January 27, 2010

India Clean Up Bangladesh

Posted in Cricket tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 1:30 pm by techtwist

Finally, the champs played like one and went on to win the two-match series 2-0. India beat Bangladesh convincingly by 10 wickets to ensure that they kept their number one position intact. The new ball bowlers did the trick for the Indians and restricted Bangladesh for 233 in their first essay. The score they finally reached was largely because of yet another brilliant performance by Mahmudullah Riyadh who has been in tremendous nick. He scored an unbeated 96 and batted wonderfully with the tail enders.

The Indians started off briskly as usual and both the openers scored their fifty. Sehwag was the first to be dismissed and then walked in Dravid. Gambhir missed reaching the elusive record of 6 centuries in 6 matches when he was dismissed for 68. I felt that he deserved a century for the kind of consistency he showed. Then it was the Tendulkar-Dravid show and both dominated the bowlers mercilessly. Dravid was hit on the head off a Shahdat bouncer and was declared retired hurt when on 111. Tendulkar made 143 and then Dhoni chipped in with a well made 89. Indians eventually reached 544/8 and ended their innings as Yuvraj Singh was out with a torn ligament.

Bangladeshis made it a point to apply themselves and play and Tamim Iqbal scored a wonderful 151. He was well supported by Junaine Siddique (55) and Shahdat Hossain (40). They were comfortably placed at 228/3 at the end of Day 3 and trailing India by just 83 runs. But Day 4 had a different story altogether. Zaheer Khan riped through their bating line-up and ended with figures of 87/7 in the innings and the match tally of 10 wickets. Bangladesh set India a total of 2 for victory and then the Indians won the match when they ran 2 byes off the bowling of Shakib. The Bangladeshi have themselves to blame for as they imploded to defeat.

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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 ┬álong 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”.

December 21, 2008

South Africa Nail Australia

Posted in Cricket tagged , , , , at 1:08 pm by techtwist

Yet another stunning run chase in Tests making it two within a week. First it was India chasing a near impossible 387 versus England at Chennai where the wicket was doing quite a bit for the spinners. Now, it is the turn of the South Africans against the mighty Australians at Perth chasing 413, the second highest target. They have managed to nail the Aussies by six-wickets.

In both the cases, the openers have done their job. It was Virender Sehwag for India who set up the chase with a blitzkreig and it was the South African skipper, Greame Smith, who set up the chase with a stunning century. He played with such an authority that the Aussies didn’t have any of their plans working.

There were also timely contributions and good partnerships from Jacques Kallis, Hasim Amla and Jean Paul Duminy with all the three scoring fifties. Duminy was playing in his debut game and it must be a really proud moment for him. AB deVillers started of from where Smith had left and even he scored an amazing century keeping the Aussie attack at bay just like Tendulkar did for India by carrying the innings till the end. Except Mitchell Johnson who picked up 11 wickets in the game, none of the Aussie bowlers troubled the South African batsmen. Johnson was exceptional and no wonder he picked 11 of the total 14 South African wickets in the game.

The celebrations will be very wild and this paves way for an interesting fight for the second spot on the Test Rankings and both the teams fighting for this spot are doing very well. It would be interesting to see India and South Africa lock horns with this form.

P.S. : Since 2000, a total in excess of 300 has been chased down on nine occasions, the most in any decade. Clearly the targets are easily being chased down in the fourth innings with proper application and good game knowledge.

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