It was a day when a packed Wankhede Stadium had gathered to watch their favourite son make his IPL debut. But in the bargain they got more than they had wished for. Sanath Jayasuriya, the most underperformed player of the tournament went berserk making an otherwise hostile Chennai attack look mediocre.
It could not have been scripted better. Tendulkar made his debut in the IPL, with his team Mumbai Indians having won three matches consecutively. But in order to make it to the Semis, they had to keep the momentum going. After restricting the Chennai Super Kings to a modest total of 157 due to some disciplined bowling up front by Pollock and Nehra but since then the night belonged to Jayasuriya.
He had been getting starts in the tournament but had barely converted them. This was the day when Jayasuriya had been waiting for to prove his worth to the team. Till the match against Chennai, he had been opening with different partners and the opening partnership never used to go past a few years. Opening with Sachin probably gave him the confidence to go berserk. The first six overs yielded 78 and by then the Chennai Super Kings knew that something had hit them hard. His flicks over Square Leg for six, his powerful cover drives and bottom hand jabs on the on side were a delight to watch.
Though on the other hand Sachin did not really make his dream debut but was more than happy to let Jayasuriya take the strike and demolish the opposition. Eleven sixes in an innings, second in the IPL only to Brendon Mecculum’s 13 in the first match against the Royal Challengers. The sheer arrogance with which he hit all the Chennai Super Kings bowlers all around the park was astonishing to see. In the belligerent mood that he was in, he did not even spare his previous team mate Muralitharan as he attempted twice to reverse sweep the Sri Lankan off spinner. If there is one player who can single handedly take the match away from the opposition with his explosive batting, it is Sanath Jayasuriya. And his team were aware that it would need just one innings to get him abck in form which he did in style.
The second fastest hundred of the tournament after Adam Gilchrist who had gone on a rampage against the Mumbai Indians a few matches back. But with Jayasuriya’s current performance the Mumbai Indians can be happy that their most explosive batsman is back in form and these are not good signs for the other teams. Jayasuriya’s knock was the first good score from a team who had till now struggled in the tournament.
But this innings would do a world of confidence to them as they would now make their move to try and reach the Semi Finals. For the thousands that had gathered to see Sachin bat, it would have been a dream come true to watch this innings of Jayasuriya. Mumbai Indians would also feel confident now as their batting looks more or less to be settled though the departure of Bravo will hurt them. Their next tie against the Kolkatta Knight Riders would be a vital one, as both these teams are fighting for a birth in the Semi Finals. It will be great to see King Khan back in Mumbai cheering his team at the sidelines. But the resurgent Mumbai Indians would be up for the challenge.
The Twenty Twenty champions had arrived at MCG with a lot of promise. The record 84,000 plus crowd was anticipating a humdinger of a Match, but the Aussies once again showed that when it comes to the big stage, they almost always come out trumps.
The selectors are at it again. Chopping and chipping away at a winning combination. Ganguly should consider himself really unfortunate to have been unceremoniously dropped for the ODI’s after registering the best ever comebacks in cricketing history.
Sourav Ganguly is sure to be in a quandary. He had registered one of the greatest comebacks into the Indian team. Continue reading →
The last season saw a few firsts for Sachin. Being booed at his home ground in Mumbai, being ‘rested’ for the ODI series against Bangladesh and being asked by top cricketing experts to hang up his boots. Last year, speculations were rife that Sachin would be retiring from the one day format, but this innings I am sure would have silenced his critics. Continue reading →
There are some things in Cricket that you can prepare for, like Brett Lee’s bouncers and Hogg’s wrong ones. And then there are some things for which no preparation what so ever is going to help you- Poor umpiring. Indians were struck by a series of erroneous decisions made by the on and the off field umpires yesterday. Continue reading →
RARELY DOES the opportunity of winning a test match knock at the doors of the Indian cricket team when they are playing away from home, and if it is against the mighty Aussies in their own backyard, then it is indeed one in a hundred. But India, after a gritty display of bowling on the first day of the test match, batted poorly in both the innings to lose this test match. Continue reading →
India went into the third test match against Pakistan at the M. Chinnaswamy stadium, Bangalore with Sachin Tendulkar and M.S. Dhoni not a part of the Indian Line up. Sachin had an injured knee and was advised rest by the team physio whereas Dhoni had a split webbing to take care of. The omission of these two players made way for Gambhir and Yuvraj into the side. Continue reading →