Sunday, May 30, 2010

Zimbabwe Tri Series. Match 2. India vs Sri Lanka

India 243 for 3 in 43.3 overs beat Sri Lanka 242 all out, comfortably by seven wickets.

India won the toss and elected to bowl first on a slow, but docile wicket. Indian seamers lead by Dinda did a great job in restricting Sri Lanka to moderate scores in the initial overs. Upul Taranga was run out and Samaraweera was consumed by Ojah to leave Lanka struggling at 39 for 2 in 11. When Dilshan fell for 61 of 94 in the 25th over, & Kapugadera for a painstaking 20 of 54 at 38th, even 200 seemed a distant task for the Lankans. Perera 32 of 29 and Kulasekara 19 of 21 added some quick runs in the power play overs, to lead Sri Lanka to a respectable 242 all out. Dinda, Ojah and Jadeja took two wickets apiece.

The Indians had a scratchy start, with both Vijay and Kartik labouring for 14 of 31 and 18 of 47 before both were consumed by Kulasekara and Ajanta Mendis. Their departure came in as a blessing in disguise, as Rohit Shrma and Virat Kohli put on a methodical workmanlike partnership of 154 runs, before Kohli fell for a well made 82 of 125 in the 38th over. Skipper Suresh Raina joined Sharma, and saw the Indians through, to a comfortable seven wickets victory in 43.3 overs. Rohit with a back to back century remained not out on 101 of 126 and Raina unbeaten on 24 of 26. Kulasekara, Mendis and Randiv picked up a wicket each.

A satisfying victory for the young Indians, and the planning had all Gary Kirsten written over it.Sri Lanka meet Zimbabwe in a crucial match on June 1st, and need to win to make it one apiece at the half way stage.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Triangular Series India vs Zimbabwe

The first match of the tri series involving India, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe, was played between India and Zimbabwe at Queens Sports Club, Bulawayo.

Zimbabwe,289 for 4 in 48.2 overs, comfortably beat India 285 for 5 by six wickets. Zimbabwe was definitely stronger of the two sides on the day, and won the match with clinical efficiency.

India won the toss and promptly elected to bat in a placid wicket. Indisciplined overs from Chigumbura and Price, gave India a flying start of over 50 in six overs, mainly constituted by wides and no balls. Immature run outs of Vijay and Kohli, and some good bowling in mid overs, swung the game Zimbabwe way, before Rohit Sharma 114 of 119 ( his last 69 coming of 31 balls) and unbeaten 61 in 61 balls, by Ravindra Jadeja, gave India a fighting 285 for 5.Mpofu 2 for 63 and Utseya 1 for 46 shared the wickets.

Zimbabwe were given a rousing start by Brendon Taylor 81 of 103, and Hamilton Masakadza 46 of 43. before Hamilton fell in the thirteenth over. Every one of the Zimbabwe batsmen did their bit. Lamb 27 of 43, Coventry 32 of 25, Chigumbura 24 of 16 helped Ervin unbeaten on 67 of 60 to finish the match in the 48.2 overs. The Indian new ball trio of Vinay, Dinda and Yadav were ineffective, though Vinay took two wickets for 51. Jadeja and Mishra took a wicket each.

A good win by Zimbabwe. Watch out for this team in the remaining matches. They are getting back to some of their past glory.

Monday, May 17, 2010

WC.T.20. Finals Australia vs England

Two old adversaries in the final of WC.T20, which it self was a record of sorts. The match played at Kensington oval, Bridgetown, Barbados turned out to be a tame affair, the mighty Aussies succumbing at the tape.

On a bouncy wicket, England won the toss and invited the Australians to have the first go. England with Sidebottom,Bresnen, Broad, Swann and Yardy were a better balanced outfit, than the Aussies, who packed their side with pacers Nannes, Tait, Johnson, Watson and Smith.

Like the semifinals against Pakistan, Australians had a poor start at 8 for three wickets, in the third over. Watson, Warner and Haddin were gone for 2,2 & 1. Sidebottom was running through the Aussies at this stage. Clarke 27 of 35 added 37 runs in 43 balls with David Hussey, before he was consumed by Collingwood of Swann. The next 50 runs between David Hussey and Cameron White came in 36 balls, when White fell for 30 of 21, caught by Broad of the part timer Wright. Fifteen overs were gone at this stage for 95, when Mike Hussey joined his brother David. Unlike the semifinals, Mike could not fire away, and added 47 runs, before David was run out for 59 of 73 balls. Australians finished at 147 for 6, with Chris Broad bowling an economical 20th over. Sidebottom 2 for 26, Swann one for 17 and Wright one for five, shared the spoils.

England lost Lumb for 2 runs in the second over. There after, it was England all the way. Man of the match Kieswetter 63 of 72 and man of the series, Kevin Pietersen 47 of 59, took England to safety, before Collingwood 12 of 15 and Morgan 15 of 11 , won the match for England by seven wickets. England finished at 148 for 3 in 17 overs. Tait, Johnson and Smith took a wicket each.

England a team without any superstars, have won the cup due to shear determination, precise planning and disciplinary approach. They thoroughly deserve the victory.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

WC T20. Day.10. Match.19. West Indies vs India. Super.8. Group.F

West Indies169 for 6, kept their chances of reaching the semi finals alive, by beating India 155 for 9, by 14 runs. India will play their final match against Sri Lanka, and the outcome will decide the final four.

It is becoming difficult to fathom the team composition. Packed with batsmen,Two pacers one spinner and other's who bowl the up & down stuff,is puzzling. This was a match where a seamer like Vinay Kumar could have been tried. The pitch was a bit wet at the start of play, but rolled out in to a good batting track with in couple of overs. Other than Harbhajan & Nehra , bowlers bowled poorly. To add to their woes, the fielding was sub standard. Crucial catches were dropped. Chris Gayle with two lives, went on to make 98, and agonisingly fell short of a record second century in WC.T20. Chanderpaul 23 of 29, put on an opening partnership of 80 in 11. 5 overs with Gayle. Sammy 19 of 10 and Pollard 17 of 11 struck out in the end overs. Nehra and Harbhajan, bowled well. Raina & Jadeja went for 50 runs between them in four overs.

The pitch had rolled out in to a decent batting track and 169 was gettable. But the Indians virtually had no plans. They were 3 down for 38 in the eighth over and never recovered. Raina made a scratchy 32 in 25. Dhoni, Yusuf and Harbhajan used the long handle effectively, but the game was already lost by that stage. Sammy, Roach and Jerome Taylor , bowled with sustained pace exposing the Indians weakness for the short pitched deliveries.Bravo, Pollard, Gayle and Benn took a wicket each, to complete the tally.
Indians like the Pakistanis are out of the T20. World Cup. Too many games, in the IPL with an hectic game schedule & travel seem to have taken a toll of the players. Is IPL too hectic and the schedule too long and wrongly positioned ? This will remain a question mark and need to be debated by BCCI. But what ever said and done, the Indians played poorly and deserve to lose.

There is one more match, and it will be worthwhile to induct Vinay Kumar and Yadav, in place of Zaheer and Yuvraj. Let us see what they have in them.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

WC.T20. Day.9. Match.18. England vs South Africa - Super.8. Gr.E

In a clinical display, England 168 for 7 beat South Africa 129 all out by 39 runs, to make their way to the semifinals.

Electing to bat first on winning the toss, England lost Michael Lumb LBW to Botha for 3 in the first over. Pietersen joined Kieswetter, and they added 94 runs in under 10 overs for the second wicket, before Pietersen 53 of 33, fell to a good catch by Smith of Botha. Kieswetter 41 of 42, Collingwood 14 of 9, Morgan 21 of 14 and Bresnen 13 of 13, contributed to the team total of 168, which at one time looked to reach over 180. Langeveldt and M.Morkel, bowled their end spells, excellently and gave nothing away. Botha and Kallis, were very economical. M.Morkel 2 for 40 , Langeveldt 2 for 34 & Duminy 1 for 11 shared the other wickets.

South Africans, were reduced to 53 for five under ten overs. Smith 19 of 24, Kallis 11 of 13, Gibbs 8 of 8, AB de Villiers 5 of 9 and J.A.Morkel zero of two, were gone in a jiffy. Wickets kept falling and excepting Duminy 39 of 25, there was not even a resemblance of a fight. Swann, Broad and Yardy, broke through the South African top order. Sidebottom, ran through the middle and finished the match bowling M.Morkel out for one in the 19th over.

South Africa now need to do extremely well against Pakistan, to overcome New Zealand, who are better placed in the run quotient.

WC.T.20. Day.9. Match.17. New Zealand vs Pakistan. Super.8. Gr.E

In a nail biting finish, New Zealand 133 for 7, defeated Pakistan 132 for 7, by one run in the last ball of the match.

Pakistan won the toss and elected to bowl on a juicy wicket. Mohammad Sami, Abdur Rehman & Shahid Afridi, picked up the wickets. But the credit of bowling intelligently and tightly goes to Md.Aamer & Md.Hafeez They held on to one end, and the wickets kept falling at the other. B.McCullum 33 of 29, Daniel Vettori 38 of 34 and Styris 21 of 17 were the main scorers. Nathen McCullum, finished the innings with a six.

Pakistan were to score 133 at 6.65 runs per over. They were reduced to 58 for 5 by the tenth over. Salman Butt unbeaten on 67 runs of 54 balls and Abdul Razzak 29 runs of 29 balls, put on 53 runs in 48 balls for the sixth wicket.

At the end of the 17th over, Pakistan were 108 for 5 requiring 26 runs of 18 balls, with Salman Butt and Razzak going strong. Nathen McCullum bowled a brilliant 18th over giving away just four runs and consuming Razzak caught of a top edge, by Taylor at deep mid wicket.

At the end of 18 Pakistan required, 22 of 12 balls still gettable. The 19th over by Mills, eleven runs were taken, a first ball six by Butt followed by five singles.

20th over, and Pakistan required 11 from six, with Butler bowling. Ball one was a well directed bouncer and no run, and no wide. Ball two, Butt top edges through third man for four, knowing the third man was up. A classy shot. Seven of four. Ball three, a good fast ball at 136 km, Butt misses, no run. Seven of three. Ball four, Butt charges, and slashes Butler, over point boundary for a four, with the sweeper cover Styris giving a chase and missing out at the rope. Three of two.Ball five, Butt misses the ball but runs for a bye. Hopkins late in throw, but hits the stumps, with Abdur Rehman in. Two of one. Ball Six. Every one were tense,what if Butler bowls a wide or no ball ? Butler keeps his nerves, bowls a length ball aimed at the pads. Rahman swings, but caught at deep square leg by Guptil, a simple catch.

Pakistan lose by one run ,and are out of T.20 World Cup 2010. What a match. Butler deservedly was the Man of the Match.

Friday, May 7, 2010

WC.T.20. Day.8. Match.16.Gr.F. Sri Lanka vs West Indies.

Match 16 was almost a replica of Match 15 between Australia & India. Sri Lanka were in in the Aussie position and West Indies crumbling to a 57 run defeat in the Indian position.

Sri Lanka won the toss, and elected to bat. Sri Lanka played with three pacemen, spearheaded by Lasith Malinga and two world class spinners, in Muthia Muralitharan and Ajanta Mendis. Mahela has been in sublime form from the time he has moved to the top slot in batting. Mahela and Sanga, put on a record 167 runs partnership in 16.3 overs, to guide Sri Lanka to a match winning 195 for three. Mahela played a gem of an innings of 98 of 56, with Sanga scoring 68 of 49. K.A.J. Roach was the only bowler, who commanded some respectability. Taylor, Bravo, Benn, Sammy & Pollard were all hit out of rhythm.

West Indies, could not match up with the target and were reduced to 138 for 8 in twenty overs, to be beaten by 57 runs. However unlike the Indians, there were performance by almost all the West Indians, which was not enough to take them through. Ajantha Mendis and Lasith Malinga, bowled their heart out, well supported by Kulasekara, Angelo, Perera and Murali Sarwan top scored with 28 of 33 and Bravo 23 of 23.

Both West Indies and India need to win their next two matches convincingly to be in contention for the last four.

WC.T.20. Day.8. Match.15. Australia vs India Gr.F.

Australia 184 for 5 beat India 135 all out in 17.2 overs, by a massive margin of 49 runs.

India just didn't know what hit them. It is also difficult to fathom the team selection. At Barbados, the pitch compared with Perth for its bounce and pace, India played with two pacemen and one spinner and other so called spinning all rounders. Other than Harbhajan and Nehra to an extent, all were clouted round the field. There were as many as sixteen sixes to six fours. The Aussies were not bothered about the field positions, since they were clearing the field every time. Lesser said about the Indian fielding the better. The batters could not bear the pace. Yuvraj, Vijay, Gambhir & Raina were found wanting to short pitched pacy deliveries, diverted at the rib cage.

Australians were given a rousing start by Watson and Warner who put on 104 for the first wicket. Watson was the first to go for a well made 54 of 32. Warner 72 of 42 and David Hussey 35 of 22 played brilliantly and Australians were 166 for 3 in the 17th. When over 210 runs were anticipated, three brilliant overs by the Indians with Nehra's 20th being hit for just five, restricted the Australians to 184. Bajji & Nehra bowled well under the conditions. Jadeja was taken to the cleaners. His last three deliveries of the first and first three deliveries of second were hit for sixes. Yusuf Pathan and Yuvraj were the other wicket takers.

India was expected to do well with its famous batting line up. But the line up just remained on paper, and excepting for a excellent unbeaten 79 of 46 by Rohit and some lusty hitting by Bajji at the end, no one was able to stand up to Aussie pace. The Indian batting card was pathetic at Vijay-2, Gambhir-9. Raina-5, Yuvraj-1, Dhoni -2, Yusuf-1, Jadeja-4, what more can you ask for.
Nannes, Tait, Watson, Johnson & Smith with a wicket each, bowled relentlessly, to reduce the Indians to 135 all out.
Winning or losing is a part of the game. But when you lose without a fight and do not control the run rate which may come to play at a later stage, you need to be spanked for your effort. Nothing however should be taken away from a classic Aussie performance. they have come to WC.T.20 with a goal and appear to be on way to achieveing it.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Day.7. Match.14. Super 8 Gr.E. South Africa vs Newzealand

South Africa 170 for 4 beat Newzealand 157 for 7 by 13 runs, in another Group E match of Super Eights.

South Africa won the toss and elected to bat first. Steady contributions from Kallis 31 of 26, Smith 14 of 12, Gibbs 30 of 24, Villiers 47 of 39, and J.A.Morkel 40 of 18 made up the score. After being 97 for 3 in the 14th over, Villiers and Morkel added 72 runs of 36 balls, to set up the score. Nathen McCullum, Southee and Oram took a wicket each.

Brendon McCullum fell for six caught by Gibbs of Langeveldt, in the first over. Jesse Ryder 33 of 28 and Guptil 18 of 19 took the score to 51 when Guptil fell in the 8th over. Wickets fell at regular intervals, and the game was a foregone conclusion at 123 for 7 in the 17th over. Bit of slogging by Nathen McCullum 26 of 17 at the fag end of the innings was not enough to stop the South Africans from a well deserved victory. Langelveldt, Steyn, Morty Morkel, and Botha, shared the wickets to fall.

Newzealand and Pakistan need to play their remaining matches well to be in contention for last four slot.

Day.7. Match.13. Super 8 Gr.E. Pakistan vs England.

England 151 for 4 beat Pakistan 147 for 9 by six wickets, at Kensington Oval, Barbados.

Batting first after losing the toss, Pakistan, were rounded up for 147 for 9, by some spirited bowling by the Englishmen. Pakistan had a reasonable start and were 71 for 1 when Salman Butt fell in the 10th over, for a well made 34 of 26. Umar Akmal who was batting at his best was brilliantly taken on the rope, by Pietersen of the bowling of Sidebottom for 30 of 25. Saeed Ajmal's cameo of 13 of 5, adding 15 runs in the last over, took Pakistan to some sort of respectability. Sidebottom3.0.28.2, Bresnen, Broad, Yardy and Swann, were the wicket takers.

Lumb and kiesetter gave a resounding start of 44 in 5.4 overs, supported by some spineless fielding effort by Pakistan, who dropped sitters. Kieswetter fell at 65, when Pietersen and Collingwood, settled down to a methodical partnership of 60 runs in 48 balls, which took the game away from Pakistan. Pietersen stroked to an unbeaten, match winning knock of 73 of 52 balls, to take the man of the Match award. Saeed Ajmal, Abdul Razzaq, and Shahid Afridi shared the four wickets to fall.

A good victory for England, which has taken them a step ahead towards Semi Final berth

WC. T20. Day.6. Match 11- Australia vs Bangladesh . Match-12. South Africa vs Afghanistan

Match 11. Australia vs Bangladesh

Michael Hussey's classic finisher act and brilliant spell by Dirk Nannes, saw Australia through to the Super eight stage after their match against Bangladesh. Batting first at the Kenningston Oval, Australia were cut to ribbons for a paltry 65 for 6, at 12. 5 overs. Bangla bowlers particularly Mashrafe Mortaza 2 for 28, Shakibul Hasan 2 for 24, Abdul Razzak 1 for 29 and Md.Ashraful 1 for 24, bowled brilliant start and mid overs, before Michael Hussey 47 fo 29 took over the rescue act. Hussey and the youngster S.P.D.Smith 27 of 18,put on 74 runs in 41 deliveries, before Smith was run out in the 20th over. Their partnership gave the Australians a fighting score of 141 for 7.

Australians bowled and fielded brilliantly and gave nothing away. Nannes and Tait, gave demonstration of good and accurate fast bowling to the Bangladeshis. They were brilliantly supported by Harris 1 for 28, Smith 2 for 29 and David Hussey 2 for 8, to reduce Bangladesh to 114 all out to win the match by 27 runs and enter Super eight stage with two played two won.
Match 12. South Africa vs Afghanistan.

Batting first South Africa made 139 for 7 in twenty overs. Useful contributions from Smith 27 of 14, Kallis 34 of 33, Villiers 25 of 21 and J.A.Morkel 23 of 17 added to the team total. South Africa need to do a lot of homework, before they meet the power houses. In the match against India, they struggled with the run rate chasing, and against the minnows Afghanistan, though they had a brilliant start of 41 in four, struggled with their run rate in the mid and end overs. Hamid Hassan bowled well for his 3 for 21. Zadran, Nabi and Mangal picked up a wicket each.
South Africans spearheaded by Steyn, Langeveldt and Mort Morkel, ripped through the Afghans with some incisive Fast bowling. Steyn, Langeveldt and M.Morkel, bowled out the Afghans for 80 in 16 overs.South Africa won the match by 59 runs and take their place in super eight.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

WC.T.20. Day.5. Matches 9 & 10

Match.9 : Zimbabwe vs Newzealand

Zimbabwe, came to the tournaments high on form, after beating Australia & Pakistan in warm up matches. They however came a cropper against Newzealand at Providence, Guyana, falling to 84 all out, one of the lowest scores in T.20.

The match was once again done in by the weather, and Newzealand 35 for 1, won the match by D/L method by seven runs. Taibu 21 of 14 and Masakadza 20 of 20 up the order, and Lamb 14 of 21 down the order, were the only worthwhile contributions. Nine wickets fell for 26 runs, and Zimbabwe crashed from 1 for 57 to 84 all out. Nathen McCullum, Styris, Vettori & Southee bowled well.

Newzealand were 36 for 1 in 8.1 when the weather intervened and the score was good enough to beat the Duckworth Lewis.
Match.10. England vs Ireland.

England 120 for 8 beat Ireland 14 for one by better run rate on a match ruined once again by the weather. Ireland won the toss and elected to field. England were 4 down for 49, when Pietersen was taken by Mooney of O'Brien in the tenth over. Morgan 45 of 27 and Wright 20 of 24 helped England to finish at 120 for 8 at the end of 20. Rankin 2 for 25, O'Brien 2 for 22, Johnston 1 for 14 and Botha 1 for 29 took the wickets between them.

Keeping Duckworth scores at their back of their mind, Bresnen and Sidebottom bowled excellent spells of and, before the weather intervened and the game was abandoned as No Result. England got through by better run rate.

WC.T.20. Day.4. Matches 7 & 8

Match 7.

Sri Lanka 173 for 7 beat Zimbabwe 29 for 1 in five overs by Duck worth Lewis method by 14 runs.
Mahela stroking a brilliant hundred of 64 deliveries with 10 fours and 4 sixers, in a one man show, where the next best was 23 of 19 by Perera and 13 of 6 by Kapugedera. Price 2 for 31 and Lamb 2 for 34 were the main wicket takers.
Rain played spoil sport, and when the match was halted after five overs, Zimbabwe were at 29 for one against 43 required to beat the Duck worth Lewis.

West Indies 60 for 2 in 5.5 overs, beat England 191 for 5, thru Duck worth Lewis method by 8 wickets. England must consider themselves as extremely unlucky. A full match of twenty overs, would have seen England in the drivers seat.
England batting was evenly distributed and was a total team effort. Every one at the top contributed. Lumb 28 fo 18, Kieswetter 26 of 14, Kevin Pietersen 24 of 20, Morgan 55 of 35 and wright 45 of 27, took England to a healthy 191 for 5. D.J.G. Sammy 2 for 22, was supported by Bravo, Gayle and Miller with a wicket each. West Indies with an asking rate of over 9.55 runs per over, batted strongly to beat the D/L asking rate of 60 in 6 overs. They lost two wickets to Swann, but finished the match with a win by 8 wickets. Gayle 25 of 12, Chandrapaul 15 of 13 and Fletcher 12 of 10 saw them through. There were 8 wides in the score of 60, which ultimately proved costly for England.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

WC.T.20. Day.3. Match.6. Australia vs Pakistan

Australia 191 all out beat Pakistan 157 all out, by 34 runs. The new look Australians have heralded their arrival in WC.T20. 2010, in a convincing manner trouncing the Pakistanis, in a game of total cricket.

Warner and Watson gave a rollicking start to the Australian innings, adding 51 for the first wicket in 34 balls, before Warner was taken by Umar Akmal of Md. Sami. Clarke fell early, bowled by Md.Hafeez's wrong one. 98 runs were added for the third wicket between David Hussey and Watson, before Hussey fell in the 17th over, for a quick 53 of 29 deliveries, misreading Ajmal and holing out to Fawad Alam. Watson fell in the same over to a low full toss of Ajmal and out LBW for a well made 81 of 49. At the completion of 19th over, Australian's were 191 for 5.

The 20th over bowled by Md.Aamer, must be getting in to the record books of T.20 format. Five wickets fell for no run. Balls one & Two, wickets to Aamer, Balls 3 & 4 runouts by Kamran, Ball 5 no run & Ball 6 Wicket to Aamer. Australia from 191 for 5 were all out for 191. Md. Aamer and Ajmal bowled intelligently. Afridi's reading of the game was poor and experimenting with Md. Hafeez was poorer. Md. Sami and Md.Hafeez were expensive for their solitary wicket going for 101 runs between them.

Chasing 192 for victory, Pakistan were never in the hunt. They lost wickets at the initial stages, and were 3 down for 34 in the 5th over. and 4 down for 70 in the 9th over. Misbah and Afridi added 47 for the 5th wicket, when Afridi fell for33 of 24, bowled by an express delivery from Tait. No one else did anything of note and Pakistan folded for 157 to lose by 34 runs.The quickies, Nannes, Tait and Johnson bowled relentlessly. David Hussey and Smith took the remaining two wickets.

Pakistan need to wait for the match between Australia & Bangladesh on 5th May at Barbados,to confirm their entry in Super Eight.

WC.T.20. Day.3. Match 5 . India vs South Africa

India 186 for 5, made sure of their berth in super eight, by defeating South Africa 172 for 5, by 14 runs at St.Lucia.

Graeme Smith won the toss and elected to field, to take advantage of the juice in the pitch in the first hour of play. Vijay fell first ball caught by Boucher of Kleinveldt for nought. Dinesh Kartik fell for 16 of 17 balls in the sixth over. Suresh Raina and Yuvraj put on 88 runs for the third wkt in quick time, when Yuvraj was taken by Smith of Kleinveldt for 37 of 30 balls, in the 16th over. The last four overs produced 66 runs, Raina going berserk, to be the last man out for a well made 101 of 60 deliveries. Dhoni remained unbeaten on 16 of 6balls. Kleinveldt with 2 for 48, Steyn with 1 for 24, Kallis with 1 for 30 and Morkel with 1 for 37 were amongst wickets. India finished at a healthy 186 for 5.
Chasing over nine runs per over, South Africa lost Bosman in the fifth over for a team total of 21. Kallis 73 of 54 balls and Smith 36 of 28 balls took over and put on 97 runs for the second wicket in 65 balls, before Smith was run out . South Africa had to get 69 runs in 27 deliveries at over 15 runs per over. Dhoni had the advantage of high asking rate, and bowled all his spinners to full quotas. The worrying factor however is that all Indian spinners were taken for plenty, and they generally bowled with out any clue. Harbhajan gave away 33 in 4, Yusuf 42 in 4 for two wickets, Piyush 27 of 3 for one wicket and Jadeja 37 in 4. Praveen bowled a solitary over for 3 runs, and did not get to bowl again. Our pace men are doing better and it may be saner to play with three instead of two.

India will have a long period of rest before they start their campaign in the Super eight. They will play the runner up in group "B" comprising of Newzealand, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe on 6th May at Kensington Oval, Barbados.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

WC.T.20. Day2. Match.4. Bangladesh vs Pakistan

Pakistan 172 for 3 beat Bangladesh 151 for 7 by 21 runs in the Match 4 played at the beautiful Beausejour Stadium, St.Lucia.

Kamran Akmal and Salman Butt, laid a foundation with a 142 run stand to take Pakistan to a match winning 172 for 3 in twenty. Both were out at identical scores of 73. Bangla skipper Shakib Al Hasan and Shafiul Islam were the wicket takers.

Bangladesh played poor cricket for most part of the game, first with the bowling stint, then with the start. They were 21 for 3 in the sixth over when Tamim Iqbal fell. Ashraful and Shakib, collared Pakistani bowlers and scored a whirlwind 91 run partnership in ten overs, which almost took them to the winning post.

Sami rolled the game back in Pakistan favour taking Shakib 47 of 31 in the 16th over, followed by Mahmudullah. Ashraful fell to Md.Ameer for a well made 65 of 49, at the team score of 140 in 17.5 overs. Pakistan then finished strongly by taking Rahim and Murtuza, to restrict Bangladesh for 151 for seven, to win by 21 runs. Amer and Sami, were at their best. Hafeez and Ajmal picked up a wicket each.

Pakistan now faces Australia in a Group. A. fixture. A win against Australia will take Pakistan to the top position in Group.A.

WC.T.20. Day.2. Match3. Afghanistan vs India

India played the match like any other important fixture and finished with clinical efficiency, to beat Afghanistan by seven wickets.

Since India started with out any practice fixture, Dhoni won the toss, and invited Afghanistan to bat first, to get a better feel of the conditions. Soon the Afghans were on the back foot, loosing three wickets for 29 to short pitched deliveries raising just above the midriff. Noor and Asghar Stanikzai, who play most of their cricket in Pakistan, took over the reins and scored 80 runs of the total of 115 between them. The spinners were taken for runs, when Dhoni brought back Zaheer. Zaheer was lacking in pace and line and was carted for fours. But Praveen and Nehra pulled Afghanistan back. Noor, Asghar and Nabi had no clue to the bouncers and were caught in the front foot. With the backbone gone, Afghanistan finsihed with115 runs, which itself was creditable playing against a powerhouse. Nehra, Praveen & Jadeja were the pick of the bowlers. Zaheer took the other wicket at

Vijay, Raina, Yuvraj and Dhoni played as only they can and won the match comfortably scoring 116 for 3 in 14.5 overs. Vijay scored a match winning 48 of 46. Dawlat, Samiullah and Hamid picked up a wicket each.

India has made a good start and face South Africa, which will determine Group C winner.

WC.T.20. Day1. Match2. West Indies vs Ireland

West Indies 138 for 9 beat Ireland 68 all out by sixty runs. The score line looks good on paper.What a day Ireland had on field. They restricted West Indies for a modest 138 of twenty overs.

Six of the top seven West Indians, contributed in small measures, highest being Sammy's 30 of 17, followed by Sarwan's 24 of 26. Rampaul , Botha and Cusack picked up two wickets each. Dockrell had an excellent analysis of

Chasing qa score of 138, Ireland were never in the hunt. They lost wickets regularly and folded to a low 68 in the 16.4 over. Wilson was the lone bat to get 17 of 34 to get in to double figures. The highest scorer was Mr.Extras at 19. K.Roach, Miller, Bravo & Rampaul were all amongst wickets. Sammy with picked up the Man of the match tag.

On day two, India plays minnows Afghanistan. But looking at Ireland's performance, They should be guarded and win a good match.

WC.T.20. Day1. Match.1. SriLanka vs Newzealand

The first match at Providence, Guyana between Sri Lanka and Zealand turned out to be a nail biting affair. New Zealand winning by two wickets. It was clear from ball one, that the pitch will play slow, and a score of 150 would be defendable.
Sri Lanka in spite of a classic 81 of 51 by Mahela, could finish only at 135 for 6. Chandimal 29 of 23 supported Mahela. Dilshan wasted too many deliveries. Sangakara did nothing of note. Nathen McCullum 1 for 17, Southee 1 for 21, Bond 2 for 35, Oram 1 for 23 and Styris 1 for 13, were among the wickets. Nathan McCullum, picked up three well judged catches in the deep.

Though the NewZealand's first wicket fell at no score, Guptil and Ryder put on 62 for the second wicket in 43 deliveries, before Ryder fell for a well made 42 of 27. Guptil followed soon after for 19 of 24. Wily Jayasurya and the magician Muralidharan spun a web in the mid overs and at 118 for 7 in the 18.2 over, when Hopkins fell, it looked a Sri Lankan game with the 20th over to be bowled by the accurate Malinga. 12 were required of the last over.

The first one was a good yorker played to mid on for a single. Second ball was a comedy of errors. Running for a bye, both the batsmen were at the same end. Sankakara's throw collected by Malinga and his flick misses the stumps, allowing the batsmen to cross over. Malinga had all the time in the world to walk to the stumps and take the bails off. Nathen swung the third ball between fine leg and deep square leg for a well timed four. Fourth ball Vettori was run out running an impossible second. Three needed of two balls. Nathan swung the fifth ball, cleanly over the Long of boundary for a six. New Zealand finished at 139 for 8 to win by two wickets. Nathan McCullum had a wonderful day picking three catches in the deep, taking a wicket and scoring the winning run for a crucial 16 runs of six balls.

Now Sri Lanka should win their second match against the dangerous Zimbabwe on the 7th March at Guyana.