Cricket: Sombre Sunday

Sunday started in a sombre note, I thought there would be an England vs. India ODI, but as match didn’t start well past 10 (I got up little after 9:55 A.M.). My father suggested that there are two days between matches, till late last night I was just gearing up myself for a big Sunday match. Anyways I am hoping an English fight back provided they change their batting order Collingwood a decent player of spinners, and Pietersen should be right on top but I am not sure if Flintoff can open? Is Flintoff ready to open the innings is the crucial question to ask.

Yuvraj best India batsmen in limited overs.

I wonder who between Ganguly and Yuvraj (both in the peak) would be a better timer of a cricket ball. I think unbiased choice would have to pick Yuvraj. But since Ganguly has hung up his boots, gloves lets focus on Yuvraj. Yuvraj is the best ODI batsmen in limited overs cricket. He fought for the prime number four spot and go it is last years T20 World Cup. He deserves it more than anyone else. He is a champion in limited over. His effect is so profound that I am sure that Ganguly won’t be missed. Sehwag was decimating the English attack. Yuvraj went a step further; he annihilated the English attack including Flintoff. England were batted out of the game. Any chance of victory were evaporated when the English were letting reeling 76 for 4. Indians went on to win by 158 runs.

I think Yuvraj has still time on his hands; he is just 26 or 27 so like Michael Hussey he may get a chance in Test fold but he needs to sort out his batting against spin attack. This observation is against Yuvraj is restricted to test arena. I mean bowlers like Monty, Murali, Mendis, Vettori, couple of Pakistani spinners would look forward to bowling to him. I am sure those very spinners would go into incognito when it come to ODI. I think Mendis Yuvraj contest would be keenly watched contest.

Yuvi should talk to guys like Andy Flower (current English batting coach) to get a different prospect to playing spin. I think even Dhoni should talk to him about captaining, keeping and batting. He was good. I know Gilchrist was an exception keeper batsmen but I wonder why Andy Flower is not talked about much as a keeper batsmen. He was phenomenal against spin bowling. I just get the feeling he gets tied up playing spin. He goes neither front nor back.

So much so for his test batting abilities. But his limited overs ability has blossomed in last couple of year. India has hardly lost anything if he crosses a fifty. He was crucial in the record run chase we had. I always knew what to do, but over the years he learnt how to pace his innings. He always has been a great finisher of limited overs cricket. He runs brilliantly has broad powerful shoulder and can time the cricket ball as good as it can get. I think Dhoni acknowledges this fact. Dhoni and Yuvraj are brilliant finishers.
I wonder if Tendulkar when he comes back into the team would want to look to get back to number five for the sake of the team. I think Sehwag-Gambhir are the future. Yuvraj has made two down his own. Raina meanwhile is hot and cold, but I think he has to be persevered with. Pathan meanwhile has not come to the party yet. I wish to know what Dhoni has planned for Yusuf Pathan.

India drubs Aussies two to nothing.

When in India do as the Indians do. I think Ponting took this too much to his heart. I mean in hindsight he screwed up of all chances of retaining his trophy. He really let situations take control of him. I mean all the moment that Aussies had at fourth day by the end of second session was gifted back to Indians. I think Ponting should have went to Krazeja and told him to rush his over while Shane Watson would have cleaned up the tail in no time and may be Aussies have won the test by fifth day tea and drawn the series. Ponting mean while lost the test, and got fined for slow over rate. The worst of it was then making the excuses and saying that he did whatever he did i.e. pressing likes of Hussey into action to bowl and letting there would have been no fines for him if Indians would have capitulated in the final session. Dhoni on the other hand won the test, won the series, and even did not get fined for not bowling the required over in the first session. The Aussie came and went. Ponting committed suicidal run after that it was matter of time before curtains came down on a poor series for Aussies. They have only themselves to blame for this poor show. Ponting should be presented a bloated pumpkin for his stupidity. Dhoni played negative, out thought the Aussies. They were found wanting and lost. The have crying hoarse of everything rather than see the scorecard which says they lost. I don’t thing Aussies are on their way down. They are the strongest team because their first class set up is the toughest to get into and yields top class players, good enough for Kiwis and SAfs and perhaps Ashes too. It is too early to take a call. It is true that Aussies have been diffused in India but I think they are hard to beat. Since the quality of opposition is well measured by the Aussies, I think it will be tough for all the teams to beat Australia in their own backyard.

Dhoni a good captain.

Dhoni meanwhile is a genius, he picking up Kumble and then asking Ganguly to lead for a while when the series was wrapped up, is more than what Kumble and Ganguly would have wanted, it was a small gesture but it was unprecedented and have presented a glimpse of how big is Dhoni’s heart and how he values each member of his team.

I don’t think Ganguly farewell post should be just an add on to this post. I think he commands a space of his own, may be when I get time I would really want to write something for and about Sourav Ganguly.

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