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Sight Screen

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Round up

Jonty Rhodes, who among other things will conduct a fielding clinic in Mumbai beginning November 27, has a word to say about Rahul Dravid's leadership:
"He is a capable leader, who motivates younger players. The decision of Indian Selectors in making him captain is the right choice," he told reporters on the sidelines of a product launch function.

The Independent, London, some years back ran this superb two-page spread on Rhodes' fielding drills. Absolutely brilliant stuff -- diagrammatically showing how he used tennis rackets and other equipment to hone his skills. There was an amusing sidelight to it -- Mohammad Azharuddin was then the Indian captain, and the team was in Sri Lanka. Faisal Shariff made copies of the piece, and sent it to Azhar; later, FS discovered that the clippings had reached the destination -- but no one had bothered to read the thing.
And still on fielding drills, Eknath Solkar had a very unusual way of practising close catching. He hung an ordinary wooden cradle above head height. He would stand under it, with a tennis ball in his hand, and with arm at full stretch, use his wrist to flick the ball into the cradle. You never knew where the ball would, after richocheting off the sides, pop out again -- front, sides, even back; the drill for Solkar was to catch it before it hit the ground, no matter even if it came out behind his back.
S Ram Mahesh, in the Hindu, has a profile of Jacques Kallis; the basic theme is that the Proteas vice captain may not be as flamboyant as some, but is no less worth a place in the pantheon of cricketing gods.
GREEN Eggs and Ham, a book by Dr. Seuss, emerged in response to a challenge from his editor to write a book with just 50 different words. Most of Jacques Kallis's compositions share similarities with the admirable and aforementioned collection of pages; their creator has chosen to restrict himself in his choice of raw materials.
If a batsman of undoubted temperament and uncommon skill compels sportswriters around the world to use `majestic' and `soulless', `gorgeous' and `unloveable' in the same breath as if trying to balance one against the other, it raises questions. A Kallis innings is an exercise often more in denial than expression. But, pray why?

Kapil Dev slams Kolkattans for prevailing talk of boycotting the Eden Gardens ODI against RSA tomorrow.
"Why did you not protest about (Anil) Kumble [who was excluded from the one-day squad] not playing ? Don't you feel bad? It's the same thing.
"The time Kolkata people feel bad about Anil Kumble, then I will feel bad about him [Ganguly's exclusion]. When they feel bad about (V V S) Laxman, then I will feel about Sourav Ganguly," he said, in response to a question at an interaction in Bangalore, arranged by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare.
"Because India comes first, then the State; You cannot think about your State and not think about your country. Country is much more bigger," Kapil said.

To be fair, I doubt the entire state deserves to be tainted with this parochial brush -- the funny noises are being made mostly by politicians trying to play to the gallery, and more lately, a couple of movie stars taking a shot at five minutes of reflected glory. The people of Kolkatta have, reportedly, bought gate tickets worth Rs 60 lakh already; this whole brouhaha reminds me of the World Cup semifinal against Sri Lanka, which then match referee Clive Lloyd conceded to the islanders following bad behavior in the stands. The moment that stood out for me was two young men holding up a big banner they had apparently hastily created, and which read 'A few idiots are not Calcutta'.
In all this confusion, you haven't forgotten, surely, that the Board elections are rapidly approaching? Former CEC TN Krishnamurthy seems determined to run this one clean as a whistle; thus, he intends to make a few changes to the nomination process. Incidentally, the Vidharba Cricket Association -- which is one of Pawar's backers -- has this point to make:
It further pointed out that for 75 years, the nominations were made on the floor of the house in the BCCI elections and that it should be continued.

In other words, on the morning of the election, someone will announce he is standing; immediately, the other group will come up with obscure points of law questioning his right to contest; the whole will deteriorate into a messy situation -- that is how they've been doing it all along. And the best argument to find new ways of doing it is simply this -- the BCCI's 'time honored' practise didn't work too good in September, did it?
Gary Kirsten (while on the man, who is apparently touring with the SA side in a media role, I hope he is getting lots of mineral water this time -- don't intend to be mean, but I can't forget his tour diary of an earlier year when he said he was hampered by the lack of that commodity!) in his latest column looks at the role of spin in the ongoing series.
Ironically, it was not the spinners who precipitated the crisis. It was Irfan Pathan. South Africa would like to hold him up as the culprit.
I am very impressed how quickly he assesses the conditions and opponents. There is a sense of plan in his methods.
I have noticed pacemen in these conditions tend to bowl straighter and slower around the seam. If you have the control and shape the red cherry well, you are on your way. He did it with Graeme Smith and later another fine example of it was served by Shaun Pollock.
In the sub-continent, pulling back your pace could be decisive.
So spinners actually did not wreak the damage; they merely picked up the spoils. In one-dayers, it is very difficult to come back if you lose early wickets.

It's an interesting point, that bit about pace. Did you guys notice one difference between ODIs 1 and 2? In the first ODI (seduced, perhaps, by the help the pitch rendered the Proteas pacemen), every one of the three Indian seamers bowled at over 140k (that is, they registered over 140k as their top speeds); the average speeds ranged between 137-139k. In other words, they were really pushing for pace in that game. In the second, they slowed things down; top speeds were around the 139k mark and average speeds fell to the 136-137k levels. It's your guess how much of a co-relation this had to the performance in the two games.
G Rajaraman, in his latest column, looks at the road ahead for the Indian team.
Together India did well to get familiar with the art of avoiding getting into tight situations and, if that didn't succeed and the need arose, even wriggling out of corners. India seemed to change a few things and not just in the squad's composition. "Some tactical and strategic stuff needed a good rethink and I think it would have been hard to do that with the old group," Chappell said.
Curiously, the coach has gone on record to suggest he doesn't believe there are any missing links in the squad. "I don't think there are any weaknesses," he told cricinfo.com, "but that's not to say we shouldn't be vigilant about what opposition teams are doing, and develop strategies to counter them. We'll probably keep tinkering, looking at different options, trying to build more flexibility."
Dravid himself may be thinking differently, for he concedes that the worry over the fifth bowler remains.

Once rained on, twice shy -- the BCCI says before scheduling ODIs, they'll make sure they check the weather report, here on in.
That does it for now; back later, with more as it comes through the chutes.


  • Prem, there is a rumor going on...you are posting as 'Fuzzy Nomad',being diplomatic about SG's inclusion in the team etc. Read posts under your earlier thread.

    By Blogger Rajg, at 15:54  

  • Human nature is most predictable.

    Ganguly, when he realized he had lost the test captaincy, rightly abdicated his leadership of the Bengal cricket team saying it was time for someone else to be groomed. Astute, fitting, and laudable.

    Then in the very next sentence, he recommended Deepshit Dasgupta aka Sleep Dropgupta. All that good karma earned by adbication is now squandered.

    During the Maharashtra game, Deepshit is not ungrateful. Poor Suiyash Gorkole suffers a cruel blow (c Dasgupta b Ganguly 5)! See if you give anyone the right incentive, they may stay awake.

    By Blogger TFFY, at 16:04  

  • tffy-you shit,stop fooling around and give credit to Ganguly and Deep Dasgupta where it is due. Only bastards like you can write such nonsense...bugger off before I castrate your balls.

    By Blogger Southie_joker, at 16:13  

  • Your threat of castration is too much to behold, southie.

    I recant my statement. I will do puja to Deep Dasgupta, the light of my life. I will also create a ruckus tomorrow at the Eden Gardens because dada wasn't chosen in the ODI. Look out for me on TV - I will be the guy with the worst looking Greg Chappell effigy.

    Thanks for showing me the path, guruji.

    By Blogger TFFY, at 16:16  

  • Changes in the offing: Krishnamurthy

    CHENNAI: The former Chief Election Commissioner, T.S. Krishnamurthy, who is to oversee the BCCI elections on November 29 as per the directive of the Supreme Court, indicated on Wednesday that "some changes in the nomination procedures are being contemplated."

    Pressed by the media to elaborate, he said, "just wait and see. It will be known in a day or two."

    Mr. Krishnamurthy made this observation after meeting the representatives of 13 associations here, individually and thereafter together. "They had made their points. We have come to some decisions and will be formulating and circulating them to the various member associations," he said.

    All these steps are being taken with a view to making the elections `fair and transparent' he added.

    The BCCI elections are to take place in Kolkata. The associations which made representations are Bihar, Karnataka, CCI, Vidharba, Punjab, Delhi, Saurashtra, HP, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, UP, NCC Kolkata and Hyderabad.

    A team from the Cricket Association of Pondicherry was also present but that, Mr. Krishnamurthy said, was not part of the 13 and had met him separately. — Special Correspondent

    By Blogger ramshorns, at 16:23  

  • Gangu is back in the test team. What a joke these bunch of selectors are. RD and GC, the captain and coach, oppose a player's inclusion in the team and yet he is included. It is clear to all and sundry that Gangu is no longer an international class batsmen and yet we pick him. What is the point of picking him. He might score a 100 in the next game but in the long run Gangu is not going to benefit Team India one bit. There is no way that he is going to survive the English fast bowlers when England comes to India. As long as BCCI is going to exist in its current form, Indian cricket fans will be forced to put up with many Gangus in the future. No wonder than that India sucks at cricket.

    By Blogger AA, at 16:32  

  • Poor Paa-ji.

    I dont think he meant to "SLAM THE KOLKATANS". Poor guy is framed by the media. Look at his comments, I could NOT see any slaming.

    Soon we will have Kapil's posters being burnt in the stands of eden. :-)

    By Blogger pg, at 16:54  

  • Prem, apropos your suggestion that our seamers intentionally slowed down a touch in the second match, are you only going by the speed-gun numbers here? or was it consistently apparent during the match itself? specifically, did you notice no change in the speeds of SA seamers? what about the slow bowlers?

    because I have a feeling that the speed gun in the first match wasn't calibrated very well. That might explain the across the board smaller speeds that you seemed to notice.

    By Blogger Rahul, at 17:09  

  • pg - Even though I agree with your point and I liked Kapil's points, I can never get myself to earnestly say Poor Paaji.

    I'll try.

    Poor Paaji. Simple math error and Chetan Sharma is slaughtered by Javed Miandad and Australasia Cup is lost.

    Poor John Wright. Imagine being told off by Zaheer Khan.

    Poor Ashish Nehra. Imagine being trumped by Bombay Duck.

    Poor Dinesh Karthick. Being edged out by a Jharkandi who guzzles milk and delivers rustic authority at the crease.

    Poor Indian cricket fans. Imagine being presented a puppet show by Jaggu Dalmiya.

    Poor Mumbai bookies. With Azhar gone and Abu Salem captured, dhandha katham!

    But most of all poor poor poor Dada Ganguly, treated so badly by the fickle minded Indian fan and the media.

    By Blogger TFFY, at 17:15  

  • tffy: Man are you cynical today. Hope the game tomorrow cheers you up.

    By Blogger Sudo Nima, at 17:23  

  • aa - how do u know RD and GC opposed SG's selection? did u attend the meeting?? don't tell itz obvious - both of dunno what happened inside the meeting. well there a lot tons of ppl who feel SG has a lot to offer still

    also FYI: India is #3 in tests

    By Blogger Ravi Krishnan, at 17:24  

  • Ganguly , VVS and Sachin will retire soon if Indian cricket is to go beyond winning one test in every series. only thing is to see is what shape their retirement takes , elbow injury, knee injury or back injury or dignified proclaiming of retirement. if don’t give good chance to Kaif 25 now , Yuvi 24 , Venu 23 and Dheeraj Jadhav is 25 already when will we , when they are 30. Sachin got his chance when he 16, Ganguly at 17 and 24, VVS 19, what are they waiting for , to turn 40.

    if we have good young batsman sure of making 40 50 runs every other inning with not only boundaries but great running between wickets and saving 20 to 30 runs beside taking great catches our bowlers if they are fit will start looking very different under Dravid smart captaincy

    By Blogger team, at 17:39  

  • Well Kapil should be matured to know that people protesting SG's exclusion are protesting against scheming to exclude him. Chappell goes and talks to media to incite them, then Kumble supposedly goes to media with dressroom conversation which none of the SG bashers fidn objectionable. Then Harsh pesters SG with the information only for SG to admit - yes he has been asked to step down. Then Chappel writes a bunch of lies to the board. People can believe that he did not take fitness regime seriously but believing that he resorted to divide and rule is utter bogus. A man who has shown no regionalism and always backed people to the hilt, a man who built team spirit within the team, would be the last person to do that. Chappel is malicious and is willing to do anything to win - we know that from history. Now of course, some people would eat from his hand because it suits them. No wonder British could take command over India as we are only after our own small interest missing the bigger picture.

    By Blogger dave_dj, at 17:40  

  • Kapil Dev Zindabad,

    Finally someone toeing the national line rather than the narrow, post-independance regional one.

    India comes first
    State and Language come second

    By Blogger Rishi Gajria, at 17:43  

  • Alvin, nice as always to hear from you my friend. I started my thanksgiving bacchanalianism a tad too early and veered the wrong way. I'll be driven home shortly, sleep well and recuperate for the game tomorrow.

    By Blogger TFFY, at 17:47  

  • tffy: hehe, enjoy the holidays, mate. I can't wait for my "bacchanalianism" to start.

    By Blogger Sudo Nima, at 17:52  

  • Ravikrishnan:
    Here's the part of article in today's Indian express that says that RD and GC did not want SG in the team.

    "Rahul Dravid and Greg Chappell were handed an unwanted addition to their work list when the national selectors drafted in Sourav Ganguly for the first Test against Sri Lanka next week. Ganguly was picked, curiously, as an ‘‘all-rounder’’, looks set to feature un the playing XI but will have just one match to prove himself.

    All this was decided at a heated, four-hour meeting the five selectors — KIran More, Gopal Sharma, Yashpal Sharma, Pranab Roy and VB Chandrashekhar — had with Chappell and Dravid today. Though chief selector More later said it was a consensus decision, it was anything but; two selectors, coach and captain (the latter two can’t vote) are believed to have opposed Ganguly’s inclusion.

    That there was high drama became obvious to reporters who spotted a visibly tense Dravid leaving the meeting room some time before it broke up."

    The ICC ranking does not matter unless you are No.1. Under Gangu's captaincy we failed to beat a weak Pak team at home. We lost 2-1 to Australia last season and won 1-0 against SA (when we should have won 2-0). These failures were the reasons for ganguly's removal from captaincy. And without the captaincy, Ganguly is not good enough to make the current test team.

    By Blogger AA, at 17:54  

  • Mr Sahi in Telegraph
    'The selectors (chairman Kiran More, Yashpal Sharma, Pranab Roy, Gopal Sharma and V.B. Chandrasekhar) as also coach Greg Chappell and captain Rahul Dravid began with a “general discussion” before taking a break for snacks.

    That done, the real business started with the selection of the 15 for the last two ODIs versus South Africa. As expected, no changes were effected.

    Then began the over two-hour discussion on the 15 for the season’s first home Test.

    According to The Telegraph’s sources, Sourav didn’t figure in the squad drawn up by Chappell — he’d left one slot, which eventually went to Sourav, for “any fast bowler”.

    The coach isn’t just focusing on the 2007 World Cup, but is “concerned” about Test cricket. Left to him, Sourav wouldn’t fit anywhere.

    Dravid, one understands, kept himself away from the Sourav-specific discussion. He told the selectors: “I’ll be happy with whoever you choose.”

    At some point, though, Dravid is bound to get firm. After all, in India or elsewhere, the captain’s neck is on the line.

    Apparently, Sourav didn’t make any of the seven slots earmarked for batsmen. A suggestion was then made that he be considered as an allrounder.

    That ate up time with More (rightly) pointing out that all along Sourav had been picked as a specialist batsman. One other selector held a similar view.

    Slotting Sourav, therefore, became a headache with those not favourably disposed towards him being reminded that somebody with a hundred in his second-last Test innings ought not to be dropped faster than a hot potato.

    Eventually, even Chappell went along with the majority view. Had a vote been taken, a 3-2 verdict (in Sourav’s favour) was assured if not a 3-1 with one abstention.

    The captain and coach don’t have a vote, but their views are respected. That’s how it should be.


    By Blogger ilovecricket, at 18:06  

  • Why can't the BCCI draw up a system of awarding contracts to players for say 8 tests and 16 ODIs. Once, the contract period is done with, the performance of the player should be reviewed over that period. If the player's performance is good enough, he will select himself and earn a fresh contract. If not, then the player should be dropped. Gangu's supporters are shamelessly pointing out his 100 against Zimbabwe as a reason for his inclusion in the team without considering his previous performances. A 100 in his second last innings cannot cover up for Gangu's pathetic failures against Pak, SA and Aus last season.

    By Blogger AA, at 18:19  

  • just as an analogy, SRT failed in his previous 9 test innings before scoring 241* in sydney. similary ganguly has failed in his last 10 innings against good teams. note that i'm excluding Bang & Zim out of this. I'm not saying SRT and SG are the same or use the same yardstick. but if we use the say the same yardstick, SG should given a chance.....

    By Blogger Ravi Krishnan, at 18:55  

  • When GC joined the Indian team he had only one thing in mind. That is money. Indian being the largest revenue generator from cricket, what could more lucrative for someone like GC than to be the coach of India and then take a piece of the pie.

    GC is a sharp guy and did not want to remain satisfied with the salary BCCI was giving. He wanted the piece of the pie from the corporates also. But to do that he needed to do two things, 1) make India win and 2) take all the credit for the team's performance.
    The first objective is good for India too. But to attain the second objective he had to have someone as a captain who is as meek as possible. So he had to get rid of SG. He laid a nice trap for SG and SG gleefully stpped into the trap. RD fitted the bill perfectly for the meek captain.

    We stupid Indians also bought GC's arguments. I also read reports about GC getting contracts from the corporates for his motivational speeches. To GCs advantage SL also played as bad as they could.

    I don't see how India could keep winning under GC for long. All he has done is made the players insecured. For exampe, midway through the Ind-SL ODIs GC was talking about Venugopal Rao as India's WC07 hope. Now for no reason he is dropped and does not even figure in the 15.

    His doctrine of only the fittest players should play does not make sense. Then why not fill the team with fitness experts?

    So here is my guess, India will win few more matches at home. But then when we go abroad we will see the Azhar days back again, with humiliating defeats. By the time we realize the folly in GC's coaching it will be too late for WC07 and we will not even qualify for the 2nd round.

    By Blogger indian, at 19:12  

  • ravi,

    but to have same kind of hope, SG needs to have same kind of overall avg (57+ runs and not 40+) and in last two years (jan 2004 to Nov 2005) SG's avg is as low as 37...also he is not showing gengleman attitude outside the team which is essential to become a role model for youngsters...all the time he is lying while stating his stats...looking desperate to make it to the team...yes yarkstick is same...but there are some points for past performances as well...do not compare a non-promissing player in test with a promissing one (12 centuries vs 34, 5000 runs, vs 10,000 runs)...tell me one 2 year long period when SRT has failed (even when he was injured)

    By Blogger Shivam, at 19:47  

  • Today is the saddest day of life with respect to Indian Cricket. I have once again been remined that (a)performance and solely performance is longer viewed as the criterion for being selected in the Indian Team (b) That there are forces at work who do not care for the betterment of the game as they do for their own personal intrests.

    As a person who genuienly yearns for India to perform well and as someone who looks forward to the day India will become the BEST cricketing nation, i feel that my dreams will reamin dreams as long as the gangrene called maladminstration destroys the INDIAN CRICKET.

    And if this continues, soon enough i will be mourning the death of INDIAN CRICKET.

    By Blogger rahul_fan, at 19:51  

  • Dear Rahulfan, let us see which way the cookie crumbles. Indeed, SG has to do something spectacular to justify his selection in the team. If he does sort out his problems, it can only be good for India, because in prime form, SG can be an ethereal bat. Also, you have to admit that all these years he has had to shoulder the burden of captaincy. RD himself averages 17 as a bastman when he is playing as a test captain. RD and SG had identical career stats when SG became captain. So let us see how SG performs as an ordinary player. If he fails, others should certainly fill his slot.

    By Blogger oldmanblues, at 20:15  

  • The moment that stood out for me was two young men holding up a big banner they had apparently hastily created, and which read 'A few idiots are not Calcutta'.

    And neither are a couple of rational, balanced individuals in the crowd :-)

    Don't get me wrong, the point is well taken. But, from my limited experience intolerance runs deep in the average Indian youth of today. That it does not express itself more often in the form of violence might be attributable to fear at least as much as to civilisation.

    But back to cricketing matters - the pieces on fielding drills are pretty impressive. Just goes to show that to be exceptional, mercurial talent is usually not enough. If you look hard enough, under the surface, you are bound to find countless hours of perspiration. And that is what team India is willing to invest in the new order. It may sound pre-mature, but it does seem that we are looking forward to good times in Indian cricket. The talent of most Indian sides has been quite unquestionable, what the polish of professionalism will do to the team is yet to be seen!!

    By Blogger Sharad, at 20:43  

  • Boy, Dravid really disappointed me. He, it seems, if LP Sahi's report is anything to go by, was noncommital on SG issue and said "whoever you choose is fine with me." That is not leadership. A leader has to make hard choices. What was he afraid of? If he opted to keep Ganguly out, he would be vilified by Ganguly lobby? or if he went the other way, he will make GC real unhappy? Whatever it was, it was certainly not leadership.

    By Blogger bouncer, at 20:54  

  • bouncer, LP Sahi is trying to put Dravid in bad light. He wanted to show that Dravid did not speak up for his ex-captain.

    By Blogger Prem Panicker, at 21:13  

  • hey shivam,

    Don't look at the number of years. Look at the number of test innings during that time. SRT scored 244 in 13 innings from Dec 2002 to Dec 2003. Let us take SG's last 13 test innings (excluding tests vs Zim & Bang). SG has scored 370 in 13 innings. Similarly RD in 99/00 season scored 263 in 13 innings. And finally let us look at VVS in his last 13 innings (excluding Bang and Zim). He has scored 305 in 13 innings. So why pick VVS over SG, i wonder.

    Personally I also feel that yardstick cannot be the same for SRT and any other player. SRT as a player is a legend. SG as a player is not a legend yet. Only SG as a captain is a legend.

    But still I pointed out the above stats just to show that all of the Big 4 have gone through form slumps. So, why this angst only against SG and not any of the other Big 4.

    By Blogger Ravi Krishnan, at 22:21  

  • Prem, interesting point about the max and average speeds, in the 1st and 2nd ODI's. What stands out is the reluctance to change the pace, particularly in the initial stages.

    I also find it surprising that people have forgotten how deadly Waqar's second over yorkers used to be - toebreakers. Given that batsmen now probably expect yorkers in the final overs only, a second over yorker can be a very potent weapon. Any theories on what's brought about this change and bowlers shy away from changing the pace and bowling yorkers?

    By Blogger Nikhil Pahwa, at 23:41  

  • Ravi Krish-I cant agree with you more about the targeted angst over SG' slump specifically in this blog. These guys pretend to forget similar slumps of the remaining Big 4 batsmen. Also Kaif's test batting average is very mediocre(below 30 over 7 odd tests) .Kaif is plain lucky to be retained in Test squad for nearly 5 years with such a mediocre average. Many better players like Ramesh,Badani and Akash Chopra were dropped with better performances in tests...

    By Blogger Southie_joker, at 23:58  

  • Southie, after Dada's mom (Dadamama) consulted Bejan Daruwalla and didn't get a clear cut answer about Dada's dadagiri, incontinence has been the order of the day in Dada's houseold. They are on the lookout for a dhobi who will bleach Dada's jock straps in addition to cleaning dirty laundry confidentially. Opportunities to moonlight at Deep's and Rohan's bungalows are a distinct possibility.

    Wake up to reality and jive with the rest of India. Even More conjured up something creative about an allrounder to save his face.

    By Blogger TFFY, at 00:13  

  • Tuffy-
    Reality is Dada's dadagiri at the Board got him back his Test spot yesterday . After Rahul loses the ODI series in Pakistan, Dada will also get back his captaincy. You can then go and raise a stink, as usual with your friend Prem...

    By Blogger Southie_joker, at 00:21  

  • tffy, just don't post some arbit stuff. if u can plz refute my stats. or else accept the unfair angst against SG.

    sothie, i disagree about kaif, he has not been given a fair and extended run in tests even though he performed quite well in tests against Aus. but he and yuvraj are young 23/24. The Big 4 will be retiring very soon perhaps in 2 years. after that of course kaif, yuvi are backbone of our middle order anyways.

    By Blogger Ravi Krishnan, at 00:30  

  • Southie - I've got to admit, that is a possibility.

    By Blogger TFFY, at 00:33  

  • Further reality is India may win against an aging Lanka on designer Indian wickets but abroad they can forget winning with this team... India's score of 35 for 5 in Hyderabad ODI showed the true potential of India on green wickets abroad ...

    By Blogger Southie_joker, at 00:38  

  • Further reality is India may win against an aging Lanka on designer Indian wickets but abroad they can forget winning with this team... India's score of 35 for 5 in Hyderabad ODI showed the true potential of India on green wickets abroad ...

    By Blogger Southie_joker, at 00:38  

  • Ravi, those stats mean diddly squat. The guy has been given 84 tests and he averages 41.18. Come on - do you *really* need more? If your argument is he is better than Kaif and Yuvraj for tests, I am not debating that at all.

    There are more desrving players than all three in the wings. I agree with southie about Badani. Rao and Mongia are also largely untried for tests.

    The irony is I won't really oppose Ganguly for ODIs. His stats there career wise are awesome and his batting weaknesses don't mean that much in the limited spells fast bowlers have. He could open and do pretty well with the field restrictions. His fielding is poor, but to have one poor fielder in 11 is arguable both ways if he bats well. The powers that be are pushing him down the wrong path.

    By Blogger TFFY, at 00:39  

  • No sense keeping SG out of ODI team other than GC's and More's politicking...With 93 wickets in ODI's and 10000 runs, SG should have been retained as a genuine batting allrounder in ODIs. Getting dropped/replaced by some mediocre bloke like JP Yadav is a lame excuse.. like I said earlier let us wait till the Pak series..fortunes may well change for RD/GC very soon.

    By Blogger Southie_joker, at 00:58  

  • tffy - Average of 40-45 is really good for batsmen batting at 5 and 6. Look at VVS average it is 43. SG's is 41. they usually have to bat with the keeper + tail. and u know evry well about our great indian tail ;)

    southie, i think SG didn't come in the ODIs because india was winning and selectors just played it safe. what if they include SG and india started losing. they get the blame. on the other hand if india had been down 0-2 or even 1-1, good chance SG may have been back in the ODIs....

    By Blogger Ravi Krishnan, at 01:09  

  • Ravi,

    Comparing with VVS's average is Very Very misleading because VVS had a Very Very poor time (and average) as an opener where he really didn't fit. His average after he was spared from opening will be close to 50 if not more.

    I disagree that 40-45 is a good average for No 5 and 6. We just have to set the bar higher. And there is a big difference between 40 and 45. Saurav is at 41.1.

    Being closer to the tail is a weak reason. How often has Saurav had to hurry up his innings because the tail was crumbling?

    By Blogger TFFY, at 01:29  

  • hey tffy - did some research, VVS average at 5/6 is 45, however SG's average at 5/6 is 39 !! However, another interesting thing I found is Inzi has a avg of 48 at 5/6, youhana has a avg of 46 at 5/6... other team's 5/6 have averages in low 40s 40-43. So 40-45 is indeed an on-par avg with the rest of the world. this is of course excluding gilly & stevie waugh...

    By Blogger Ravi Krishnan, at 02:23  

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