The dashing opening bat is back in the playing XI for the Edgbaston Test. A quick chat with the Dilli butcher at lunchtime on the first day.
1) How does it feel to be back in the Indian squad?
When was I ever out?
2) Speaking of out, what are your feelings about the first ball duck at Edgbaston?
I was still in net practice mode and Stuart Broad wasn’t. The ball kissed my gloves and I kissed my wicket goodbye.
3) Is there a Sehwag special in store in this series?
Sure, why not? Besides, in this series, even a 50 is highly significant (with due apologies to Rahul Dravid).
4) How is the shoulder holding up?
Not too well. You see, all the Rainas, Zaheers, Mukunds, Gambhirs and Yuvrajs are crying on my shoulder. It’s under a lot of strain. Not quite what the surgeon envisaged.
5) Do you see yourself in the wickets, as well?
I have to test out the shoulder and this is the perfect opportunity (in Bhajji’s absence).
Do say: Two triples and a 293.
Don’t say: Golden ducks.
Disclaimer: The character(s) are real but the interview is fictional.
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The Indian team, in the 3rd Test, accepted a tame draw instead of grasping a victory within reach.
Much has been said and written about the Indian batting line-up’s unwillingness to take up the challenge of scoring 180 runs in 47 overs.
Not much has been made of the Indian bowling’s lack of incisiveness and penetration when they should have gone for the kill. The last five West Indian wickets added 121 runs between them.
The Indian and international press have unflinchingly condemned the No.1 team’s tactics.
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.
2nd May, 2011
Shivnarine Chanderpaul continues to raise a ruckus about his axing from the West Indian side.
In a second letter to West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Ernest Hilaire, the batsman questions his dropping for the Pakistan tour of West Indies.
Hilaire had squarely blamed the West Indies Player Association (WIPA) for Chanderpaul’s outburst in his response to his earlier missive.
The Guyanese was quick to respond saying:
“I may not be Dr. Chanderpaul, but I have been a top-ranked international batsman and we have to be able to think critically under the most intense and stressful situations.
It is therefore distressing that you blame WIPA by implication, if not overtly, for my letter saying that WIPA was offering me "ill advice". You may not be aware but I have faced the best bowlers in the world in my career and I know how to counter-attack. Furthermore, I am my own man and would ask that you respect that!"
The West Indian bat raised issues on the mishandling of injuries by the administrative body.
Coming on the back of a controversial decision by Chris Gayle to play the IPL rather than represent the band of nations that is the West Indies, the episode paints a sorry picture of the state of Caribbean cricket.
Chanderpaul may no longer be a sprightly young man but he should be allowed to decided when to quit the game.
Chanderpaul rarely courted scandal in his distinguished career but the lackadaisical attitude of the powers-that-be raised his hackles.
This man will not go quietly into the night.
Elite umpires, Simon Taufel and Asad Rauf, and International Umpire Kumar Dharmasena have announced their retirement from Test cricket with immediate effect.
The umpires complain of fatigue in the longer version of the game.
“Standing for 6 hours or more for five consecutive days and having to focus on every ball is extremely taxing for body and mind.” said Simon Taufel.
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.
There are more rumbles within the IPL.
The franchisees are not all pleased with the auctions. Though teams have largely grabbed the players they short-listed, the team owners feel that they should have a say in the appointment of curators and groundsmen especially at their home venues.
The much awaited, much hyped, Mother Of All Games between sub-continental giants—India and Pakistan—is finally behind us.
India won, Pakistan lost.
Indian fans will celebrate.
Pakistani fans will mourn.
Another sub-continental giant—Sri Lanka—await the men in blue on Saturday, the 2nd of April, 2011 in Mumbai.
Despite it sounding like a cliché on a stuck record, can Team India do it for Sachin Tendulkar?
The batting power-play—is it a boon or a bane?
Teams have benefited and teams have suffered in this crucial period of the innings.
There are two schools of thought as to when the batting power-play should be taken.
Some random thoughts on India’s mesmerising loss to South Africa on a Saturday evening:
The word is mesmerising because that’s exactly what it was. Despite a feeling of deja vu—the Indian fan felt that it was the same old story—that it was the same old capitulation of a much-vaunted batting line-up in the face of disciplined bowling.
Yet, the South African attack was disciplined, not hostile.