played against last year and there is more at stake with the World Test Championship and both teams eying off that (2021) final.
“It’s going to be an awesome series. They showed last year they have a pace battery that is going to be every bit as threatening as ours.”
Monday’s finale summed up the season, as Australia’s kings of the summer starred again.
David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne both scored big runs to help the team declare at 2-217 and set New Zealand an unlikely 416 for victory.
Nathan Lyon took 5-50 to make it 10 wickets for the match, while Mitchell Starc claimed 3-25 as New Zealand were dismantled for just 136.
Warner’s 111 was his third century of the series, as it took his tally for the summer to 786 runs at 131.
It is the most by an opener in a five-Test Australian summer, as he cover drove as well on day four in Sydney as he did in his century to start the Test season against Pakistan in Brisbane in November.