FB Group

Share the Passion

To exchange links with me, please send mail to madhusudan (dot) gr (at) gmail.com.
Session-dashboard - Tracking Test Matches as they progress.
Tracking T20 run-chases in an innovative manner - See here.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Lessons from the Hyderabad ODI

The Indians lost yet again in the ongoing India v Australia series by a close margin in Hyderabad. Despite Sachin Tendulkar’s pyrotechnics, the Indians could not get their 3rd win in the series.

It panned out in such a way that Praveen Kumar was trying yet again (thrice in this series has he tried and failed) to single-handedly take India through the finishing line. Shane Watson proved to be the thorn in India’s flesh, just like Mohali.

Where did India fail then? 2 Australian actions on view were very interesting to watch:

  • The run-out of Ravinder Jadeja. Forget the young man’s suicidal tendencies to run for anything and everything. The ball went to Cameron White and he could have tried to become a hero by throwing down the stumps. Instead, he reduced the chances of failing to almost none by throwing it to the bowler Clint McKay who was doing the right job by running to the stumps.
  • The run-out of Praveen Kumar that ended the match. Nathan Hauritz fielded the ball cleanly and threw the ball to the gloves of Manou before PK could reach the crease. There were no fumbles by both the players involved.

Both these actions showed that in pressure, the Australian team could think straight and clean. This is essentially the difference between winning and losing. Probably, this is what MS Dhoni was referring to, in his post-match conference. Obviously, talent and temperament are other factors that matter in a close battle like this, as well. But, the ability to do their tasks (fielding, deciding where to throw the ball back) is something that the Aussies do better (even if it was a debutant like McKay).

SRT should be praised for the great innings he played last night but the innings was destined to end as the 3rd highest score in a losing cause. The fact that Sachin has six of the top seven scores in a losing cause says something – obviously, lack of support at the other end (like yesterday) would be the first reason. One only hopes that Sachin will get enough reasons to celebrate his records in the near future, if his team-mates can learn from the master innings that was on show in Hyderabad.

The fact that Australia could put up a score of 350 itself is reason for worry. Agreed that the pitch was doing nothing – but this was the same pitch where Harbhajan Singh and Shane Watson bowled with discipline.

For the next match, what should MSD do?

  • Ask his team to field in the same way that they have done the last 2 matches,
  • Start taking their catches,
  • Replace Munaf Patel with Amit Mishra. The Aussies have not been able to score against the spinners as much as they have against the faster bowlers. Why not pack the bowling with spin options?
  • Suggest the batsmen to make their starts count, especially Viru Sehwag. Also, the batsmen should ensure that they stay at the crease till the last ball is delivered. No point in getting out before the overs are exhausted.

Lets hope the Indians come back in the next match and make the final ODI meaningful.

PS – One day earlier to the match, 12-year-old Sarfaraz Khan blasted 439, the highest individual score ever made in the Harris Shield tournament (best known for the 664-run stand in 1988 that brought Sachin Tendulkar and Vinod Kambli into the limelight). Is there a future Sachin in the horizon? Maybe not – check this piece.

Post a Comment