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Sight Screen

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Overs 21-30

Here's what I can almost guarantee you -- unless it is an absolute batting beauty, Graeme Smith will likely want to bowl first here on in if he wins the toss and there is the faintest hint of dew; for all that he and Kallis said the Proteas bowlers are used to dewy conditions, they haven't really enjoyed this experience. The older, softer, greasier ball has seen a marked dip in the discipline of line and length -- and the game is slowly but surely slipping away. After 30, SA 96/6; India, moving on from 71/2 at the end of 20, in the box seat now at 124/3 and coasting.
The wicket to fall during this period was Pathan's -- and predictably, to a run out. Coming in, in the 9th over of a torrid spell, with the score on 13/1, Pathan did his bit and more (what more would an accomplished batsman have achieved?) in helping the score along to 105/3; 38 dot balls, 15 singles and 4 fours in that knock of 37/58.
It is clear Pathan knows the importance of singles, from the way he tries to manufacture them when the fielding doesn't automatically permit them -- but while there is little wrong with his footspeed, his calling and even judging of his partner's calls could do with some work.
A positive for India is the batting of Sehwag at the number 4 slot -- in this game, his batspeed through the hitting arc has been a lot more akin to his best, than we have seen in recent times; the footwork is positive and assured, the timing and confidence seem to be back. It raises two possibilities -- that with this innings behind him, he could go back up the order and let SRT come down; alternately, that he could become one more game-breaker in the middle order.

7 Comments:

  • I still think sachin and sehwag should play on top. GG is a very exciting batsmen and I think he should be given a lot of play so he can always come in and be ready. But a Sachin and Sehway in song is devastating.

    By Blogger ahem, at 10:36  

  • Proteas said so because in SA dew helps the bowlers. The bowl swings more in those conditions there. Remember several day night games under dew in Durban?

    By Blogger Vick, at 10:40  

  • Prem, I am not convinced at all about Sehwag yet. He still a lottery, doesnt move his feet and the shot selection has an air of premediatedness(you know what I mean..)

    By Blogger Reverse Sweep, at 10:44  

  • folks,

    My take on SRT trying to hit out that over is the following. The last ball of the previous Over Gambhir slashed and got a four. SRt was not too happy and probably thought as the senior partner his job is to accelerate the scoring. Of course not a great ball to try that shot. He looked very compact playing the speedsters though.

    By Blogger Seshan, at 10:50  

  • prem,

    love your 10 over analysis startegy. It gives perspective to those who cannot watch the game and have to trust the scorecard to give'em an idea.

    By Blogger Amit, at 10:50  

  • Sehwag is definitely not a lottery. He was masterful today. I think if Gambhir plays he should open.

    By Blogger Mano, at 10:58  

  • What we can do is rotate the opening combination between Sachin-Gambir & Gambhir-Sehwag...mainly to rest Sachin in dead rubber games. I think Gambir has shown enough evidence that he is capable of playing attacking cricket and a right/left combination is always tough to bowl at. Ravi SHastri said that if we can alternate between Sachin & Sehwag at #4 depending on the opponent and match situation...it gives more weight to the middle-order.
    South Africa have done that too with Gibbs moving down the order...though De Villiers hasn't clicked as an opener in ODI's.

    By Blogger ClannZĂș, at 13:59  

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