cover image source: cricket.yahoo.com
Sri-Lanka is behind Pakistan , Pakistan is behind India, and India just broke the jinx against the Proteas. Mauka mauka mauka mauka!!!
Team India is on a Roll!!!
There’s a Hindi saying that goes by: ‘haathi k daat, khaane k alag, dikhane k alag’. I use this saying more often than not and oh how I love to use this for the Men in Blue. Based on India’s recent form, nobody would have cared a fiddlestick for India’s chances of even qualifying through to the knockout stages let alone defending the title. However, Sunday’s match against South Africa gave a strong message to the rest of the world. Beware!!! We’re game for defending this title and yeah we #wontgiveitback. Here’s what Team India got right and why it needs to be taken seriously.
image source: ibn.in
The average score at the ‘G’ (MCG is called as the G by the locals) batting first is 282 and chasing under lights would always be difficult. One doesn’t have to be a cricket guru to understand this. Captain Cool won the toss and elected to bat first.
2. UNCHANGED SIDE
It took almost 3 months for India to get the winning combination. The side that comprehensively beat Pakistan in the opener seemed like a well oil machined gearing to run riots onto the opposition. Why change a winning combination?
He is flamboyant and he loves attention. The stylish left-hander seemed in complete control of his innings. Compact and well-paced, his body language seemed reminiscent of the Dhawan who played in the Champions Trophy a couple of years back.
image source: ibn.in
Although he just scored 46, Kohli’s cameo was of a matured batsman who knows how to balance the innings. The otherwise dominant Kohli who goes rampant against the bowlers, this time around played a beautiful second fiddle to Dhawan.
Rahane has had comparisons with The Wall already; on Sunday he showed us he could pack a few out of the park as well. Kohli’s dismissal could have turned vital for South Africa but it was Rahane who picked up from where Kohli left and what a knock it was. Kudos to this guy!!!
image source: indiatimes.in
Teams playing against the Proteas know that if there’s one thing they need to be careful about; it’s the running between the wickets. Although very early in the innings de Villiers sent back Sharma on a duck with his brilliant throw, the Indian batsmen took on the South African fielders convincingly. We saw this against the Pakistanis, as well.
Shami, Mohit Sharma, Ashwin, and Jadeja– They bowled brilliantly. Other teams – take notice the Indian bowlers now mean some serious business.
As soon as Dhoni brought in Jadeja and Ashwin, the runs dried. There were a series of dot balls that led to the Run-Out of de Villiers. This set the tone for the rest of the match.
Another change, Mohit Sharma, got du Plessis on the first ball of his new spell.
South Africa literally got the taste of their own medicine. First Mohit Sharma and then Yadav were responsible for two key dismissals viz. de Villiers and Miller. India’s fielding was spot on throughout the match.
India have had a dream start to their World Cup campaign and certainly look like the team to beat. Though they’ve posted impressive totals in both their games, the major concern lies in the finishing. In both games the score seemed 20-30 runs short of expectations. Rohit Sharma though was unlucky, hasn’t got anything going for him. Dhoni’s cameo was decent but he needs to spend some more time in the middle. With these things worked out India would certainly go all the way.
In the game against UAE we can certainly expect some players from the bench to show their skills. Hoping for the best, Go India Go…!!!
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