Cricket: Indians are chasing the goose, again.

India wins the toss and elects to field first. A good toss to win, I hope. The just into it’s 13 over and I am up again trying to compile my thoughts on which may the game may go. Pathan managed a customary break through. This time it wasn’t Butt, it was Kamran Akmal, was gobbled up by Suresh Raina. I think it was a blinder. Then I saw a very neat catch by Rahul Dravid. He being consistent in his stroke play as well as scoring run is also consistent with his slip catching. I think Azhar was a very superlative slip fielder but Dravid is as good as a slip fielder as any. One can add Stephen Fleming, Brian Lara, Shane Warne, in that list of current cricketers. Not all of these play both form of the game. It is after a very long time that I have seen just 26 runs scored after the first 10 overs. I am however interested to see how many runs do Pakistan plunders in the last 10.
They have the most prolific finisher in the form of Abdur Razzaq. He is very big hitter and has penchant for fast bowling at the death. I am sure he will make it count today as well. There are other like him though Kevin Pietersen (England), Justin Kemp and Mark Boucher (South Africa), Yuvraj, Dhoni and Kaif (India), Russel Arnold (Sri Lanka), Andrew Symonds and Michael Hussey (Australia) and Brendon McCullum (New Zealand).They are all power hitters but they are also supremely good runners (except Razzaq I think). This makes actually look forward to the 2007 World Cup.
Indians, will they be 12 time lucky? At this moment no one is complaining about India is chasing. They have done well in the last 11 games. They need to do it again. At present from 24-1 to 39-4 not exactly, a dream start. The problem with Pakistan seems to be that their specialist batsmen are still in heady dreams if their Test performances. They played and played and played sometimes as boring (for me) as the Duracell Ad. I think they have to realize that this is the One Day. I hope they do it now as the series is about to wrap up. I think it is not over yet. In one-day games, things happen before anyone knows. India is playing to the gallery of Pakistan, by bowling excessive wides and no balls. Not a good sign. There can suddenly be a partnership or a bowling spell, which suddenly turns around things. Dhoni along with Yuvraj did it in the last match India played. Inzamam is a very good player and come soon good anytime. He can pile up huge amounts of agony in double quick time. At least Rameez Raja seems to be content with the way Pakistan is playing in this match.
Indians know they have to get this match in the kitty. But it isn’t going to be that way. Indians are poor finishers of the game and Pakistan being mercurial can just turn on the things unexpectedly. The end of Pakistani innings will be a thing to watch out. The onus is again in the experienced hands of Tendulkar and Dravid. It is one of those matches where the mind vacillates between hope and reality. When hope and reality are on the same side it is celebration. Is this match a celebration or will it be a Pakistani comeback?
I am not sure I will be surprised if Pakistanis win this one.
(This post will be edited tomorrow afternoon. The result will be know already.).

Part II Was it really a goose chase?

Pakistan meekly surrenderedto India in the fourth game.It was sad because India vs Pakisatan have tended to be a life or death affair. The heads of the losing captains have often been axed when they lose a series. It is always said "Be sure of what you want, you might just get it" thats the case. Everyone wanted more Indo-Pak matches and now matches have lost any zing there ever was.
India played well to beat Pakistan on Pakistan. Pakistanis have a very "good" team on paper. The problem here is the game of cricket is not played on paper.There is something called as "performance" which needs to be ploughed in so that your mettle comes out shining. This has not been the case with Pakistan. I feel sorry for them. On the brighter note India won them fare and square in Pakistan own backyard and turn the tables after a disimal performance in a the first innings of the third test which cost them the test series. They fought back hard played some really resourceful and enterprising cricket to set up the series win.
It was a brilliant bowling performance to clinch the series along with the match. Sree Santh looked really jubliant after being rewarded for some tidy bowling since the last match. He is a good prospect but we as cricket fans are looking forward to having a bowler which can attack the batsmen for the period on next five years. There is a strong case for bringing on the Srinath as a bowling coach. I think he was brilliant when he retired. I think it might just help.
So it was Sree Santh and Pathan who opened the bowling and did well top rattle the top order. It was all down hill then. They only threatening partenership was nipped in the bud by R.P. Singh with ther batsmen already under the hammer he bowled on onside of the wicket and was rewarded with a four wicket hall. Irfan came back to mop up the tail. Tendulkar is the bowler who Inzamam fears the most. Tendulkar has dismissed Inzamam seven times now.
From Inzamam to Tendulkar. It is amazing how Tendulkar follows a string of not-so-good scores with a huge score and a string of huge scores folowed poor score. He has done it all the time in his international career. We praise him when it is the first case and he is deemed (T)Endulkar for the second. We will leave Tendulakar here. Gautam Gambhir has to think about his batting in a Gambhir way. Dravid has been so consistent. He made sure that there were no cats among the pigeons and pilled up a half century.He is close to 9000 runs in ODI can you believe it?Yuvraj was an able comapnion in the partnership. Yuvraj cannot put a foot wrong at this point in time.
The player of concern of Kaif. I think he should be placed up the order prefarably one down. It is imperative for a batsmen to have scores behind him to get a selection. While every one seems to be scoring runs Kaif just has 13 runs against his name in four matches. It is not a good sign for an important series coming up against England.
Winning is the only thing. I realised this last night when I was watching the telly last night even the weather desk was discussing the win over Paksitan rather then tell us what will the sunshine look like today. The Indian team has the Greatest Coach* the Greatest Captain* and the Greatest Player.Nothing succeeds like success and nothing fails like failure.
Other than that "Nothing else matters."
* Scenario may change in course of time.


Sudeep said...

Time for celebration

dude u follow cricket so well.. i have a bad time remembering earlier matches

i agree with u tht the pak batsmen made a bore out of the test matches n its really in their head now

RPM said...

Dravid dropped a pretty simple chance off Sreesanth in the last match.

The Light-House. said...

@ Sudeep: I agree with u Sudeep.
@ RPM: Let bygones be bygones.By the way did u see the catch by Dravid in second slip.

Dewaker Basnet said...

india won bro. hope u r glad:)

Hiren said...

India won as you had predicted. What you said about Tendulkar-Inzy, Gambhir and Kaif is aboslutely true.

The Light-House. said...

@ Dewaker: I am glad surely.But did u know the bookies lost money in tune of 500-800 crores, luckily i wasn't one of them :-P
@ Hiren: Thanx man.

emotions said...

i must say superb creation !!! u knw wat u r mad abt CRICKET n ur blog will made me mad abt CRICKET !!
good one.....

all d bst !!
keep writing n keep smiling :-)

Sesh said...

Another gr8 chase. But this time credit to bowlers. I would say, Sreesanth is the 'find-of-the-tour'. He has a nice breezy action and bowls with a nice pace. He would definitely add a great variety to our bowling attack, which India thoroughly missed during their Karachi test-loss.

Nice post Tarun !!!

The Light-House. said...

@ Emotions: The game of cricket a real reason for me to be blogging. :-)
@ Sesh: Yes he did well but needs to learn a few more tricks of the trade.