November 22, 2010

Sri Lanka Vs West Indies 1st Test Galle - SL Report Card

Mendis caused few problems to the Windies
© Associated Press
   The Islanders returning from a successful tour down-under undoubtedly go into a home series with high expectations. Rangana Herath misses out, Mendis making yet another come back which meant  Suraj Randiv continues as Sri Lanka's spin based attack now looking a lot humane. Batting nevertheless, full strength with home conditions to boost their level of confidence. A look at the Windies report card for the match over here.

Tharanga Paranavitana - 7
Played poorly in the first innings. Out after playing 53 balls for 10, second innnigs though he missed out on a well deserved century.

Tillakaratne Dilshan - 6
Out for a duck in the first innings to debutant Russell, looked lot better in the second innings with a hundred run stand for the opening wicket with Paranavitana.

Kumar Sangakkara - 6©
King Kumar had a quite game. Mainly due to watching Gayle take the game away in the first two days of play. His batting however, looked solid in the first innings. In the second innings  Roach did him in. Playing just two seamers in Thushara and Prasad, should have used more of Mathews as the third seamer and perhaps Dilshan to test of Gayle.

Mahela Jayawardene - 7
Twin fifties in the match. Made sure the game dint go out of hand at any point. Definitely needed to score big and bail out the team when it needed the most. But, the rain helped them out.

Thilan Samraweera - 6
Yet another fifty for Samaraweera in Sri Lanka. The man relishes playing under home conditions. That run-out seemed to be the only way he could have been dismissed. Unfortunately, dint help his team avoid the follow-on.

Angelo Mathews - 5
Did not get much to bowl watching the Gayle was going. Batting cant say much either. Was merely playing a waiting game, trying to get Sri Lanka out of the woods. Got out and the tail was left to fight out to avoid the follow-on.

Prasanna Jayawardene - 6
Sri Lanka's man for the job behind the wickets in test matches. He did well with the bat in the first innings helping the team reach 378 miserly close to avoiding the follow-on.

Suraj Randiv - 4.5
3 wickets to his name. Dismissed Chanderpaul when he was looking to settle in his game. Got the stick treatment from Gayle. With Mendis faring better, and Herath round the corner he will need to improve his performance given he plays.

Dammika Prasad - 3
The seamers lacked soul in their performance. Without Malinga, the seam attack looked spineless. However, Sri Lanka does have some names in Kulasekara and Fernando who will be in the running for the next test. Hopefully, perform better for the team in the absence of Malinga.

Ajantha Mendis - 7
At one point when all seemed to be one-way traffic. Mendis picked up wickets and brought Sri Lanka back into the game. Picked up 6 wickets in the Windies innings at an average of 28.17 perhaps light at the end of the tunnel for the islanders.

Thilan Thushara - 3
Nothing new to be said about his match performance. Went wicketless, could reap results for the team and his captain with the new ball or the old one.

   So, thanks to a merciless innings from Gayle, contributions from the rest of the Windies batting helped them post a huge first innings score of 580. In reply, Lankans missed the fact that none of their set batsmen were able to score big and bail them out. Missing the follow-on mark by 2 runs meant, Sammy asking them to bat again. With rain eating up some playing time the home team made sure the test had no ultimate winner.

   First test clearly heavy on the bowlers with 1199 runs being scored for the loss of 24 wickets in 340 overs bowled. Should be interesting to see how things move from Galle test to the Premadasa in Colombo for the second test.

November 21, 2010

Sri Lanka Vs West Indies 1st Test Galle - WI Report Card

All hail King Gayle!
   Sun, Sand, Sri Lanka.  The Calypso Kings playing the Emrald Islanders at home, some sparks sure to fly! Windies are perhaps one of the few teams that have performed well in Sri Lanka and that is mainly due to "Brian Charles Lara". Lara single-handedly dented the hopes of Murali few years back when most considered Murali to be in his prime.
   Pre-match the home team were expected to dominate play after a really good series down-under and lack of results for the Windies recently. Sri Lanka resting Slinga-Malinga ahead of the world cup'11 and the hectic cricket schedule. Murali has retired from test cricket, which meant the absence of these two would find an all new spine in the Lankan bowling attack. Windies under the captaincy of Sammy, ready to play for pride.

Chris Gayle - 9
Played 653 mins thats almost 11 hours of cricket in his knock of 333(half of 666 not a surprise). And not one minute in that the home crowd could complain. Runs were leaking from all corners. Played a perfect knock, in the series opener. He's not the captain but still a leader, the senior player the team looks up to. And he blasted his way, dominating the Lankan attack from ball 1. He deserved a  10 for his performance but, a minus 1 for he could have easily shattered Lara's 400 without breaking a  sweat.

Adrian Barath - 6
Gave a good start to the innings. 110 runs opening stand with Gayle. Played cool with Gayle going bezerk at the other end until he was done by Randiv.

Darren Bravo - 6
Signs of BCL, sadly only signs. Has the same style and bat lift like Lara but, needs to work a lot more to improve his game. Played well with Gayle, 196 runs stand. Windies taking the game away from the islanders.

Shiv Chanderpaul - 5
5 is as good as fail for the likes of Chandepaul. Had a start, spent lot of time at the crease and then threw it away. Will be looking to redeem himself in the next test.

Brendan Nash - 6
167 runs added for the 4th wicket. Nash provided further pain to the Lankans. Who had given up all hopes of dismissing Gayle.When Nash was finally out the Windies score was 559/4.

Dwayne Bravo - 4
Failed with the bat and ball. Gayle looking for 400 needed Bravo to stay at the other end. Unfortunately Mendis was just beginning to finish things.

Carlton Baugh - 4
Cant be blamed for Gayle missing his quadrple cos, Mendis removed him soon after Bravo was dismissed. Baugh replace Ramdin behind the stumps. Nothing really impressed.

Darren Sammy - 3©
First ball duck with the bat and wicketless with the ball. Let Sri Lanka easy from 295/7 to 367/8.

Andre Russell - 4
Started brilliantly, his maiden test wicket of just his second ball that to of Dilshan! And from there on went wicketless. Enough said.

Shane Shillingford - 6
Question marks against his action already, picked 4 wickets in the first innings but, mainly the tail-end of the Lankan innings. Helped enforce the follow-on they were looking for. Struggled against the top-order batsmen who can play spin very well. Left us asking for a lot more.

Kemar Roach - 6
Bowled with pace and lots of heart. Picked up 5 wickets in the match even in conditions not favouring pace and swing. Looked the best of the seamers, throughout the match.

November 18, 2010

Pakistan Vs South Africa 1st Test Dubai : SAF Report Card

Can anyone crack this nut?

   After crushing Zim without mercy and beating the Stanis in the T20s & ODIs, Proteas started favorites in the 2-match test series as well. Smith opting to go with 2 spinners in Botha and Harris along with Steyn, Morne in the pace department and Kallis to bowl his share(senior citizen quota). Clearly, Smith struggled with his 5th bowler options. But, it was the Proteas top-order that made merry in the first test against an unimpressive Pakistan bowling attack. Check how the Pakistanis fared in the match here.

Alviro Peterson - 6
Brilliant 150 run opening stand with Smith on day1. Set the mood for others coming in.

Graeme Smith - 7©
Started slowly, took his time at the crease. And by the time you knew it took the game away from the Stanis. As a captain dint use his bowling resources all that well. His decision to declare in the 2nd innings was to provide a result to the  test and it almost did go very wrong for him. Bold but the bowlers lacked the skills to take wickets on a  day 5 pitch. He may have used Kallis a bit more and perhaps Peterson's bowling just to test the Stanis.

Hashim Amla - 8
198 runs in the game. He's turning out to be the run-machine Proteas would have dreamed to replace Kallis at the no.3 slot. Runs in limited overs has helped his confidence overflow with aggression. Tendulkar, Ponting, Sehwag loyalists beware!

Jacques Kallis - 7.5
208 runs in the game. Played the Pakistani spinners with ease.Dominated the old-school style caution with aggression.

AB De Villiers - 4
Had a game to forget. Got out in the 1st innings when Gul, Rehman just pulled things back for Pakistan. Dint get to bat in the 2nd innings.

Ashwell Prince - 4
Had the same fate as that of De Villiers.

Mark Boucher - 5
Dint flourish with the bat. Was neat behind the stumps.

Johan Botha - 5
Got into the Pakistani middle order in the 1st innings getting 3 wickets. Failed to do so in the 2nd innnigs.

Paul Harris - 4.5
Picked up just 2 wickets in the game bowling 56 overs! But dint leak runs at a miserly rpo of 1.86 for the match. Ideally Smith would like the wickets column show some life.

Dale Steyn - 5.5
Bowled well but, could not finish the job for his captain. The Stanis played him very cautiously infact, in the Pakistani 2nd innings Misbah faced Steyn for 34 deliveries scoring zilch!

Morne Morkel - 6.5
Stuck to the task and earned a well deserved 5fer in the 1st innings. However, couldn't repeat the performance in the 2nd innings and Pakistan played it easy.

November 17, 2010

Pakistan Vs South Africa 1st Test Dubai : Pak Report Card

Younis along with captain Misbah and Azhar helped save the game for Pakistan

   Once again Pakistan playing a home series away from home. But, better than playing in England I'm guessing. So, the Mid-East serving up as home conditions. Not completely unfair I guess. The T20's were a one-sided affair. Saffers beating Stanis quite comfortably 2-0. The ODIs however were a  completely different tale altogether. Some really closely fought games but, Saffers clinching it in the end 3-2. Almost felt sorry for  Pakistan and then Haider mania caught the world napping. Lesser we speak on that the better. So time for the test matches and enter a new captain for Pakistan, come-back kid Misbah-ul-Haq. Also Taufeeq Umar, Younis Khan returning and Hafeez getting a test call after consistent performances in the LOIs. MoYo again unfit so left out of the side.

   For a team that's been in the news for all the wrong reasons and too many at that, to come and play good competitive cricket is a treat. We know how passionate the Stanis are when it comes to sports like hockey and cricket. From being in no-man's land to almost winning the test thanks to Graeme Smith, this test had it all.

Mohammed Hafeez - 6
A hundred run opening stand on come back with Taufeeq. Gritty 34 in the second innings as well. Looked solid with the bat. Misbah however, dint use him effectively with the ball.

Taufeeq Umar - 5.5
Good comeback.Struggled against pace of Steyn and Morkel. Was keen to fight it out there.

Azhar Ali - 6.5
50+ scores in both innings. Deserved a ton atleast. His innnings set the tone to the Pakistani fight back.

Younis Khan - 6.5
Spent valuable time at the crease on come back. Gritty ton in the second innings made sure any signs of collapse is averted. Could have taken the attack towards the end against the tired Proteas' attack. (-1)

Good knock in the second innings after a forgettable first innngs failure. Captaincy still very unimaginative. Having 7 wickets in hand should have put more pressure on the Proteas.

Umar Akmal - 4
Had a poor outing, out for just 4 in the first innings and dint get a chance in the second.

Adnan Akmal - 4
Another Akmal, another wicket keeper for Pakistan. Not very impressicve with the gloves or the bat. Got the job done on debut.

Adbur Rehman - 5
Got 4 wickets in the match from 68 overs a S.R. of 102 per wkt. Can do better.

Umar Gul - 5
3 wickets in the first innings and wicketless in the second. Struggled to make any in-roads for his captain being the strike bowler.

Wahab Riaz - 4
2 big wickets of Smith and Amla. Both looking good for long innings. Then got injured and increased the tension for Misbah.

Saeed Ajmal - 4
Bowled plenty of overs, just 3 wickets in the match. Din't trouble any of the top-order batsmen.

October 6, 2010

ICC Awards 2010

    Yet another gala nite organised by the ICC or was it, the 2010 ICC Awards had the makings of a special kind. The sheer emergence of India as the no.1 test playing nation and some super performances had seen Sachin, Sehwag dominate the nomination list for the top honors. So was 2010 gonna be the year when Sachin was finally receiving something new, after he has claimed several man of the match/series honors across the lengths of his playing career, apart from that the top honor he received from the state and central government, the wax statue at Madame Tussads and most recently the the honorary rank of Group Captain by the Indian Air Force. Ah! the list can go on... So, easy to say the focus of the awards nite was certainly the little master.

   Dutchman Ryan Ten Doeschate won the associate player of the year hands down. England's 21 year old, 6 ft 7 in fast bowler Steven Finn was named the Emerging player of the year, ahead of the likes of Umar Akmal and Angelo Mathews. It was surprise indeed. T20 performance of the year was a close one with two big knocks from Mahela Jayawardene and a match winning effort from Mike Hussey but, it was Baz who stole the honor for his whirlwind knock against the aussies. The Kiwis took the Spirit of cricket award, where I felt the Lankans deserved to have played India so so so many times their spirit needs to be applauded the most. Umpire Aleem Dar won the Simon Taufel award of the year, and Billy Bowden dint even get a nomination. Sachin bagged the people's choice award needless to say.

ODI team of the year : Ponting©, Tendulkar, Shane Watson, Michael Hussey, de Villiers, Paul Collingwood, Dhoni, Daniel Vettori, Stuart Broad, Bollinger and Ryan Harris.

Test team of the year: Dhoni©, Sehwag, Kumar Sangakkara, Graeme Swann, Tendulkar, Hashim Amla, Simon Katich, Dale Steyn, Jacques Kallis, James Anderson and Doug Bollinger.

   AB De Villiers won the ODI player of the year after scoring 855 runs @ an average of 71.25. phew! Virender Sehwag took home the Test player of the year honor with 1282 runs to his name and figures that will blow your mind. Shelley Nitschke  was named the women cricketer of the year. So, with 2 big awards already out of the way Sachin had the biggest baddest award left to fight for. So, it was Sachin, Sehwag, Swann and Amla fighting for the top honor of the nite and Sachin swept it and made it one more happy moment for the millions of Sachin fans. Another feather added to the humble man's cap. Take a bow!

The Winners:

Associate Player of the Year - Ryan ten Doeschate (Netherlands)
Emerging Player of the Year - Steven Finn (England)

People's choice award- Sachin Tendulkar (India)
Spirit of Cricket Award - New Zealand
Umpire of the Year - Aleem Dar (Pakistan)

T20 performance of the year- Brendon Mc Cullum - ( 116* v Australia.)

ODI player of the Year - AB De Villiers (South Africa) 855 runs, 71.25 avg, 103.38 S.R., 4 100's
Test player of the Year - Virender Sehwag (India) 1282 runs, 85.46 avg, 97.34 S.R., 6 100's, highest score - 293

Women's Cricketer of the Year - Shelley Nitschke ( Australia)
Cricketer of the Year - Sachin Tendulkar (India) 1828 runs, 9 100's (Tests + ODIs)

September 20, 2010

Australia tour of India '10 - Test Squad announced

Following multiple attacks on Indians down-under which were claimed as a "friendly bash" by the Aussie govt. and described as "racist attack" by the Indie counterparts, which then led to Emraan Hashmi going ding-dong with blonde chicks in his latest flick aptly titled "Crook". Now, the selection committee of the B.C.C.I. have announced no free perks to the visiting Australian team. In a very rude yet, not so shocking announcement it was cleared that Yuvraj Singh will not be a part of the Indian test team for the upcoming 2 test match series. Meaning, Chappelli and co. will have to come up with new lines at the last minute to ridicule the fitness/form of the Indian team. No more "MRF BLIMP" jokes to be poked on Yuvi. Alas.. the selectors over looked Bhajji, Zak and their ponchos! So 1-1 already.

Cheteshwar Pujara(Che) gets his maiden call up to the test squad after being in the Saurashtra NEWS radar forever. Same guy who played for KKR in the IPL, now you remember? Also, Free! Sreesanth was also named in the squad, we are now waiting for an injury update on the same. The regulars in the Indian team since 90's SRT, RD, VVS did not fail to make it either. Sehwag - Gambhir should look forward to their re-union after both being out regularly due to injuries. Captain MSD, Suresh Raina, Murali Vijay seamer Ishant and trio of spinners Bhajji, Ojha & Mishra named in the test squad. Why three spinners? No one has an answer to that one. Balanced squad I guess, 3 seamers + 3 spinners that is, if you count Bhajji as a spinner.

Notable absentees: *drums roll* Dinesh Karthik and Subu Badrinath. Aaaah! Who would have guessed?

India squad: MS Dhoni (capt. & wk), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Suresh Raina, Cheteshwar Pujara, M Vijay, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Ishant Sharma, Pragyan Ojha, Sreesanth and Amit Mishra.

Board President's XI (Vs Aus): Gautam Gambhir (capt), Shikhar Dhawan, Ajinkya Rahane, Jaidev Unadkat, Umesh Yadav, Abhinav Mukund, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), R Ashwin, Piyush Chawla, Abhimanyu Mithun, Sreesanth,  Ravindra Jadeja.

Rest of India squad (Vs Mumbai): Yuvraj Singh (capt.), Abhinav Mukund, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, S Badrinath, Saurabh Tiwary, Parthiv Patel (wk), Piyush Chawla, R Ashwin, Jaydev Unadkat, Umesh Yadav, R Vinay Kumar, Manish Pandey, Abhimanyu Mithun and Ravindra Jadeja.

July 22, 2010

Quick Updates : India Vs Sri Lanka Test #1

Ah! thus we witnessed yet another Indo Lankan encounter , but this was a very special one for obvious reasons. Needing 8 wickets to reach a tally of 800 wickets, there can be only person who can be sure of making it, and rest is history now. It has taken him almost 7500 overs to get to this near impossible record. Well, this is not the only record, his record list goes on and on . The one thing which baffles me is how does Sri Lanka produce unorthodox bowlers, Murali, Mendis, Malinga and many more to come.

Getting back to the test, Sri Lanka elected to bat and the bad times started for India. Sri Lankan were milking the impotent(not literally!!) Indian bowling. Their bowling was so pathetic on day I that the rain Gods got angry and came down so hard on day II and the day was called off without a ball being bowled. At the start of day III, Ishant was at his very best and 3 wickets fell quickly. Enter Herath and Malinga , they made the bowling look miserable yet again. They sent the ball screaming to the boundary. Lankans declared at 520-8 at tea on day III. Paranavitana, Sangakkara notched centuries while Malinga and Herath scored their first international half century. MSD's captaincy skills were hitting an all time low. A draw was expected considering the strong Indian batting line up, but not to be. Unlike the Lankan innings, wickets kept falling at regular intervals, Sehwag yet again at his aggressive best scored another century and UV scored a fluent 52.  But, was done in by the man of the moment, Mooorali. After yet another batting collapse, Indians were bowled out for 276 and couldn't avoid the follow on and they were batting again.

Sehwag and Gauti were removed quickly. I dont remember when Gauti had actually earned a pair in a test match. Wall and Tendlya came to the crease and steadied the ship. Dravid almost had built a great wall of India but, Malinga found cracks in it. Sachin was again a treat to watch, a river flowing smoothly which was blocked by ... once again, Malinga. Both of them put on a century partnership, and broke the record for most number of century partnerships. Indians were 5 down at the end of day IV. MSD fell early on the final day. Final day's play was all about survival for the Indian team, surprisingly none of the senior batsmen nor the captain had the game for it. Laxman along with the tailenders showed heavy resistance. Although, Laxman was more keen on getting to the non-strikers end and exposing the likes of Bhajji, Ishant, Mithun to the potent Lankan attack. Murali  was made to literally plead for his 800th wicket, which was the last wicket of the Indian innings. So, with that Ojha entered the record books edging Murali to his favourite slip fielder. Indians were bolwed out for 338 and set a target of 95 . Dilshan and Paranavitana raced away to the target and won the match by 10 wickets.  A fitting end to the LEGEND's career. Malinga was the obvious choice for the man of the match for denting the Indian batting line-up with his swinging yorkers and bouncers and his cracking 64(75). So Lankans lead the Micromax series 1-0 with two more to go. We will surely miss the Lankan lion, Chennai Super King, Smiling Assasin, 'Muthiah Muralitharan'.

© AFP . This image may not be reproduced without specific consent from AFP

July 3, 2010

Dhoni to enter the wedlock

Yes, you heard it right . Indian Skipper M.S.Dhoni is getting married.It is with his school friend,Sakshi Rawat.They have been in an affair for a couple of years now .The date of the wedding hasn't been decided yet .Their parents thought this was the right time for them to get engaged. It MAYBE because of the rumours about Dhoni and the Indian Celeb ASIN getting closer and having an affair.So,to put off the rumors the engagement must have taken place.It was a very low profile ceremony.Raina,Bhajji and Nehra attended the function.Sakshi Rawat is a hotel management student in Aurangabad.Well, we just hope it does not become a drama  like the Tennis Star Sania Mirza , who called off her engagement with her childhood friend and made one of the most brilliant decisions ,marrying Shoaib Malik. All said and done, we wish Dhoni all the best . Well,its obvious that this news may pierce the heart of his female fans.Don't worry chicks,we heard that Bhajji is single again ;)

June 21, 2010

Quick Updates : Pakistan Vs Bangladesh ODI# 5

This was the fifth match of the tournaments and both the teams had nothing to lose as they were out of the finals . Only thing left to play was the the PRIDE. Pakistan made 4 changes to their side . Difficult to rememeber the names . As a matter of fact, even Boom Boom forgot the name of the replacements . How Pathetic !! Bangladesh made the best change ever possible , they dropped CrashaFool, whose brainfreeze never melts. Afridi won the toss and elected to bat without hesitating because the lighting is poor at Dambulla. Indians haven't complained about the lights yet as they havent lost a match yet . So, Pakistan were off to a blazing start with a quick fire 50(38) by S.Hasan. Farhat played patiently and notched a half century to his credit . Malik,Amin and Shafiq got out quickly without doing any damage . Enter U.Akmal & Boom Boom, Bangladesh's fielders were made mere spectators . Afridi terrorized the bowling attack .The ball went screaming to the boundaries . Akmal supported him excellently from the other end . Afridi got his first 50 in 35 balls and his next 50 in just 18 balls ! Uuh that must have hurt the Bangla Tigers . He broke Jayasuriya's world record of 270 6's in ODI . While Jaya took 440+ matches , Afridi broke it in just 295 . His knock definitely demoralized the Bangladeshis . He departed after scoring 124(60). Cameos by Razzaq and Kamran at the end propelled the score to 385.Terrific hitting ain't it ? Tamim and Kayes took strike for Bangladesh and Tamim,as usual BANG BANG BANG OUT!. Scored 34(27) and got out . Kayes and Siddique put on a P'ship which should be awarded the "THE BEST TEST PARTNERSHIP IN AN ODI". They never showed any intent of chasing down the score . They were happy rotating the singles , defending the balls . They seemed to be on a mission " COME WHAT MAY , WE ARE NOT GIVING OUR WICKETS AWAY!" and it was a perfect execution. They were so much keen on not losing wickets that they even forgot to score . Imrul Kayes scored a boring 66(110) . Siddique , never deserved a century and rightly so, got out on 97(114).Even after that , no batsman showed an intent to reduce the margin of victory . They managed to score 47 of the last overs .Not to forget Pakistan's sloppy fielding , dropped chances and missed run outs . According to Bangla, they had successfully drawn the test , but then reality is  that Pakistan won by 139 runs . MOM was undoubtedly Shahid Bhai for his blitzkrieg . Right then, Pakistan however finished on III place . The next match is a rehearsal for the finals . India play Lanka in  the last league match and then meet them again at the finals . Wonder, if they arent bored playing against each other for atleast half an year , every single year. :)

Match Summary

Pakistan 385/7
Afridi 124                                 Shafiul 3/95
Hasan 66

Bangladesh 246/5
Siddique 98                              Akthar 1/22
Kayes 66

Pakistan bt Bangladesh by 139 runs.

June 19, 2010

Quick Updates : India Vs Pakistan ODI#4

Phew! Its been  hours since the match ended and I am yet to get over it . What a finish !! No wonder Pakistan Vs India gather so many spectators around the world . I can definitely say that Indo Pak rivalry is more than the Oz-Poms ( Cricket rivalry , No Politics here ). The rivalry was truly showcased on the field today when Gauti got hyper yet another time with Kamran 'Butter' Akmal. It reminded me of the Styris -Johnson head bang . Talking of rivalry, how can you keep Bhajji and Akthar out of the scene  . Both of them were involved in an altercation just before the match ended . and There is so much patriotism involved when these two teams meet head to head . So this was the 4th match of the Asia Cup and it was a knock match for the Stanis. Pakistan won the toss and elected to bat . Imran Farhat and Salman Butt took strike . Farhat departed early . Malik and Butt steadied the ship. Butt has scored 5 of his 8 centuries against India ( Phew!!) and was looking good for another one . Both of them fell in quick succession and then wickets kept falling , though Afridi did play a cameo scoring 32(25) . It was  Mr. 'Butter'Akmal 51(41) who made use of the batting power play and boosted the score . Eventually,Pakistan were bowled out for 267. It was a tricky target for India ,considering the Poor Lights @ Dambulla . Viru and Gauti opened for India . Viru was looking a fish out of the water. He was struggling to get the ball away . It was a very Un-Sehwag innings . Can you believe it , he scored 10 runs of 32 balls :O.Kohli didn't make a big either . MSD and Gauti put on yet another brilliant partnership of 98 runs . When Indians were looking to seal a comfortable victory , they lost 4 wickets for less than 40 runs , requiring 45+ of the last 5. Raina and Bhajji stole the match away from them. It was a gem of an innings from Raina. He proved that he can bat at any position. The winning shot , the six over the leg side, bought back the images of Javed Miandad and Chetan Sharma . Wonderful innings by Bhajji too , under pressure. He reiterated the fact that SINGH IS KING! Thus, Indians have  successfully butt-kicked Pakistan and Bangladesh out of the series. Its India V SriLanka in the finals.

Match Summary 

Pakistan 267/10 (49.3 overs)
Salman Butt  74(85)                               Praveen Kumar 3/53
Kamran Akmal 51(41)

India 271/7 (49.5 overs)

Gautam Gambhir 83(97)                        Saeed Ajmal 3/56
Mahendra Singh Dhoni 56(71)

India bt Pakistan by 3 wickets

June 18, 2010

Quick Updates : Sri Lanka Vs Bangladesh ODI#3

Well, today was the III match of the Asia Cup.It was the fight of the animals , i.e Lankan Lions and Bangladeshi Tigers , at least they call it so . The result was kinda expected . Lions are better than tigers any day, isn't it ? Sangu won the toss and chose to bat first .Tharanga and Dilshan opened and were off to a blazing start (Courtesy : 70% Dilshan 30% Tharanga). Both notched up half centuries. Is there anything which Dilshan cannot do on a cricket field ? He can bat well, handy off spinner , brilliant fielder at any position, a good enough wicket keeper , can lead a side ( Won the Zimbabwe tour ) , water boy too ( Initial stages of his career :P). He is definitely any captain's dream . Today , he took the attack to the bangla bowlers right from the start . He scored a brilliant 71 of just 51 balls and headed to the pavilion . Tharanga departed soon after . The captain and ex-captain , Sangu and Jaya steadied the ship and guided the team till the slog overs stage . Mathews and Kapugedera took the baton from them and rocketed the score to 312 in 50 overs . Quite a difficult ask. As usual Tamim and Kayes took strike , and as always they lost a wicket first up. Tamim was at his own best , belting the ball to all the parts of the ground . Junaid Siddique gave him a good support . Junaid departed , with the score on 77 . Tamim completed yet another well compiled , blazing half century and joined Siddique and Kayes soon after . Nothing worth mentioning about the other batsmen.Typical Bangladeshi Wrap up.They were bowled out for 186. Dilshan was the star with the ball , picking up 3 wickets .

 Tomorrow is the BIGGEST match of all.Yes , you guessed it right , INDIA Vs PAKISTAN . We Miss You GOD( read as SACHIN for the atheists :P)

June 16, 2010

Quick Updates : India Vs Bangladesh ODI#2

Today was the second match of the Asia Cup,played between India and Bangladesh . Both the teams were coming out freshly after defeats . India after getting thrashed in World Cup and Zimbabweans . Bangladesh lost against the Poms,but did show some character and of course the World Cup. So the teams were eager to fight it out and find out who was the Biggest Loser. Bangladesh won the toss and chose to bat first without any hesitation . TONim Iqbal and Imrul Kayes took strike .TONim looked in quite a hurry  . Post Lunch problem I guess . They started BANG BANG BANG and Out ! Within no time they reached 35 and lost Iqbal.CrashaFool was trying to stick on without going for any extravagant shot early on . Then , as expected his brain froze and got out followed by Kayes and Shakib in quick succession. Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah put on a decent partnership of 55. Now call it Dhoni's thinking or magic or luck, he bought on Viru .All hell broke loose for the Tigers. He let the ball rip and picked up 4 wickets in jus 2.5 overs .  It looked like the doctors over worked on his shoulders .Indians were set a target of 168. With the present line up , you never know . Gambhir and Viru opened . Viru departed early without causing any further damage . Kohli dint do much either . Dhoni and Gambhir played sensible cricket and steered India to victory .Gambhir piled up 82 and yet and NOT OUT innings for our Indian skipper which will boost his average further .  So , the blue billion stamped  their authority in Dambulla. The Man of the match went to Gambhir for his sensible knock.

Look who's on the bike . Its Rohit for change . Dhoni must be angry . Look out Nohit , you may be bench warming the next match. All the best

June 15, 2010

Match Update - Pakistan Vs Srilanka

The fight for the King of Cricket in Asia has started . The first match was between the ever predictable Sri Lanka and the never predictable Pakistan.This match marked the entry of the Rawalpindi Express for the n'th time and ofcourse Mr.Sania Mirza, oops Shoaib Malik.Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat.Murali was back into the team after getting his groin repaired ;).The SriLankan innings was yet another boring encounter.Shoaib Akthar was the star of the innings for Pakistan as he picked 3 wickets giving away 41 runs in his quota of 10.He has to definitely improve on his fitness . You could see him limping after bowling 7 odd overs. Jaya scored yet another classy half century before getting out to a bad decision. Mathews anchored the innings till the end and got a half century to his credit . Nothing else worth mentioning . Pakistan had to chase down 243, which was kinda tricky target on the snail slow Dambulla pitch. Hasan and Butt took strike for Pakistan. It seemed like they had no idea about the target . Their scoring was slower the cricket pitch. They were struggling to the bolwers away . They were in deep shit as the third wicket fell with just 32 on board after 13 overs. Enter Afridi. The match turned upside down.He started smacking the ball left right and centre.All his sixers were clean. SCREAMERS!!. He played a magical knock.It was a single man battle as the other players kept falling .

Cramps were holding him, but he kept on going . Reminded me of Fat Smith :).He deserved a century and got it in style . Finally Murali got the better of him and it ended one of the best innings of Boom Boom . It was a very mature knock.Razzaq was holding the the team after afridi's departure until Slinga Malinga came and wrapped up the innings in a jiffy. Pakistan lost by 16 runs . Malinga with his unplayable swingers and Afridi with his clean hitting were the real stars of the night :).The Man of the Match was undoubtedly Boom Boom.
Next up is the Indo-Bangla encounter.Considering the form of both the teams , I suggest the Punters to place the money on Bangladesh. Aint it Obvious! :)

P.S- 1 )Can some tell me if its Mohammed Aamer/Amir/Aamir/Ameer ?Why are the names in Pakistan so complicated ?
2) How do Umar Akmal manage to get sunscreen matching the jersey ? Is it Custom made ?:P

Trivia- Afridi successfully ran out both the brothers < Umar and Kamran Akmal>

June 11, 2010

Sourav Ganguly is a world-leading Twenty20 cricketer

© Indian Premier League

No, it's not a joke! According to John Stephenson, MCC's head of cricket. No pun intended but, HOW WHAT WHEN WHERE.. Exactly from which angle was John Stephenson referring to when he uttered this. In the same news, Ganguly a.k.a. Dada is going to lead the MCC team against the touring Pakistani team in a Twenty20 game to be held at Lord's near the end of june.

The MCC side also features the one & only "BCL". Yes, you guessed it. Brian Charles Lara. The three names put together for one man and the rest as they say is caribbean calypso.

Also starring are Ian Harvey, Chaminda Vaas. Going by the age trend, MCC missed Sir Boycs. Almost no one is looking forward to the game. But, Ganguly is in the news. So, have a laugh. *Cheers*

May 25, 2010

Celebrating Cricket à Trois

Continuing our series on "Celebrating Cricket" here are few high adrenaline moments.
Once the grandfather clock in the English dressing room, he sure knows how to work on an appeal.

Harwood goes "Quick Gun Murugan" Style.

Unforgettable? This one sure is. Dada-giri @ Lord's.

One of the few to watch out, Md. Aamer goes ballistic every time he gets a wicket. Keeping up with the Pakistani tradition.

Gambhir seen here, living up to his name.

But, if you are more of a spiritual kind. Agarkar shows you how it's done.

Stay tuned for more only on "Wah! Cricket".

May 24, 2010

Celebrating Cricket - Continued

The celebration continues, we see few CLASSICS!

The Awesome twosome! Warner man-handled.

Unforgettable moment this for KP, after English finally solved the puzzle to glory.(Get the foreign recruits to do the job)

Who can leave out Lee in celebrations.. his famous fist punches and other variations such as:

This one thanks to Achettup. (not really a celebration though, it demands its space here)

And this coming courtesy Purna, describes the feeling Sreesanth is going through personally. You can't really blame him.

But, why run when you can FLY!

Wah are not done with that, Wah will be back with more "Celebrating Cricket". Keep tuning in, till then say "Wah! Cricket".

Celebrating Cricket

Wah are celebrating cricket, and what better way than the cricketers showing us how to do in ishtyle!! Weird that, ever wondered how these egoistic super-natural beings let their real selves out in the flow of things.

Exhibit A: Shahid BoOm BOom Afridi - Crickets very own SeX Symbol

C'mon Picky, I mean Ricky celebrate! U just won another trophy, rest is Ashes.
And talking of Ashes, remember when Freddie almost became Jesus!

Gayle trying to be as cool as the Lighting Bolt!

Or have you ever done the Full MONTY!

My eyes bleed with this one.

Some just let the animal in them take over.

Wah are not done with that, Wah will be back with more "Celebrating Cricket". Keep tuning in, till then say "Wah! Cricket".

May 14, 2010

Captain Cool on Fire

    Dhoni, is on the firing line after India's yet another disastrous performance at the ICC World T20. I don't seem to understand the fact that, why should a captain be blamed, when its a called a "TEAM" game. Isn't the whole team responsible for the loss. Finally, India showed some team work, it was not one or two guys out of form, the whole TEAM looked out of place. Agreed, Indians cant handle short stuff, but how long will they keep saying the same old stuff. It cant be said that India played badly, the opposition played exceptionally well, which made India looks like, cats on a tin roof on a HOT day. What amazes me is the fact that, just few weeks back, when Dhoni lifted the IPL, adulation reached the peak and now they have turned the other way, courtesy : MEDIA. Fitness has definitely been a major concern. After playing 14+ matches in a span of 8 weeks and flying to Carribean two days later can definitely take a toll. People may argue that even foreign players played IPL. The main difference is that not all the International players played 14 games excepting a few. The others players had enough time with them, which was not the case for Indian players. Rightly so, Gary has hit out against the players as well, saying there around 8 people who are overweight to name a few: Yuvraj 'MRF Blimp' Singh, Rohit 'can take a paunch' Sharma and Zaheer 'I may be fit' Khan. Their paunch is EXPLICIT! This has resulted in the team failing in all 3 departments of the game. The batting looked miserable facing pace, bounce, swing. The bowling attack never really attacked or even started to look like one. The fielding for so bad that Afghanistan will be proud of their efforts.

    Right now,  in case Dhoni is dropped, wonder who will replace him... Viru couldn't handle the pressure of Double D's and looked like fish out of water when ever the national duty has beckoned him, he will lose his implanted hair too, if he captains India once again. Gambhir, no way! Earlier, there was captaincy material in him but, post IPL3 he has shown some serious attitude problems and lacks leadership skills. Plus he doesn't know what he is speaking during the presentation. Yuvi and Bhajji, ha ha , Cricket is(was) a  gentleman's game, isn't it? Raina flopped in the IPL so, lets not go there again. Only people left are PK, Zaks, Nehra which seems highly unlikely. Otherwise, Subu-Badrinath / Dinesh Karthik will have to take over the reigns. And that will only make matters worse with Srikkanth being the chairman of selectors. So its better if BCCI stick on to Dhoni rather than looking out for another lame ass.

May 13, 2010

ICC World T20 - Semi Finals Preview

Alas, the semi-finals are here. Australia, England, Pakistan and Sri Lanka the final four surviving teams. Here on, the loser doesn't get another shot at the title. No more depending on results from other games. Every man for himself, rather every team must now win. The line-up suggests Sri Lanka take on England in the first of the two semi-finals and "defending champs", Pakistan face off against Australia in the other encounter.

 England Vs Sri Lanka

    Poms have looked very strong and only bad weather has resulted their only loss in this tournament. Form of KP, finishers in Morgan & Wright, seamers, spinners they have had it all. If there was a run the Poms ever dreamed of it would not be better than this. Facing Lnaka will be a sigh of relief for them. They need to crack the top-order early and apply pressure on the inexperienced and naive Sri Lankan line-up. Malinga-Mendis will have to be negotiated. Should play Mendis positively and as late as possible. With the Ashes still a while from now, we could have a T20 treat if the two teams Aus and Eng make it through. England clearly have the upper-hand in this encounter.

   Lankans have fought hard and made it to the semi-finals once again. The semis being played in St. Lucia will give them some high. But, they are still struggling with Jayasurya's form with the bat. Batting still depends on Sangakkara, Dilshan and Jayawardene. They have dont well till now(not all at once) and would like to carry on for two more games. Malinga was been used by S'kkara in one over spells against India. Not sure if that is effective enough. Sure he got the breakthrus but, as a batsmen if Malinga goes off after bowling 6 balls I'm more than relieved. King Kumar might have to think on those terms. Mendis most likely to play against the Poms, as they haven't seen much of him. As always the islanders should give a tough fight to any opposition and on their day triumph.

Australia Vs Pakistan

   Ozzies clearly ahead of the rest as far as form is concerned. Coming into the semis crushing every opponent by huge margins, Aussies would like to continue the juggernaut. Already faced Pakistan once in the competition, the Aussies were cruising at 10 r.p.o. until the last over where Aamir bowled the WWWW0W  over. Nevertheless, Aus had a huge total and pushed aside any hope from the Pakis of an upset victory. The Aussie bowling attack probably the most feared at the moment. Dirty Dirk + Sloon + Itchy Mitch + Twatto and spin from SPD Smith, Pup and DJ. Batting looks top notch as well, even White Bear and Mr. Cricket have bailed out the team when Twatto, Warner, Pup, DJ miss the bullet. Champion stuff!

   But, Aus will not take the defending champs lightly. No team will take Pakistan on basis of current form. They are one unpredictable side and lift their game when one least expects them to. Boom Boom Afridi the capt. in charge, leads the team on his own terms and conditions. He will take any steps that are required to win a game (read "even take a bite"). Batting however hasn't been their strength of late. Looks brittle, but with the Akmal bros., Butt, Misbah, Boom Boom, Hafeez, Razzaq  there is some depth. Bowling has been the key, Ajmal Aamir leading the attack, Hafeez, Boom Boom and Razzaq/anyone who can roll his arm. But like Deccan Chargers did in IPL3 the defending champs mite just bite the dust in the semis. Or will they?

May 10, 2010

ICC World T20 - India beat Sri Lanka & make it to semis

In the final game and must win situation, the Indian team did wat is the best kept secret around the world *WIN*. Batting first Ind put on 144 and then bowled 20 miserly overs giving the Lankans just 73 runs and picking 9 wickets. So, win by 71 runs means Ind go through to the semis thanks to a brilliant performance.

Now that the eves have qualified it remains to see if the "Men in Blue" follow suit. What a co-incidence?!! I dint see that coming... Honestly! They too similarly have to face the islanders in their final super 8 match and win by a margin of atleast 20 runs batting first. Not so tough huh?! Lankan men though, will not be as easy as the Lankan eves and will try India dont sneak in the semis like the Pakistanis did yesterday. Oh, yea! we told you it will happen.. Dint we?

Despite all the numbers and calculations it will depend on whether Aussies bt Windies in the final game of the super 8 stage. So, once again a billion hearts will have prayers on their lips, only strangely supporting the obnoxious Ozzies.. Ha! Its so simple, Aus bt WI and  Ind crush SL and they're through. Only they have to do it now.

So, lets not shift focus from the eves, after all it is their moment. "India beat Sri Lanka and qualify for the semi-finals". Hope, we get to read this once again. Till then let me hear you say.. WAH! (one more time)

ICC World T20 - How Pakistan are better placed than India

Final four games and most people don't realise that the race to the semis is still alive for all super 8 teams. It has been helped by the fact that Australia and England have been unbeaten and this in fact will be very crucial in the last few games as well. Pakistan the defending champions still have a ray of hope, and a very glossy one that! same time ex-champs India have also lost 2/2 but, are not as comfortable as Pakistan are.

So, why is Pakistan better placed than India to make it to the semis you ask.. simple "Net Run Rate" dear, the very three words MSD would pay to remove from the Englsih vocabolary. As of now Pakistan hv a NRR better than SAF, NZL who are ahead only because of points. So, all Pakistan need is a victory over SAF today and hope that England remain unbeaten in their match against the Kiwis. That should do it.. Pakistan once again from no where will go through, with the biggest baddest grin you'll ever see but cant see-see.

Meanwhile India has to think on parallel terms.. They need to pray Aussies bt host Windies and then Men in Blue go and beat Sri Lanka by a big and I mean BIG! margin. That's unlikely but, never say never.. India should be happy to be getting away from Barbados for the time being. Last game at St. Lucia where they beat Saffers should give them some positive mind-set. But Lankans wont be sad either, they can definitely play the quality of spin India is providing them. But, no Murali will definitely be a positive for Indians. So, some exciting times ahead. Lets hope the unexpected happens and we are in for a treat! Till then let me hear you say.. WAH!

May 7, 2010

ICC World T20 - Super 8 Group F preview

The story in Group F of the super 8 its more likely the same. Lets have a quick look at the teams.

Australia - *Ozzy desperate for T20 success*
Ex-world champions in every format of the game. Wait a minute.. not T20! But, they did beat the defending champs quite convincingly. Got the best pace attack and use SPD Smith and Puppy Clarke as frontline spinners!
Since 2 of their 3 super 8 games are in Barbados their weak spin dept may not affect them. Look good to cruise into the semis despite the loss against Zimbabwe in the practise match and sudden slump against Bangladesh in the previous match. Hunger to win in this format is bringing the best out of them.

Wah say, "Better late than never" No.1 finish

Sri Lanka - *Lanka living in the Past*
Very well balanced side but, seems to lack the ability to give the final blow when the opposition is weak. After Sangakkara the batting looks like crockery, looks good but the cracks cant be hidden.
Lankan attack sans Moorali will make life tougher, Slinga Malinga will have too much riding on him. Dilshan, Jayawardene, Sangakkara have their task cut out. Jayasurya needs to bat higher probably no.4.

Wah say, "Surprised?" No.4 finish

India - *Incredible India*
Will have to play out of their skins to restore lost pride after the humiliation that defending champs of '07 could not go past the super 8 stage in '09. MSD will look to senior players to play with responsibility. But when Yuvi, Bhajji are among them its Dooms-day!
Nevertheless, Indian contingent looks balanced. Should be able to give a fight. The road ahead is difficult and the journey still a long one. The opening pair is still in search of some calmness, the fielding needs to lift the game. Yusuf should be tried higher in the batting order probably ahead or Yuvi at no.4.
Praveen Kumar is injured and Umesh Yadav of the Delhi Daredevils is his replacement.

Wah say, "Thou shall fight on the beaches, Thou shall fight on the cricket grounds, Thou shall fight ... Thou shall never surrender." No.2 finish

West Indies - *Curry-Bean flavour*
The home team will have the advantage of knowing the conditions but, it comes down to performance and Windies look iffy at best. Good range of allrounders available for the captain in Sammy, Bravo, Pollard and himself.
Sarwan needs to click soon. Big-Benn will be crucial and how Gayle uses him. Rampaul is better suited in the dressing room and nowhere near the field.

Wah say, "If u play the perfect host.." No.3 finish

May 6, 2010

ICC World T20 - Super 8 Group E preview

When the top 8 teams are the ones playing the super 8 games expect, fire crackers! It's top-notch at its top-notch best. Very difficult to choose right now. When I say, Kiwis the only team unbeaten in this group that says it all. With bad weather and two gentlemen, Mr. Duck-worthless and Mr. Lew-ass one has to be brave and call out predictions. So, here is the Group E for you.

Pakistan - *Defending Champions*

Carrying the burden of being the best team in T20's. Losing finalists in '07 and one big step in '09. Undoubtedly expectations are high, so far have played on expected lines. They tend to be slow starters (lost to Ind in 07 & Eng in 09 in grp stage).
But, this is where Pakistan lifts their game and probably takes it to ionosphere. The Super 8's. Team has looked mixed so far. Kamran Akmal opening not my ideal choice same for Hafeez playing at crucial 1-down(no.3). Umar Akmal yet to live to expectations. Razzaq, Md. Asif left out!

Wah say, "Not this time folks." No.3 finish

New Zealand - *Kiwi Fresh*

The one team who is unaware of their own potential. Smooth sailing so far, beat Lankans in a closely fought group match. Baz Mc'Kill-em yet to fire since the aus-kiwi game(IPL included). Bro Nathan Mc'Kill-em can't seem to put a foot wrong. Bond has been getting the stick treatment too long.
With Jesse back, Rosco, Baz+Bro, Guptill, Scotty 2 hotty, Oram, Dan the man team looks good.. might give Poms a run for their money. But, the black caps wont be favorites to go the distance.

Wah say, "Bottoms-up" No. 4 finish

South Africa - *Chokers*

Not fair to call them chockers already, the side looks good but, depending on Big Jake(Kallis) for too long will hurt them. Not used spin as their weapon unlike other teams. Struggled to keep India low in their first game will want to send some strong signals to potential rivals.
Langeveldt hasn't been played.. Albie Morkel is way past his fake-prime, thats 4 overs of buffet bowling to the opposition. Gibbs warming the benches as Bosman takes all the Loot!

Wah say, "Still have time to choke"  No.1 finish

England - *Pretty Poms*

Potential "Dark Horses" this year no matter how fair Stewy Broad or Eoin Morgan are. Eoin Morgan the "Deshdrohi" of the west. Rain has played bigger part than cricket has in England coming in to the super 8's.
Most likely that will continue and the Poms will be singing "Rain, Rain go away..".

Wah say, "English is a funny language."  No. 2 finish

May 4, 2010

ICC World T20 - Super 8's fixtures

The ICC World T20 championships moves into the Super 8's stage and here are the top 8 teams that have progressed so far:

Group E:
  • Pakistan
  • New Zealand
  • South Africa
  • England

Group F:

  • Australia
  • Sri Lanka
  • India
  • West Indies
Here's how the games are likely to be played:
  • May 6 - Barbados
 Pakistan v England
 South Africa v New Zealand
  • May 7 - Barbados
 Australia v India
 Sri Lanka v West Indies
  • May 8 - Barbados
 Pakistan v New Zealand
 England v South Africa
  • May 9 - Barbados
 India v West Indies
 Sri Lanka v Australia
  • May 10 - St. Lucia
 Pakistan v South Africa
 New Zealand v England
  • May 11 - St. Lucia

 Sri Lanka v India
 West Indies v Australia

The top 2 teams in Group E and Group F will move into the semi-finals. So, now that we are past the minnows or any possible upsets. We are in the business end of the world T20 thingy. Hoping the battles will be fierce and not affected by rain so, we don't have to swear on Mr. Duckworth and Mr. Lewis in the upcoming games.

April 29, 2010

Zimbabwe Beat Pakistan. WOW!

Lo' and behold! Zimbabwe on a roll. This time its the defending champs, Pakistan! yes, you saw it right.You never know with the Stanis, they may lose to Zim and beat the top team the next day. Anyways, coming to this match, Zim piled on 143 in their 20 overs. Chigumbura was the hero again scoring 49(35). Coventry and Masakadza also chipped in with handy runs. Boom Boom was the star with the ball picking 4/24. The target seemed pretty easy but not to be .Except for Kamran Akmal, Alam and Misbah , no one even reached double digits. They were "BOWLED OUT" for 131. Prosper Utseya really prospered with the ball , picking up 4 wickets. Chigumbura cleaned up the tail, picking up 3 wickets. Mind blowing performance. Its good to seem them taking these practice matches seriously. It would be nice to see them giving a tough competition in the league matches. The advantage is they seem to have the right bowling . Slow medium pace and spin is the need of the hour and that is helping them big time. Way to go ZIM! WAH! WAH!!

In the other matches, Chokers lost to Poms and Australia butt-kicked Windward Islands. WTF!

April 28, 2010


Early 2008 when talks about starting the Indian Premier League were raised. The one good reason(besides stealing the limelight from ICL) was that local talent will get a platform to play with greats of the game, international exposure and opportunity to get noticed. On those lines, the 3rd season has not been disappointing as most teams realised that besides having 4 quality intl players in the team, it is very important to have 7 talented local guys, who can steal victories for them. Some teams could not get the combination right like DD and KKR where some like RCB and MI had headache with whom to bench. But, these local guys have to be the toast of the third season of DLF IPL. Here are the xi players who well truly define the term "HOME TEAM".

  • Naman Ojha
  • Murali Vijay
  • Tirumalasetti Suman
  • Faiz Fazal
  • Saurabh Tiwary
  • Ambatti Rayudu
  • Kedar Jadhav
  • Ravichandran Ashwin
  • Vinay Kumar
  • Siddharth Trivedi
  • Murali Kartik

No surprises for the choice of openers, both Ojha & Vijay performed 2 notches above expectations. Suman won games for DC and helped the defending champions restore pride. Fazal looked quite good in the Royals outfit. Played a very significant role in the top order. The Mumbai Indians duo of Tiwary & Rayudu probably played their best cricket together. Caused lot of problems in the opposition's game plan. Jadhav had one really good knock for the Daredevils but, there on the Double D's couldn't figure out whom to play. Ashwin opened the bowling and did some serious damage for the Chennai Super Kings. His ability to mix it up and be very unpredictable was sheer class. Dint look like a rookie was in action. Vinay Kumar bowled very well initially and later got the stick treatment. But, in parts was good. SidT also bowled within his limits but mixed it very well and reaped praise from his captain and team mates. Murali Kartik showed with his county experience and Indian conditions was very effective but, was not used all that well.

Many others impressed. Of course, there is not room for all. We pick just eleven but, here we must mention a few. Ashoke Dinda once again showed signs of a smart bowler. Old Horse, Romesh Powar was very good but lack of wickets and 2 spinners already in the list meant he was left out. Badrinath, faced lot of criticism but had few good knocks that saved CSK the blushes. Mithun Manhas, Sarabjeet Ladda, Iqbal Abdulla, M.S.Bisla, Hameet Singh showed that domestic strength is very vital for the IPL teams.

DLF IPL 3.0 - Nightmare Team

When everybody is busy thinking about the IPL 3.0 Dream Team , we thought the other way and with great difficulty made a IPL 3.0 Nightmare Team. This team consists of the high profile flops of this edition of IPL. JUST THIS EDITION OF IPL! So here's the FORGETTABLE XI (4 overseas players only). This elite group of players have given nightmares to their franchisee owners, team sponsors and worst of all cricket lovers. So, sooner they are forgotten the better and they must hope this doesn't affect their value in the next player auctions.

Openers Haydos and Gilly make it to the team by default. The famous Aussie opening jodi back together like the good ol' days only not good anymore. The mongoose man showed the power of mongoose just for a match and that's it, his Mongoose died. On the other hand Gilli's koobaburra dint fly high. They played every match and failed in most of them. Next comes in Tillakaratne-Dilscoop-Dilshan. He was one of the T20 sensations, but failed to dominate this time. At no.4, its none other than our very own MRF Blimp a la UV Singh. Stripped off captaincy, no hugs from preity, etc etc.. can really demotivate any player and UV wasn't an exception. Don't worry UV, you are the captain of our side. *Cheers* Next is UV's best friend Md.Kaif. Though he dint get many chances, he would have screwed it anyways. Next is Johnny Bravo oops Dwayne Bravo. MI put in more faith in him than KiPo but he failed to grab the opportunity. His batting and bowling sucked equally. Next comes the ICL sensation, Chennai Superstars Captain, Rajagopal Sathish. Had chances to prove himself with the bat and ball, failed to capitalize. Only consolation was his fielding. Next is Lakshmipathy-C'mon Hit Me-Balaji. A pretty consistent bolwer who bowls full-toss & short wide outside off-stump at 110ks. Next is the deadly duo Ishant Sharma and R.(i).P Singh. Lesser said the better. The last player, no prizes for guessing, its Shanthakumaran Sreesanth and you all know why. This list could never be complete without him.

So here's a quick look at the team once again.
  • Matthew Hayden
  • Adam Gilchrist(wk)
  • Tillakaratne Dilshan
  • Yuvraj Singh©
  • Md.Kaif
  • Dwayne Bravo
  • Rajagopal Sathish
  • Lakshmipathy Balaji
  • Ishant Sharma
  • Rudra Pratap Singh
  • Shantakumaran Sreesanth

To hell with this team :)

April 27, 2010

Zimbabwe beat Australia... AGAIN!

Its not the first time this is happening, a similar thing happened in SAF in the league match during the 2007 T20 WC. Brendon Taylor gave Aussies sleepless nights in the first edition. This time, the venue was Beausejour Stadium, Gros Islet, St Lucia. Aussies would have loved to take revenge against ZIM , but not to be. ZIM batted first and were rocked by OZ full throttle pace attack. 4 wickets down for 36 after 6 overs Enter Chigumbura and Craig Ervine(B/O Sean Ervine)and they countered the OZ attack excellently. Chigumbura sent the ball screaming to every part of the ground.Watson and Christian were murdered. They bowled 2 overs each and their sum of 4 overs cost 63 runs. Phew!! Chigumbura scored a rapid 76(35) and was well supported by Craig Ervine 39(30). Mitch Johnson dint disappoint his fans,he picked up 4 wickets and Lee surprisingly bowled well.Zim set a target of 173. Warner and Watto took strike. Watto's poor run in the match continued and he departed early. Warner and Clarke then got off to a flier and tables started turning when they required 42 of 18 balls. Wickets fell in desperation of runs. It all came down to the last over when they needed 13 runs. Clarke, who steering their team to victory till then,was bowled by Mpofu. Johnson was run out immediately and Lee scored only 1 run of the final delivery. That's it !Australia lost by 1 run. It was party time for the Zimbabwe guys. Its a wake up alarm for the OZ. Guess, they took the match pretty lightly and it cost them badly. Warner scored 72(49) and Clarke scored 49(42).

April 26, 2010

Lalit Modi kisses Goodbye!


But is it over already? You really think it is...

April 21, 2010

DLF IPL - Wahs at War III

Alright, another semis game up tonight.. After Mumbai Indians ate the Kumble pie, not to sure any of these will bother to face them in the finale. But atleast they automatically qualify for the Champions League 2010, rather than face RCB in the play-offs game. The wounded tiger is sure to give a fight for the Champions League spot. So, Kollywood takes on Tollywood in the second semi-finals at D.Y.Patil stadium home of the Mumbai Indians and also the Deccan Chargers (get the clue?). Battle is heatnig up nicely, DC coming in with 5 straight wins and CSK pulling a humdinger of a match against KxiP to qualify for the semis.

The Sooper Kings made their entry with a Bang! and thus, ended Delhi Daredevils hopes of making it to the semis. With Capt. MSD in ominous form their batting seems have got a new lease of life. Hayden problems continue. But, most teams have attacked him with a spinner at the start. Gilly might not waste his best bowler and purple cap owner Ojha so early. So, Mongoose man can expect some off-cutters from Vaas at the most. Raina, Vijay have been in great touch and undoubtedly they are the linch-pins once again.. CSK will expect a big start from the top 3. Badri's knock against the Zintans has recouped his chances in more than one ways. MSD may look to send him ahead once again. Bowling worries continue for CSK with Albie Morkel getting the STICK treatment. He's most likely to save his place as there is no Flintoff or Oram to give him competition, only Kemp who did play against KxiP but bowled just 1 over. So, MSD would most likely go for Bollinger, Morkel, Haydos, Murali. Just keep Balaji/Tyagi in the playing xi(big case of What-Else, But-IF) bowl Bollinger, Morkel, Jakati, Ashwin , Murali, Raina. But, 4 spinners is a risk and might not be taken and the batting depth lacks due to this. So, Thushara Mirando may start in place of Murali. Albie, Hayden cannot afford to disappoint once again. Win toss bat 1st à la Mumbai and score BIG! and use spinners later in the game when they are more effective.

The Chargers have literally charged their way in with 5 straight wins and look re-charged from the way they started this season. Honesty, they dint look defending champion material until, the local boys came to the party. Suman, nearly the find of this season along with the Rayudus and Tiwarys. So, in case CSK bring their spinners into play, DC should easily tackle that with their domestic strength. Mishra, Suman, Rohit. Gilly better not fall for Ashwin as that is likely on the cards.. But, a Déjà vu of last years semis should make Gilly the MVP in this game. Symonds selects himself and the batting position, whether Gilly plays Vaas or Harris will be keen or he plays both and drops Mitch Marsh is an option. Gibbs still not the 1st choice and may sit out once again. Pragyan-Purple cap-Ojha, Harmeet-fake seamer-Singh, RP-Ex-Indian team-Singh should help out Vaas/Harris who ever plays and Roy can bowl his crap as well. Marsh if playing can be useful as well. Win toss, bowl first and restrict CSK. Bowl Rohit against Hayden early in the game. Chase down the target with ease. Have defeated CSK already twice this year so should look to repeat the task. Just in case invite Trisha for the match. Cos, she supports CSK they are sure to end up as the losing side. Qualify for CLT20, defend the title against Mumbai in the finals! Period.

April 20, 2010

DLF IPL - Wahs at War II

So the first of the knock-out games and a mouth watering one that promises to keep the water boiling till the very end. This is WAR! and we like to keep it that way between the bat and ball.

MI-Mumbai Indians were the favourites to win the IPL 3.0 even before it started and they haven't disappointed so far. Yes, a few hiccups here and there , but looks like its all sorted out. Questions were raised after the MI-CSK match when the wickets fell like 9 pins as soon as GOD(read SRT)retired. From then on,its been a collective effort from the batting side.Ambati-Did the Selectors notice my batting-Rayudu , Saurabh-a la MSD-Tiwary have been in good form right through the tournament. Keiron-10 ball wonder-Pollard has shown what he is capable of with the bat and ball. Duminy has found his long lost form. He is the new "Man with the golden arm", breaks important partnership. Proven and tested. Mclaren has been consistent with the ball. Coming to their bowling, its easily one of the best attacks. Zaks and Mclaren share the new ball and they hardly get hit.More importantly they uproot 1 or 2 wickets . Bhajji has been tremendous with the ball(even with the bat a couple of times). Lasith-Slinga-Malinga is easily their trump bowler with his pace, swing, variations. He is difficult to get through. I am sure he is a part of everybody's fantasy team :) Pollard is good for a 5th bowler. Satish, Duminy can be handy too. Their fielding has been fantabulous. They are a truly 3-d team. Jaya and Bravo have been the disappointments and are likely to sit out. Dhawan may open with SRT. The toss doesn't really for this team as they have an excellent bowling to defend the target and they have an explosive batting order which can chase down any target. Thier main strategy is remove KP and Uthappa ASAP, they are ones who change gears and up the ante. Jumbo has been in terrific form too, so its better they play away Jumbo without losing wickets. Its a knock out match for both the teams. MI would want all their 3 departments to fire and fire BIG TIME. If it does happen, there's no stopping the MI.

RCB- Dr. Mallya's merry men not in a very merry mood after the last few games giving them a scare of being knocked out before the knock-out stages. But Aal izz well in the RCB camp except they now face the table toppers Mumbai Indians enroute to the grand finale. RCB might be considered the under-dogs especially after the home ground conditions being stolen from them and gifted to their semi-finals opponents. Nevertheless, RCB being the under-dogs has to be a good sign(As that's what the IPL is all abt). Team strategy should ideally be - Win toss, elect to bowl first and get Sachin early. With Sachin in the hut, half the job is done. But, don't let the likes of Tiwary, Rayudu settle getting a couple of wickets exposes the chink in Mumbai's Armour i.e. their middle order. Restrict the Mumbai Indians and then beat them all over the park with a batting order to boast. C'mon Kallis, Dravid, KP, Rosco, Robin, Kohli.. hahaha. Mumbai may have a bowling attack on the sheets as well but, expect some buffet bowling and you shall be granted. Bowling needs to be extra-tight not sure if Pankaj Singh will get another game, expect PK to be back and Jumbo, Vinay, should support Kallis & Steyn very well. The pitch will not assist pace a lot but, when you can bowl @150+ you really don't need the pitch to help you. RCB should look to get ROFL Merwe in if you ask me. That will change a lot in the match. So, Kallis, KP, Merwe & Steyn can be the 4 maximum overseas players allowed. And if everything else goes by the plan RCB would have pulled an upset victory over the Mumbai Indians.

Carribean T20 - Attention Indian Fans! Vijay replaces injured Sehwag

As expected , an INDIAN player is injured. Courtesy: IPL. It is none other than the swashbuckling opener, Virender-JATMAN-Sehwag. The details of the injury is not known yet,must be the usual hamstring/ribs/shoulder injury or maybe mental disorder because of the fact that Double Ds dint make it to the semis. No prizes for guessing who flying to the Carribean to replace him, its Murali-Now you know why I scored in IPL-Vijay. Its a great oppurtunity for the guy to make a mark in T20s and thus make it to the ODIs too. The advantage for Vijay is that there are no other backup openers in the Indian Squad. So,even if he doesn't perform he still plays, but we hope it doesn't happen.Ya, we know people may say Rohit Sharma may open. Cut the Crap right now. Period. Vijay entered the test arena as a replacement for Gambhir too. Viru's loss is Vj's gain. All we can say is ALL THE BEST to VIJAY and GET WELL SOON, WE WILL NOT MISS YOU to VIRU. To show your love & affection send your best wishes directly to Viru @sehwagvirender.

P.S- Sehwag has injured his shoulder , now don't ask if its Left or Right :)

April 15, 2010

DLF IPL - Wahs at War

Wah are at War and it aint smelling like blueberry pies. Sooper Kings take on the Double D's today in a crucial encounter. The loser is not necessarily out and the winner not surely through as we said here. But surely both teams are desperate to win and will be happy with points in the bag rather than prayers on their lips. So it is simple, go out there and win 2 games and the next 2 and be crowned champs. CSK hv a neat record against DD, now going 3-2 head to head. So, that will mentally get them ready for the challenge. For DD Viru has been at ease against CSK and Chepauk is his one of his favorites undoubtedly. So, this is what the two teams must look to do.

CSK- It should be an easy outing for the Super Kings considering their current form. Finally after several FAILED experiments, the bowling department seems to have clicked. Though not attacking , but definetely better. Batting has always been their strength. Its good to see that the batting is not dependant on Haydos. Its good to see the young Indian guns firing. Murali-I can Fkn hit DLF Max too- Vijay has been a revelation. Suresh -IPL- Raina has been the backbone of the team in all the 3 editions. MSD, you never know, when he hits, it stays hit! If one of them clicks,its PARTY TIME for CSK! Last time when these two teams met, it was a run feast at the Feroz Shah Kotla. We all got to know the reason for the MEGA HYPE for Mongoose. Double Ds scored 185, thanks to Joginder-Golden Arm- Sharma. Haydos and his pet, Mongoose murdered the DD bowlers. The problem which CSK faced in the first half is now faced by DD. Their bowling looks weak after the exit of Nannes. It still seems an area of concern. Of late, their batting seems to be breaking too. Looks like they have their IPODs on when batting, they just dont listen to their partner's call. I hope they continue this way for CSK to make full use of it. Playing in Chennai doesn't really matter to any team because they cheer for everyone, even you and me. Its more like a neutral venue. I feel CSK should stick with the same winning combo. 3 spinners and 2 pacers looks perfect . Their main strategy is to remove the openers as quickly as possible. Gambhir has looked dangerous, but he will run himself out, no worries there. Nothing much to say about the rest of the batting, maybe Karthik will try to impress the crowd. CSK should bat first, it should be a belter of a pitch, score an assload of runs. Bowlers should make sure that Viru and Warner get back to the pavillion within the powerplay and the Double D's will succumb to the pressure automatically.

DareDevils - The Double D's are in woeful form and they know it. They haven't settled into a stable team combination and the absence of Dirty Dirk is proving crucial. Play to win, has to be the plan here. Probably bringing back Dilshan into the xi will help. He has been kept away for too long one feels. McDonald was given the treatment so we hope capt.GG learnt not to bowl his happy meals, in the last few overs like Raina did earlier captaining CSK. Viru has to get going and not towards the dug-out. DK just cannot bat at no.4 that is just insane! Probably go in with Warner, Dilshan, Collingwood and Vettori will make sense and bringing in Bhatia will provide some depth. Also if Viru can bowl a couple will surely help the cause as the wicket in Chennai is sure to assist the slower bowlers. Last time around Haydos unleashed the Goose. That shouldn't happen again, getting wickets early exposes the likes of Badri, Morkel and that should help DD buckle them and strangle them. It would be a good toss to lose. But, an important game to win.