November 24, 2010
Could have been a more convincing series victory, had the pitches been more conducive. Credit to NZ for a good batting display in the first two matches of the series. Pity that they got a few bad decisions in the Nagpur Test from umpire Nigel Long. Despite, that I still believe the URDS referral system in its present form won’t help. What will help is the way umpires like Taufel refer when they aren’t sure. There’s an element of self-respect/ego from the umpires that takes a beating while doing that, but when they do let that go a little bit, it buys them back a lot respect.
Positives for India from this series:
1. Gambhir showing signs of returning to form from a temporary slump. The ODI series and added responsibility as captain might help that further.
2. Man of the Match Dravid finds his lost touch and gets runs! There cannot be better news before the SA tour starts. Yes, the conditions will be different there, but one know what to expect from a veteran.
3. Pace battery charged up – Ishant seems in great form. If Zaheer returns, both of them on SA pitches can be a handful. Sreeshant has had a good comeback too.
Can’t wait for South Africa!
2 Comments | Cricket, Dravid, India, Indian cricket, Sreesaanth, Sreesanth, Test Cricket, Umpiring, Zaheer Khan | Tagged: Cricket, Dravid, Gambhir, Gautam Gambhir, India, India win NZ series, India win NZ series 1-0, India's tour of South Africa, Indian cricket, Ishant Sharma, Man of the Match Dravid, New Zealand, New Zealand's tour of India 2010, Rahul Dravid, Sreesanth, Sreeshant, Test Cricket, Zaheer Khan | Permalink
Posted by vmminerva
October 5, 2010
Limitations sometimes propel people to greatness. Sometimes, when something is missing, you focus more on how to compensate for that missing something. This time, there were two batsmen with limitations – VVS with his back spasm and Ishant with a knee issue – that fought with sterling grit to snatch victory from near definite defeat!
VVS Laxman proved yet again that he’s not only special, he’s Spectacular. Having played perhaps the most innings (for a solid Indian bastman) with the tail, he knew how it had to be done. It’s just that the luck and grit was needed from the other side. The kind of calmness and poise he brought with the bat was invaluable, not to mention juggling a runner and a tail ender. Even today, year after the Laxman-ODI debate, many fans of Indian cricket will rue why he never made it to the Indian ODI team.
I started watching today’s proceedings on after Ishant came to the crease. I was expecting a bit more from Harbhajan, for all his improved batting and the like. I must say, equal credit in the win must go to Ishant. What he couldn’t do in Sydney in 2008 to draw a match, he did to win this one. And what a time to choose to display such grit! Kudos to the young fellow. With temperment like this, he’s bound to go a long way! And that must only auger well for India.
The Aussies deserve special mention for their efforts, for without that, today’s match would not have been the nail biting advertisement for Test cricket that it was. They peppered the top order with bouncers, chin music, rib rackers and the like, causing them in turn to crumble, although not without some semblance of a fight. Hilfenhaus was perhaps at his best (from my memory of him in recent games). But they perhaps missed Bollinger in the later half of today. Despite that, the fielding from an Aussie side was a bit below par. They don’t generally drop this many catches, and miss this many run outs. Ponting’s lack of the gambler’s instinct didn’t help either. I don’t understand why he didn’t try Clarke’s off spin.
Mediocre umpiring on also played its hand in the game. But fortunately, the errors went in favor of both sides equally. If Hussey missed out, so did Gambhir. If Ishant was given out lbw off a clear edge, Ohja was given a reprieve. What iis strange is that even the third umpire got at least one controversial decision wrong. This is what keeps me still against the controversial Umpire Refferal system. What needs to be done, is the quality of umpiring improved. If the on-field umpire isnt sure what to do, he must ego-lessly refer to the third umpire, and not merely give in to vociferous shouts from in-fielders.
Having said all that, it was still a thrilling day of Test cricket. It’s unfortunate that one team had to lose. While I’m not complaining too much about that, I think in the end, the battle was more in the mind, as it turns out with many such thrilling games.
Long live Test Cricket.
Looking forward to Bangalore!
7 Comments | Bangalore, Cricket, India, India-Aus series, Indian cricket, Laxman, Ricky Ponting, Sydney Test, Test Cricket, Umpiring | Tagged: Australia, Australia's tour of India 2010, Ben Hilfenhaus, Bollinger, controversial Sydney Test 2008, Cricket, Gambhir, Gautam Gambhir, Hilfenhaus, Hussey, India, India win Mohali Test, Indian cricket, Ishant, Ishant Sharma, Laxman, Micheal Clarke, Miracle at Mohali, Miracles, Mohali Test, Ohja, Sydney Test, Test Cricket, Umpiring, umpiring referral, umpiring review system, VVS, VVS Laxman | Permalink
Posted by vmminerva
October 4, 2010
What a day of Test cricket it’s been. From Ishant’s bouncer’s and Zaheer’s yorkers to Hilfenhaus’s chin music, it’s a been a whirlwind of a day!
India ended the day at 55/4 needing another 161 runs to win the match. Gambhir got a shocker (some decisions have been seriously bizzare), Dravid threw his wicket away after taking 16 balls to get off the mark, and Sehwag soon followed suit. With VVS Laxman’s condition unknown, Australia may need only 5 more lower order wickets. I must say it’s odd that Dhoni sent Raina in when as a wicketkeeper batsman and captain Dhoni should have come out himself. Dhoni’s not been in great form. In fact, I can’t remember the last time he’s scored a decent 50. But this could have been an occasion.
On a day when India bagged a silver and bronze at the CWG, the cricket team’s fortunes at teetering by a thread. But that isn’t unusual, or is it? The accolades in other sport often comes when the cricket is floundering. Or are we just playing too much cricket? 😉
2 Comments | Cricket, Dhoni, Dravid, India, India-Aus series, Indian cricket, Laxman, Test Cricket, Zaheer Khan | Tagged: Australia, Australia's tour of India 2010, Cricket, Dhoni, Dravid, Gambhir, Gautham Gambhir, India, Indian cricket, Ishant Sharma, Laxman, Mohali Test, Mohali Test Day 4, MS Dhoni, Rahul Dravid, Raina, Sehwag, Suresh Raina, Test Cricket, Virender Sehwag, VVS, VVS Laxman | Permalink
Posted by vmminerva
September 30, 2010
For those who have been eagerly awaiting another Ind-Aus cricket clash, the action begins tomorrow.
There are many questions that come to mind:
1. Will Pujara play? If he does, will he do better than this?
2. How effective will Gambhir be?
3. Will Dravid push the recent bogies against Aus away? The 2004-08 average is an alarming 24-odd.
4. Will Ishant rediscover his dream form against the Aussies? Will he get Ponting again? I certainly hope so.
Here’s to a few weeks of good cricket!
2 Comments | Cricket, Dravid, Harbhajan Singh, India, India-Aus series, Indian cricket, Ricky Ponting, Test Cricket | Tagged: Australia, Australia's tour of India, Australia's tour of India 2010, Cheteshwar Pujara, Dravid, Gambhir, Gautham Gambhir, India, Indian cricket, Ishant Sharma, Ponting, Pujara, Rahul Dravid, Ricky Ponting, Test Cricket | Permalink
Posted by vmminerva
April 8, 2010
Sourav Ganguly never fails to inspire, at least for me. Delhi started the 180-plus chase fairly well, even after the early departure of David Warner. Viru and Sehwag chased in a way that is charesteristic only to them. But Gambhir’s wicket was key. After that, though there was Sehwag at one end, the others seemed jittery.
Some excellent fielding from Dada and and inspired bowling changes help turn KKR’s fortunes. After Sehwag, it was all downhill. Good to see KKR win.
Woo hoo! Rock it, Dada.
3 Comments | Cricket, Ganguly, India, Indian cricket, IPL, Sehwag, Sourav Ganguly, T-20 Cricket | Tagged: Cricket, Dada, David Warner, DD, Delhi, Delhi Daredevils, Eden Gardens, Gambhir, Ganguly, Gautam Gambhir, India, Indian cricket, Indian Premier League, IPL, IPL3, KKR, Kolkata, Kolkata Knight Riders, Sehwag, Sourav Ganguly, T20, Virender Sehwag, Viru | Permalink
Posted by vmminerva