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Quest for No. 1

December 11, 2010

Quest to be a No. 1 Test Cricket Team will start in Centurion, South Africa when India will take on a challenge with South Africa. Every Indian cricket fan and many critics are eagerly waiting for this huge India tour of South Africa. Many will agree that both teams match the potentials, skills and talent to come through as a No. 1 team. But team with more desire, hunger, hard work, consistency and luck will experience the pride of being No. 1.

Coming into the series, I am not sure which team can be called as under-dog or a favorite ? Both team enjoying success (at least not failure) in their recent test series, playing with not so good teams; Pakistan and New-Zealand. They played on sub-continent pitches which  did produce lot of centuries and increased the batting average of many players, but most of those in cause of no results (draw). I wonder if they have statistics which shows the batting average in cause of winning or at least forcing the draw. I am sure Jayawardene will definitely be not in Top 25. Looking at both the sides at least on paper every player matches its counter part, South Africa having little age in bowling with fearsome Steyn and India in batting with resilient Laxman.

No doubt India will be in more pressure than South Africa :

1. To defend the No.1 title and prove its critics, who are not yet ready to award India a title of undisputed No. 1 Test Team.

2. To win a first ever Test series in South Africa, who have managed to win just a single test match since 1992.

3. To handle the expectations of billions of Indian fans.

4. To fight the unfamiliar bouncy wickets and opponent captain making it harder by requesting groundsman to leave healthy grass on wickets. Lack of practice matches and team struggling to handle bouncers with some key first time visiting younger players doesn’t make it any easy.

Keys for success:

1. Practicing hard with dedication and be 200% prepared before entering the ground.

2. Playing each session/phase of match like its a final deciding session of the series. Every session in every match is so important as it will be difficult for either team to come back in a series overcoming bad performance in one session.

3. Taking benefit of each and every opportunity coming on the way. Failing to perform at highest level in any department of game will leave no chance to win the game.

4. Building partnership is key, specially a good start. More than runs, it will be important to spend more time on wicket. In past we have seen importance of defending a wicket in first session of an inning and playing out the new ball. Success in Australia can’t be justified without mentioning the opening performance by Aakash Chopra and Shewag , who did not score many runs but definitely played the new ball making it easier for players to follow.

5. Being smart than being a over-smart. Leave the short balls as much as possible and attempt it only if you can keep it on ground.

6. Performance of No. 6 & 7 (Dhoni & Raina) batsman will be a difference.

7. Its no secret, a team which have a ability to take 20 wickets can only win test matches. India definitely have it with Zaheer & Ishant but without support from Bhaji and forth seamer it will be impossible. Lot depends on Dhoni how he handles the situation and uses his fast bowlers. Key is to keep them fresh and avoid injuries.

8. Luck. Luck with toss, umpire decisions, weather conditions, drop catches, etc… Its been said, luck favors the brave. To be lucky you have to at least try and put an effort. If you do not hit a ball, you will never be lucky to be dropped by fielder or without attempting a shot, you won’t be lucky to get a benefit of doubt from the umpire.

Hope this series keeps up the hipe it has created. Wish Indian Team All the Best and will pray for its success.

Go India Go !!

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5 comments

  1. Hi Ravi,

    Nice article! I am also eagerly waiting for the series. Irrespective of whether India wins or loses, I just wish for them to put their best foot forward and give it their best.

    -Venkat


  2. Ravs Darling…. me and Tush reading Live from Hyderabad….. sahi blog and yes we wish the Indian Team too and I am sure we will do good….


  3. Very nice article Ravs!
    I wish the Indian teams somehow reads the points you have mentioned :)))

    Agree that India has still to prove that it is the undisputed no. 1 side. However I still feel that we are a very good team and are going to give a good fight to South Africa.


  4. South Africa is India’s Final Frontier. And we know that the MEN IN BLUE will leave no stone unturned to Conquer it. We have the best team on paper, and if this team proves its mettle on the field, the South Africans will have to run for cover.

    GO INDIA GO


  5. Aho Saheb, Sagale kalate pan Valat Nahiye…



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