Archive for the ‘Indian cricket’ Category


Cricket Riveting Cricket!! Valentine and Ramadhin Rise Again at Pune

February 27, 2017

Gideon Haigh, in The Australian, 27 February 2017, where his chosen title is Pune shock a victory for the true believers”

This was one for the true believers, and it’s fair to say that these were heavily outnumbered in the vicinity of MCA Stadium last week, especially once the pitch, as dry and scarred as the lunar surface, was rolled out. When Steve Smith spoke warmly ahead of the first Test of “the great challenge” of playing in India, and of the future possibility of team members looking back on a series win as “the best time of our lives”, he was indulged, but sceptically. Young captains must say such things, mustn’t they? The forebodings of a chorus of greats resonated more loudly.

Australia's captain Steve Smith bats during Third day of the first cricket test match against India in Pune, India, Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

Australia’s captain Steve Smith bats during Third day of the first cricket test match against India in Pune, India, Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

But when Smith opined of his tough summer’s cricket that “you probably learn more from losing games than you do from winning”, it turns out he was not kidding. In Pune, he and his team evinced a quality in which Australian cricket has not always abounded: humility. Read the rest of this entry ?


Australia’s Lock and Laker decimate India’s Batting

February 27, 2017

Steven O’Keefe and Nathan Lyon reversed the famous Laker-Lock roles in skittling the renowned Indian batting line up at Pune in ways that recall the manner in which Laker and Lock undermined the Aussies during the famous 1956 Ashes series in 1956 .. in the era before wickets were covered.

okeefeO’Keefe celbrates wkt-Pic by Reuters& Danish-Siddiqui

View wickets SNJ O’Keefe 13.1 2 35 6 2.65 55 2 1  
View wicket
View wicket NM Lyon 11 2 21 1 1.90 52 2 0


NM Lyon 14.5 2 53 4 3.57 59 5 0
View wickets SNJ O’Keefe 15 4 35 6 2.33 71 4 0

Read the rest of this entry ?


Indian Cricketers bemused by the DRS

February 27, 2017

Item in The Australian, 27 February 2017, where the title is Border-Gavaskar series: India’s DRS ‘shocker’

India’s new-found resolve to use the Decision Review System backfired spectacularly in Pune. There were a range of different factors that led to Australia recording their first Test win in India since 2004. The tourists were much better in the field, while they outperformed the top-ranked Test side with bat and ball. One of the most stark differences between the two teams was their use of DRS.


Read the rest of this entry ?


Recognising Michael Tissera in the Tale of Sri Lankan Cricket

January 30, 2017

Abhishek Mukherjee, 25 March  2016, courtesy of

Michael Tissera shares a trophy name with Garry Sobers. Till date, he also remains the only Sri Lankan captain to win a Test on Indian soil, albeit unofficial.

Michael Tissera © Getty Images
 Michael Hugh Tissera, born March 23, 1939, was one of the architects of Sri Lankan cricket in 1960s and 1970s. Unfortunately, his international career started late, for Sri Lanka did not get a chance to lock horns with the big guns in official matches till World Cup 1975. His leadership qualities and all-round skills on the field made him stand out among Sri Lankan cricketers of his era. To honour him, the West Indies-Sri Lanka Test series were named Sobers-Tissera Trophy after him and Sir Garry. Abhishek Mukherjee remembers a forgotten man of Sri Lankan cricket.
29-tissera-bowling sobers-wild

Read the rest of this entry ?


Dhoni the Captain: Cool. Thinking, Daring

January 5, 2017

Sidharth Monga, in where the title is “A reputation staked on bold decisions, Dhoni makes one more”

There is a great little story, almost confirmed, but better off without a final confirmation, about India’s – perhaps the world’s – best limited-overs captain. In the 2007 World T20 final, when MS Dhoni asked Joginder Sharma to bowl the final over ahead of Harbhajan Singh, he told this domestic workhorse something. It was either at the start of the over, when Pakistan needed 13 to win, or after the six by Misbah-Ul-Haq, which left them needing six runs off four balls.

In the high-pressure final, against the great rivals Pakistan, having given up a winning position in a match India originally had no business winning, amid blaring music, this man, in his first tournament as an international captain, told Joginder, two years younger to him: “You have bowled so many overs in domestic cricket with so much dedication, when no one is watching. Don’t worry, cricket won’t let you down now.”Dhoni’s last-over call to have Joginder Sharma bowl to Misbah-Ul-Haq with a World T20 title on the line is one of many calculated risks that paid off during his captaincy reign © Getty Images Read the rest of this entry ?


Sri Lanka’s Golden Oldies of the 1970s

December 30, 2016

Sankaran Krishna, in ESPNcricinfo, December 2016 where the title is  “Sri Lanka’s pre-Test glory days”

Of late, it seems India play Sri Lanka in some form of cricket just about every other month. These matches, especially one-dayers, have little charm and no one really remembers anything much about them. Sri Lankan cricketers have suffered from over-exposure in India, which is such a pity when you think of the soft caress of Mahela Jayawardene’s strokeplay or the elegance of Kumar Sangakkara, to mention just two of their finest.
sunil-in-full-flow  Sunil Wettimuny bats against Australia in the 1975 World Cup, before he was forced to retire hurt, courtesy Thommo © Getty Images
There was a time, back in the 1970s, when cricketers from Sri Lanka were exotic and rare creatures, who created quite an impact on schoolboys like me in Madras. We caught a glimpse of them during the annual MJ Gopalan Trophy (thankfully now revived after a long hiatus), which pitted the Sri Lankans against the Tamil Nadu state team. The matches were three-day affairs and often keenly contested. And there was the unofficial two-Test series between a near-full-strength Indian team in its pomp and the Sri Lankans in early 1974. Though India won 1-0, the home team more than held their own.

Read the rest of this entry ?


India Squeezes Lanka in Under 19 Final of Asia Cup

December 24, 2016

Report in ESPNcrcifo

Half-centuries from opener Himanshu Rana and No. 3 Shubman Gill provided India Under-19s with a total of 273, which they were able to defend successfully thanks a middle-overs squeeze by their spinners Abhishek Sharma and Rahul Chahar. In the end, hosts Sri Lanka were beaten by 34 runs. At one point though, that result had seemed unlikely. With the momentum of picking up six wickets in the last 11 overs fuelling them, Sri Lanka went after the target with great vigour. Captain Kamindu Mendis and R Kelly struck fifties each to take the score to 158 for 2 in the 31st over. That brought the equation down to 116 off 118 balls with eight wickets in hand. 


Read the rest of this entry ?