One-Day Mataram

Deconstructing the gentleman's game

DLF Cup, Game 5: India v West Indies

With a do-or-die situation arising, as usual, for India... the fifth match in the DLF cup has started off with India choosing to bat against the West Indies.

The match is being played on the pitch used for the first round of matches. The one that Indians expressed their displeasure about. It seems to have a ridge or a trough running across it which tends to cause unexpected bounce, mostly on the lower side. It was this unusually low bounce that put off the Indians in the first match against the West Indies... according to the Indian team. Yet it's funny how Sachin managed to work around it even after being away from competitive international cricket for so long! Just goes to show the calibre of the individual. On the other hand, it may also be that the others in the team were not on full concentration while batting out there on that pitch. Perhaps this was due to the towering presence of the master at the other end. Who knows!

And predictably, with the fear of a misbehaving pitch playing on their minds, the Indians have got off to a bad start in today's match. At the time of publishing this post, the Indians are at 38/2 in 8.1 overs. Bad because they were 6/2 in 2.1 overs with Dravid and Sehwag back in the hutch.

I haven't been watching the play, so I cannot comment right now if the Sehwag wicket was due to the ball keeping low or owing to Sehwag's frustrating habit of trying to play a straight-batted shot away from the body without moving his feet.

Currently... Sachin and Raina are playing steadily. However it is to be borne in mind that Irfan Pathan, one of the key contributors to the big Indian score against the WI in their last match, is out of the team. Sreesanth takes his place. So while we lose a batsman(?!), we are playing with a bowler who should be very motivated to perform in order to show the selectors that they erred while keeping him out of the Champions Trophy squad.

Update1: Oops! ... Raina is out!! The score is 38/3 off 8.5 overs. Now it's testing times for the wobbly Indian middle order! Let's see how it goes!!

Update 2: Grrrr!! ... there goes Yuvraj to his favourite mode of dismissal... edging a moving ball outside the off-stump, to the wicketkeeper! He really should go back to the drawing board to rectify that!! ... Dhoni is in and he has just smashed three boundaries. Temporary relief? ... Hmmm... perhaps! Lets see!! It's 54/4 in 12.3 overs.

Update 3: Will Greg Chappell's gambit of going in with 5 specialist bowlers pay off?? Or will the lack of runs, due to the sacrifice of a batsman in the team, make Greg Chappell rue his decision?? ... It's 132/8 in the West Indian innings and just 31 runs to win. Lets wait and watch!! My money is on Lara taking his team past the winning post!

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