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Sight Screen

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Star in the making

The Times is first off the block in paying tribute to an outstanding innings by Mohammad Ashraful.
It was the heck of an innings, by any yardstick -- the strokeplay so incandescent, Paul Collingwood is quoted as saying it was like watching Tendulkar in his prime.
Every bowler he faced, he destroyed -- 2 fours in seven balls faced off Tremlett, 4 fours and two sixes (one the sort of wristy flick you would expect from an Azhar, or a Laxman) in 12 balls off Steve Harmison; 2 fours and a six in 11 balls off Flintoff; 21 runs in 14 balls faced off Ashley Giles -- and mind you, it wasn't as if the bowlers weren't trying to get the little lad out.
Check out his wagonwheel -- there's an obvious on-side bias, which you would expect from a batsman hell bent on hitting everything; but it's not as if his off play was limited. An edge and a cut behind point, two drives through the covers, one on the up through mid off... very similar, in fact, to the innings he played against Australia the other day (see wheel).
Dileep Premachandran, elsewhere, sees parallels between Cardiff and India's 1983 win over West Indies at the now defunct Albion Sports Complex, Berbice.

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