Friday, May 21, 2010

Cricket in Florida, oh my!

A new post on the significance of the NZ-Sri Lanka T20 series in Florida is up at Different Strokes. I'm excessively optimistic at times and perhaps there are traces of that on display in this piece.

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

BrawlGate and the Golden Mean

A new post on BrawlGate and the search for the golden mean is up at Different Strokes.

PS: I'm not sure I've said anything new in this post, but I still feel like I had to get it off my chest post-T20 WC.

Labels: , , ,

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Pakistan lose to Australia - how predictable

It isn't entirely clear to me why Pakistan is described as an unpredictable team. For when it comes to Australia, one thing is entirely predictable: Pakistan will lose. Badly or well, it doesn't matter. Pakistan will lose. They might start well, or end badly, but they will contrive to lose. There might be five-wicket maidens or three sixes in the last over, but they will end up with a L and the Aussies with the W. Whether its the fifth day or the twentieth over, if its Pakistan v. Australia, it's the Pakistani players that are muttering the quiet "well-played"s at the end of the game.

In terms of losing streaks, this is turning into an epic. It includes test matches, one-day internationals and T20s. It includes blowouts, last-over thrillers, fourth-day collapses, weak-kneed implosions, flaccid surrenders, team revolts, captaincy dramas, managerial abuse, board intervention.

But at the end of the day, the Kangaroo and the Emu continue to stare down the Crescent and keep on making it wane. For when it comes to bat and ball, if there is one thing predictable about a Pakistan-Australia contest it is that Down Under is on Top.

Labels: , ,

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Rohit, get yer checkbook ready

Rohit Sharma is going to have insult added to injury pretty soon. You get given out, and you ask the umpire for a replay? (While pointing at your forearm?) I'm sorry lad, but there is no UDRS around. What were you thinking?

Labels: , , ,

A familiar script?

A depressing template seems to have been established for India's games against the Australians and the West Indians. I've already mentioned the win-toss-bowl aspect. Then there is the business of the short stuff. Everyone seems to know the script. The bowlers and the batsmen. Gambhir has followed Vijay (third tame dismissal in a row) back to the pavilion. It isn't entirely clear who is going to throw the playbook out the window.

Labels: , , , ,

Smell that leather!

Even though it's an Indian (and Delhi) batsman on the receiving end, those two bouncers by Jerome Taylor (1.3 and 1.4 in the Indian innings) were a treat to watch.

Labels: , , , , ,

Win the toss, bowl, repeat

Rather mysteriously, MS Dhoni has elected again, to send the opposition in to bat (after the failure of that strategy against Australia). And on the evidence thus far, it looks as good a decision.

Poor Jadeja; he must really wish there weren't any T20 World Cups. Ever.

Labels: , , , , ,

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Hello, is this radar gun working?

Or is someone smoking crack?

6.6 Kleinveldt to Raina, no run, 101.0 mph, moves away from short of length outside off, Raina tries to punch it on the up but the ball flies through the bat and pad gap

6.5 Kleinveldt to Yuvraj Singh, 1 run, 100.7 mph, on the off stump line, pushed towards mid-off

6.4 Kleinveldt to Yuvraj Singh, 2 runs, 100.0 mph, angling away from Yuvraj who pokes it at with an open face of the bat and the ball runs down to third man

6.3 Kleinveldt to Yuvraj Singh, no run, 100.2 mph, on the off and middle line, defended towards the non striker

6.2 Kleinveldt to Yuvraj Singh, no run, 100.5 mph

6.1 Kleinveldt to Yuvraj Singh, no run, 98.6 mph, short in length on the middle stump line, tapped to the on side

Labels: , ,

Sense and nonsense to kick things off

India versus South Africa gets underway in the World Cup T20:

Two little nuggets of wisdom from the captains in the usual pre-match cliche-fest. In response to Shastri's inane "what would you be comfortable chasing", Smith says "as little as possible." And MS Dhoni points out that one of the benefits of playing yesterday was that he got a chance to work on his field placings (in a larger field).

And Murali Vijay has just gone ahead and ruined the start by hanging his bat out to dry on the very first delivery that comes his way. I've now seen him get out a few times in ways that make him look absolutely clueless against the quicks. Too early to tell, but I hope he gets his head sorted out.

Karthik, meanwhile, looks sadly clueless. What has happened to this young man, who started off so promising but seems to have lost his way a bit.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Saturday, May 01, 2010

India-Afghanistan early thoughts

Early days in the Afghanistan-India game (well,perhaps not, because Afghanistan are already batting into their 14th over). Noor Ali is an impressive bat; he strokes the ball well, and has some good power and timing. Asghar Stanikzai and him have put on 51 runs in some eight overs; very good going indeed. Whatever happens from here on in, Afghanistan have not disgraced themselves at all. And they still have a chance to cause a few flutters by taking some early Indian wickets.

The contrast between this World Cup game and the IPL couldn't be greater. Everything is much quieter, the PA music system is relatively muted, and of course, the commentators aren't yelling as much (to be fair, commentators can work themselves into a frenzy when the crowd sound is loud and that is not the case here). And this is a day-game, in contrast to IPL games, most of which were at night. Lastly, its nice to see sixes and catches called as that.

I look forward to seeing Afghanistan in a 50-over game.

Labels: , , , ,