Thursday, August 2, 2007

The secret man of the match

The fact that India got to 481 for a match-winning 283-run lead in the first innings of the Trent Bridge Test without a single century shows the application of all the batsmen. Only Dravid failed to get to a 50. The way the batsmen put their heads down to ensure that India derived maximum advantage from dismissing England for 198 after winning the toss on a sticky wicket is to be appreciated without qualification. But now, after savouring the victory, it's worth considering how much the presence of Yuvraj Singh in the balcony concentrated the minds of the Indian batsmen out in the middle. He's a strapping young fellow, in the prime of his batting form, fresh from two match-winning one-day knocks, and an inspiring fielder and close-in catcher to boot. To have such a presence on the bench is surely a great motivator for each of the batsmen whose contributions have come under close scrutiny because of the poor performance of the team over the past three years. So, after 'Zak and the bean struck' (Hindustan Times headline), I think Yuvraj Singh was the man of the match.

5 comments:

straight point said...

SC

but for the selection bizarre of Ishant and ranadeb in bowling department i think we have developed good bench strength who are keeping playing XI in their toes.

yuvi you mentioned...

there is also certain kartik who i think is also influencial in MSD staying till end to save the match at lords too...

coz but for that innings yuvi would have been playing in XI in notts and DK keeping wicket!

so everybody keeping everyone honest and how i wish that SS gets some brains too to complete the missing link in bowling dept...

what you say???

Sumit Chakraberty said...

sp
i think ss's antics are an effect rather than the cause of his relatively less effective bowling. he tends to hit the deck and bowls a little shorter than the others, which was effective in SA, but not so much in england. anyway, he did get the wicket of collingwood when a fourth partnership was developing in the first innings and that was important, because if england had got through the first day with one or two more wickets intact, those would have been hard to prise out on the sunny second day. so i think we should persist with him, and put up with his juvenile delinquence.

Samir Chopra said...

Sumit,

Thanks for the comment on my post; I just responded to it there. I've also just written an open letter to Sreesanth on the blog :)

Cheers,
Samir

Soulberry said...

Yes, Yuvraj's presence on the bench is a constant reminder for all.

The one's in the IX know it is just a matter of a couple of low scores to excahnge places with him.

The one's in the BCCI scheme of things will always be reminded how his all-round game development was stunted by such benching in his younger days when he should have been playing domestic and A tours to iron out the wrinkles in his game for the longer version. Yuvraj realizes as much today, as is evident from his comments on this tour; patience and better reading and footwork against the spinners must be his prime objective now to make a name for himself in the longer duration game. In addition, he might want to cut down on the one-day cuts through slip-less areas to third man in the test version.

These are reminders for the board who should have helped him and Kaif develop their longer game. And it is heartening to see Yuvraj himself speak about improving his game and biding his time now, even though he spurned many chances to play for Punjab in the fallow period between tournaments and series in the past. Being a member of Team India does evoke such strange responses to domestic cricket.

I quite agree Ishant's is a bizarre selection; I have held so in some of the forum's I haunt since his name first cropped up. He needs not just some meat in the right places but also a little more experience for his own good. Irfan Pathan's absence from the dressing room is another such reminder, as is RP Singh's success after two important years spent in domestic cricket after coming into the reckoning. You know you are good enough to be there at the top and you know you need to do some things to stay there - RP did a few of those in his spare time from the team.

Ranadeb - I'm not so sure. I thought he was a smart selection for the English tour conditions. Maybe not Australia, but England is where he could shine.

Yuvraj is indeed a reminder for many things - BCCI and Ishant should also heed that bell. Better play a couple of seasons at domestic and A levels, mature up your body, firm up your game, and then step up to the senior stage. If one is good, no one can prevent you from achieving your destiny.

One can say, Yuvraj has been the secret man of the match for his evident reminders.

Sumit Chakraberty said...

soulberry, ya i think yuvraj and kaif hit a peak when they partnered in that famous lord's chase against england that inspired sourav's shirt dance. i feel an aussie style management would have handled such talent more fruitfully for the long term.