Saturday, April 15, 2006

"Team"ing with confidence..

Cricket Fans watching India in One Day Cricket over the last 6 months can scarcely believe their eyes. India's Dream Run (17 wins out of the last 22 games, and 16 wins on the trot chasing) has been as difficult to digest as Bangladesh's recent performance against Australia. The Indian team they were used to watching for ages, one which always depended on a couple of great batsmen to win them matches, one whose bowlers used to get routinely man-handled by opposition batsman, one which always started their innings with -30 runs on the board, on account of the vast difference in fielding standard with respect to the opposition, one which which used to capitulate like a pack of cards while chasing any decent target, is no more. It has been replaced by an exciting, energetic, and entertaining outfit, which has the confidence to take on any opposition, and give them a run for their money.

For me, main architects of this metamorphosis, are 2 men. Two Men, who have risen from the most modest of backgrounds, to give India what they had been searching for decades, the essential ingredients for any Complete Cricket Team. A Bowling All-Rounder and a Batting Keeper. Pathan and Dhoni. Their rise has not only given more meat to the batting lineup, but also allowed Dravid and Chappell to play 5 bowlers, hence giving the side more chances to bowl the opposition out. Others like Yuvraj, Raina, Srishanth, Harbhajan have also played important parts in is resurgance, but it is Dhoni and Pathan who have made this Indian Team complete.

The most exciting thing about the next generation of Indian Team is that all its future stars are aggressive creatures. Sehwag, Dhoni, Pathan, Harbhajan. All are aggressive in their game, as well as with their attitute. Aggressiveness is another key ingredient of a successful side. No team with a meek psyche can ever become a Champion Side. Perhaps this is why Indians have never been consistently done well in the past. With this Indian side, there is hope that all that will change too.

The rise of this Indian side reminds me of the rise of the Aussie side in the late 80's. A side that was down in the dumps when Kim Hughes resigned as Captain, was slowly converted into a Champion side by the Allan Border- Bob Simpson duo, and which has never looked back since. Under Mark Taylor, Steve Waugh and now Ricky Ponting, it has gone on to become one of the all-time great sides in the history of Cricket. The Indian team has been following a similar trajectory. After Sachin Tendulkar resigned as Captain in 2000, Saurav Ganguly and John Wright came together to reconstruct the fortunes of Indian Cricket, and did a fantastic job. And now, Dravid and Chappell are continuing the good work, and trying to take Team India to the next level.

P.S.:- As I child watching the Indian side habitually capitulate under pressure, I had once uttered in frustration, "The only place Indians perform under pressure, is the Loo". Today, I take back my words.

1 comment:

chaos said...

i think indian team performs only when they are in pressure... :D