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Deodhar Trophy is on. West and North began their campaigns with contrasting wins against South and Central respectively, with West dominating South. Today, South held their own against a dire Zimbabwean team, possibly an association team, especially with Shivlal Yadav Jr and off-spinner Ashwin being the two top-scorers in their chase of 193. In the other match, East Zone defeated North by 65 runs, with Jaggi getting a century, and Wriddhiman Saha (watch this name) getting a rapid 84.
Saha has a shout as a reserve ODI keeper, with his average of 47. His strike rate doesn't seem so impressive. A place in the India A team is not far away.
The matches are being played on Ravenshaw College Ground and Barabati Stadium in Cuttack. Ravenshaw College ground is actually a lot bigger than nearly every other college ground that has hosted FC/List-A matches in India, though it appears very hard and not conducive for very modern, attacking cricket- the fielders can't dive out there! We know what Barabati is all about, and it's one of the better grounds in India.
"Talent is nothing without opportunity"
"You're not remembered for aiming at the target, but hitting it"
Twenty20 used to be boring.
Wriddhiman Saha scores another rapid 50 to take East Zone into the finals of the Deodhar Trophy. They had a close win against Central, with Piyush Chawla, smashed for 52 runs in seven overs with a lone wicket, scored 93 rapid runs, but it still wasn't enough. Elsewhere, it was West Zone's turn to pound a hapless Zimbabwe President's XI, with Ravindra Jadeja getting flattering all-round figures. Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane and spinner Iqbal Abdulla had a good outing here.
Deodhar finals are on. The scorecard on Cricinfo says "UPDATES ONLY" and we won't get too much on a regular basis. There's no coverage even on Neo.
Wasim Jaffer has thrashed the bowling all around, with Dinda going for six an over. Bose has been the top bowler, with two for 43 on a flat Cuttack deck. Jaffer finished his century with a strike rate over hundred. Cheteshwar Pujara missed his century, getting out to a dire part-timer. We now have Ravi Jadeja and Abhishek Nayar in the middle, and they're already off to a good start.
If anybody is viewing the scorecard, you'd see hilarious developments.
12:31pm: West Zone 289/5 in 45 overs. RA Jadeja 30*, AM Nayar 13.
12:35pm: West Zone 320/5 in 45 overs. RA Jadeja 61*, AM Nayar 13.
12:37pm: West Zone 360/5 in 45 overs. RA Jadeja 64*, AM Nayar 54.
12:38pm: West Zone 362/5 in 50 overs. Ditto
They're updating individual figures with time.
The season is now over. We have Mumbai winning the Ranji Trophy yet again, Tamil Nadu winning the Vijay Hazare (One-dayers) Trophy, West Zone winning Deodhar and Duleep. Now we can look to assembling the Indian reserve and development teams.
The reserve team should ideally have the best reserves, age no bar. It's more of a Board XI than India A. Old warhorses Akash Chopra and Wasim Jaffer may open yet again, with Vijay on the bench. The middle-order will look familiar, with Yashpal Singh, Badrinath and Kaif, though young Kohli will benefit a lot as a reserve. Ramesh Powar will be the lead spinner, with Pragyan Ojha as his partner, and though a lot is being said about Parmar's progress, his action is still suspect, so that will take a while to sort out. The pace attack will have RP Singh, Ashok Dinda and Irfan Pathan, with Balaji or Kulkarni as backup. They can have Dinesh Karthik as a wicketkeeper. While it would be ideal to keep out the current Indian players, when you have six Test/ODI specialists, a few may be brought in here.
For India A, the development team, you can pick some youngsters who have shown a lot of promise. The openers will be Uthappa and Vijay Krishnan, with Mukund in reserve. The middle-order is an easy one to assemble, with Rahane, Pujara and Kohli. Piyush Chawla and Ravi Jadeja as spinners, and then a pace attack of Dhawal Kulkarni, Ashok Dinda and Irfan Pathan. An experienced bowler, possibly Balaji or Bose, may travel with them. Wriddhiman Saha may keep wickets for them.
Last edited by Arjun; 22-03-2009 at 04:03 AM.
We'd love to see top foreign players in the Ranji/Hazare matches. What is stopping the BCCI from doing that? With the top Indian players not getting a game, they can have some foreign players to make the matches competitive, can't they? We see them being auctioned here and there when franchise owners are assembling IPL teams. Why can't we have them playing for more mainstream, more serious tournaments? They can surely take a leaf out of what England have done for so long, and get some overseas players, two a team, provided to every team by decisions, rather than auctions. IPL was, and still is, a brand promotion exercise. When Ashok Dinda bowls to Matthew Hayden or Mike Hussey, there's a lot he can learn. Likewise, facing Brett Lee, youngsters like Pujara and Rahane can learn a lot.
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