January 21, 2010

Indians Draw First Blood

Posted in Cricket tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 10:55 pm by techtwist

India won the first test at Mirpur by a comfortable margin of 113 runs, thanks largely to the Ishant Sharma, Zaheer Khan and Amit Mishra who bowled with a lot of fire. At the begining of the final day’s play, India needed another 8 wickets for victory. The Bangladeshis kept losing wickets at regular intervals and it looked like the game would end even before lunch. But the actual resistance started only after the lunch break. It was a lone effort by just one Bangladeshi.

Mushfiqur Rahim played very sensibly and kept one end tight. But the wickets kept falling at the other end and he was running out of partners. He then took the attack to the Indians and played splendidly and scored his maiden test century. It was a phenomenal effort as he looked very solid at the crease. Had another couple of other batsmen got in, anything would have been possible. He was the last man dismissed. This was the fastest century by a Bangladesh batsman in a test match.

For the Indians, Mishra picked up 4 wickets, Ishant picked 3 and Zaheer Khan picked 2. They looked in good shape. Sachin Tendulkar was declared the Man of the match for his splendid century in the first innings. He also praised the efforts of the bowlers and Gautam Gambhir and was happy about Ishant Sharma’s rhythm. He said that he would like to see Ishant bowl well in the coming match also.

Sehwag was repeatedly questioned about Bangladesh’s bowling effort and he said that they still didn’t pick up 20 wickets. When asked about why he declared when they were 8 down in the second innings he replied that he did it to win the game. When asked about Rahim’s effort, he said that he batted well. The reporters tried to catch Sehwag off gaurd by asking him about his personal performance against Bangladesh and his wish to play well against them this time around. They asked him whether he was satisfied with his performance in the game and he said yes immediately. Thats Sehwag for you.

During the course of the game, Laxman injured his hand and has been declared out of the series. There hasn’t been any replacement sent for him. Dhoni and Harbhajan have recovered from their injury and are available for the next test starting on Sunday. Sreesanth also pulled his hamstring today and there has been no news about him as yet. If he’s out, it would probably mean that Harbhajan Singh would replace him and Murali Vijay would replace V.V.S. Laxman. Dhoni would walk in strainghtly to replace Dinesh Karthik and also take over the captaincy.

Picture Courtesy : Cricinfo

January 17, 2010

Bangladesh On Top

Posted in Cricket tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 11:59 pm by techtwist

Yes, you read it right. Bangladesh are on top on Day One of the Idea Cup Test series. After Sehwag’s comment that their team was an ordinary test team, they’ve really pulled up their socks and bounced back strongly. India were 8 for 213 at the end of days play. No one would’ve expected this specially with the way the Indians started. They were 63 for no loss at lunch after a delayed start. Sehwag and Gambhir played some shots though the ball wasn’t coming onto the bat. Earlier Shakib Al Hasan won the toss and put India into bat. The moisture made the conditions tough for the batsmen.

After a steady start, Indians faltered badly and lost wickets with not much runs on board. It wasn’t hostile bowling from the Bangladeshi bowlers, but rather some lose cricket by the Indians. Sehwag fell to a lose stroke when he pushed at a ball whcih didn’t come to him as fast as he expected. Gambhir chased a wide delivery outside the off stump the very next over. Dravid was bowled by a late out-swinging full length ball. Laxman was rather unfortunate when he mishit the ball and it rolled to the keeper and was stumped. Yuvraj Singh holed out at mid on off a full toss. Dinesh Karthik played a drive even before he was set and was caught at gully.

Tendulkar waged a lone battle and the tail gave him some sort of support. The Indians didn’t apply themselves and have only themselves to blame. Shakib and Shahadat Hossain were the pick of the bowlers, picking up four a piece. Whatever said and done is over. The Indians have to put their head down from here on and look to play positively. Indians will probably look for as many more as possible and then the bowlers should take the responsibility to keep them in the hunt. Absense of Harbhajan Singh doesn’t help India’s cause. But it is a good chance for the likes of Amit Mishra and Ishant Sharma to make their presence felt. As Tendulkar said, there is still a ¬†long way to go and a lot of cricket left. Sehwag and his men have to play their best game on the field to prove a point to the minnows.

P.S. : Pics Courtesy – Cricinfo

Tendulkar Pulls Out Of T20 Action

Posted in Cricket tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 11:24 pm by techtwist

Sachin Tendulkar recently pulled out of the T20 season in Middlesex colors scheduled during the English summer. He had earlier been in talks with the Middlsex Boss’ when they showed their interest to sign him along with Adam Gilchrist in their ranks. Tendulkar told the club that it would be an additional workload in an already heavy International schedule. He also explained them that he was keen to prolong his career in the big stage and hence he was not ready to risk the excess load.

Middlesex County Cricket Club Chief Executive Vinny Codrington said,”We are all naturally extremely disappointed that Sachin has reached the decision not to join us this year, as without doubt, his presence within the Middlesex ranks alongside Adam Gilchrist would have been a major coup for the club. When the news initially broke that we were in negotiations with Sachin, it quite rightly created major headlines in all the sports pages, and it’s a real shame we have been unable to reach a satisfactory outcome to our discussions with him. Sachin was very open and honest with us when advising us of his decision and he went to lengths to express how flattered he was that a club like Middlesex were so keen to have him on board.”

He also added, ” Whilst extremely keen to join the club, Sachin felt he wished to concentrate his efforts on prolonging his international career at the top of world cricket, and believed that the additional workload of playing Twenty20 cricket in the UK for Middlesex this year would place too much pressure on his already busy cricketing schedule. We would like to express our thanks to John Stephenson, MCC’s Head of Cricket, for all his help, and we wish Sachin continued success with India and our thanks go to him for giving the Club every consideration”.

March 9, 2009

When The Batsmen Ruled, The Sixes Rained!!!

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 4:48 pm by techtwist

Christchurch did see an amazing display of Batsmanship. The crowd couldn’t have asked for more. The climate, for once, was amazing and it was something that all of us had been waiting for. MSD again won the toss and decided to bat first. Sehwag fell early without being able to make the most of the splendid wicket. The ground looked small and I felt that Indians won’t score so much after Sehwag departed.

Gambhir walked in and he didn’t look his usual self. He looked very scratchy and he was not even able to put the bad balls through the gap. He looked completely out of touch. I was not surprised to see him get out to such a weak shot. Then came the turn in the tide. Tendulkar joined hands with Yuvraj Singh and the duo just did everything right. They kept clobbering runs of every over at an alarming rate.

Yuvraj made the best use of the small dimensions and kept clearing the rope every now and then. The duo were particularly deadly during the third power play during which they managed to score 78 runs off 5 overs!!! But Yuvraj fell 13 runs short of the century. By then the damage was done and the platform was set for a big score. Later Dhoni took over from Yuvraj and joined hands with the Little Master.

Tendulkar reached his first centuryin New Zealand¬† at almost run a ball and then completely changed gears. He went from strength to strength and he looked like the vintage Tendulkar. He was set to score a 200, but then he got injured and retired after an amazing knock of 163*. Raina then came in and smashed a 18 ball 38 to ensure that the scoring rate didn’t fall.

In the last two overs, the Kiwis came back and ensured to keep India under 400. Clearly they missed Daniel Vettori and it showed. New Zealand also started off briskly and Jesse Ryder and Brendon McCullum seemed to take the game away from the Indians. Both scored at more than run a ball and Ryder was ruthless. He smashed his ton off just 71 balls. The duop put on 164 for the first wicket. After that they collapsed to 217/7. The tailenders then took the game alarmingly close. Kyle Mills scored a 50 in about 25 odd balls to put them back on track. But his dismissal opened the gates again.

The Kiwis were caught 53 runs short of the target. Clearly Brendon McCullum had a tough day as the Captain. A total of 31 sixes were scored in the game ( India – 18, New Zealand – 13 ) which is the new record. The total runs scored in the game stands second only to the 400+ chase that South Africa made against Australia. Many more records also tumbled in due course. Tendulkar was adjudged the Man Of The Match.

October 1, 2008

Ganguly – The Man Of Comebacks

Posted in Cricket tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 11:39 pm by techtwist

The history repeats. To my liking ( or even to Ganguly’s for that matter ) it has happened very quickly. Saurav Ganguly was again on the verge of being pushed aside and out of International Cricket for once. But his strong record has saved his head again. One of the selectors said his experience, character and resilience has put him ahead of the youngsters like Rohit Sharma, Yuvraj Singh and Mohammad Kaif. They feel these three qualities are very important for a tough series against Australia.

As a build up to the series, Saurav Ganguly is expected to play a India A test against New Zealand A as he has not been a part of the current team who are at a conditioning camp at Bangalore. Ganguly has an impressive average of 50.67 aggregating 1571 runs since his comeback in December 2006 during which he has also scored a maiden double century. The surprise packages were Amit Mishra and Subramaniam Badrinath. Both made it to the 15 member squad.

Badrinath said he expected a call up. What the selectors have done is that they have sent a strong message. Badrinath will be under the shadow and will me the most likely one to replace Ganguly. Meanwhile Mishra will be the third spinner and likely to be the successor of Kumble. Too ealry to make a call. But this seems to be the pattern. Pragyan Ojha and Piyush Chawla were left out. I felt Ojha deserved a place in this squad.

Meanwhile the news from the camp is that the team has been really working hard on its fitness and the bowlers on getting their rhythms right. They were made to bowl with teh fifth stump just to get thier ” just outside off stump ” line right. The first Test starts in Bangalore on October 9. The second is in Mohali from October 17-21. The squad for the remaining fixtures, in Delhi and Nagpur, will be named after the second Test. Here’s the squad :

  • Anil Kumble
  • Virender Sehwag
  • Gautam Gambhir
  • Rahul Dravid
  • Sachin Tendulkar
  • Saurav Ganguly
  • V.V.S. Laxman
  • Mahendra Singh Dhoni
  • Harbhajan Singh
  • Zaheer Khan
  • Ishanth Sharma
  • Munaf Patel
  • R.P. Singh
  • Subramaniam Badrinath
  • Amit Mishra

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