Wednesday, 14 March 2007

Lara’s Lads Come out Smiling

It needs a great cricketing brain to predict a West Indies-Pakistan match right. Both sides unnecessarily complicating things in the middle dished out a low key lung opener but the West Indian perseverance paid off in the end. The match served an important notice to all contenders - The focus in the first half of the innings has to be on preserving the wickets rather than trying to go berserk.

Pakistan missed one trick too many. 57 runs in the last five overs undid all their good work. The target extended beyond 'reachable' on a wicket that flattered to deceive. If this is the way the strip across the Caribbean is going to play, the slow men will have a huge part to play.

Inzamam should have persisted with Kaneria after the leggie went for only three runs in the final over he bowled. The medium pacers who came back at the end provided the right air speed for the batmen to free their levers. Spin might have been far more potent against a set of batsmen who don't posses the foot work to counter them on a wicket that aids their craft.

Both the fact that far too many runs were scored in the closing stages and the players body language suggested Pakistan were coming out second best. Pakistan cannot be counted out based on this show but a only if they are to come out with a game-plan in accordance to the conditions, will they be able to match performance with potential.

Cutting to the chase, Pakistan faltered at every stage. Imran Nazir did what Afridi does often. Matches are never going to be won in the power play, only a platform can be laid. The sooner Pakistan and other teams learn this, it is better for their campaign.

As I had said earlier Younis Khan would be the vital cog in the Pakistan line up. The teams chances is more likely to rise and fall with him. He is the calming influence in the top-order. Inzamam and Mohd. Yousuf carry too much pressure on them to play their natural game. The middle order that looked good a few months ago, looks distraught now and it is up to the three most experienced batsmen at the top to guide the team through.

The approach was over cautious that led to the downfall while Lara riding on a emotional wave in front of a vociferous home crowd rung in some brilliant changes with the ball and was innovative with his placing of fielders. Round one to Lara as he outwitted Inzi in all departments. Pakistan has it in them to bounce back but what remains to be seen is how much they have learnt from this defeat।


On the commentors: Joseph, I agree. That was questionable captaincy. After Kanheria got a wicket the pressure just wasn’t kept up. If Inzamam had continued with the spinners for even about two or three overs after that we might have seen a different result. IssacMJ, all-rounders will always make or break games in international cricket, and, as you say, especially in these conditions. Look at the India-Bangladesh match: Sehwag would have made the difference in that game if he’d been brought in earlier.

Once again, thank you, everyone, for your comments and feedback!


Joseph said...

Hi Kris,

First, I really appreciate that a former cricketer has ventured into Blogging. This gives people like us a way to two-way communicate with you. Unlike reading reports and having an opinion and being forced to keep it to ourself.

Regarding yesterdays match. Didn't you think that Inzamam missed a trick when he did not pressure Samules and Lara when they were three down for not much?

What did you think of his captaincy? I always thought that he was not a good tacticion. Younis might have made a better captain.

I wrote about this at:

I would love to hear what you think about this.

Peter said...

Could you enable an RSS feed for your blog Krish...?
It would be very helpful...
Thanks in advance

P.S This may help

Sifar said...

Hi Krishnamachari Srikkant....

Great to know you have a blog going now. I love the times when India had cricketers like you. I get nostalgic thinking of the matches I watched where you came in as opener and smashed the heck out of the opening bowling attack. I havent watched cricket in a while but I keep serching online of clips of cricket played in 70s and 80s.

I hope India do well in this world cup and bring it home. I 'll be a regular visitor of your blog. I'll post a link to your blog on my blog.

Yuva said...

Samuels looks like player of the future for the windies. The top 6 of the windies presents batsmen with different style and temperament.Also their team resembles much like our '83 team with plenty of players with an ability to bat and bowl.

I guess the absence of Abdul Razzaq gives pakistan an unsettled look.Bring in Afridi and let Malik play at No.3

Aswin said...

If this match is unpredictable, just watch out for India -Pakistan.
Trust me krish, India may have Superstars like Sachin, Dravid or Dhoni, but they are always Inconsistent and Predictable and so are Pakistan.
Just don't miss that match.
I also expect atleast one match where one of the minnows, (my best bet would be Kenya or Bangladesh)to upset one of teh test playing nations(Not India, please we had enough minnows beating India).

IssacMJ said...

My feeling is that this World Cup is going to be a lot like the '83 World Cup where in more and more bits and pieces all rounders are gonna come into picture because of the nature of pitches. The twin Dywane's wont be counted as the best bowlers on any day but on these re-laid slow pitches, they'll continue to be more than a handful.

AjiNIMC said...

Last few overs made the whole difference. Lets see how they go.