Parvez Rassol is getting a wee bit of attention for his 7-for and eventually 36 useful runs. Ranji followers, however, will be aware of his exploits for J&K with bat and ball. He took 33 wickets in 7 matches at a strike rate under 40, average under 20 and three five-fors. He also scored 594 runs. None of the more elite all-rounders have topped it. Easily a lead spinner and middle-order batsman for India A. Two more years of domestic and A-team cricket will serve the country another international prospect.
There was action in domestic cricket, with the first round of Vijay Hazare Trophy games beginning in Himachal Pradesh- yes, that covers North Zone. Delhi, Punjab and Services won their opening games. Two all-rounders, Rajat Bhatia (meh) and Rishi Dhawan (useful) had a good day. Dhawan was unlucky as his team lost the game in the final over. Surely he needs to leave strugglers Himachal Pradesh to further his cricketing career? A shift to Rajasthan or Madhya Pradesh will do him a lot of good. Yashpal Singh was unlucky to miss a century (96) but won the game for his team.
All scores are available semi-live on BCCI.tv on the main page itself.
Robin Uthappa, IshwarPandey and Laxmi Ratan Shukla have had a rather good start to their run in the Vijay Hazar Trophy. Uthappa has followed his brutal 169 (of 118) with another quick fifty in this game. While South zone bowling attacks as of now are quite weak, it will ensure Karnataka's passage to the knockouts.
Knock knock, ting tong, tring tring, there's a tournament going on, please check in!
Robin Uthappa and Dinesh Karthik are setting this scene on fire, leading the runs tally, at a very healthy strike rate. Wickets, though, are a dicey issue as there are plenty of bowlers with just as many wickets. Srikanth Wagh, left-arm seamer from Vidarbha, is leading the tally. After a poor comeback to domestic cricket, Yusuf Pathan has scored 70 rapid runs, but his team at present is still 145 runs behind, with five wickets in hand- may be too late, as you've now got better choices (Shukla, Bhuvneshwar, Iqbal, even Ashwin) for the national side. Ojha did well in one game he got, but was not emphatic.
But wait, we don't see Ashwin, Jadeja, Harbhajan, Dhawan, Kohli or any of the Test stars in this tournament. Poor form from these blokes.
Unmukt Chand WAG. Hundred in the final against Assam. Cricinfo don't even have a scorecard up. Shunts.
Delhi won the Hazare Trophy. They've got a much better chance of competing with the Challenger sides than Assam. All of the top five did well with the bat. Plenty of wickets for not-so-old warhorse Awana.
A bit too much is being made out of Abu Nechim Ahmed. He's been creamed by the South Zone batsmen in Guwahati in the Duleep Trophy opener. Small man, only medium pace (or slightly faster), poor line, poor length and the South Zone batsmen, under pressure earlier from slower bowlers, played him with ease. Biplab Samantray, even slower, bowled a lot better. Shami Ahmed had a decent game until the final overs. All bowlers are either medium pace or slightly faster. The fielding started off poorly but got better.
Robin Uthappa batted smartly until his injury. Baba Aparajth got a well-compiled century and Dinesh Karthik started well until he ran himself out, running too hard. No decent scores elsewhere, except for No 4 in the batting charts in Hazare Trophy, the strangely-named Sachin Baby. Let's not make any jokes on his name, and look at his batting instead- he's had a strike rate over 130 in Hazare, reached the top four and scored a rapid 33 of 18 deliveries, with a few smart strokes in the final overs. A T20 specialist in the making.
One name to watch- Shrikant Wagh. Plenty of wickets in four games, but he plays for a weak team (Vidarbha), can score a few runs and is a left-armer. Should be in line for limited-overs, as he has very good limited-overs statistics. In two more seasons.
Both pace prospects Abu Nechim and Sandeep Warrier had a poor game. South Zone won by eleven runs, and Abu Nechim did his bit in trying to steal the game from the lower order. It didn't really work. No bowling performances were noteworthy, except, by a long shot, Mithun. Saha had a good game, and Jaggi is one very impressive youngster. We're looking at another limited-overs prospect here- but very limited overs? Will take a while. The bloke who had it best, however, was Baba Aparajith, from the U-19 Cup winning side- not only did he score a power-packed century, but also supported the bowlers for six overs.
It's a pity the event is reduced to a shoot-out. You can't even take much out of these results.
Pankaj Singh may be nursing an injury. Missed the entire Hazare Trophy and the Deodhar Trophy, and not surprisingly, was not picked up for much at the IPL auction. All of us serious India supporters hope he's not fit only for the IPL. He shouldn't be playing T20Is anyway.
In a truncated game, North Zone have spun out Central Zone for 190. Amit Mishra is making the ball talk, and how. Square turn, three-foot bounce and variation the batsmen struggled to read. He's taken three wickets, and has passed 150 before playing his hundredth game. Very, very impressive. An impressive Deodhar Trophy performance with the ball and also the bat should get him in for ODIs. Too good to ignore perpetually. The others were not so impressive, and a part-timer got two wickets by poor strokes. None of the Central Zone batsmen made it count when it was going good, and it was uphill once the lower order was exposed and the pitch began to turn.
Make that crack and kick up a lot of dust.
EDIT: Truncated further as there's rain and bad light again. Poor form from Gauti, but Yuvraj steals the show with an emphatic 75. Unmukt Chand gets a fifty too, while Praveen Kumar has a good day with the ball picking the only two South Zone wickets.
Baby makes another 50. Looks a decent prospect.
This was one over from Nayar in today's match -
Nayar to Vihari, OUT, movement in the air, fuller on middle and leg, Vihari played down the wrong line and timber gets rattled, both the openers are back in the hut
GH Vihari b Nayar 23 (33b 2x4 1x6) SR: 69.69
Karthik comes in
Nayar to Karthik, 2 runs, played to fine leg
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, flashing at the away going delivery, flirting with danger
Nayar to Karthik, no run, length delivery, Karthik leaves the incoming delivery and gets hit high on his pads, lbw appeal turned down
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, wide on off stump
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, wide on the other side, down the leg
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, wide on off stump, in-fact a bag on, wavered
Nayar to Karthik, no run, finally gets one correct, left alone
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, wide on off stump again, not happening for Nayar
Nayar to Karthik, no run, defended to off side
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, whats happening, wide on off stump again, bonus runs for the South
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, oho again a wide, on wide of off stump
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, wide again, shorthen his run-up
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, wide again
Nayar to Karthik, 1 wide, whats wrong Nayar, bowling all around, wide on off
Free Hit coming up
Nayar to Karthik, 1 no ball, this time its a no ball
Nayar to Karthik, no run, wild swing and a miss, finishes an real lengthy over
17 ball over and lasted 15 minutes. :laugh:
Bowled 2 good deliveries to begin with swinging them around and then lost it.
Reminds me of the over from the 2002 Challenger Trophy - Iqbal Siddiqui bowled eleven wides in one over.
Yusuf Pathan smashed 68 runs at a T20-ready strike rate. Won the game for West Zone. Pity he didn't bowl more than one over. He can smash a few in domestic cricket, but he needs to bowl plenty of overs to make a claim for himself ahead of the likes of Jadeja and Tiwary.
Sachin Baby will be just right for the 'baby' form of the game. Scores at a rapid rate, good on the field.
Dinesh Karthik seems to be capable enough as a batsman to walk into the top six. We can now have five proper bowlers (not the Yusuf/Jadeja/Nayar types) with him as a wickie.
West Zone won, initially with difficulty, but then had it in the bag. Ambati Rayudu played a good innings over 70 to take West home, while the ever-improving, ever-impressive Kedar Jadhav scored big again. While Rayudu is often named as a national prospect by fans on message boards, I feel Kedar Jadhav in limited-overs cricket is a genuine prospect, especially in slam-bang T20, where you don't need to play your top Test players. Amazing OD stats, over five seasons, although he hasn't finished 50 OD games yet- happens with tight West Zone competition and Maharashtra not going very far.
Mishra continues to impress. Surely he should have been given the loads of chances that Jadeja got? This bloke turns it like nobody we see playing for India, and isn't afraid to give it a little flight.
Sid Kaul can bowl a good bouncer. Not too fast, but he's smart. Let's see how the 2013-14 season goes. India A for sure.
Rayudu, Rasool, Sid Kaul, Juneja, Jadhav, Chand were impressive for me.
Gony bad as usual.
What's your idea of an India A team based on this season's performances? Nadeem and Rassool as spinners (Rassool also as a middle-order batsman), a pace/swing attack of Ishwar Pandey, Rishi Dhawan, Varun Aaron and Siddharth Kaul/Sandeep Sharma. Batting should include Ishank Jaggi, Kedar Jadhav and Unmukt Chand, and maybe both Uday Kaul and Gautam can play as wicketkeepers.
Aaron hasn't played for ages.
That's rather sad and disappointing. He actually had genuine pace when he bowled, and didn't try to compromise on pace, like, everyone else. The BCCI should work on getting him back to full fitness.