Monday, October 29, 2007

Eye of an Optimist

The 7 match ODI series between India and Australia has recently been concluded. The series, played with high intensity and temper has been won by Australia, 4-2.

But there is a lot beyond that scoreline. Australia's dominance is the most boring and monotonous thing that had happened to cricket. So every slice cut out of australian glory will be well enjoyed by the rest of the cricketing world. Competing with Australia is not an easy job, as they are thorough professionals and master-sledgers in the field. When they sledge, they dont consider you as human being, or have no respect for you. India , especially sreesanth, wanted to give them back some of their own medicine. They did not like that.

Aussies started crying about racism, monkey chants, all that. How funny!! how funny that the most racist nation in the world is complaining about racism. Every touring party, that toured down under, has faced racist comment on and off the field. Makhaya Ntini, Muralidharan, Chaminda Vaas, Gavaskar, you name it. I just dont think they are not nice human beings, most of them. Of course there is Allan Border, there is david boon, geoff marsh, geoff lawson, richie benaud, who played the game as gentleman's game. But in general, they always sledge, use bad words, drag your families.
The way India approached australia's sledging was wrong. They shud have approached with smile, not with artificial jumping in the ground. But this is not an article on sledging, this is just a small report on the optimistic side of Indian cricket.
India bowled well with the new ball in the whole series, they had Australia 3-4 wickets down inside 100 runs in first 3 matches. They bowled aussies out for 193 in the last match, and dragged aussies to 283 from a runrate of 7 after 15 overs. The

Spinners bowled well, both M.Karthik and Harbhajan generated turn, and sometimes bounce. Brad Hodge has a horrible series, and if all the catches were held properly, Symonds average wouldnt have look so healthy.

Fielding definitely needed to be improved. The general level is okay, but Indian fielders have to hold on to catches more frequently, have to have direct-hit run-outs more often. But again, when the opposition is Australia, it is not so easy.
Indian batting was mixed. Whenever sachin and sourav gave good starts, the middle order looked solid, the runs came big. In the 4th and 6th ODI, the opening stands were 91 and 140 respectively. India ended up scoring 291 and 299. We need that level of consistency more often. Sachin and Sourav together have opened for India I think close to 180 times, and they have crossed 100 runs together as openers for 21 times. Their average as a pair is 45+ . Undoubtedly this is the best opening pair EVER to play one-day cricket. Indian selectors should remember that before they get influenced by a 70 by Gautam Gambhir in challenger trophy, or a meaningless 75 by Virender Shewag in domestic tournaments. Yuvraj's century at Hyderabad was treat to watch, so was the fight by Zaheer and Karthik in the last ODI to win from 64/6. In Uthappa, India has found a batsman who can take the attack to opposition in true sense. His stepping up to the crease, his walking silently to the ball before hoising it for six, his calm head and silence aggression is definitely a wonderful sight for the future. He needs to do this more consistently.

India smashed Aussies out of the park in 20-20 match in Brabourne stadium. I am not going to the discussion of that match, because India is world champion in that format, and the way aussies played that 20-20 match, they have A LOT to learn in that version, a lot to adapt. May be they can take that lesson from India.
All in all, a series ended 4-2, could well have been 3-3. A series, where , Indian team, after such long season, still withstood to aussie challenge. Indian team has played 14 ODIs, 5 test matches and one T20 world cup after their early exit from carribean world cup. Australia, played only few 20-20 matches in T20 world, no international longer matches whatsoever. Easily understood which team was fatigued and which team was more rested. Still Indian players have shown that they can fight, and impossible will be nothing.
I see a bright light at the end of tunnel, or I can say, I see a bright future for Indian cricket.


rOhit said...

nice blog..
different from others..
good to see ur cricket love.. :)

keep it up :D

Subhashis said...

Thank you rohit