Marcus Stoinis is a “feel” player. Even if it might not fit with the many macho nicknames that are given to him, such as the Big Rig, The Predator, and The Hulk. Even though it might not be apparent when looking at the very fundamentals of his batting. Marcus Stoinis is a cricket player, but he is also a man, and he is defined by his heart more than his brawn and muscle.
And on Tuesday, October 25, at Perth Stadium, Australia needed every last bit of it. In their camp, some emotion was required. Yes, they obviously needed to win to advance in their World Cup defense effort. But in a way, they nearly required more.
They had initially appeared dull. After that, they had an unprofessional appearance. They appeared unkempt. Even irritated, they appeared. It resembled a hangover from the Black Caps’ crushing defeat on Super 12s opening night in certain ways. In a way, it was the stress of being the home team and facing the terrifying prospect of losing early. Additionally, they were facing a valiant Sri Lankan team that, as usual, was stubbornly refusing to lose despite the fact that the game’s circumstances were clearly in their favor. For most of the opening innings, the body language wasn’t fantastic. Others simply didn’t seem to be able to reach the high intensity feel that most Australian teams build to in whatever game they are part in, while some seemed to be going through the motions throughout phases.
Australia’s first-half performance in Perth had a distinct air of “we aren’t enjoying this,” whether it was the 23 additional runs they let up, a few errors in the field, or even the final over from Pat Cummins.