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Archive for the ‘World Cup’ Category

The Finals-A Preview

So here we are on the eve of the finals of the most lacklustre Cricket World Cups of all time.

Australia meet Sri Lanka in the finals tomorrow at Barbados. Australia have clinically demolished all the teams they have met and they have proved that they are the best in the business.

Sri Lanka, the proverbial underdogs want to relive their 1996 dream. It is going to be an interesting contest tomorrow.

Vass bowling to Hayden, and Murali foxing Ponting, Glen Mc Grath to Sanath and Sangakarra. I wish it will be a fight to the finish and not a match where one team(read Australia) overpower the other in all departments of the game.

I strongly support Sri Lanka and want them to win. They have really worked a lot and improved their game under the able leadership of Jayawardene.

If Australia complete a hattrick, then the game will lose its charm and unpredictability.

Wishing the Lankans -ALL THE BEST.

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When Bangladesh defeated India on March 17, I thought the Tigers might spring a surprise. But their performance has been poor. They beat Bermuda to dash all Indian hopes, their show in the Super Eights has been disappointing and have lost their matches against Australia and New Zealand so far.

So it means that India fielded the worst team in the entire cup.

I hope the Bangla Tigers put a decent fight in their remaining matches.

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West Indies had a poor start to their Super Eight round as they lost both their matches. In the first match they were comprehensively beaten by Australia by a margin of 103 runs.

Batting first in their next match against New Zealand West Indies were boled out for 177. New Zealand won by 7 wickets, with Styris hitting a gusty knock of 80 runs.

South Africa won a thriller and defeated Sri Lanka by 1 wicket. Lasith Malinga created history by taking four wickets of as many balls.

So the Australians are clear favourites. Let us see what happens.

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Some of the leading news channels carried a feature on a sms this morning, what is so special about a sms? Well when it relates to the shattered dreams of a billion people, the sms is of great importance.

Chappell sent a sms to the renowned sports journalist Rajan Bala. Bala read out the sms to the media. The summary of the sms is as follows:
Chappell was not happy with the team selection.
He wanted Raina to be a part of the team but his choice was refuted.
Dravid demanded the inclusion of seniors instead of some young players and the selectors did not want to take a gamble by fielding a young side for the fear of failure.
Kaarthick is a good lad, and has leadership potential.
Yuvraj is putting on airs and behaving like a big star, although is just a rising talent.

My point is that I agree with Chappell, the million dollar question is why did Chappell not protest earlier, before the team left for the World Cup? Does a coach have no say in the selection of a team?

So who will be the new captain? Sharad Pawar hints that the burden will once again go to Sachin. Will Chappell be sacked, the backlash of the public suggests it. Already Sandeep Patil has been named by some influential people to be the next coach. Ravi Shastri and Sunil Gavaskar have been called for a brainstorming session to give new ideas.

Ideas look very good on paper and on TV news. The challenge lies in recognising genuine talent and implementing ideas to make those talents work fruitfully.

We have about another 45 months to have a proper team in place before the next World Cup starts. I hope by then things will fall into place and India will once again be a force to reckon with in the cricketing world.

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When the warmup matches started before the main event, the Indian fans breathed a sigh of relief when India dismissed the hosts for a total of less than a hundred runs. Little did we realize that it was just flattery. The Indian team once again flattered to deceive. They were beaten by Bangladesh on March 17, the same day when Ireland thrashed Pakistan. India came back strongly and posted a record total of 413 against Bermuda, but all that went in vain when India lost to Sri lanka and were eliminated from the world cup.

So where do things stand now. Chappell came with a dream promising a lot, but the team faltered and with one controversy after the other Team India has landed in a mess like a dream gone horribly wrong they have landed themselves in a pile of shit(sorry to use the profanity). First things first, why were Sreesanth, Pathan and Dinesh Karthik not played. Did they go to the Wst Indies for sight-seeing? When Sehwag and Uthappa were repeatedly failing with the bat why was Karthik not given a chance? Dhoni has been a dismal failure, a lot was expected from him, but he managed two ducks and a 29 in three innings. When we had both Sachin and Ganguly, why did Chappell not go back to the glorious opening combination of Sachin and Sourav or maybe Sachin and Sehwag. Or Dhoni should have been moved up the order to give him some confidence. Agarkar dissappointed again with his expensive bowling. The big selection blunder was not to have included Romesh Powar. He is an excellent bowler and batsman and the slow tracks in the West Indies would have helped him.

So whose head will roll first? Guru Greg will get a return ticket maybe economy class to Australia. Sachin who failed once again when he needed to hit some runs should retire gracefully. Drop Sehwag, Agarkar and Harbhajan, Make Yuvaraj the captain. Let Dhoni play as a batsman and make Dinesh Karthik the full time wicket-keeper batsman that he is. If Anil Kumble is retained in the team, which should happen, let Kumble captain India and make Yuvraj Singh his deputy. Our next tour is to Bangladesh and it would be an excellent opportunity to avenge the Worl Cup humiliation, but the way the Tigers played they deserved to win that match on March 17. Let the team be moulded afresh. The team needs the support of its fans. ANother issue is the cricketers should not endorse any products or star in advertisements, or a there should be a limit to the number of products that a player can endorse.

Let this be the fire in which the Phoenix of Indian cricket burns and arises again as a winner.

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I think the word “minnows,” will be used with lesser frequency in the world of cricket. The reason being the double shock that occured in the World Cup on March 17. India were well and truly beaten by Bangladesh by 5 wickets. India batted first and Sehwag and Uthappa threw their wickets again to trigger a batting collapse, which posted a decent total just because of Ganguly and Yuvraj. India were bowled out for 191, and Bangladesh romped home in style with an over to spare.

In the other match Pakistan batted first and were bowled out for 132 in 45.4 overs. The Irish scored 133/7 in 41.4 overs. So Pakistan have been eliminated from the tournament and if Team India does not pull up its socks the runners up of the last edition would have to run back home.

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Australia defeated Scotland 203 runs.

Kenya beat Canada by 7 wickets. Canada were all out for 199 runs and Kenya scored 203 for the loss of 3 wickets.

Sri Lanka defeated Bermuda by a massive margin of 243 runs. Sri Lanka scored 321 for the loss of 6 wickets and Bermuda were all out for 78 runs.

Ireland and Zimbabwe played a wonderful match which ended in a tie. Ireland scored 221 for the loss of 9 wickets in the stipulated 50 overs. Zimbabwe were on track for a victory, but some brilliant fielding and bowling by the Irish ensured a nail biting finish. Zimbabwe were bowled out for 221 in 50 overs.

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