Saturday, May 28, 2011

The losing side in Cricket

This season 4 of IPL has been a rather boring one due to an overdose of Cricket post the world cup. One of the reasons why many wanted a MI vs CSK in the finals. These two teams have faced each other only once during the entire tournament where MI won against them. Apart from which the Dhoni-Sachin factor evoked a lot of interest among the viewers. However yesterdays qualifier 2 games dashed the hopes of many as MI was knocked out of the tournament by the Gayle storm,not to mention poor captaincy by the Little Master.

Last night's game reminds one of the India-Australia world cup final in 2003 where India won the toss and elected to bowl first against the mighty and unbeaten Australia with the likes of Adam Gilchrist and Mathew Hayden being in top form. The first over began with a rather nervous Zaheer Khan who gave away 20 plus runs-an over which gave away the match to the Australians. A similar scenario took place with Mumbai Indians yesterday where they won the toss and elected to field first against RCB where the Gayle force was the much talked about factor in the tournament. Sachin chose to start the over with an inexperienced Abu Nachim which Gayle took RCB to a headstart of 27 runs. An over which sealed MI's loss. There was no stopping the Jamaican as he smashed all over the park. However when the bowling team got him out finally, the damage was already done. MI did contain them to a 185 which was still attainable with sensible batting and taking a few chances. However the way the wickets tumbled after a blazing start by Blizzard and Sachin makes one question the captaincy factor here. Too many blunders were committed.

1. Why did Sachin opt to bowl when they had the chance to bat first and put pressure on the opponent team?

2. Why start with Abu Nachim to bowl against Gayle when experienced ones like Munaf, Harbhajan and Malinga were available?

3. Why not play Andrew Symonds when he was an all rounder who would have contributed some quality threat to the sturdy opponents?

4. Sending Harbhajan Singh one down was the most absurd decision one could take in a crucial game like this especially since Ambati Rayudu was reliable.

While Sachin may be a world class batsmen, he needs lessons on captaincy and being a good a strategist. He has no doubt done the country proud with his several accolades and giving the best bowlers nightmares. But his captaincy has always been under scrutiny and only time will tell whether he will learn from his mistakes. One can't help but think how Dhoni is truly admired for his calm composure, for being an excellent strategist under tense conditions and motivating his team mates to bring in the best.

Its a great disapointment for Cricket lovers who were expecting a CSK vs MI final. However if Gayle does play over the park today it will be interesting to watch how Dhoni and his men combat the mighty caribbean force.



Blogger KParthasarathi said...

I also expected a MI vs CSK contest in the finals.But RCB started with a disadvantage.Which team can play with same alertness and strength on a successive day especially in a tension laden finals.The planners of the schedule made a grievous wrong without giving a day's gap between the penultimate and final games.Without detracting from the merit of CSK, it should be said that RCB would hv put in na greater fight and may be Gayle would hv given us an encore if there was a small respite.That would hv changed the complexion of the game.What do you think?

8:25 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

I agree with you KP! In fact they should have had the finals on sunday instead of saturday. That one day break was needed. So RCB were at a disadvantage that way. Yes had Gayle hit all over the park, the game could have taken a different turn. It would have been a close contest rather than a one sided game.

11:13 PM  

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