The suspense has ended.IPL play-offs have been decided.
Super Sunday will repeat itself in two instalments on the 24th and 25th of May, 2011 at the Wankhede.
It’ll be the Royal Challengers Bangalore versus Chennai Super Kings in the first qualifier.
Mumbai Indians and Kolkatta Knight Riders will clash once more on Wednesday in the eliminator.
The Eliminator? Sounds like a wrestling tie to me.
What he said:
“I am an easy man to please and one of the greatest pleasures is taking money off Mark Boucher on the golf course.”
Jacques Kallis finds SA and Kolkatta Knightriders team-mate easy meat on the links.
What he really meant:
“Pocket money’s always welcome.”
What he definitely didn’t:
“I’d continue playing Mark is if I kept losing.”
The game between Chennai Super Kings and Kolkatta Knight Riders was a humdinger. A last-ball finish was a perfect ending to a cliff-hanger.
Fresh personnel could not take KKR over the line. Captain Cool MS Dhoni retains the Midas touch though he seemed a little lacklustre in the field.
Image via Wikipedia
The Indian team’s preparations for the World Cup recovered from a minor hiccup when Shantakumaran Sreesanth replaced the injured Praveen Kumar in the side.
The UP bowler has not yet recovered from an elbow injury sustained on the South Africa tour.
Though there were some calls for Ishant Sharma instead, the Kerala cricketer is the man in form. Sharma is a far cry from the bowler he was on his debut Down Under in 2008. He has been bowled into the ground; a case of poor handling by captain and coach. In his case, the rotation policy is a joke.
The second Test match at Hyderabad ended as a damp squib as well.
There were many who considered the tourists easy meat coming into the Test series. The New Zealand batsmen obviously had other thoughts.
Except for the first innings here when they collapsed after a healthy start, they have made the Indian bowlers labour hard for their wickets. They have not let the home side buy their wickets cheap.
The UK has acquired most favoured nation status among asylum seekers —at least among cricketing ones. Pakistani cricketer and wicket-keeper Pakistan wicketkeeper Zulqarnain Haider has sought safety there following threats from match-fixers. The 24 year old hit the winning run in the fourth one-dayer against the Proteas in the five match series in Dubai.
Haider alleged that he was approached to fix the fourth and fifth ODIs. Pakistani cricket continues to shrivel under the shadow of the recent spot-fixing scandal.
Over the past 3 years, India have won just 3 of the 1st Test matches in a bilateral series.
This considering that India has played 12 Test Series in the past 3 years.
The 3 First Test Matches India have won have been the following:
England in India Test Series – 1st Test
India won by 6 wickets
India in New Zealand Test Series – 1st Test
India won by 10 wickets
India in Bangladesh Test Series – 1st Test
India won by 113 runs
Even amongst these 3 matches, India conceded the 1st innings lead against England and scored just 243 vs Bangladesh with Bangladesh replying with 242. The only Test Match where India seems to have been on fire right from the start was the Test Match against New Zealand at Hamilton where India scored a huge 520 in reply to New Zealand’s 279.
It seems to be India’s bane that by the time India wake up in a series, they are lucky if they have salvaged a draw in the 1st Test of the series. This seems to have been the case in the last 2 series as well. India were lucky to win against Bangladesh; a stronger team would have punished India’s batting ineptitude in the 1st innings.
South Africa proved that India have still to learn the art of being ‘ready to go’ right at the beginning of the series and won handily at Nagpur to go 1 up in the series without even a semblance of a fight from India’s top cricketing team – we are ranked No. 1.
Use the link below to check India’s performance in Tests over the last 3 years, both away and at home.
But why , oh why , are we such poor starters?
A good beginning is a job half-done. And that definitely holds true for the India cricket XI.
Have a great day!
|Don’t bother just to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself.|