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When Kumble’s Magic Was Not Enough For RCB In South Africa 02/06/2020

When Kumble’s Magic Was Not Enough For RCB In South Africa

Read the wonderful story of Deccan Chargers as they lifted the IPL trophy coming from the bottom last year.

Story of rags to riches

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https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/06/when-kumbles-magic-was-not-enough-for.html

When Kumble’s Magic Was Not Enough For RCB In South Africa Heroes In the IPL Finals- Episode 2 With the grand success of IPL in 2008, the much-awaited glam boy of cricket travelled to S...

When Pathan Power Exploded In The Inaugural Edition Of IPL 01/06/2020

When Pathan Power Exploded In The Inaugural Edition Of IPL

Ever thought of relieving the IPL finals from last 12 years.

Here's my first article in the series 'IPL Heroes In The Finals'

Click here to share your valuable opinions.

https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/06/when-pathan-power-exploded-in-inaugural.html

When Pathan Power Exploded In The Inaugural Edition Of IPL Heroes In the IPL Finals- Episode 1 Twenty-20 cricket, the ‘cricket’s amateur baby’ or ‘school boy cricket’ as it was called in...

Is IPL Bigger Than ICC And Bilateral Tournaments? 28/05/2020

Is IPL Bigger Than ICC And Bilateral Tournaments?

The International Cricket Council (ICC) and the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) have locked horns against each other, as the PCB have denied the proposal to re-schedule T20 World Cup from this year to March 2021.

Furthermore, the coveted board opined that the ICC should not prioritize IPL as it a domestic league and honestly, the ICC and bilateral tournaments are much greater than such domestic tournaments.

So, Is IPL Bigger Than ICC And Bilateral Tournaments?

Express your opinions on my blog

Post link: https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/05/is-ipl-bigger-than-icc-and-bilateral.html

Is IPL Bigger Than ICC And Bilateral Tournaments? In the recent turn of events, there has been an interesting bout regarding the re-scheduling of IPL season 13. The International Cric...

Should Indian Players Be Allowed To Play In Foreign Leagues? 26/05/2020

Should Indian Players Be Allowed To Play In Foreign Leagues?

Have you ever wondered, cheering for Dhoni when he is lighting the stumps for Hobart Hurricanes or Trinbago Knight Riders?

But, we all know that the Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI) doesn’t allow any Indian players to participate in any foreign leagues.

Should Indian Players Be Allowed To Play In Overseas Leagues?

Please share your opinions on the above debate by commenting on my blog.

Post link: https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/05/should-indian-players-be-allowed-to.html

Should Indian Players Be Allowed To Play In Foreign Leagues? Have you ever wondered, cheering for Dhoni when he is lighting the stumps for Hobart Hurricanes or Trinbago Knight Riders? Watching K...

Could Rohit Be Better White Ball Captain Than Kohli? 23/05/2020

Could Rohit Be Better White Ball Captain Than Kohli?

In both major tournaments (Champions Trophy 2017 and Cricket World Cup 2019), Kohli has looked vulnerable as a captain.

Should team India go with split captaincy in tests and limited overs?

Click here to share your thoughts: https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/05/could-rohit-be-better-white-ball.html

Could Rohit Be Better White Ball Captain Than Kohli? India’s disappointing exit in the semi-final of the Cricket World Cup 2019 was very agonizing for every cricket fan. Since the ICC Cha...

When Little Master’s Storm Blew Away Aussies In The Desert Of Sharjah 20/05/2020

When Little Master’s Storm Blew Away Aussies In The Desert Of Sharjah

Rohit Sharma’s Rising From 2013 To 'Hitman'

Post link: https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/05/rohit-sharmas-rising-from-2013-to-hitman.html

Talk about batsmen who have their natural flamboyance and unmatched style, only few names come to my mind like Steve Waugh, David Gower and Sir Vivian Richards. However, in this list, every cricketing guru and fan knew there is someone equally capable to join them i.e. Rohit Sharma.

Rohit with his elegant style has a split second extra than any other batters. His lazy elegance and his majestic stroke play cannot be rivaled by anyone. However, for every talented batsman there are difficulties to sustain big game pressure and handle expectations of others. Such was a case for Rohit Sharma too. Although talented, Rohit lacked an imperative weapon in his armamentarium i.e. consistency. His problems in middle overs was not soothing for the team, as he would play a good innings and then have a string of low scores which was unlike his talent.

Since his blasting debut in ICC T20 World Cup 2007 and recurring performances in Tri-series in Australia 2008, Rohit’s graph suddenly titled downwards with the string of low scores. In 2010, India faced Srilanka in a 5- match ODI series, Rohit couldn’t cross the two-digit score for once in his five innings. Due to his inconsistency in the middle order, he wasn’t even considered for Test selection until 2013 and lost his place in 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup. Many cricketing gurus and fellow commentators criticized him, referring him as ‘talented man with lazy approach’ and ‘lacking the will to score’. It was slowly becoming the lowest point for the batsman of such high caliber. However, behind every great cricketer there is a supporting captain and ‘Dhoni’ proved to be his knight in the shining armour. Even with his inconsistency, Dhoni continued to back him throughout his career and in 2012, in ODI series against England at home, Dhoni gave him the chance to bat at top of the order, where he scored a match-winning 83. Though, his lean form continued till the end of 2012.

What was the turning point for Rohit Sharma?

The year 2013 was ideally the breakthrough year for Rohit Sharma. It all started when Rohit was selected as an opener to partner S Dhawan at the top of the order in ICC Champions Trophy 2013. Rohit along with his partner Shikar and V Kohli formed an attacking trio that destroyed each and every opposition in the pecking order. Rohit became the second highest run-getter for India in the tournament behind S Dhawan. After 3 months, it was time for the famous 2013 home ODI series against Australia where Rohit Sharma showed his true class and amassed 491 runs averaging 123 in the process with a century (122 at Jaipur chasing 360) and a double century (209 at Bengaluru batting first) under his belt. He became only the third batsmen overall to score double hundred in ODI cricket. Till date, he is the only man in world cricket to score 3 double hundreds in one-day internationals. In addition, the added-responsibility of captaining such a huge IPL franchise in the mid-season made him more mature as a cricketer. Rohit Sharma with his batting, recorded 538 runs in the season 6 of the IPL. With his astute leadership, Mumbai Indians lifted the prestigious IPL trophy for the first time.

Story of becoming the ‘Hitman’:

After the breakthrough 2013, Rohit never looked back and become one of the finest white-ball cricketers in the history of the game. Since then, Rohit has been called ‘Hitman’ who had the habit of destroying bowling with his touch play and lazy elegance. Rohit Sharma holds the record to scoring at an aggregate of over 50 from 2013 to 2019 in ODI cricket. He has gone passed 500 in more than 5 consecutive calendar years while averaging 50 or more. Even in the Test cricket, Rohit with his limited opportunities as an opener, has shown a class of an attacking opener which could be a significant factor in overseas conditions.

To conclude, Rohit Sharma is relentless as an opener in every format. He is one of those cricketers, once settled, is pain in the neck for any bowling attack. Rohit makes batting look a child’s play. With experience and form on his side, everyone knows the best of Hitman is yet to come and world cricket should be wary of this ‘Baba Yaga’ of cricket.

Share your opinions.

According to your choice, who is the best white-ball opener currently in ODI cricket?
David Warner
Rohit Sharma
Quinton de K**k
Jason Roy

Please have a look on my previous posts

https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/05/when-little-masters-storm-blew-away.html

https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/05/is-this-end-of-road-for-iceman-ms-dhoni.html

https://everythingyetonlycricket.blogspot.com/2020/05/the-number-four-conundrum-indias.html

When Little Master’s Storm Blew Away Aussies In The Desert Of Sharjah From The Vault: Article 1 Imagine being born in this beautiful country and hearing about the tales of Indian cricket from the past...

19/05/2020

When Little Master’s Storm Blew Away Aussies In The Desert Of Sharjah

Imagine being born in this beautiful country and hearing about the tales of Indian cricket from the past. Apparently, among those all, one tale always stood out for me, the nostalgic Desert Storm innings of Sharjah, 1998 by little master Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar. The batting heroics at such a young age was something above the class, especially when the ground was hit by a sandstorm making the game shorter.

The story started in the cusp of Coca-Cola cup in 1998, where Australia as always in early 2000s dominated the round of robin stages of the tournament beating both NZ and India, preceding to the finals. In group stages, India was able to beat NZ in the first match of the tournament [S Ganguly 105 (140) and Ajit Agarkar (4/35) defending 220]. Though, NZ came back in the tournament by beating India in their next fixture [Chris Cairns (3/26 and Craig McMillan 59 (122) chasing 181).

After 5 matches, Australia (won 3 games) was sitting at the top qualified for the finals with 6 points. On the other hand, their opponent India (won 1 game) had only 2 points under their belt after 3 matches. It was the last match of Round of Robin stage, wherein Aussies won the toss and batting first scored a mammoth 285 [Michael Bevan 101 (103)] in their allotted 50 overs. The card was set for India wherein either they had to win or had to go pass 254 (50 overs) at least to overhaul NZ's net run rate and qualify for the finals. However, after 25 minutes of play, the stadium was hit by a devastating sandstorm and the game was reduced to 46 overs where the team required 276 to win or 237 to qualify.

Chasing 276, India were not off to the amazing start as the Indian opener S Ganguly 17 (32) got out in the ninth over of the innings. However, playing steadily Sachin with the support of Nayan Mongia got the total to 107 in 22nd over of the innings, but in the same over Mongia 35 (46) got dismissed to Tom Moody. Both, the skipper M Azharuddin 14 (20) and A Jadeja 1 (5) soon followed cheaply at the score of 138 for 4 after 29 overs. Later, Sachin was joined by VVS Laxman 23 (34), wherein together they put-on a huge 105 run partnership for the 5th wicket.

The highlight of that partnership was Sachin wherein he single-handedly smashed the likes of M Kasprowicz, Shane Warne and Damien Fleming, all-round the park. Sachin’s final score read, a brilliant 143 of 131 balls which forever etched in the memory of each and every India cricketer and fan. Even though India lost the match (due to the lack-luster lower order), the sheer dominance of the innings allowed India to enter the finals wherein Sachin took his single-handed revenge. Sachin continued his on-slot and scored yet another hundred 134 (131) in the final chasing 272 but this time in the winning cause.

The game had its irony, where the Aussies might have thought the desert storm hit the stadium, but lesser they knew that the Sachin’s storm was the one that hit much harder. The emotion of Sachin’s heroics was showcased greatly by the Australian legendary leggie, Shane Warne, he claimed to get nightmares after the tournament at the thoughts of bowling to Sachin. This was one of those tournaments wherein you can easily say that it was ‘One vs All’. Sachin, single-handedly snatched the trophy from the hands of the Aussies and portrayed his character as the greatest players in the history of the game.

Share your opinions.

Is Sachin’s desert-storm innings, your nostalgic cricketing moments in the history of the Indian cricket?

18/05/2020

Is This The End Of The Road For The Iceman, MS Dhoni?

I wish this day wouldn’t have arrived to pick up such an emotional topic to write on. For every Indian cricket fan, from last one year, this topic has been one of the bitterest pills to swallow and the current phase of Indian cricket since 2019 World Cup. From last 15 years we aren’t use to see anyone behind the stumps raising arms and setting the fields. However, currently Indian team even if they are doing decently well, lack that one important factor i.e. the MS Dhoni factor.

Whenever we use were used to hear, how many do India need? Our next question has always been, who is at the crease? The sense of calmness and joy to hear that Dhoni is still there was very special to everyone. His ability to soak in the pressure and calmly handle the situation of the game was something that cannot be taught by any coach. We all knew, no one could ever escape his lightning quick hands behind the stumps, even if it was a matter of few inches and spilt seconds. The responsibility that he shouldered starting from a mere hitter to being one of the finest cricketers in the world is just amazing. Ideally, he is one those gems for whom technique didn’t define him as a cricketer.
What has been the problem?

The wishes are compulsive and currently, the legendary career of MS Dhoni against our liking has slowed down. The legacy and inevitable leadership of our Captain Cool was something we were so used to; that his absence from the list of contracted players this year is unimaginable. The fact that his ability against spin went down in the later part of the career has led to difficulty in rotating strike in the middle phase of the innings. Additionally, the true talent of finishing games in the last over, that defined him throughout his career sadly turned out to be his greatest downfall. Dhoni, the guy with amazing hitting talent has occasionally not been able to finish games in the death overs from last 2 to 3 years in both international and IPL cricket.

I would never wish to see ending of a great career in such a bizarre manner (run-out in semifinal of World Cup 2019). The image of him sadly walking into the dressing room knowing, this the end for the team, is something no cricketer ever deserves. The fact that such an ending came in store for MS somehow seems very unfair to him. I know the comebacks are special and Dhoni might retort back sooner or later but unfortunately, these comebacks are also deceptive. As the career moves forward, the mind and body could slowly go out of sync pushing him in no man’s land. Finally, I hope that the somehow, he outlasts everyone and gets his deserving ending.

Share your opinions.

According to you, should Dhoni be included in the World T20 squad in Australia?

17/05/2020

The Number Four Conundrum- India’s Downfall In ICC Cricket World Cup 2019

It is the year 2020 and the cricketing world is eyeing the upcoming and much-awaited ICC T20 World Cup 2020 2020, amidst the COVID-19 crisis. However, India’s failure in last year’s ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, has fed a very debatable question even after the wealth of batting exploits and talents in the country. One of the biggest concerns in the showcase of giants was the lackluster middle order (specifically number 4) that failed miserably.

Team India tried as many as four different options i.e. KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant, (both in the race for the wicket-keeper position in India’s current white ball set-up), Vijay Shankar, and Dinesh Karthik (Semi-final vs NZ). The question in reckoning was that the team even tried Ambati Rayudu (Best fit to the position as per my choice), Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya (Series against Australia at home) at that position and even Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni was thrown in the mix before the World Cup. Trial and error method of selectors proved to unfruitful, as in the final squad, Vijay Shankar was selected in the 15 and was reckoned to fill in the much-debatable position. However, the indecisive selection of KL Rahul ahead of him, raised many questions on the communication between the selectors and the team.

Vijay Shankar was a hit and miss, as before his selection, he didn’t perform to his expectations. Shankar, even after getting starts and threw his wicket away in crucial times leading to a debate on his temperamental issues. Talking about his bowling, Virat was very reluctant to use him and whenever he was called for rolling the arm over, he wasn’t up to the mark, bowling only 2 to 3 overs. Even KL Rahul, who can do no wrong in cricket currently, was lacking that ability to churn the strike over and hit those singles and twos in middle phase of the innings. Targeting the spinners or seamers too early by playing a rash shot. In middle of the tournament when S Dhawan was injured, the replacement Rishabh Pant wasn’t up-to the mark with absence of same ability to hitting ones and twos even before the World Cup.

Why is Number 4 a difficult position to bat in White ball game?

With the advent of changing rules and powerplays, the number 4 is one of the crucial positions in white-ball set-up. However, the situation of the game, ground dimensions, top-order form and current form is important to bat at that position. The position demands flexibility to face both pace and spin in any given situation. It even demands the temperamental skills to assess the situation of the game and change gears accordingly. In ODI cricket, the ability to choose and attack the bowler having a rough day, buildings the innings, and softening the bowling for next batters, is few important skills that separates a good from a great number 4. In T20 cricket where gigantic sixes are demanded, a skillful number 4 knows whom and when to target and re-assess his plans by striking important ones and twos.

Current scenario:

Currently, Shreyas Iyer has been shouldered the responsibility to bat at number 4 and contemplating with his current performances, he is steadily winning the position from the likes of Rishabh Pant, and Manish Pandey competing (currently slotted in number 6 in absence of Hardik Pandya) in the race. He has been calm and is steadily grasping the qualities of ideal number 4 and has been equally supported by Indian swiss-knife KL Rahul and run-machine Virat Kohli in the middle order. With the inclusion of Iyer at number 4, things are looking better for the team in the current ball game. If the likes of Hardik Pandya, Shivam Dube, and R Jadeja could support these middle order batsmen in the business end of the innings, the team could crack the code for striking the perfect balance of strikers and accumulators.

Finally, for team India to perform better as a batting unit in upcoming white ball tournaments, the middle order needs to fire in crucial games to take the burden off the top order. India’s defeat in semifinal was rarest occasion where the top order failed and fact that same happened in Champions trophy in 2017 against Pakistan shows the importance of a strong middle order in the batting unit. It is important now that the people who bat in these crucial positions be assured about their positions and given ample opportunities to solidify their position in the team.

Suggest your views about the article and the issue of number 4.

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