Thursday, December 31, 2009

Zoom Barabar Zoom

Here is a look back on the top few sporting moments in this decade

2001- Laxman's 281 and India's victory over Australia in Kolkata after following on. This series was played around the

Feb-Mar season. Despite board exams, and all those Engineering tests hovering, for the last 3 days of this test everything else was switched off.

2001- Goran wins Wimbledon.
First Croat,
First Wild card entry and the only wild card entry to date to win the men's grandslam,
200 + aces
Beating Rafter in the Finals
Espn/Star Sports Did not broadcast this match live

2003- Sachin hits 19 off Shoaib's first over. A Six over thirdman, flick off the wrists for 4, and the classic Sachin on-drive set the tone for India's visctory over Pakistan at Centution. Me and Chotu were just in time at the Off-campus hostel to watch this. If anyone wants the mp3 version of this innings of Sachin, email me. I listen to it when I feel low.....which is everyday I go to work!

2003- Jonny Wilkinson kicks England to world cup win
Yes, England did win the world cup. But it was not cricket or football. With the score tied at 17-17, Jonny steps up to take the "free-kick" and with it the Rugby world cup 2003.

2003-04: The Arsenal invincibles go 49 unbeaten. Henry, Pires, Bergkamp, Ljungberg, Vieira, Gil, Campbell, Toure, Cole, Lauren, Lehman backed up by Wiltord, Edu, Kanu.
I can sense a deja-vu is soon going to happen! Come on you gunners!!

2005 - Mission Impossible to Mission Istanbul
As much as I like AC Milan (my second, Gattuso, Kaka, Pirlo, Gerrard and Co still bring goosbumps when I look back at this night. Me, kure, vind, sycho, shiki, andy, pawan, havish, gudi, arku, desi, alok, chotu were in the off-campus hostel that night.

"Forza Milan" was the Banner held by the Milan supporters and Desi, Shiki and Havish were going home till we convinced them to stay back as Milan ius leading 3-0, having 75% of the posession and Liverpool cant get our of their half. And then Rafa brought in Hamman for Finnan. They say that was a "Masterstroke". But whenever a manager plays a "Masterstroke" I always wonder, did he err in the first place by not starting with him. Anyway, Jerzy dudek does the "Jelly fish" as pool complete an amazing fightback to win on penalties.

2005 - England tip Australia by 2 runs at Edgbaston. Flintoff offers solace/sympathy to Brett Lee. Kodak Moment!! clik!! Could not watch it live :(

2007 - Joginder Bowls, Misbah scoops, but alas, he forgot there is Mallu in every corner of the world! This was the headline on TOI as Dhoni and Co. erased the memories of the debacle in the Carribean within 20 days of 20-20 magic.

Picture sources: Cricinfo, BBC etc

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

World Cup Pots

So, FIFA announced the 4 "pots" of next year's world cup. The 8 pools will be decided this Friday with one team coming from each “Pot”.

Pot 1 (seeds): South Africa (Group A), Argentina, Brazil, England, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain
SA, because they are the hosts are in Pot 1. Obviously, they are the weakest in Pot 1. Everyone else looks strong except Italy.

Brazil and Argentina, with their South American flair and also histroy/mathematics favoring them. For the last 40 odd years, the world cups have been won alternately by a South American and a European Nation. (Italy 06, Brazil 02, France 98, Brazil 94, Germany 90, Argentina 86, Italy 82, Brazil 78, Some european nation 74, Brazil 70, ENGLAND!! 66, Brazil 62). So, will it be Argentina or Brazil this time? I dont like Maradona. So no Argentina please.

England is everyone's favorite. Because of all this EPL broadcast. But, now there is a growing sense of feeling that English players among people are over rated. OR are they?

My favorite--Italy looks bad on paper. But they looked worse in 06 and yet won it. And also, they brought back the coach who won them the 06 world cup, Marcello Lippi.

Pot 2: Australia, Japan, North Korea, South Korea, Honduras, Mexico, USA, New Zealand
The Socceroos and the USA look the strongest here with Tim Cahill, Mark Schwarzer and Dempsey, Tim Howard, Donnavan etc.
Weakest would be NK and Honduras.

Pot 3: Algeria, Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay
Wouldn't we love to see an African Nation going all they way?
IVory coast with Drogba, Toure Brothers, Aruna Dindane, Salomon Kalou, Eboue look really strong.
Algeria looks the weakest here.

Pot 4: Denmark, France, Greece, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland.
Slovakia, Slovenia- Weakest.

There is every chance that we could have a pool with Argentina, USA, Ivory Coast and France in one pool. Or England, Australia, Ghana and Portugal in another.

Countries and players to miss out on WC 2010:
Bulgaria (Berbatov), Sweden (Zlatan), Togo(Adebayor), Russia(Arshavin and GUUS HIDDINK!!), Ireland(Given and Roobbie Keane).

Don’t miss the draw. Its on Friday 8:30 pm India time.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Sachin Tid Bits (1)

Sachin was the first overseas player to be contracted by Yorkshire. Before he was signed in 1992, Yorshire had this policy of not allowing 'outsiders' in their team. There were claims that the Yorks were Racists. But, seeing the plight of Yorshire cricket, Geoffery Boycott, who was in the Yorkshire's cricket council, desperately wanted Sachin in the team. So, it was not easy for Sachin to play in the team, as there were lot of oppositions to his contract-signing at Yorkshire. But, the great man won the hearts of the Yorks. Even though, his performance was not as outstanding (a mere average of 46!!), he was commended by the Yorks for the way he carried himself on and off the field.

For some people, who might blame me for copying or plagiarism (LOL)!!!, I will be on the safe side. I got this info from a book which I was reading the other day,

Sachin: The Story Of The World's Greatest Batsman(Paperback - Nov 2003)
by Gulu Ezekiel (Author)Write a Review

Sunday, November 29, 2009

खेल,इन्टरनेट और हम

कुछ बाराह साल का था मैं, जब मैंने पहली बार भगवान् को देखा, वो नीले रंग का मुकुट पहेनता था अपने घुंघराले बालो के ऊपर, और एक भारी लकड़ी की गदा थी उसके पास, और अपने चमत्कार से वोह दुनिया के सबसे महान गेंदबाजों का नाश कर रहा था. उस साल था विश्व कप के उपलक्ष पर उसने दौड़ो की झड़ी लगा दी थी, और शेन वारने नमक गेंदबाज़ को तो उस महान ने नेस्तनाबूद ही कर दिया था.

पर फिर वोह दिन भी आया, जब कलकत्ता की रणभूमि पर ९१/२ के स्कोर पर वोह आउट हुआ, और उसके बाद कलकत्ता की जनता ने उस देवता के अभाव मैं मैदान को भस्म कर दिया, लोग कहते है वोह शिवजी का दुःख था की उस नन्हे भगवान् के आउट होने पर उन्होंने उस दिन कलकत्ता पर आग बरसाई. पर उस रात मैं सो नहीं पाया, और उन आँखों मैं कही कुछ पानी की बूँदें ज़रूर थी.

१९९६ का वोह साल और मायनों मैं भी ऐतिहासिक था, जब इन्टरनेट नामक तकनीक मेरी दुनिया मैं आई. एक घर्र्र घर्र करते संगणक के सामने बैठ कर आप दुनिया मैं कही भी चिट्ठी लिख सकते थे. हॉट मेल , याहू, और मेरे आज के नाम से जुडी एक पोर्टल काफी प्रसिद्ध हुए.

पर मुझे क्या पता था, की कुछ १० सालो बाद, इन्टरनेट के जरिये मैं उन महान खेल के क्षणों को संभाल के रख पाऊंगा, जिनका इतिहास मैं कोई सानी नहीं, और जो मेरे दिल के बेहद करीब रहेंगे. इसी का प्रयास करते हुए हम कुछ मित्रो ने मिल कर "पेन द गेम" की स्थापना की. इसके पहले ही वर्ष मैं इसने indibloggies पुरस्कार समारोह मैं भारत के सबसे बेहतरीन खेल ब्लॉग होने का गौरव प्राप्त किया.

इस वर्ष भी हम इस सम्मान के लिए नामांकित हुए है, कृपया इन संदेशो का पलान करे, और हमें विजयी बनाने मैं मदद करे..

Our Blog Pen The Game( has been nominated in indibloggies Best Sports blog category in Indibloggies Best Indian Blogs 2008…

Please vote for us by visiting here,

Go to q.10, Sport Blog Category, choose PenTheGame option in sports blog category and press submit.

You will be asked to enter your email id. Press submit and you will get a mail at the same email id and just confirm by clicking on the confirmation link.
Please vote using as many email-ids as you can.

जय सचिन,
आपके प्रिय ब्लॉग बंधू

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Small God of All Things

Readers might find this post biased, hindered by favoritism, but what I would like to believe is that I am pinning down facts accompanied by my perceptions. Yes, I am talking about Sachin Tendulkar, the much talked about, favourites of all (cricket lovers, spectators and all others). Moreso, where I want to draw everyone's attention are the statistics (numbers as called by people in Sales). For starts, a quick one, by the time I started walking properly, the Great Man started playing. Now, I am still nobody and the Master has achieved everything. A total of more than 30,000 runs in International Cricket, 12877 in Tests and 17178 in ODIs. The other day I was looking for definitions of 'infinite' and what I started believing in was that we should have some such concept in Cricket as well. I think Sachin's scores should be marked infinite. Why? First, I don't think its possible to touch this mark because they are way too huge! Secondly, like everyone was excited on him scoring 17000 runs in ODIs and then 30000 runs in International Cricket, what one of my friends rightly pointed out was, with every single run that he scores now, he is creating milestone after another - 30,001, 30,002, 30,003, and so on. Simply because its anyways too huge, so a run more or 10 runs more are taking an already huge number further down.

Moving on to a different track, a part 2 of this post. When I play cricket with friends I feel how good a feeling it would be for players like Yuvraj, Dhoni, Gambhir, Sehwag and others to share the dressing room with Sachin. To be on the crease with Sachin on the other end. And then I was wondering, his son would be so proud that his father is Sachin Tendulkar, all his relatives proud and happy of being related to Sachin, his friends for being friends with Sachin, in fact everyone related to him in one or the other way would be willing to proudly flaunt the fact of being related to Sachin Tendulkar! And this was precisely what I was discussing with another friend (yes, I tend to discuss Sachin 'n' number of times with 'x' number of people and the fact is everyone is willing to participate in the conversation, because as I said, he is a favourite of all!) and my friend said, back in college when any of us would top a course and be very confident of knowing all concepts and the fact that others would definitely come for help, there was a sense of pride, and more than that, an attitude that somewhat had a tint of arrogance, but look at this man, Sachin Tendulkar, the name is in itself so BIG but yet so down to earth, calm, composed! And who can debate this being as one of the key factors behind his success?

In this part 3 of my post what I want to say is what I had in the beginning of this post - You may find it biased, but then there is this another man named Tony Greig and what I feel is, if Sachin's Greatness is to be marked 9.9 on a scale of 10, Tony Greig makes it 10 on 10. His description of events while commentating when the Master is batting, his pitch modulation, flow of excitement in words, it can make even a dead man sit up and watch! Putting one of the many videos of the great combo - Sachin in Full Form and Tony Greig describing it in his own words :) (Take special note of the video at around 7:55, this in desh's words is called 'orgasmic commentary').
Enjoy. Have Fun. Good Bye :)

Fastest Gol

Records are meant to be broken......but will this one ever be?

Nawaf Al Abed, the number 24 from Al Hilal, saw Al Sholah gol keeper (ironically also a number 24) off the line and unleashed a bekhamesque curling ball, which the gol keeper could only watch sail into his net.

This gol, which took only 2 seconds, is claimed to be the fastest gol in profesional futbol.

Well done Nawaf!!

For videos of the link, please visit the following website

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Sports MBA style : United Warrior League

First 10 days of November were full of sporting activities at IIFT. If was time of United Warrior League (UWL). Event was platform where we enjoyed playing and also learn management fundas.

UWL is a sports and marketing events based on lines of IPL. There are four teams
Southern Stallions
Aryans Juggernauts
Eastern Gladiators
Mumbai Hawks

First of all owners were selcted in an interview process by the organizing committee. There after another round of interviews were conducted for selecting 2 brand managers for each team. A team is not only supposed to win on the ground but also win hearts all around. IPL consist of only cricket we had cricket, volleyball, football, carom, darts, table tennis, basket ball, badminton and athletics.Owners and brand managers thereafter selected 25 players for their respective teams in a closed bidding process in which base price of a player was Rs30, total budget was Rs1000. Highest bid price went at Rs120 and for the girls it went to Rs70. It is not a male only tournament each team is supposed to have atleast 4 girls, 7 junior boys and 7 senior boys and 1 exchange student.

Teams tried numerous ways of promoting themselves with innovative ways like sending promotional SMSes, running ‘Enthusiastic Fan’ contests, launching blogs and websites, releasing promotional videos on youtube, hiding chocolates in classroom, Launching campus cleaning drive to outright crazy ideas like Running dating contest and loudest fan of the team.

Sports celebrities Vijay Dahiya, Indian ODI player and Badrinath Pathri, Physiologist to Sania Mirza inaugurated the sporting and branding event at IIFT Delhi campus. Launch event consisted of team introduction, team video, team jerseys and flag launch. Two teams got dhol and music band to introduce their team, one showed kerala martial arts.

Though its said that when the real battle start everything is kept aside, it was not the case here branding and promotional activities ran on full swing till the end. College was full of noise at 10.30pm when matches used to start. Though its rare to see a MBA student getting up at 6.00 am in the morning but for cricket everyone used to get up.

Eastern Gladiators lifted the cup this year, last year it was Aryan Juggernauts. Southern Stallions were awarded the best team in branding contest.

See you next year :)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Delhi is getting ready for Commonwealth Games 2010

Less than 11 months are left for one of the biggest sporting extravaganza to take place in India. Preparations are on full swing, being in Delhi I am witnessing the changes taking place on regular basis.
India will be only the third developing country to host the event after Jamaica in 1966 and Malaysia in 1998. This is only the second time the event will be held in Asia.

India is lagging behind when compared to BRIC Nations in terms of olympic bidding. Rio will be hosting on 2016, Russia and China have already hosted the games. So India needs to show games which can give a strong message to the countries and make us a potential candidate for hosting olympics in 2020 or 2024

Here is how delhi is getting ready

Nominated for Indibloggies Best Sports Blog

2007 winners as sportolysis , 2008 as PenTheGame, we are nominated again for the best sports blog in the country.
Indibloggies 2008 Nominations

Friday, September 25, 2009

Barbados Vs Grenada - What a bizzare match!!

Lets forget about Rooney, Arshavin and Messi for the moment and go down to Barbados. Rewind to 1994. Not to Brian Lara's 375, not to the house of Joel Garner or Gary Sobers. There is an interesting match between Grenada and Barbados. Lets go out there to watch a Shell Carribean Match "maaan". A match in which both teams will later on try to pull of a 'Diaby'. (Remember ManU v Arsenal this season??!!....Sorry Abou)

You would think that the basic tactic to win a football match would be to put the ball between the two posts, in the net. In the OPPOSITION net that is.

Barbados needs to win by two goals to progress to the next round. A draw would mean, extra-time and golden goal. Anything less than a two-goal win and Barbados are out. There was one weird rule though, a GOLDEN GOAL in the extrat-time would count as two goals.

Barbados are leading by 2-1 in the 85th minute. Not enough to go to the next round. Grenadan Defence is water-tight and there seems to be no way in for Barbados. A Barbados striker realizes that there is no way into the ultra-defensive Grenadan goal in the next 5 minutes. So, he runs towards his own goal and riffles the ball past his own stunned goalie!! 2-2!!

The comical farce begins now. Grenada, initially confused, realize whats going on. They try to pull off a "Diaby" themselves (Sorry Abou again). But, the Barbados players are mindful of that and they start defending the Grenadan Goal. The Barbados players managed to force the match into extra time and eventually won on a GOLDEN GOAL!!.

The Grenadians manager James Clarkson was furious. "I feel cheated, the person who came up with these rules must be a candidate for the madhouse.

"The game should never be played with so many players on the field confused. Our players did not even know which direction to attack; our goal or their goal. I have never seen this happen before. In football, you are supposed to score against your opponents in order to win, not for them."

Type Grenada vs Barbados on youtube to watch clips of the match.

Forza Azzura.......Come on Arsenal.......GO India GO.... lets kick some Fulham and Paki ass!!!


Thursday, September 17, 2009

New Rules in ODI Cricket?

7 ODIs and 2 T20's!!......While England are getting their asses whooped by the OZ's, I wonder if it should be the other way round......I mean it should have been 2 ODIs and 7 T20's.....

TEST CRICKET is the real deal......We have talked about that a few times....especially Lucy and me have had a few arguments on that.......So lets leave TEST cricket in its pristine form. I dont care what people say......"5 days!!??"....."Yes....5 days....."

......To me, there is nothing more exciting and intriguing than the first day, first session of a Test match.....

But how about new rules in ODIS......

My proposal is as follows:

--Divide the 50 overs into two 25-over innings.......
--The 2nd innings will continue from where it left off in the first innings. Which means that the batsmen who got out in the first innings CAN NOT bat again in the second innings.
--The team that wins the toss for the 1st innings automatically looses the toss for the 2nd innings.

What are the adavantages of it?
--Changes the "What is getting boring" ODI format. New tactics. Teams would want to loose the toss as they would get to choose for the 2nd innings!!
--Toss factor gets reduced. In day-night matches, both teams would have to bat under lights.
--If there is rain after 50 overs, the winner could be dclared based on the first innings.

Any comments?.......

Does the idea suck? or
It wont make too much difference. ODIs are dying anyway? or
Any other suggestions to improve the format?

Friday, April 17, 2009

Can they play for us? Not anymore Arsenal predicitions have come good so far. So you better read this one too. and if you have not read the Arsenal predictions, then go down and read my Arspective before you read this.

NRI. Is it Non-resident Indians? or Non- returning Indians as she said in that movie? Or is it Not Required Indians?

I recently read an article which talked about the latest policy(You guys may be already aware of this policy) adopted by the India's Sports Ministry. From now on, only the Indian passport holders can represent India in international sporting events. My intial reaction to this article was "What the......You mean this rule was not there till now. I mean its not even a 'rule' per se. Its just common sense. Of course, non-Indians cannot represent India." But as it turned out, the reference was made to ABCD's. That is, people with foreign passport but Indian origin. But still, how can a non Indian-passport-holder represent India?

Well, till recently that indeed was the case. And that indeed was one of the reasons, why India did well in some sports at least at the Asian level, if not at the international level. Shikha Oberoi, born in Mumbai and brought up in the US, has had a career-high singles world ranking of 122. She won India the silver meda in the Doha Asian games. With a world- ranking of 210, the US-passported Prakash Amritraj is among the top-ranked Indians. Leave him out, and you come to the "citizens" of India, then you are looking at Rohan Bopanna with a world ranking 333. Among women, leave Sunita Rao(Us citizen) ranked at 197, and then you are looking at Isha Lakshmi at 362. Tennis, it seems, is the hardest-hit victim. It faces the hardly enviable task of either dropping these players or convince them to change their passports. Shikha Oberoi, for one, has already stated that she will let go the American citizenship and dig into her old locker to revalidate the Indian passport.

OK STOP. Stop staring at the picture above and continue reading the post.

It could take India a long time to recover from and start performing even at the Asian level. The impact this policy may have might be so deep/long that it could
outweigh the long-term gains of this policy. Critics also say that this policy could be unfair to the foreign-born Indian kids, depreiving them of the opportunity to represent their homeland because of a slight change in a technical document(the passport I mean....ok slight change in a technical book if you like it that way). In this era of ever-increasing globalization, has the Indian government erred by inflating the value of a passport? If Gary Kirsten could be our coach, Gregory King our trainer, whats wrong if we allow the ABCDs to represent India?

Whats wrong? Whats wrong is that the local players will always remain in the shadow of the ABCD's. With lesser training facilities the local talent will always fail to compete with their ABCD(ABCD = American Born Confused Desi.....for those who are condering what the f... it means. Its a general term used for someone with a foreign passport but with an India origin) counterparts. And hence, the abyssmal state of Indian sports, the poor facilities will remain unexposed for ever. Perhaps, the grassroots will be cleaned up. And rather than waiting for the next ABCD kid delivered, the Indian government may improve the facilties to develop the local talent. Let HOPE SO!!

One more question that came to my mind was. " Had Prakash Amritraj been good enough to represent the USA, would he even consider playing for India?" Chances are that he would not. So, should we allow a US reject to represent our country. Well, the answer I think, unfortunately is, YES if he is better than our best.

Vishy(Grand master Vishwanathan Anand) suggested a solution to solve the problem at hand.

His vision:
1) Long-term: No non-citizen should represent India.
2) Short term: Donot enforce the policy immediately. Announce the policy and tell everyone that it will be enforced in a year.

This will give the various federations time to think, time to talk to the players. It would also give the ABCDs time to think if they would want to give-up their foreing passport to represent India. I totally aggree with "Namma Tamilian".

Come-on Arsenal !!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Chelsea vs Liverpool (4-4) UEFA Match Highlights

Watch the highlights below

Chelsea v Liverpool

Football Development in India

"Maradonas made in India" This was the slogan which caught everyone's attention when Maradona was here in India in December last year. He inaugurated the private academy which has some big plans for football development in India. I was browsing through the slideshare and came across their presentation and thought to share it to you all. Football is catching everyone's attention in India. Hope to see India playing in 2020 world cup.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

India ratings : Pappu and Munna reunion

Once upon a time there were two kids, pappu and munna, who never got marks in their classes, they got zero, once again again and again and again. And one day they decided that they would hit back on the face of this world by creating their own marks their own rating and their own scores. And they came up with this list, Pappu has already done it in the earlier post and here is Munna doing it. We did it Pappu, we did it Pappu.

Virender Sehwag - 3 - Can't blame him for getting out on spinners even on crucial occasions that's how it is. Either its his day(and thus India's day) or its the bowlers' day. A lot of starts but not even a single half century, and a ordinary match as a catpain in Napier test gets him a 3, more because of the great expectations he set.

Gautam Gambhir - 10 - Post ODI tournament, we had this discussion that Gauti is due his knock. Other than the sudden rush of blood in the first inning at Napier he has been the epical centre of Indian batting line up. His centuries in back to back test matches ensured that we have a solid start. Napier knock will stay as a Indian classic on foreign soil. The 'serious' guy continues to make an impact on Indian test matches' results. Meanwhile, he also reached a milestone of the top Indian scorer in his first 25 tests.

Rahul Dravid - 8 - Rahul Dravid the way we love him, the wall. We don't need no 'edge'ucation and he made his batting look like fluent floyd numbers. He has returned back to his gritty form and reminds that there is a lot of good test match cricket left in him. He will also remember this series for his catching records as we moved past Mark Waugh to become the test cricketer with most test catches. Wall is stronger now.

Sachin Tendulkar - 8.5 - Two 60s one 49 and one massive 160 in his 5 innings and making it all look so easy, he continues to rule the batting world. I would confess that I am always a little pro-tendulkar in all my statements (but tell me a reason why I should not be, or anyone should not be for that matter!). The innings were well placed, he failed only once in an inning where we were already on the top of the match. Two wickets in the last inning of third test match left us all happier than before.

VVS Laxman - 8 - While writing this and looking at the scorecards for three matches, I can so clearly see that India's series was eminent in all circumstances. VVS captured the other half of the southern hemisphere as well at Napier. Specially the second innings with 25 fours made the kiwi audience laugh and cry at the same time. Elegant as ever, people may call him lazy but who cares to run when you can hit them all along the ground with sheer perfection.

Yuvraj Singh - 5 - One good knock at Napier, but otherwise he looked ordinary. Yuvraj is a massive world figure when it comes to the shorter forms of game, but at tests he is still fighting for his place. With Pujara and Badrinath and others around it may get difficult for him in future. All of us love to see him once he gets going (but once he gets going!)

MS Dhoni - 8 - MS makes the other team feel aM aSS, apart from his captaincy he impressed by his keeping and the way he batted with tail whenever required. He has an invisible presence which was exposed in the second test where we let kiwis score 600 plus. And when he was back it looked that things well back in place. I sometime wonder if it is all a matter of stars, or its all planned. But as long as India wins, its three cheers!

Harbhajan - 9 - These were not the spinning Mumbai tracks or some other Indian dry pitch. He impressed by his controlled aggression throughout the series. The funniest Indian cricketer and still one of the most effective bowlers of his time. The turbonator acts as the sankat-mochak batsman for India.

Zaheer - 9 - Spearhead. Its difficult to bring adjectives when a team is doing good as a 'team'. And for those who write for Indian cricket, this is a dilemma we faced never before in such intensity. Zaheer's early strikes always led the floor for the rest of the bowlers and like bhajji he has become a very effective lower order batsman. This is revival of Zak.

Ishant - 6 - There were great expectations from him as well, he fared decently well but we have seen better of him and specially when situations were conducive for pace bowling. He is still one for the future.

Munaf Patel - 5 - India's third seamer worry is still eminent, in spite of decent performance from him in bits and pieces. Munaf has the tendancy to surprise by switching good and bad performances to and fro in no time at all. He has certainly worked on his fielding which can help him cement his place at least in the shorter versions of the game.

Gary Kirsten - 9 - I think he must be now busy in writing a book that he must write - 'The dos and donts of an Indian foreign coach'. Doing what he has to at his best. The players are happy, the captain is happy, the press is happy and the Indians are happier. Nobody knows a lot about what he is doing but its working and as I said earlier as long as it works its hurray!!!

Ind V NZ ratings

Indian Team, individual rating for test series.......I did this before cricinfo

9.5-- Zaheer Khan.
Bowlers win you test matches, batsmen win you one-dayers they say. To win a test match, you need to pick 20 wickets. ZAK wasbeen brilliant. Always in and arround the off-stump. Using the bouncer sparringly. Reminded me of Wasim Akram, in his glory days. I dont know who was given the the MOS (Man of the Series). But to me, it surely is the Baroda express. We have always had a decent batting line-up. But, I think its the vast improvement of the bowlers thats helping India win test-series' abroad.
And to add to that, he also made some good contributions down the order.

9 - Gambhir
The dimunitive southpaw from saddi dilli showed tremendous application in the second test. Should have got the MOM in the 2nd test to me. His 137 off 436 balls drew compairsons with the Greatbatch knock of 146 off 485 balls at Perth against the Aussies. The resemblances are startling. For New Zealand the rescuer was a man who would turn into an innovative pinch-hitting opener. In Napier it was one who until last year was considered a one-day specialist.
Brilliant in the 3rd test too. Another reason for India's overseas victories. Successful and aggressive opening partnership.

9 - God
Ab god ke baare main kya bolein. Oh god, tussi great ho. On every April 1st, someone tries to post that "God to retire". I fear, one day, its going to come true :(

8.5 - Dravid
When Laxman is out of form, play him against the Aussies. When Dravid is out of form, play him overseas. To be fair, he did regain his touch with a century agains England in the last test of the previous test series. But, if ever there was any doubting and critics saying that he should now retire, he has shut them up now. Given out incorrectly in the 2nd test, when he and Gambhir looked to draw the game for India on their own. But he and Gambhir combined well and their success more than made up for Sehwag's failures.
Also, congrats to Jammy(no one calls him that these days), for becoming the highest catcher.

8.5 - Laxman
He has probably been India's most consistent in Test for the last 3 years. Comes lower down the order. So, gets overshadowed by the top 4. But, whenever we needed him he delivered. Even in the 2nd test 1st Innings, when most batsmen failed, he was at his silky/smooth best and got out only because he tried to push the scoring (since he was batting with the tail).

8 - Ishant Sharma
Bowled well. Ideal foil for Zaheer. Must be having nightmares for the dropped catch off Sachin in the 3rd test.

8 - Sardar
Sardar ne achi karayi. Lekin 50/3 pe aake achchi daalna badi baat nahi hai. Would be interesting when he comes in to bowl at 150/0, against a good opposition. He has this habit of not really flighting the ball when the opposition have runs on the board. But, to be fair to him, he bowled well whenever he was given the ball by Dhoni.

8 - Dhoni
Batted really sensibly and played a couple of crucial innings. His half-century at the Basin Reserve was a classic case of ugly-effective batting. What an important knock that was. Will have to face critics for not declaring earlier in the last test. But, I, for one, am totally in support of the decision. Why leave them even a sniff of a chance when we have the series lead of one-nil. Remember the 222 by Astle on this versus ground when NZ were set 550 to win by the Poms back in 2001.
The fact that India dominated the tests in which he played in speaks about his captaincy.

5 - Munaf -
Behti ganga main haath dho liya ladke ne. RP Singh and Sreesanth are better than him.

5 Sehwag -
Tried to dominate. Failed mostly. His 2nd test, 2nd innings, dismissal came under lot of criticism. But, thats how he plays. He would not have 2 triples otherwise.

4 - Yuvraj
Has lot to prove in test match. We should and probably will persist with him though.

Dinesh Kartik - theek hai yaar. Parthiv Patel se to better hi hai

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Arsenal vs Villareal UEFA Champions LEague

Posted by Giri

Whats up in April? The "Ars"pective. (Arsenal Perspective. Sorry Bad PJ)Wow!! Its an absolutely mouth watering month to look forward to. I will hopefully buy my first car in the US. And then I will hopefully get my work visa. I know it was funny when I completed my Masters in Computer Science. But its funnier to think that I am working full-time as an Engineer.

Coming to the Ars-pective (haha....I like my jokes/pjs)Arsenal Vs Villareal - Gooners Vs The Yellow Submarine. Ya thats what they call Villareal. Looks a pretty easy match up on paper. But, as some of you may remember, it required a last-minute penalty save from Lehmann, Jens not Darren, in the 2006 CL semi final. Would be nice to have Pires back at our home ground. I am sure he will receive a great reception. When Henry used to score those countless goals, this man's contribution was often forgotten. But the avid/ hardcore arsenal supporters, which I must admit I was not in those times, will know that he was one of the most important of the "Arsenal Invincibles". RVP has been ruled out. Arshavin is cup-tied. So, that leaves us with Adebayor and probably Bendtner up-front. The mid-field should be, Fabri, Denilson, Nasri, Walcott. I think, however, Bendtner might make way for Alex Song. Back four should be Clichy, toure, gallas and Sagna. And Almunia between the sticks.

The players to watch out for in Villareal would be Pires, of course. Though he would be playing after being red-carded in his last Primera Liga outing. Giuseppe Rossi, the Man U reject will be keen to prove a point. John Dahl Tomasson, (I wish Bendtner starts playing half-as-good as his compatriot) is a natural Goal scorer. Even though age is running against the Dane, Arsenal will do well to keep this man in check. Marcos Senna, he was regular member the Euro-winning Spanish team. Joan Capdevilla, I think he is the captain, but more importantly, this defender has the uncanny ability to come forward and score crucial goals. Edmilson, I remember this guy's brilliant over-head kick in the 2002 world cup for Brazil.
My prediction (Villareal 1 - 2 Arsenal)

18th Apr- FA cup against Chelsea.
We should have Arshavin and RVP back for this one. I hope Arshavin/Nasri rapes Ashley Cole.
My prediction(Chelsea 0- 1 Arsenal)

15th Apr- CL Home Vs Villareal
I think we will give them a spanking at home if my first prediction is correct. If it is wrong, we will spank them even harder at home. LOL
My prediction(Arsenal 3- 0 Villareal)

21st Apr- EPL against Liverpool

Then Arsenal travel to Anfield (The is Wigan in between that). Playing in front of 'the kop' under lights is one of the most daunting prospects in football they say.

My prediction(Liverpool 1- 2 Arsenal)

29th Apr- Champions League ***CL semifinal Vs Man U
Wow.......Porto Vs Arsenal would be interesting. But there is a slight chance that Man U might make it to the semis. Wow!!That would be an intersting one. I hope Macheda gets red-carded, Ronaldo is injured and Vidic starts fighting with Rooney.
My prediction(Man U 0- 2 Arsenal)

***if Man U beats Porto

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Sachin to Retire from Test Cricket

Sources are telling that Sachin is planning to retire from test cricket after the last test in New Zealand. He has said that he has achieved so much in Test cricket, he wants to focus on one day internationals and focus on winning the 2011 world cup .

"It has been my long cherished dream to lift the world cup" He said that in a press conference

Retirement from test cricket will give him time to stay fit and spend time with his family which right now he is unable to do in hectic season. He said that lot of youngsters are coming and he is sure they will keep winning.

International Players in IPL Franchisses

Kolkata Knight Riders:
Chris Gayle, Brendon McCullum, Brad Hodge, Ricky Ponting, David Hussey, Angelo Mathews, Moises Henriques, Mark Cameron, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza and Ajantha Mendis
Opening pair is looking deadly this time as both Gayle and McCullum will play this year. I expect Ricky ponting may not be playing all the matches.

Mumbai Indians:
Lasith Malinga, Jean Paul Duminy, Graham Napier, Ryan McLaren, Dilhara Fernando, Sanath Jayasuriya, Dwayne Bravo, Mohammad Ashraful, Kyle Mills and Luke Ronchi.
Kyle Mills though he is thrown all around the park in NZ, I expect he will be able to give good start to the team. MI will have home advantage in form of Duminy. Mohammad Ashraful will get a big platform to prove his worth and talent. Jayasuriya is a legend and he has some experience of playing with south african twenty-20 franchise.

Rajasthan Royals:
Shane Warne, Graeme Smith, Shane Watson, Dimitri Mascarenhas, Morne Morkel, Robert Quiney, Tyron Henderson, Shaun Tait, Shane Harwood and Lee Carseldine.
All players I find to be dark horses. I have not seen much of Henderson,Harwood and Lee but they can be what Shaun Marsh was last year.

Kings XI Punjab:
Brett Lee, James Hopes, Shaun Marsh, Luke Pomersbach, Simon Katich, Kumar Sangakkara , Mahela Jayawardene, Burt Cockley, Ravi Bopara and Jerome Taylor.
All hopes for Brett Lee to be fit by the time tournament starts, Sreesant also will not be playing due to injury. Ravi Bopara will bring in some stability down the order.

Deccan Chargers:
Adam Gilchrist, Herschelle Gibbs, Scott Styris, Andrew Symonds, Ryan Harris, Fidel Edwards, Dwayne Smith, Chamara Silva, Chaminda Vaas and Nuwan Zoysa.
We had lot of expectations from the team last year, perhaps the burden on star players was unbearable or they didn't click properly. Team of power hitters and Sri Lankan bowlers. I have a gut feeling of seeing this team in Semis this season.

Delhi Daredevils:
AB De Villiers, Daniel Vettori, Owais Shah, Paul Collingwood, David Warner, Andrew McDonald, Dirk Nannes, Glenn McGrath, Farveez Maharoof and Tillakaratne Dilshan.

Watch out for Warner , De Villiers. I dont know Glen McGrath will be the same as he was last year. McDonald is a dark horse.

Chennai Super Kings:
Muttiah Muralitharan, Matthew Hayden , Michael Hussey, Albie Morkel, Makhaya Ntini, Jacob Oram, Stephen Fleming , Thilan Thushara, Andrew Flintoff and George Bailey.

Jacob Oram injury is a blow, Fleming will be doing the role similar to what Shane Warne did last year. Costliest player Flintoff will be under huge burden of expectations. Team is looking stable with nice combination of international stars. They might play Flintoff,Hussey,Morkel/Ntini,Murli frequently.

Royal Challengers:
Jacques Kallis, Mark Boucher, Dale Steyn, Dillon Du Preez, Cameron White, Nathan Bracken, Ross Taylor, Kevin Pietersen, Jesse Ryder and Roelof van der Merwe.

Mallaya will be after them this year expecting a semi final finish atleast.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Dark Clouds over Major Events in India

Concern of security is affecting sports events on regularly basis. Thanks to Indian Government for their efforts to alleviate the fears which have increased since IPL committee decided to host the event in South Africa as we didn't have enough police/army/nsg/crpf to give the security cover. Country with 3/4th largest army and big police force can't provide security cover to common people, that is for politicans only. 

GOI expected that BCCI will postpone the event but Modi was able to do a turnaround and get the event hosted in SA which will benifit hugely with the coming event.

But that decision as I also wrote earlier has put India-Pakistan-Bangladesh-Sri Lanka at same platform in terms of security concerns. Events are getting affected or main players are not turning up due to fear factor.

I feel its not the terrorists who have held the common public to ransom its the politicans and elections which have held us to ransom. You have to vote its a biggest democratic exercise of the world with 700 million voting. 
Democracy is government for the people and by the people so the biggest elections are putting my National Pride at stake Why ?? . Image of my India is taking a beating. 

I guess the time has come to think What we have done for the country not What the politicians have done and are doing. 
Time for young guns to come over not those who spread communal voilence ...... 

Monday, March 30, 2009

The best indian DRAWing

Ever saw an art movie with the subtlety of every move, every single dialog, the colours and the delicate sounds. You must have, but ever saw it live, being played in front of a kiwi audience.

'How can someone be so irresponsible, how can someone disrespect the bowlers like that?', these were the words of those commentators who were awed by Sehwag's reaction to Jeetan Patel on the third day of the second test of India-New Zealand test series being played at Napier. Indians (referred as we in this passage, in spite of this being an anonymous blog the nationality is inevitably inseparable from cricket) were left to chase a mountain on the fourth morning of this boomerang attack by the kiwis. Some 269 runs behind, we had to survive six cruel sessions of gameplay. And the rest is history! I had a hunch that Gambhir had waited too long on this tour, and the time had come. One of the most prolific T20 batsman of our times, played an innings that will be remembered perhaps as the most gritty overseas knock by an Indian. Rahul Dravid reminded of the great rivalry days during the South African tour in late 90s. And they held the fort.

And then dravid succumbed to appealing. A bad decision indeed, and my disbelief in the referral system disappeared. He certainly deserved better than that after all that hard work. Life is not fair, but as far as possible, let technology help bring fairness to whatever aspects of life it can.

Sachin came, and the new ball was taken. Here is the snapshop of next few overs:

82.1 Martin to Tendulkar, FOUR, full but drifting down leg and Tendulkar tickles it to the fine-leg boundary

82.3 Martin to Tendulkar, FOUR, lovely whippy flick. It was the inswinger but full and on the middle and leg, Tendulkar waited for the swing to play out, allowed the ball to come into his zone before wristing it away

82.5 Martin to Tendulkar,
FOUR, And now he pings the off-side boundary. He went down on a bent back knee to cream a full delivery through covers. He held the pose as he watched the ball race away to the boundary

83.2 O'Brien to Tendulkar,
FOUR, Very classy on-the-up back-foot punch. He moved back, stood on his toes and played a delicious punchy drive through covers. It appears even the bowler appreciated that shot.

87.2 O'Brien to Tendulkar,
FOUR, his first bad delivery after few good ones and Tendulkar puts it away immediately. Full and on the legs, flicked to the boundary. He is very positive today, looking for run-scoring opportunities.

87.6 O'Brien to Tendulkar,
SIX, It's a bouncer and the red ball flies over long leg. Tendulkar swiveled to unfurl the pull and it flew over the ropes

I will need to stop here, the list is getting too long, and remind you its the same slow test match we were talking about. Day ended, kiwis tired of two days hard work on field but still in lead and with a very good chance of leveling the series. Sunset.

Fifth day, Sachin starts with a boundary but perishes to Martin playing an uncertain uppish drive. In comes the man who scripted India's great follow-on victory against Australia at the Eden Gardens, VVS Laxman. The guy who loves the southern hemisphere a hint more than the northern, and then there were stats. India survived what would be remembered as one of the finest performance by Indian batsmen overseas. Cricinfo has provided some stats relating this match, and its imperative that we see atleast a few of them here:

  • India batted 180 overs in their second innings, which is the eighth-highest number of deliveries they've batted in the second try. The first six of those instances had all been before 1980
  • It's also the second-highest number of overs they've played when following on
  • For New Zealand, it was the first instance of not winning a Test after enforcing the follow-on at home.
  • Gautam Gambhir's 436-ball 137 was easily the slowest of his 15 fifty-plus scores in Tests. His innings spanned 643 minutes, which is the seventh-longest by an Indian.
  • Gambhir's knock is the slowest by an Indian, in terms of balls faced, for an innings of less than 150. His strike rate of 31.42 is still better than Sanjay Manjrekar's strike rate of 24.64, when he scored 104 off 422 balls against Zimbabwe in Harare in 1992.
  • VVS Laxman's unbeaten 124 contained 25 fours, which is the highest by any batsman in an innings of 125 or less.
This is certainly the best Indian drawing that I have seen.

IPL in South Africa: Match Schedule

Here is post number 280 we are nearing the triple century mark.

Below is the schedule for IPL-2 in SouthAfrica


April 19: DELHI DAREDEVILS v KINGS XI PUNJAB (8 pm) at Cape Town.


April 21: RAJASTHAN ROYALS v MUMBAI INDIANS (4 pm) at Durban


April 23: KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS v RAJASTHAN ROYALS (4 pm) at Port Elizabeth


April 25: DECCAN CHARGERS v MUMBAI INDIANS (8 pm) at Durban.

April 26: RAJASTHAN ROYALS v KINGS XI PUNJAB (4 pm) at Cape Town


April 28: DELHI DAREDEVILS v RAJASTHAN ROYALS (4 pm) at Pretoria

April 29: MUMBAI INDIANS v KINGS XI PUNJAB (4 pm) at Durban

April 30: DELHI DAREDEVILS v DECCAN CHARGERS (4 pm) at Pretoria
April 30: RAJASTHAN ROYALS v CHENNAI SUPER KINGS (8 pm) at Pretoria.


May 2: RAJASTHAN ROYALS v DECCAN CHARGERS (4 pm) at Johannesburg
May 2: CHENNAI SUPER KINGS v DELHI DAREDEVILS (8 pm) at Port Elizabeth


May 4: DECCAN CHARGERS v CHENNAI SUPER KINGS (4 pm) at Port Elizabeth


May 6: MUMBAI INDIANS v DECCAN CHARGERS (4 pm) at Pretoria


May 8: DELHI DAREDEVILS v MUMBAI INDIANS (4 pm) at East London

May 9: DECCAN CHARGERS v KINGS XI PUNJAB (4 pm) at Bloemfontein
May 9: CHENNAI SUPER KINGS v RAJASTHAN ROYALS (8 pm) at Port Elizabeth


May 11: DECCAN CHARGERS v RAJASTHAN ROYALS (4 pm) at Bloemfontein

May 12: KINGS XI PUNJAB v MUMBAI INDIANS (8 pm) at Pretoria.



May 15: KINGS XI PUNJAB v DELHI DAREDEVILS (4 pm) at Kimberley

May 16: CHENNAI SUPER KINGS v MUMBAI INDIANS (4 pm) at Johannesburg
May 16: DECCAN CHARGERS v KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS (8 pm) at Port Elizabeth

May 17: KINGS XI PUNJAB v DECCAN CHARGERS (8 pm) at Johannesburg




May 21: MUMBAI INDIANS v DELHI DAREDEVILS (8 pm) at Pretoria

May 22: Semi Final 1 at Pretoria

May 23: Semi Final 2 at Johannesburg

May 24: Final at Johannesburg.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Indian Premier League in England/SA gains and losses

So finally we saw yesterday what we all were expecting since long. IPL governing body decided that there is no way the tournament can be organized in India. It was decided that tournament will be shifted to England or SA with England having upper edge.

Why BCCI had to take this decisions:

1. Petty politics between NCP chief Sharad Pawar and Congress and congress trying to diminish the clout of Mr Pawar after he offered himself as PM candidate
2. Government of India thought that the returns of organizing the event will be less at the time of elections.
3. Why take the risk of any unexpected terrorist attack which may raise questions on the running government. Lets get it scrapped or push for delay
4. Fear among the politicans that they may be sidelined duing the IPL season, i.e cricketers will be the heroes not the great nation servers politicans.

What is lost with IPL going out:

1. Big opportunity to the political parties to advertise duing the IPL season. 
2. Revenue for reeling Hotel industry, and other tourism related industry. If the even had gone peacefully lot many foreigners would have stared coming back to India who have stopped after Mumbai  attacks.
3. Image of India as a powerful country has taken a hit. Elections elections are the biggest festival but that doesn't mean that no other event can take place during this time. This is not what superpowers are made up of. We cant even have 3000-4000 police force for the match day where as we can have big 60,000 police force to protect any big small medium politicans in New Delhi.
4. Feeling of city-city rivalry which was the base of IPL will not be the same. IPL-1 was hit due the big city fan following TV viewing being the other reason.
5. This decision has put India together with Pakistan and Bangladesh which are not save for cricket.

What's good for having IPL outside India:

1. Eventhough the sport may go the England or SA, still we can expect a upliftment in the level of game in that region and also increase in fan following. EPL organizers are trying to have 1-2 matches added in the season which can be played outside England so as to cater to fans in Asia, in the same way with whole of IPL going out of India we may see an increase in fan following. It may make IPL fully global in a way and may lead to cricket being played by more then 8-9 serious countries
2. Logistics industry will get a boost in the organizing country.
3. Easy money for organizing country as BCCI will pay hefty amount to SA/England
4. We are seeing globalization in cricket now, there are no boundary walls now as a local tournament of one country will take place in other country.

Some people will say they will not watch the matches, it will not be the same as last year. But i feel this was the only way out considering the options left to the organizers. 

Enjoy the game at same timings atleast and i will be glued to the TV that is for sure.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Whats left in EPL?

After the initial shootouts by Liverpool, sudden ups and down by Chelsea there is not much left now in the top race. In spite of the humaling defeat against liverpool, ManU looks all set for the top place. 4 points clear of both chelsea and liverpool with one match in hand, and it has also completed its 4 matches against these two teams. It needs to underplay to loose this battle.

However, there are a lot many interesting fights going around in the league. First and foremost the unimportant second spot between the champions league rivals, pool and chelsea at 61 points and 9 match in hand are both set to fight it out and try to toggle ManU at the top. My money on pool this time as chelsea looks a little more uncertain this season and for the gerrard-torres factor.

Secondly and more importantly, the fourth place fight is interesting. Arsenal, unfortunately for them, fights with Villa and Everton for the fourth place. Gunners and Villa are at 52 each and a third spot looks like mercury and Pluto to them. But a European slot is for grabs and while Arsenal try to avoid embarrassment, Villa and Everton would want to continue the impressive season and make a claim for the dream European place.My money has to be on gunners (otherwise the head of this blog will get me chucked out of this team).

The most intriguing battle for me is at the bottom, oh what a bliss to see them fighting for survival! A certain WBA exit at 23, but along with it it's all hidden. Boro with 27 points, Stoke, Portsmouth and Newcastle all at 29, Blackburn at 30, Sunderland at 32, Hull and Bolton at 33. To sum up 6 teams in the cluster of 8 points. It can be anyone, absolutely anyone of these. It's not as much a fight at the top as it is at the bottom.

There is a lot left in the last 9 matchdays, but my predictions are as follows:

1. Manchester United
2. Liverpool
3. Chelsea
4. Arsenal
5. Villa
6. Everton
7. Wigan
8. Spurs
9. West Ham
10. Man City
11. Bolton
12. Fulham
13. Sunderland
14. Newcastle
15. Portsmouth
16. Hull
17. Blackburn
18. Middlesbrough
19. Stoke
20. WBA

Rock Stars of Cricket

Rock stars of cricket are on fire. Critics might argue that we were expected to win. Agreed, man to man India is any day much better team than New Zealand. But the way of winning is something which I loved the most. Right from the time the first ball was bowled to the 4th day, we never really looked like losing. There was an air of certainty in the way we played, much like the aussies of late 90’s , when no matter what the opposition team does , end result was always certain.

Sachin Tendulkar says this is the best batting line up he was played in, quite a debatable claim considering the fact Tendulkar was part of every Indian batting line up for past 20 years. In my humble opinion, I think he is probably right , but the dada’s boys of early 2000 comes quite close to them. The factor in which this bunch of boys scores over dada ones was probably the fear factor. These guys are just fearless, I have been following cricket for now more than 15 years and I have never seen an Indian team which plays with so much confidence, fearlessness and the enjoying the game as they do. May be it’s a there captain effect (cool and charismatic), means he is an enigmatic personality , he is not a technically correct batsmen, not even technically correct Wicket keeper , neither he is pretty too watch (in fact that bottom hand approach is quite ugly to watch) , but still he is damm effective. Look at his career development , he started off as an exciting batsmen who can smash sixes at will , people says he is a flat pitch bully, will never work against good pace attack or on bouncy pitches. But he proved everyone wrong, he scores decently in every situation, is very reliable batsmen (perhaps after SRT, especially in ODI) but most importantly has got one hell of a cricketing brain, the most important thing for a good captain.

Other factor which is makes this team more ominous is the role of SRT, u can sense a calm, relaxed person in the way he bats now a days, a person who is dead sure of his role in the team, he might have cut down on his flamboyance a bit, but the new methods are as effective as the old ones. Also the presence of so many rock stars have resulted in lowering of expectation from him, thus making him plan his cricket in the way he wants to.

Anyway, it’s really a great feeling to have a winning cricket team, I don’t really know whether we are currently the best team or not, but we are very close to it; probably SA with their wonderful pace attack and a very good captain might be ahead of us. But these are really exciting team for world cricket with some good hard competition making it really good to watch.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Sehwag Fastest Century in NZ : 4th ODI

Here are the highlights of the 4th ODI of the India-NZ series 2009. Sehwag made a 60 ball century and lead to a historic series win of India. This is the first series win for India in NZ.

India Batting::

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Kapil Dev :: Straight From the Heart

On telling someone in an interview that I loved reading autobiographies, the interviewer asked me have I read anything about Kapil Dev. I replied a no !! making a sad face. I ordered his autobiography "Straight From the Heart" the same day.

Kapil Dev is Dhoni of Old era or that would be injustice to great legend, I would say Dhoni is Kapil of new era. Both have few similarities being brought up in non cricketers producing states of India and both lifted the world cup in earlier stages of their captaincy.

Book start with memories of Kapil's childhood days. Kuckoo as he was known in his family was into sports and atheletics since his childhood and was as away from his studies as is Jammu is away from Kanyakumari. Playing whole day not cricket but football, coming back home and pretending to sleep in front of his father so that he is not scolded for studying. But as we know father is father how much we say child is father of his father. He got trapped when his father used to say this football is torn and it should be thrown away. In a flash Kuckoo was awake and his father used to say "Hmm t rajkumar jaag rahe hain. Ab jaag hi rahe hain, to inse kahye ki thode der baithkar padhaai kar leing... Nautanki kahi ka...."

Just like any other Indian family where children are pushed to only study and study same was the case in Kuckoo's family. Kapil loved challenges and he writes one incident of trying to get on the back of police horses who were not used to clumsy boys. He was successful after few attempts and he takes the police horses away and is caught by his father.

Kapil was as ignorant about cricket as most of the Indians are about Ice Hockey. He used to ask his brother about players when his big brother used to read a cricket magazine.

Kapil used to get irritated when his bother disturbed his sleep listening to cricket commentary in the night. He is introduced to playing cricket by his brother Bushan when one of their team member is absent and Kapil is used in place of 11th player. He showed his fielding skills and impressed everyone. His natural talent is again seen by eveyone when in other match his 4 hits in 5 balls are out of boundary and during bowling he also took 3 wickets. On being encouraged by his brother Kuckoo decides that cricket is his future.

Kapil starts his coaching under coach Azad and is asked to increase his stamina by drinking more and more milk. His dad gets two buffaloes in few days and so he became a milk guzzler as was teased by his sister as Nikhanj Milk Diary. He coaches with other cricketers Yograj Singh, Ashok Malhotra. Kuckoo was assertive and fought for his writes, he writes about an incident where he fought with BCCI officials over food quantity in under-19 camp.

Finally his efforts pay off and he makes his debut under Bishen Singh bedi in Pakistan. He has never watched test match before and here is making his debut against arch rivals Pakistan. He feels the bad side of international cricket when he is teased while batting, but his moment infact moment for India came when bowling Pakistani batsman halts the play and ask for a helmet. So here is a fast bowler who has arrived to prove to the world that India can also produce fast bowlers.

He writes about how less money players got and they couldn't afford to get their clothes washed and they used to wash it themselves. He also writes about the divide in the team among seniors and juniors and how the divide wanished when young crickters came and stopped following orders from seniors and asked for equal rights in decision making. He writes about his and gavaskar spat , various tours and World Cup in details. He also writes about BCCI's nature of changing captain every now and then and how little say the players had in BCCI working.

I enjoyed reading about his 175 run knock against Zimbabwe and world cup final. Its exhilariting to read how a team who is at 66-1 odds from beginning of the cup and also the final lifts the world cup. Its an era when BCCI doesn't give lakhs to a team winning world cup but it has to organize a Lata Mangeshkar show to earn money to give to the world cup winning team.

Book is different from other autobiographies in a way that it has not covered only Kapil cricket but also separate chapters are given to his marriage , matchfixing scandal. He talks in detail about his business, he first started a publishing company but has to close that down with the coming up of satellite telivision in India. Later on he started a ground lighting company which has lighted many stadiums across the country.

Till 200 pages there is no talk of marriage, but in chapter "Love Makes you go round" he talks at length about his marriage and love life. I liked the chapter in which he talks about BCCI, honorary presidentship , biased zonal selection. All this is all relevant today and has been going on for ages, one can easily see the biased selection on seeing Balaji in the team as we know Balaji shares state with one of the selectors.

Finally he talks about the Match Fixing saga, cricket fan will surely hate outlook editor Vinod Mehta who without doing proper enquiry kept on publishing what Manoj Prabhakar said about Kapil's involvement. Other one is noted women writer Shobha De who has written in some article like "She never invites cricketers to her party’’. ’’How can She deduce that all cricketers are involved?’’ is what Kapil wants to know. And what to say about another great Mr Bindra Punjab Cricket Board chief who has seen kapil playing and growing in front of him naming Kapil on cnn. You feel sorry for Kapil when you read things like this. You feel like this is not the way to treat people who have brought laurels to nation.

You will enjoy reading about 83 world cup, 175 against zimbabwe, azar and kapil relationship, wisden Indian cricketer of century award, sunil gavaskar and kapil dev saga , romi his wife and her wierd behavior during the 83 final.

Must read for any one who says he is Indian cricket fan

Friday, March 13, 2009

Adventure Sports:: SwatTV Roadies 1.0 :: Future of Pakistan

Hi I am your host Mullah Omar

Welcome to the SwatTV Roadies 1.0. 2012 marks the first year of Roadies being organized in Pakistan.

First a brief history of SWAT TV ::

Last year various international satellite channels pulled out of Pakistan citing security reasons.So SWAT region decided to launch their own channel on the lines of MTv. Its a music channel where we show folk, rock and everykind of music. Motto of the channel is to spread jihadi music. As we all know music is everywhere, we can generate music from anything so we have positioned ourselves as the only channel showing music from bullets, tanks, grenades. Practice in training camps is shown live as we feel there can be no better music then the sound of bullets hitting the targets.

TRP of the channel touched new heights when we showed live second mutiny in as many as 3 years by Bangladeshi Rifles group. For two whole days our viewers listened to the sound of bullets, tanks rolling on Dhaka Roads. SwatTV was the first to show the whole incident infact our cameras were in place 2 hours before the event started as we have our network of reporters spread everywhere.

We have got exclusive rights of showing missile launch by North Korea in July 2012. One team is on way to Sri Lanka to meet the LTTE to get rights to show live attempt by LTTE to regain its lost area in Sri Lanka.

Before continuing further its time for a short commercial break::
(Companies selling military warfare and related equipments are given discount of 25%)


Ringa Ringa Rocks Ringa Ringa Rocks
SWAT Rocks .small big diagonal horizontal rocks SWAT Rocks
Buy SWAT rocks to be used during stone pelting spectacle
Buy 5 get 2 free
Ringa Ringa Rocks Ringa Ringa Rocks


Welcome back to  Al Qaeda SwatTV Roadies 1.0.

Further about the channel, Swat TV has generated huge interest and we are planning to launch the channel in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Iran in a year or two.

Now about the Roadies.Since we got the idea of the show from a bald man in India (the most dangerous place in the world), we are getting thousands of enquires from the youth.

We have got large number of sponsors. Main sponsor is Al Qaeda, other being
Mulla Umar Consultancy Services .. "Consult us before killing",
Lahore Powder ... "For that heightened feeling",
Toiba Oil -  "Keeps your guns shinning"
and Swat Rocks - "For easy throws".

We have got 10 participants from different regions and first edition is an international one with participants from Afghanistan and Bangladesh also.
And for the participants everything will be unexpected, i.e expect the unexpected, there will be real stunts, killings, gun battles, and many more adventure sports tests.

Winner will get straight entry into the next planned mission of Al Qaeda at an unspecified location.

I will not reveal all the details as it is SwatTV Roadies 1.0 Expect the Unexpected

Till then its goodbye from all of us here at SwatTV Roadies 1.0

ps: Some people are not able to intrepret it and saying that its a sports blog and I should write only sports related posts. I feel the post is very much related to sports and such scenario can take place in future in Pakistan, we are seeing what is happening there and sports be it cricket or anything may not be possible in that country.  So it is like a dark humor which has some bitter reality in it.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

public class IndianCricket :: Method shouldSachinRetire

For Sachin Fans :-)

public class IndianCricket {

// constructor
public IndianCricket() {
System.out.println("Welcome to IndianCricket. This class give output of should sachin retire or not");

public void shouldSachinRetireOrNot() {
// if will be decided by 3 categories of people media, fans and sachin himself.

private void mediaJudgement() {
// get sachin last 5 scored and calculate average and then analyse.
int sachinLastFiveScores = ICC_Data(Sachin);
int average = sachinLastFiveScores/5;

if(average < 30)
System.out.println("Sachin has gone old, he should retire and let youngsters be allowed to show their potential");
System.out.println("Is this the same Sachin we used to love !! No his time has gone now.");
else {
System.out.println("Sachin is a great player, he should carry on...");

// Get Result of India last five matches played and then analyse.
int indiaLastFiveMatchesResults = ICC_Data(India);

if(indiaLastFiveMatchesResults == Loss) {
System.out.println("Sachin has not won much for India!! He plays for himself");
System.out.println("Sachin always fails in big matches");
// they show some matches' details in which sachin has failed.
System.out.println("Here you can see the data how he has failed in big matches");
else {
System.out.println("Sachin is legend he has won India many matches !! India and we are proud of him");

if((average <>indiaLastFiveMatchesResults == Loss) ) {
String NDTV;
String CNN_IBN;
String India_TV;
String OtherNews;

NDTV= startWalkTheTalk("Should Sachin Retire Gracefully now? Discuss !! Barkha Dutt");
CNN_IBN = startFaceTheNation("Should Sachin Retire Gracefully now? Discuss !! Sagarika Ghosh");
India_TV = startDiscussion-with-Facts("yeh dekhiye sachin kaise pehle run banate the ab pata nahi kya ho gaya hai inko!! Kya yeh wahi sachin hai !! ");
OtherNews = start("Should he retire now!! Should BCCI selectors give some one younger a chance? ");

public int ICC_Data(String PlayerName_CountryName) {
return data;

public void fansJudgement() {
// fans will be divided into two categories true cricket lovers and evangelists and others just game watchers.

public void cricketEvangelists() {
boolean anything;
if(Anything) {
// for cricket Evangelists
System.out.println("Sachin is a legend and he has done what no other player has done to India.");
System.out.println("He will retire by himself when he will feel his interests level is not the same");
System.out.println("We bow to sachin he is God");

public void justGameWatchers() {
if(India_Loosing) {
System.out.println("These players dont do anything! They dont practice hard");
System.out.println("They always do ads and roam around with celebrities");
System.out.println("Some fanatics will burn effigies of players");

if(Sachin_Not_Scoring) {
System.out.println("Sachin is old now he should retire");
System.out.println("Selectors should bring some new face");
} else {
System.out.println("Sachin is our hope and true hero");
System.out.println("We never miss him playing");

public void sachinJudgement() {
System.out.println("I will retire when my time will come! I am loving the game and enjoying it");

public static void main(String args[]) {
IndianCricket obj = new IndianCricket();

Some compilation errors may creep in :-)