Cricketer Of The Year
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Mumbai, India
The Indian ODI team seems to have carried on its dreadful World Cup form to the series in England, and it's not surprising when they've got more or less the same team. The T20 team is very different, and a very good showing can get most of the new recruits here into the ODI side.
Yusuf Pathan: The elder brother of the more famous Irfan Pathan, he's very tall, he bats a lot like VVS Laxman and can hit big shots with ease. For a frontline batsman, he can bowl tight off-spinners (or leg-spinners? a matter of controversy) for long periods and he's also a good fielder- a lot better than Powar. With the Indian ODI team sacrificing at least ten overs in every ODI with part-timers, especially after Dimi's five sixes off Yuvraj, he's an ideal fit. Very much the Chris Gayle of the Indian team.
Robin Uthappa- The Indians' dreadful powerplay batting highlights the need for a new opening partnership. Uthappa's aggression and strokeplay will make him an option. He's a very good fielder in the covers, saving more than a few runs. His only weakness is his tendency to bat like a pinch-hitter, but, this is T20. A future star, he's worth persisting with for the 2011 World Cup and certainly the next Champions Trophy.
Gautam Gambhir- Another proper opener, his aggressive style of batting and hard running between the wickets makes him another option. When the field cannot be penetrated, run hard. He's also very effective in the outfield.
Rohit Sharma- No Dravid. No Tendulkar. No Ganguly. Only Yuvraj. Then Rohit Sharma. This youngster from Mumbai may not be a star, but as a support act for Yuvraj Singh, he'll do very well. He's a hard runner between wickets and can build partnerships. When he's on strike, he too is a strokemaker, but a little quieter than Uthappa. A future ODI contender, he may be a quick pick once the heroes retire.
Piyush Chawla- He's been very impressive with the ball in the limited-overs format. He goes for wickets, which sometimes gives the batsman a six-ball or two in every spell, but he may be a surprise in this format of the game. A very good fielder in any position, he's also got good batting technique and at seven, eight or nine, he can be quite a handful. Harsha Bhogle rates his batting very highly, and suggests he request his coach to bat him at five- good idea, since it will prepare the team to play a fifth bowler.
Dinesh Karthik- He's had a dreadful ODI series in England, so he'll have to do a lot better to convince the selectors that he's good enough to stay in the ODI team. His slow, shaky batting and erratic fielding are very unlike what we had seen in the Test matches. Rather unspectacular, he is a gritty batsman who can hang in there, and also a fast runner between the wickets. He's also a good fielder, which helps, when the current 'best' Indian team is the worst in the field, and suffering for that.
Irfan Pathan- Written off after a slump in form since the series in the West Indies, let's not forget what he can do on his day. We've seen him burst into the scene in Australia, a fresh relief in the fading Indian team that was crushed in the ODI series. He's quite a handful when the new ball is swinging and regularly got early wickets, though once the batsmen are set and the ball gets old, it's a different story. He's got a good throwing arm (though more effective in the inner circle) and very athletic in the field, and as experiments have shown, he's also a very strokeful batsman and a clean hitter of the ball- very useful in positions seven and eight.
Joginder Sharma- His recent OD/T20 form isn't very inspiring, but on his day, he too is a player to watch. His batting is very similar in technique and style to Dinesh Karthik, but he tries to force the pace and increase the scoring rate. He's, however, primarily a swing bowler, but most of his success has come with the new ball, so he's got little experience with an older ball. Very much the Dimi Mascarenhas (not playing in T20?) or Dwayne Bravo of the Indian team.
Preferred XI: Uthappa, Gambhir, Yuvraj, Dhoni (C, WK), Rohit Sharma, Dinesh Karthik, Yusuf Pathan (OB), Irfan Pathan (LMF), Piyush Chawla (LB), Sree Santh (RFM), RP Singh (LFM) with reserves Joginder (RMF) for Karthik and Harbhajan (OB) for Chawla. Sehwag may not make it because of fielding issues and Agarkar, well, we've seen enough.
"Talent is nothing without opportunity"
"You're not remembered for aiming at the target, but hitting it"
Twenty20 used to be boring.
Last edited by Arjun; 08-09-2007 at 08:46 AM.