Saturday, June 27, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
West Indies don't seem to be a formidable opposition esp. in absence of Fidel Edwards, but those who watched last ODI series India played in Carribean would vouch for the fact that West Indies can be very menacing in their home condition. India have looked a very good side in ODIs in last season triumphing over Sri Lanka, England and New Zealand in style. This time bowling looks more potent with RP Singh, Ashish Nehra, Ishant Sharma and Praveen Kumar in pace department and Harbhajan in spin. Also, to assist these players we have more-than-just-decent part-timers in Yusuf, Jadeja and Rohit Sharma.
It is going to be interesting to see how Murali Vijay and Badrinath perform. Vijay has looked solid as a batsman and should make most of the opportunity he has got in absence of Tendulkar and Sehwag. Badrinath has one more chance to prove he is worthy successor to legends of Indian Cricket in not just limited over format but also in the test cricket.
Around a week's break must have rejuvenated Indian players and now the run-a-ball innings of Dhoni and Jadeja could prove to be very useful in this format. There are not much expectations from this Indian team and it will only help them. For me, India are the favorites to win this series provided they are still not carrying niggles.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
So the dreaded thing has happened. With all the hype and glitterati of the IPL, very few of us would have thought India will not reach semi finals. But then the only test playing nation Indians have defeated is Bangladesh. Yes, they are still better than 2007 World Cup squad. But they lost to West Indies (without a significant contribution from Gayle) and England. England is the same team which was branded "chokers", a group of snobbish players and a team lacking talent after their loss against Netherland. Now the same team whose players play insipid county cricket "bounced" us out of the tournament as the Cricinfo reports. At the beginning of this tournament i had no hopes from England but they have left Indian team in hopeless situation.
With all the glitz and glamour of the IPL Mr. Modi and co. wanted us to realise what good the IPL has done to India. May be the IPL has made life easier for an ordinary domestic cricketer but scheduling it so close to an ICC event was bound to leave players jaded. Remember all these Indian players were subjected to intense pressure in their respective teams for about 40 days. A bit of pressure is good but to have 14 twenty20 games within a span of 40 days is just too much. I never thought anyone in India will celebrate dismissal of Tendulkar by Warne. But commercialism did that too. Team bonding? What is that man? Now they want 2 IPLs a year and add to it the Champions League. Where is the time for test cricket or for that matter any form of international cricket?
India is fast turning into England of World Soccer. All hype and no value.