Sunday, November 25, 2007

Scintillating 97 and Kumble at Kotla and a Few Records in Between ...

Sachin played brilliantly for his 97 at Gwalior to help India seal the series against Pakistan. I am bored of everyone telling me that he missed his century for the sixth time this year. At the interview while receiving his 56th MOM-award (!), he said that the more he would think about it, the more difficult it would get.

He should have continued with his form at Jaipur but fell unfortunately at a blitz 30. Pakistan went on to win the last ODI. Dhoni and Yuvraj played well to get within striking distance, but couldn't finish it off. Yuvee was adjudged the Man of the Series -- He's worthy of it. Well done, Yuvraj!

Well, Kumble is at his best at Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi. He achieved the amazing feat of 10-for at the same venue eight years ago! The match is definitely in India's favor with an all-round performance by various players. As I write this, India need 32 runs to win, with 7 wickets in hand. Both Saurav and Sachin are playing well and they should see India through. Kumble's maiden test victory as a captain -- That should be cherishable. Sachin broke/achieved few other records -- Being second-highest run scorer ever in test cricket and being the third Indian to have scored 1000 runs in the fourth innings of a test match.

Misbah Ul-haq's run-out was hilarious.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

First two ODI's Against Arch-Rivals ...

The Series (Pakistan in India, 2007) is level at this point. Sachin was fooled by a slower one by the rejuvenated Shoib Akhtar and was out for 4. India went on to win the ODI. MS Dhoni and Yuvraj saw India through. Sachin fooled the fearsome Afridi and was lucky to have dismissed Shoib Malik. So, his contributions have been there.

The second game performance by Sachin was a gem, yet again. He made wonderful 99. After India made 321/9, brilliant strokeplay by Younis Khan and Afridi saw Pakistan through. Indians helped them by dropping catches.

Another good thing that has happened for Indian team is that Anil Kumble has been chosen as the captain of the test team. I hope good days are ahead of us.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Dravid omission is shocking ..

OK, here is a prediction, regarding Dravid's omission: He will come back with a vengeance in the series against Pakistan. There's no doubt in my mind that we will have him in Australia squad.

I think the strategy is akin to the one that kept Kallis away only to help him concentrate more and deliver incredible knocks against Pakistan.

The last ODI and 20/20 Win ...

Hats off to Robin Uthappa, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer and Murali Karthik who won it for India. Getting 194 against quality Australia bowling is awesome. Sachin could have done better, but it was not to be. Someone has already said that he played his last game at his home ground, but I don't want to speculate it.

This win is significant because it reinstated the self-confidence and temperament. Uthappa is all about that. I like it especially because I lack the temperament that is so vital in the game of cricket!

The following 20/20 win where Gambhir led India to victory was enjoyable too. But I have to yet join the Twenty20 fan club.