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 20, 2010

Advantage India

Posted in Cricket tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 5:09 pm by techtwist

Yet another century by Indian opener Gautam Gambhir ensured a solid foundation and the Indian middle order built on this to set Bangladesh a target of 415 runs. This is Gambhir’s 5th test ton in five consecutive Tests placing him among some of the famous names in the history of Cricket. He was ably supported by India’s night watchman Amit Mishra who scored a well made 50. More over, the pair scored their runs at quite a brisk rate before they were separated. That ensured that the Indians had enough time to pile on some good runs through the day’s play.

After the fall of Mishra, almost every Indian batsman got a good start and then perished when they looked set. V.V.S. Laxman started slowly but later paced his innings beautifully to score 69 and remained not out at the end of the innings. There was some good contributions throughout which saw India go past 400 run mark. Sehwag kept up his promise and ensured that the Indians didn’t lose all their wickets (which would have made it 20 wickets in a test match). India declared when the score was 413/8.

This was also India’s second best run-rate when scoring over 400 in an innings. Indians batted just for about 20 minutes after the tea break. The Bangladeshi batsmen were troubled by the Indian pace attack. Zaheer Khan was very accurate and kept on asking the batsmen questions. He was hitting the right length from the begining and his perseverence paid off when he had Imrul Kayes caught behind. He was pretty unlucky as Shahriar Nafees was dropped by Laxman off his bowling. But Ishant Sharma ensured that there wasn’t much damage by picking up Nafees later.

Everything is set for an interesting final day’s play. Bangladesh need another 348 runs while the Indians have to snap up another 8 wickets to come out victorious. Anything is possible but I feel that the Indians have a good chance of going one up in the series. They should attack the Bangladeshis tomorrow and should never let them out of the groove. The Bangladeshis looked scratchy today and India should capitalise on that.

Gambhir’s Feat :

16 & 137 – India Vs New Zealand – Napier – 26th March, 2009.

23 & 167 – India Vs New Zealand – Wellington – 3rd April, 2009.

1 & 114 – India Vs Sri lanka – Ahmedabad – 16th November, 2009.

167 & DNB – India Vs Sri Lanka – Kanpur – 24th November, 2009.

23 & 116 – India Vs Bangladesh – Chittagong – 17th January, 2010.

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