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The Dilemma that is Indian Cricket
|by Ananya S Guha|
The Indian cricket selectors are running out of ideas. The Indian creicket team is running out of steam, and its most vaunted sting. After the deparure of the Australian greats such as the Waugh brothers, Warne, Gilchrist, McGrath the cricketing world was in transition. England were just on the roads of recovery, the West Indies were in shambles, New Zealand were recuperating, South Africa were just about to recover and Sri Lanla were in abysmal depths. India still had Tendulkar, Dravid and Laxman, and at least in tests they were redoubtable. Gambhir and Sehwag were in superlative form and Virat Kohli had just entered the cricketing scene with vengeance. The bowlers were also doing a good job, Zaheer and Harbhajan being the pick. It was a good situation for Indian cricket to dominate the world scene, taking advantage of the sorry state of affairs in other countries. Pakistan remained as unpredictable as ever. Then came the great crash in England, Rahul Dravid decided to quit, and after humming and hawing VV Laxman followed suit. Tendulkar has also quit from one dayers, and his fate in tests remains in balance. But of course we cannot 'drop' Tendulkar. If at all he must quit.
Now, on the eve of the one dayers against England, after dismal performances against both England and Pakistan, the selectors have called shots by dropping Sehwag. What some of the others like Suresh Raina and Rohit Sharma, have done to retain their places remains to be seen. The bowling is still poor, with the exception of the new comer, Kumar and a sudden burst of form by Ishant Sharma. Parthiv Patel has been called back, but notwithstanding some changes the team on paper still looks brittle, especially if you consider that Kohli and Gambhir have gone back to the inveterate Indian characteristic - unpredictablity. Let's just hope that they swing back to form and cruise to earlier forms. However with both India and Pakistan unpredictability is the order of the day - it can however work both ways. The only good sign nowadays is that the tail does not wag as easily before. Ashwin for example has shown ample guts in this respect.
To not persist with Sehwag, and to persist with players who have not exactly proved their mettle is an enigma, something which the selectors must answer. We have also to remember that Yuvraj Singh has come out of a dreaded disease, he must be played with caution. But the selectors behave that nothing has happened, and that he is invincible!
The plague of the Indian team is bowling. We just do not have enough pace bowlers, who can be time tested against injury proneness. The genuine pace bowler is one who can withstand such a test. It seems we have limited choice for selection, and are falling back upon unproven players. The pick aand choice of fast bowlers has been unimaginative. We have rotated too many in the recent years.
The selectors must now answer for every defeat...
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