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The much awaited Indo-Pak Series has finally begun with Pakistan bagging the very first T20. Let's take a closer look at what went down in the grounds of M.Chinnaswamy Stadium on the 25th.
Mohammad Hafeez, the Pakistani captain, initiated the nerve-wrecking match by winning the toss and opting field first. Much to Pakistan's advantage, the grounds and conditions in India are quite similar to that of Pakistan's and much of the rest of the subcontinent. However, playing India in India is bound be a pressure-inducing game, and it sure proved to be one.
If I say that the ideal team as a young bowler to make his debut against, or for an out of form bowler to make his comeback again in the team should be against Pakistan, then surely I am not over exaggerating. Transforming a mediocre bowler into an unplayable one is a routine thing for the ‘talented’ bunch of Pakistani batters; to be capable of doing such a thing is a talent for sure. It would, however, be unfair if I do not mention that they sometimes make some of the most dangerous bowlers look miserable; ‘sometimes’ is the key word here.
The need to go far down the years is not necessary since many examples of gratitude shown by our batsmen to the opponent’s ‘weak links’ can easily be found in recent times.
It's time for Pakistan vs India. It's time for the biggest Cricket series of all. Although it's a short tour still this is significant in many ways. This is the revival of one of the biggest rivalries in sports. It's the first series between the two countries after a gap of almost 5 years.
There are people who actually rate this higher than the Ashes and no matter what the format and where the series is played the enthusiasm is always at its peak.
Pakistan cricket fans are divided into three categories.
1. Who have cricketing knowledge and love cricket. 2. Who have cricketing knowledge and love Afridi. 3. Who just love Afridi.
Anyone who belongs to the first two categories will know Shahid Afridi does not deserve a place in the team and he was only selected in the T20 side because he is Shahid Afridi.
First of all, lets be clear. He is perhaps the biggest super star after Imran Khan and Wasim Akram. But he is not more important than Pakistan Cricket Team.
Shahid Afridi is a Pakistani player just like anyone else. If Younis Khan can be dropped from the ODI side for just a couple of bad performances, If Misbah ul Haq can be dropped from the T20 and strip off the captaincy for no apparent reason or maybe for playing 'slow' against England. If Aizaz Cheema can be dropped after winning us the Asia Cup then Afridi can be dropped over poor performances for the past one year.]]>
No doubt Younis is an excellent test batsman but he has always struggled in the ODIs. He had occasional success in this format but his overall records prove that he’s not a right selection for limited over’s game. Overall 32 top order batsmen (Batting position between 1 and 5) have played 200 or more ODIs, and when you check their batting average, sadly Younis is right at the bottom of the list.]]>
Earlier, Pakistan handicapped cricket team reached India in the wee hours of Wednesday to play the ODI and T20 series. The Pakistani contigent was received by Physically Challenged Cricket Association of India (PCCAI) secretary Ravi Chauhan amid drum beats and dancing from the overjoyed crowd who raised slogans in favour of both the teams. Indian hadicapped cricket team had earlier visited Pakistan in June for a ODI and T20 series.
“Indian handicapped players have potential to beat any side of the world with their determination and devotion. TO provide them healthy activity and opportunity, we have decided to send our team to Pakistan to have maximum international exposure. There was no suitable side than Pakistan to play against as they are one of the best sides and the most respected teams of the world and to play with them will also help in bridging gap between the people of both the countrie.” PCCAI chief believed.
Meanwhile, PCAPH chairman Abbas Hashmi said: “We are feeling proud with the respect and love we received here in India in such a short time. We are here to promote love, peace, harmony and to play positive cricket and we present love from the government and people of Pakistan to the Indian people.”
Pakistan team held their net practice session yesterday at Nihar Singh Cricket Stadium where first ODI to be played between the two countries. All the 16 players participated in the practice session conducted by coach M Tahir.
“We would give tough time to India to return as winners as our team is well-balanced and the players are capable of beating any given opposition,” said Pakistan's captain Fayyaz.
Team manager Nasir Mehmood said: “The boys are in high spirits and we have selected a very good squad comprising youth and experience while our spinners will be the key in the series. Nihal and Kashif Nawaz are our secret weapons having ability to destroy any opposition with their accurate and good spin bowling.”
The series should provide as a mean to bridge the gap between the two arch-rivals and promote healthy activities for the disabled. It is pertinent to mention here that neither the governments, PCB or BCCI are funding the hadicapped cricket boards.
Mr Khan, who represents the players who have been accused, has spoken to all three players and they vigorously deny any wrong doing. "I have spoken to all three players over the past day and all three are shocked to see such ludicrous claims by Minhaz Uddin Khan, the Dhaka Gladiators media manager". said Mr Khan on behalf of the players.
He also said that all three players are on the verge of taking legal proceedings as the accusations could have an effect in their careers and private lives. He added, "All three players have given the go-ahead to proceed to taking Mr Khan to court in this regard. I will be going to Bangladesh in due course to take up this option. The players believe that such accusations could have a lasting effect on their images in the game".
The allegations by Mr Minhaz Uddin Khan were made by him to an undercover sting operation by India TV. They also alleged six umpires of doing match fixing - something that all officials have denied.
The sight of West Indian players dancing to the tunes of Gangnam style was enough to know who the night belonged to. As Bravo took a running catch to end the Lankan innings, glory had made its way to the Caribbean Islands after three decades.
After being set 138 to win, Sri Lanka just couldn't get going.Dilshan, bringing back the memories of 2009 final at Lord's , had his off stump uprooted at the start of second over by Rampual to walk back for nought. Sangakara then walked in to join Mahela Jayawerdene and even though they kept they scorecard ticking, they never really threatened the Windies.
Sangakara got off the mark with an edge that went wide of first siip before Jayawerdene was dropped at deep backward square leg in the next over, as Bravo ran over the ball. Jayawardene then slashed at Badrees' half tracker to provide it a deserved treatment. No further risks were taken though by any batsmen in the last two overs of powerplay.
Gayle and Narine further subdued them with two quiet overs as the required run rate crept to 8.25 an over. Finally Sangakara improvised to hit Gayle, who followed him till the end only to be picked up exquisitely over the cover fence for four. Sangakara then perished trying to break the shackles further against Badree, as Pollard took a good low catch on deep midwicket.]]>