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Friday, 31 May 2013

MS Dhoni Interview ahead of Champions Trophy 2013

Mahendra Singh Dhoni talks to the media.

The Indian captain emphasized the importance of having the entire squad fit throughout the tournament

How does it feel to be over here?          
It's good to be out of there. You know, England, it's always good to come here and play some cricket, but the weather now, we landed yesterday evening so it has not been really nice, so we are hoping it will turn out to be bright and sunny soon and we can go onto the field and start with some practice.  Fingers crossed. I don't think we'll get good practice today, but from tomorrow maybe, yes.  
And the mood as a team here?          
It's fantastic.            

How important is it for you as a skipper to win this Champions Trophy to silence your critics back home?          
Well, it's an ongoing process. Always something that keeps coming across, a few of them will ask questions and a few of them, you have to silence them. It's not really important from my side. It's to see what kind of a squad we've got and to see if it's a fresh bunch of players. With the new rules that we will be using, it will be the first time that we will be playing outside the subcontinent with the new rules. It will be interesting to see how quickly the players adapt, what kind of plans we'll plan so that it will be good according to the kind of talent that they have got.          
I think that's the main thing where we are focusing, and of course it looks good as of now. Nobody has got any niggles when it comes to the fitness aspect. It's very important that the full squad remains fit throughout the span of the period so that you're not forced to select your second 11 or third 11; it's always good to feature the best 11 in each and every game.            

Just wondered how disappointed you were to lose the final of the IPL, and would this championship rekindle your winning spirits if you win?          
The T20 format, I always say it's a lottery format where you have to be at your best on that particular day, especially once you reach the knockout stages, especially if it's the big game. I think we didn't really bat well on that particular day and because of the pitch we were on the losing side. Now, in this format, the team is completely, the squad team is completely, and the composition of the squad is entirely different. So I think it's very different to what we are talking about. It's the amount of effort that we have put in, the preparation that really matters, not always the result.            

Does the Champions Trophy offer an opportunity to restore the reputation of Indian cricket?          
It's not that the reputation is gone. If I go ahead to explain that, I would rather answer his question, also. When the right time comes I'll answer, but as of now I don't think we have lost reputation because whatever the setup will be throughout the world or in any sport, still you'll have people who will be slightly mentally weak compared to some of the others, and I would have loved to elaborate, but at the right time I'll do it.            

When England went out there for the 50‑over series, Jadeja was a key figure.  Do you think he can be as influential over here in very different conditions?          
We are hoping, but as I said, the condition is very different compared to the subcontinent conditions. We'll have to see how it works, what's the composition of the side that we are looking at, what kind of bowlers we want to feature. Of course with the new rules we'll be forced to play with five bowlers, and Jadeja has done really well for us giving us that balance that's really needed.          
We are hoping that he does well because it will be a great ‑‑ he'll be a great asset to the side with his stamina, with his bowling and a bit of batting down the order. I think he'll be someone who will really help us get the balance that's really needed in an ODI squad, and there are a few others. If it doesn't work there are a few others that can still do the job and we have options in the side.
What do you make of this being the last Champions Trophy?  Do you think as a tournament, a mini‑World Cup, it could have been continued with?          
It's a difficult one to answer because of course there's a lot at stake when it comes to the bilateral series and also the ICC tournaments. If you see with the T20 format jumping in which means every alternate year we have a T20 World Cup that's there and then you have the proper 50‑over World Cup and also not to forget we have Asia Cup also that the guys play in, a lot of other big tournaments, so I think it's just a measure to get slightly out of the too many ICC tournaments that's happening.          
Champions Trophy is always a tough tournament. Whether it's the right way to go ‑‑ not the right way, I'm not really sure about it.  But it's always a tough tournament where all the top teams, they come to participate, and you don't really have much time. You have to get your acts together really quickly, be at your best right from the very start. It's a tough tournament, and we are hoping that it will give plenty of experience to some of our new boys.            

India's record going into international assignments after the IPL hasn't always been so good, presumably looking at the difference in the pitches here, I think you've only got two warm‑up games, so I just wondered for all the positives of the IPL, and no one disputes those, the weather, whether it maybe it holds back the Indian team a little bit.          
Not really. You have to look at the positives. If you look at the positive you can say the players that are playing the IPL, they had good exposure to international bowlers because bowlers from all over the world, they come and play in the IPL right from (indiscernible) team to the best that the world has to offer, which means most of the players are in touch. They are in good rhythm.          
You look at the positives and the traveling, also, this year was not really hectic. We have to travel, but we all know in India the hospitality business is really good so from the hotels to the airline business, I don't think that really pushes us on the back foot.          
What you have got right is the stats where they say after IPL we have not done really well, so you have the stats to back you up on that.  So that's one area where we'd like to put also on the right side by doing well in this particular tournament. But I don't think it's for the IPL to be blamed if you say we have not done well after IPL, if we have not done well when we have played. Let's see how it goes, and as you said, we have a few days before we get out and going in the business end of the tournament. Two practice games should be good enough. If not, then we'll have to play a little 15‑game tournament before the start of the tournament.          
I think overall it looks like a good setup as of now. We have got a few days where we'll get together, do a bit of practice, what needs to be done, the areas where we need to work and get into the tournament.            

I simply wanted to know that given Rohit Sharma opened in the last game against England and also you have the option of Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan also, has any thought given on the opening, as to who's going to open, and second part of the question is about the bowling attack with Bhuvneshwar Kumar, a lot of expectations riding, and how are you going to back him?          
Well, let's see if he will start in the opening 11. I'm just joking.          
You know, it's good to Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan both fit and being a part of the side. They are someone who has done really, really well in the few test matches they have played against good sides. We are really banking on that.Vijay had a decent IPL season and Shikhar was unfit for the few first games but after that he came back really well.          
I think it'll be really important to start off with two proper openers. Yes, Rohit has done well; the few games that he got as an opener he has done well, so he'll be our, you can say, the third opener just in case if it's needed, and if it doesn't really go our way. Dinesh Karthik I think is a middle‑order batsman; I don't want to push him to open, but you may say I'm contradicting that by asking Rohit to open. So we'll see how it goes, and if needed if something happens to the opener then Rohit will be our backup opener just in case.            

Do you feel that you have a point to prove in this tournament?          
Well, every assignment that we go in we have a point to prove, and that's what international cricket is all about, when you compete amongst the best teams in the world. There's always there the fact that you play for your country, you play for the pride of the people that you are representing.          
I think it's always about being at the best.            

Imagine if you win the Champions Trophy at this point of time, do you think the faith of the fans will be restored back home in India?          
I know one thing, I'm a person that lives in the present, so I don't really believe in imagining. What I believe is in doing stuff right. As you likely said, we'll have a practice session today in the afternoon hopefully, and from there we'll take it how it comes.            

Your first answer was "it's good to be out of that."  Can you just expand on that a bit?  You look the same cool, relaxed guy you always do.  Is that really how you feel?          
Well, you know, you're just forcing me to answer a few things ‑‑ when the time comes I will answer. I just want to keep our side away from everything as of now.            

Can you just comment on how Bhuvneshwar Kumar is going to ‑‑          
He is someone who can swing the ball ‑‑ what we have seen even in the subcontinental conditions he is someone who can swing the ball both ways and he bowls in really good areas. It will be a good outing for him. He's someone who's really young, so he has plenty of cricket ahead of him. Just that he needs to enjoy the challenges that come in front of him. We all know he's someone who will do well, just have to see how he bowls from the 6th until the 8th maybe or from the 5th to the 8th because now with the two new balls getting used, definitely someone who will have an impact on the game.

source: icc-cricket.com

Sachin Tendulkar: Always hurt me when the game of cricket is in the news for the wrong reasons

Sachin Tendulkar has called the developments in Indian cricket over the last fortnight - the spot-fixing charges against three Rajasthan Royals players and betting charges against top Chennai Super Kings official Gurunath Meiyappan - "shocking and disappointing". Tendulkar is the first current Indian cricketer to comment on the issue - via a statement - and he said the sport needed to repay the faith the fans invested in the game.

"It has always hurt me when the game of cricket is in the news for the wrong reasons. The developments in the last two weeks have been shocking and disappointing," Tendulkar said. "As cricketers we are always taught to go out, fight hard, give our very best and play in the true spirit of the game. During this difficult phase, I join every cricketer, from the boys in the maidaans [fields] across the country to those who represent clubs, states and the country, who trust the authorities to take sincere steps to get to the root of the issue.

"The faith reposed by the millions of fans should be justified and we owe it to them to ensure that Indian cricket is all about pride and joy."

India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh also said he hoped that politics would be kept separate from sport. "Not prudent to comment while investigations are underway," he said. "I hope that sport doesn't get mixed up with politics"

Former India batsman VVS Laxman had also said the issues of corruption in the IPL were "distressing".

"It's very disappointing," Laxman had said. "The last two weeks have been quite distressing and a feeling of anguish was definitely there. I hope the various investigations done by the police in Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai come to a logical conclusion, and more importantly the cause of this problem is erased. It is very important because just for some greedy players, the credibility of the rest of the players should not be affected. I think it is a very important issue and I am sure it will be cleaned up very soon."

The India captain MS Dhoni had said in Birmingham on Thursday that he did not feel that the reputation of Indian cricket had "gone" as a result of the scandals in the IPL. Dhoni had said he would not speak on the issue until the time was right because he wanted to keep the squad shielded from distractions during the Champions Trophy.

source: cricinfo.com

Thursday, 30 May 2013

MS Dhoni addresses media ahead of ICC Champions Trophy

While addressing media in Birmingham ahead of ICC Champions Trophy, India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni once again opted not to answer any question on IPL spot-fixing. His focus at the moment is the eight-team tournament in England starting June 6. (Also Read: Good platform for youngsters says MS Dhoni: CT2013)

Here's what Dhoni said:

1. Won't answer any questions on IPL scandal; reputation of Indian cricket not hit by fixing scam

2. Conditions are totally different here as compared to sub-continent. Ravindra Jadeja likely to play all matches.

3. We are banking on Vijay and Dhawan as openers. Rohit Sharma will be our third opener. Dinesh Karthik will play in the middle order

4. We always have a point to prove against the best teams in the world. It's about being at your best.

5. me players may be mentally weak compared to others

6. We have a few days before days before we start our campaign against South Africa on June 6. We have two practice games, hopefully we will do our level best to get acclamitised to the conditions.

source: ndtv.com

10 Best Bowling Performances - ICC Champions Trophy


Shaun Pollock, South Africa v England, Quarter-Final, 10 October 2000, Nairobi
South Africa never relinquished its firm grip on England in this ICC Champions Trophy quarter-final from the moment Shaun Pollock removed key batsman Marcus Trescothick for 26. The left-hander had scored the bulk of a 33-run opening partnership with Alec Stewart but England struggled for inspiration thereafter. Graeme Hick (65) and Andrew Flintoff (25) then gave England hope before Pollock again dealt a crucial blow to break the fifth-wicket stand with the score on 154. Fittingly, Pollock collected the final wicket to end with three for 27 from 9.1 overs. South Africa chased the 183-run target for the loss of just two wickets.

Shayne O'Connor, New Zealand v Pakistan, Semi-Final, 11 October 2000, Nairobi
At 237 for six with 25 balls remaining, Pakistan looked on course for a winning total in their semi-final against New Zealand. Left-arm pace bowler Shayne O'Connor then swept away the last four wickets as Pakistan were bowled out for 252 with four balls left unused. O'Connor had already removed opener Imran Nazir as he finished with five for 46 off 9.2 overs. That collapse ultimately proved crucial as New Zealand got home by six wickets with an over to spare.

Muttiah Muralidaran, Sri Lanka v Pakistan, Group Stage, 12 September 2002, Colombo
Sri Lanka's star man made his mark on the opening match of the 2002 ICC Champions Trophy - a competition that would see the hosts share the title - with three wickets in an emphatic victory over Pakistan. The ‘home' team's pace bowlers did the early damage but Murali then turned the screw, bowling the dangerous Younus Khan (35) on his way to 3-29 from 10 overs. Sanath Jayasuriya made light-work of the run-chase by slamming 102 not out in Sri Lanka's 201 for two in 36.1 overs. 

Glenn McGrath, Australia v New Zealand, Group Stage, 15 September 2002, Colombo
If Australia were already up against it at the halfway stage, having seen its opponent make 296for seven, that was nothing compared to the situation they faced by the 13th over of the reply. New Zealand found its innings lying in tatters at 51 for six with Glenn McGrath claiming five wickets for 37 runs. McGrath's work for the day was done and he did not bowl another over in the innings as New Zealand were bowled out for 132 - a humiliating loss by 152 runs ensuing. 

Aravinda de Silva, Sri Lanka v Australia, 27 September 2002, Colombo
Sri Lanka spun Australia to distraction in this ICC Champions Trophy semi-final with Muttiah Muralitharan inevitably to the fore, claiming three for 26 from 9.4 overs. But it was Murali's ally, Aravinda de Silva, who won the man-of-the-match award for the remarkable figures of 1-16 from his 10 overs. Predominantly a batsman, De Silva's off-spin also proved useful on a number of occasions in limited-overs cricket. Chasing 163, Sri Lanka had little trouble reaching the target - winning by seven wickets and with 10 overs in hand. 

Mervyn Dillon, West Indies v Bangladesh, Group Stage, 15 September 2004, Southampton
West Indies pace bowler Mervyn Dillon picked up four wickets in his opening five overs to help reduce Bangladesh to 26 for five as its pursuit of 270 was over before it began. Two of the right-armer's victims were bowled as his pace proved too hot for the Bangladeshi batsmen to handle. After an eight-over opening burst, Dillon returned to pick up a further wicket to end with five for 29. Chris Gayle helped to finish the job off with two for 12 in a 138-run win, having struck 99 with the bat as West Indies posted 269 for three.

Shahid Afridi, Pakistan v Kenya, Group Stage, 15 September 2004, Edgbaston
After rain washed out play the previous day, there was no escape for the Kenya on the reserve day as Shahid Afridi instigated a collapse that saw them go from 67 for one to 94 all out. Afridi had Maurice Ouma (23) caught behind following a second-wicket partnership of 65 with Kennedy Otieno (33). Afridi bowled each of his four remaining victims, including last man Peter Ongondo, to finish with figures of 6-1-11-5. Pakistan eased to the target for the loss of three wickets. 

Farveez Maharoof, Sri Lanka v West Indies, Qualifying Group, 14 October 2006, Mumbai
It seemed a long road back for West Indies after it was dismissed for 80 and slumped to a nine-wicket loss in this qualifying match for the ICC Champions Trophy 2006. Yet the West Indies recovered sufficiently to finish as runners-up in the tournament. Their chastening experience at the hands of Farveez Maharoof clearly galvanised the men from the Caribbean after the right-armer's movement beguiled a succession of batsmen in Mumbai. Maharoof claimed six wickets as West Indies lost its last seven batsmen for 29 runs. Maharoof holds the best analysis in the history of the tournament - 9-2-14-6.

Glenn McGrath, Australia v New Zealand, Semi-Final, 1 November 2006, Mohali
Not for the first time, Glenn McGrath demolished New Zealand's top order to lead his side to a one-day victory. McGrath took three wickets as New Zealand slumped to 35 for six in pursuit of 241. Daniel Vettori (71) did offer the Black Caps hope, supported by Jacob Oram (43) and Kyle Mills (21), but their calamitous start proved costly as they were finally bowled out for 206. McGrath bowled right through his spell at the top of the innings, finishing with 10-2-22-3. Brett Lee (two for 31) and Nathan Bracken (two for 36) offered invaluable support. 

Stuart Broad, England v New Zealand, Group Stage, 29 September 2009, Johannesburg
England's group match with New Zealand seemed likely to peter out when the Black Caps had reached 84-0 inside 13 overs in pursuit of just 147. Stuart Broad then removed Brendon McCullum, after a quickfire 48, to trigger a flurry of wickets that left New Zealand hearts fluttering. The chasing side eventually got home by four wickets - with plenty of overs to spare - but it was not for the want of trying on the part of Broad, who finished with four for 39 from 8.1 overs.

source: icc-cricket.com

10 Best Batting Performances - ICC Champions Trophy


Sachin Tendulkar, India v Australia, Quarter-Final, 28 October 1998, Dhaka
If Australia thought it had begun its march to victory by reducing India to eight for two it did not to account for India opener Sachin Tendulkar, who struck a magnificent 141 off just 128 balls. The right-hander smoked 13 fours and three sixes all around the Bangabandhu National Stadium as he put Australia to the sword. Rahul Dravid (48) played the junior role in a second-wicket of 140. Ajay Jadeja (71 off 65 balls) then ushered India to 307 for eight after Tendulkar was dismissed with 29 balls remaining. Australia was bowled out for 263 in the reply to fall to a 44-run loss. 

Jacques Kallis, South Africa v Sri Lanka, Semi-Final, 30 October 1998, Dhaka
Jacques Kallis was still carving a spot for himself in the South Africa line-up when the inaugural ICC Champions Trophy was being held. In a match affected by rain, Kallis hit 113 not out in South Africa?s 240 for seven off 39 overs. The right-hander hit as many sixes and boundaries - five apiece and was the only batsman to score more than 30 on either side. Sri Lanka was dismissed for 132 in the reply to lose by 92 runs on the D/L method.

Andy Flower, Zimbabwe v India, Group Stage, 14 September 2002, Colombo
Andy Flower played one of the great backs-to-the-wall ODI innings but it was not quite enough to earn Zimbabwe a famous victory over India. As one of the leading players of spin, Flower was right at home against India?s slow bowlers on a sub-continental surface. The left-hander was finally dismissed for 145 in the penultimate over as the Africa nation lost by 14 runs. Rahul Dravid (71) and Mohammad Kaif (111 not out) had earlier rescued India from 87 for five to 288 for six.

Marcus Trescothick, England v Zimbabwe, Group Stage, 18 September 2002, Colombo
As one of the most explosive opening batsman of his time, Marcus Trescothick put Zimbabwe to the sword at the R. Premadasa Stadium in the 2002 ICC Champions Trophy. The left-hander?s 119 off 102 balls included 11 fours and two sixes before he was bowled by Grant Flower. With 11.4 overs still to go it seemed the England man was on the way to an even more significant total before he was unexpectedly dismissed. England?s 298 for eight was far much for its opponent as Zimbabwe limped to 190 for nine in reply.

Virender Sehwag, India v England, Group Stage, 22 September 2002, Colombo
When England struck 269 for seven there was every prospect of running India close at the R. Premadasa Stadium. But England did not bargain for a Virender Sehwag blitzkrieg, crashing 21 boundaries and one six in his 126 off 104 balls. The right-hander dominated a 192 first-wicket partnership with Sourav Ganguly, who picked up his own tempo once Sehwag fell - making 117 not out off 109 balls as India eased home by eight wickets with a massive 63 balls to spare. 

Nathan Astle, New Zealand v USA, Group Stage, 10 September 2004, The Oval
New Zealand may have entered itsmatch against USA expecting victory but the innings of Nathan Astle nonetheless lit up the encounter in London. After New Zealand struggled to 48 for two, Scott Styris then helped opener Astle to put on 163 for the third wicket. Two quick wickets fell before Craig McMillan (64 not out off 27 balls) joined Astle at the crease. The fifth-wicket pair added 136 off the last 46 balls of the innings with Astle finishing on 145 not out off 151 balls (13 fours and six sixes) - the joint highest individual score in tournament history alongside Andy Flower. 

Chris Gayle, West Indies v South Africa, Semi-Final, 2 November 2006, Jaipur
South Africa had no answer to West Indies opener Chris Gayle as he made light work of a victory target of 259, hitting 133 not out off 137 balls to see his team home with six wickets and six overs in hand. At one point it seemed possible West Indies might win by 10 wickets until Shivnarine Chanderpaul (57) retired hurt with the first-wicket stand on 154. In all, Gayle struck 17 fours and three sixes as no South African bowler was spared. 

Tillakaratne Dilshan, Sri Lanka v South Africa, Group Match, 22 September 2009, Centurion
Sri Lanka opener Tillakaratne Dilshan lit up the first match of the ICC Champions Trophy 2009, flaying the host side to all parts at Centurion. The right-hander dominated a second-wicket stand of 156 with Kumar Sangakkara (54) to set Sri Lanka on the way to 319 for eight. Tillakaratne was dismissed with more than 20 overs to go but had already struck 106 off 92 balls (16 x 4, 1 x 6) by that time. Mahela Jayawardena (77) carried on the run-fest before South Africa was restricted to 206 for seven, losing out by 55 runs on the D/L method.

Shoaib Malik, Pakistan v India, Group Stage, 26 September 2009, Centurion
A third-wicket partnership of 206 between Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Yousuf (87 off 88 balls) underpinned a mammoth Pakistan total of 302 for nine. By the time Shoaib was dismissed at the end of the penultimate over he had struck 128 off 126 balls, including 16 boundaries. India maintained a decent tempo in the run-chase but wickets kept slowing them down every time they threatened to pull off an unlikely victory, eventually succumbing by 54 runs. 

Shane Watson, Australia v England, Semi-Final, 2 October 2009, Centurion
While Shane Watson's ICC World Twenty20 2012 heroics could only take his side as far as the semi-final, the all-rounder's exploits in the ICC Champions Trophy 2009 helped Australia retain the title. After taking two wickets to help restrict England to 257 all out, the big-hitting opener then proceeded to destroy the opposition attack in the reply. Watson powered his way to 136 not out off 132 balls, picking up 10 boundaries and seven sixes along the way. Captain Ricky Ponting helped himself to 111 not out in an unbeaten stand of 252 as Australia cantered home by nine wickets with 49 balls remaining.

source: icc-cricket.com

10 Best Matches - ICC Champions Trophy


South Africa v West Indies, Final, Dhaka, 1 November 1998

South Africa clinched its first, and still only, major trophy in the inaugural ICC Champions Trophy. Philo Wallace got the West Indies into a good position in the final but when he was dismissed for 103 (made off just 102 balls) it collapsed from 180 for three to 245 all out. Jacques Kallis was chiefly responsible for the change in fortunes, taking five wickets at a total cost of 30. West Indies kept itself in the hunt with regular wickets in the run-chase before Hansie Cronje (61 not out) saw his team home with four wickets and three overs to spare. 

Australia v India, Quarter-Final, 7 October 2000, Nairobi

Australia twice put itself in a strong position chasing 266 but two mini-collapses from 159 for three and 224 for seven handed this ICC Champions Trophy quarter-final to India. Zaheer Khan picked up the crucial wicket of Steve Waugh (23) in the closing stages and when Brett Lee (31) fell in the next over there was only one winner. Yuvraj Singh had earlier dominated the India innings with 84 off 80 balls while Sourav Ganguly (24) and Sachin Tendulkar (38) gave their side a good opening platform.

India v New Zealand, Final, 15 October 2000, Nairobi

The second ICC Champions Trophy final was a tale of two spectacular innings that underpinned one of, if not the, most exciting matches in the history of the tournament. Sourav Ganguly hit 117 and was ably supported by Sachin Tendulkar (69) in a first-wicket stand of 141. But from 202 for one at the end of the 39th over India's final 264 for six was slightly disappointing. New Zealand slipped to 132 for five in reply before Chris Cairns blitzed India with 102 not out, adding 122 for the sixth-wicket with Chris Harris 46 to see his side home with two balls to spare.

South Africa v West Indies, Group Stage, 13 September 2002, Colombo

In what was effectively a match to decide a semi-final place, South Africa pulled off a thrilling last-ball run-chase by two wickets. Consistent scoring throughout the West Indies batting line-up saw it end at 238 for eight. Despite being docked an over in its run-chase - due to a slow over-rate - South Africa was coasting at 178 for three but then Boeta Dippenaar (53) and Jonty Rhodes (61) fell in the space of three balls. The game swung both ways until 13 were needed off the last over. With three needed off the final delivery, Mervyn Dillon (four for 60) bowled a wide and then Alan Dawson hit the extra ball to the boundary to seal a dramatic victory. 

India v South Africa, Semi-Final, 25 September 2002, Colombo

When Herschelle Gibbs (116) was smashing India to all parts of the R. Premadasa Stadium there was only one winner in this ICC Champions Trophy semi-final. But from the moment the opener was forced to retire hurt from dehydration the match was turned on its head. With Jacques Kallis still at the crease there remained hope but when he fell off the second ball of the final over the game was India's, getting home by 10 runs. Virender Sehwag was an unexpected hero with the ball, taking three for 25 in five overs, having already hit 59 off 58 balls. Yuvraj Singh (62) then took India to 261 for nine.

England v West Indies, ICC Champions Trophy, 25 September 2004, The Oval

West Indies pulled off a thrilling run-chase in this ICC Champions Trophy final to secure its first ICC title since 1979. Chasing 218 for a win, West Indies found itself at 147 for eight before wicketkeeper Courtney Browne and medium-fast bowler Ian Bradshaw steered their side to an unlikely victory in an unbeaten ninth-wicket stand of 71. Opener Marcus Trescothick had earlier dominated the England innings, scoring 104 before he was run out in the 48th over. Wavell Hinds claimed ODI-best figures of three for 24.

Australia v West Indies, Group Stage, 18 October 2006, Mumbai

Australia was well on the way to victory at 182 for four chasing 235 with Adam Gilchrist (92) and Michael Clarke (47) at the crease. Gilchrist's run out with 8.2 overs to go turned the tide and Jerome Taylor's hat-trick, as part of his four for 49, then finished the job off as Australia finished on 224 for nine, 11 short of the target. West Indies had earlier started poorly but from 63 for four it was rescued by a fifth-wicket stand of 137 between Runako Morton (90 not out) and Brian Lara (71) as it reached 234 for six.

India v West Indies, Group Stage, 26 October 2006, Ahmedabad

West Indies beat India to clinch a semi-final place by three wickets and deny the hosts a place in the last four in the process. Set 224, West Indies had reached 212 for three - with 14 balls to spare - before a dramatic collapse saw it lose four wickets for seven runs. Needing five runs off the last five balls, Marlon Samuels finally hit the winning boundary with two balls to spare. Half-centuries from Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Ramnaresh Sarwan plus 45 from Runako Morton did most of the work for the men from the Caribbean. Ian Bradshaw had earlier taken three for 30 in a tidy fielding display that restricted India to 223 for nine, MS Dhoni top-scoring with 51. 

England v South Africa, Group Stage, 27 September 2009, Centurion

A high-scoring encounter saw England come out on top by 22 runs despite a terrific 141 by South Africa skipper Graeme Smith in the reply. Significant innings by Owais Shah (98 off 89 balls), Paul Collingwood (82 off 94 balls) and Eoin Morgan (67 off 34 balls) took England to 323 for eight. Smith, suffering from cramp towards the end of his innings, was denied a runner by England counterpart Andrew Strauss and the left-hander finally succumbed with 19 balls to go to signal the end of his side's hopes. 

Australia v Pakistan, Group Stage, 30 September 2009, Centurion

Pakistan fought hard to defend a meagre total before Australia sneaked home thanks to a bye off the last ball of the match. Kamran Akmal, Mohammad Yousuf and Misbah-ul-Haq all scored forties but Pakistan could only manage 205-6, Mitchell Johnson and Shane Watson both taking two wickets. Ricky Ponting led from the front in the reply but from 140 for two Australia slumped to 187 for eight. Brett Lee and Nathan Hauritz eked the remaining 19 runs from 25 balls to see their team home by the smallest margin.

source: icc-cricket.com

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

India v Pakistan at ICC Events: Major rivalries


India v Pakistan, ICC Cricket World Cup, 8 June 1999, Old Trafford

It may have been a neutral venue but huge swathes of supporters from both teams packed in the Manchester venue for a memorable day's play. Sachin Tendulkar (45) and Rahul Dravid (61) gave India a good platform before Mohammad Azharuddin (59) issued a final flourish in their 227 for six. Javagal Srinath picked up two early wickets in the reply and then Venkatesh Prasad helped himself to the man-of-the-match award with five for 27 as Pakistan were bundled out for 180.

India v Pakistan, ICC Cricket World Cup, 1 March 2003, Centurion

Pakistan opener Saeed Anwar's 101 was the highlight of his team's 273 for seven - a total that seemed likely to test India at the midway stage. That was not to account for Sachin Tendulkar, whose 75-ball 98 took India to within 100 of the target with more than 22 overs to go. Rahul Dravid (44 not out) and Yuvraj Singh (50 not out) took advantage of the platform to see their side home by six wickets.

India v Pakistan, ICC Champions Trophy, 19 September 2004, Edgbaston

Standing out from India's otherwise impregnable record over its great rival in ICC tournaments are two ICC Champions Trophy victories for Pakistan, including this Pool C match in Birmingham. Pakistan did the hard work by dismissing India for just 200 - Naved-ul-Hasan and Shoaib Akhtar claimed four wickets each - but then nearly messed it up in the reply. Inzamam-ul-Haq (41) and Yousuf Youhana - now Mohammad Yousuf - got their team to 102 for three before India started to chip away at the batting card. Yousuf (81 not out) held his nerve to guide Pakistan home with four balls and three wickets in hand.

India v Pakistan, ICC World Twenty20, 24 September 2007, Johannesburg

There could not have been a better way to mark the inaugural ICC World Twenty20 final as India and Pakistan fought out a classic encounter at the Wanderers Stadium. Gautam Gambhir (75 off 54 balls) was the mainstay of the India innings before Rohit Sharma (30 not out off 16 balls) took his side up to 157 for five. Pakistan's chase was faltering at 77 for six but then Misbah-ul-Haq (43) steered his side to the brink of victory. Then, with four balls remaining he was dismissed to give India a five-run victory.

India v Pakistan, ICC Cricket World Cup, 30 March 2011, Mohali

A match of fluctuating fortunes was eventually decided in favour of the hosts by 29 runs to give them a place in the ICC Cricket World Cup final. Sachin Tendulkar was once again to the fore against India's fierce rivals, riding his luck on the way to top-scoring with 85. No other batsman reached 50 as Pakistan kept the total down to manageable proportions at 260 for nine. Wahab Riaz was the pick of the bowlers with five for 46. With the reply on 103 for two, Yuvraj Singh then made a double breakthrough that swung the match towards India. Misbah-ul-Haq's 56 provided little more than damage limitation before he was the last man out.

source: icc-cricket.com

ICC Champions Trophy 2013 - Broadcasters List

In less than a week’s time, the world’s top eight ODI teams be playing across three venues in England and Wales and host broadcaster and ICC global media rights partner STAR Sports is gearing up its production to make sure the people in close to 180 territories, will enjoy an unrivaled spectator experience, all from the comfort of their living rooms.

The event is set to reach an audience of 1.5 billion, thanks to new and extended agreements secured by STAR Sports. This includes the continuance of long-term partnerships with Fox Sports in Australia, BSkyB in the UK, Sky TV in New Zealand, SuperSport in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa and Pehla in the Middle East and North Africa. It also includes the groundbreaking partnership with ESPN in the US and Caribbean and the continued coverage of the ICC events on terrestrial television in Pakistan via PTV, Bangladesh via BTV and Sri Lanka via CSN.

Following on from the world class production of the ICC World Twenty20 last year, STAR Sports will once again produce High Definition (HD) broadcast coverage using 29 cameras, including Spydercam, enhanced Hawkeye cameras, Hot Spot and Ultra Motion cameras. 

There is an array of on-air enhancements, including the first ever broadcast of an ICC event in  Dolby 5.1 Surround Sound, and compelling graphic presentation to accompany the insightful and trusted voices of its expert group of commentators.

The live world feed broadcast will feature 16 commentators and legends of the game from the leading participating countries. These include Michael Atherton, Michael Holding, Nasser Hussain, Shane Warne, David Lloyd, Pommie Mbangwa, Ramiz Raja, Russell Arnold, Sanjay Manjrekar, Simon Doull, Sourav Ganguly, Sunil Gavaskar, Tom Moody, Wasim Akram, Alan Wilkins and Harsha Bhogle.

Commenting on his involvement in the tournament, Hussain said: “I’m really looking forward to being part of the Star Sports commentary team for the ICC Champions Trophy for what I’m sure will be top class coverage of the event.  It’s great to have the best eight teams in the world here in England and Wales.  The atmosphere will be electric.”

Meanwhile, Atherton added: “The ICC Champions Trophy is one of the best events in cricket.  Every game matters and they’ll be played in front of big crowds in the UK.  All the teams have a chance of winning – it’s absolutely wide open.  I can’t wait to join the Star Sports team”.

David Richardson, ICC Chief Executive, said: “The ICC Champions Trophy 2013 will showcase the best teams in the world and to complement the on-field action, ICC and STAR Sports will ensure the best possible coverage to the widest audience ever for an international 50-over event.

“For those people around the world who can’t be in England and Wales in person this June, STAR Sports’ distribution efforts have ensured that 1.5 billion people across the globe can view every single ODI of the tournament from the comfort of their own home.”

Nitin Kukreja, STAR Sports, said, “The ICC Champions Trophy is a true test of cricketing excellence with the top eight ODI teams going head to head to be crowned - Champions.   

“Star Sports will leave no stone unturned to bring this spectacle live to all our viewers across the world in a manner befitting the stature of this marquee property.  

“Star Sports is working with the International Cricket Council to deliver a world-class production for viewers worldwide. With a range of special programming, on-air enhancements, brand new camera angles, state-of-the-art graphics along with a high quality team of analysts comprising some of the great names of international cricket Star Sports intends to take fan engagement to levels not seen before by redefining the way international cricket has been showcased till date.”

A full list of broadcasters for warm-up matches can be found here.   

A full list of broadcasters for the tournament matches can be found here

Tweet about the ICC Champions Trophy using the official tournament hashtag #ct13
source: icc-cricket.com

ICC Champions Trophy - India's year-wise performance

The ICC Champions Trophy is the only crown missing from skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni's cabinet. He captained India in the 2009-10 edition of the 50-over tournament but India failed miserably and were unable to qualify for the semi-finals. India's pride was hurt when they lost to traditional rivals Pakistan and the match against Australia was washed out. 

Under Dhoni's captaincy India have scaled cricket's top summits. After India won the inaugural ICC T20 world championship in 2007, Dhoni's men clinched the 2011 World Cup and also became the No. 1 Test team in the world. 

This is the last edition of the Champions Trophy, which started in 1998 in Dhaka as the Mini World Cup. India will open the 2013 tournament against South Africa on June 6 in Cardiff in Wales and follow it up with matches against the West Indies (The Oval, June 11) and Pakistan (Edgbaston, June 15) in the group stages. 

India have never beaten Pakistan in the tournament's history plus revenge will be on their minds especially after losing 2-1 to the Men in Green in a 3-match ODI series at home in December 2012. 

India ended runners-up to New Zealand in 2000 (Nairobi) and in 2002, shared the title with hosts Sri Lanka after the final was washed out twice. 

India's year-wise performance

1998 (Dhaka): Captained by Mohammad Azharuddin, India reached the semi-finals after knocking out Australia in the quarters, courtesy Sachin Tendulkar's 141-run knock and 4 wickets. However, India finally lost to the West Indies by 6 wickets.

Squad: Mohammad Azharuddin (captain), Ajit Agarkar, Nikhil Chopra, Rahul Dravid, Sourav Ganguly, Ajay Jadeja, Sunil Joshi, Anil Kumble, V. V. S. Laxman, Nayan Mongia, Venkatesh Prasad, Robin Singh, Javagal Srinath, Sachin Tendulkar. 

2000 (Nairobi): Sourav Ganguly-led India beat Australia again in quarterfinals by 20 runs. This time it was a young Yuvraj Singh who rose to the occasion and scored almost a-run-a-ball 84. In the semi-finals, Ganguly led from front and struck 141 as India hammered South Africa by 90 runs in the semi-finals. In the final against New Zealand, Ganguly's 117 went in vain as the Kiwis chased down India's 265-run target. A limping Chris Cairns bagged the Man of the Match award for his 102 not out.

Squad: Sourav Ganguly (captain), Sachin Tendulkar, Ajit Agarkar, Hemang Badani, Rahul Dravid, Vinod Kambli, Anil Kumble, Sunil Joshi, Robin Singh, Yuvraj Singh, Sridharan Sriram, Venkatesh Prasad, Vijay Dahiya (wicket-keeper), Zaheer Khan.

2002 (Sri Lanka): This time the Sourav Ganguly-led side bettered its performance by finishing joint winners with hosts Sri Lanka after the final was washed out twice in the island nation. It was Ganguly's young brigade of Mohammad Kaif, Zaheer Khan, Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj that showcased their talent with match-winning performances.

Squad: Sourav Ganguly (captain), Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Dinesh Mongia, Mohammad Kaif, Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Ajit Agarkar, Yuvraj Singh, Jai Prakash Yadav, Ashish Nehra, VVS Laxman, Javagal Srinath.

2004 (England): India started the tourney well against Kenya, beating them 98 runs. India lost to Pakistan by 3 wickets in a low-scoring game at Edgbaston. This was the first time that the traditional rivals met in the tournament's history. The defeat against Pakistan ended India's campaign and they lost out on a semi-finals spot for the first time in event's history.

Squad: Sourav Ganguly (captain), Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, Yuvraj Singh, Mohammad Kaif, Ajit Agarkar, Dinesh Karthik, Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, Lakshmipathy Balaji, Ashish Nehra, Irfan Pathan, Rohan Gavaskar. 

2006 (India): Under the leadership of Rahul Dravid, India did not make the semifinals. After India managed to beat England by four wickets in their first match, they lost to the West Indies and Australia in their next games. Dravid's 52 against Australia went in vain as India lost by 6 wickets. 

Squad: Rahul Dravid (captain), Ajit Agarkar, MS Dhoni, Harbhajan Singh, Mohammad Kaif, Dinesh Mongia, Munaf Patel, Irfan Pathan, Ramesh Powar, Suresh Raina, Virender Sehwag, RP Singh, Sachin Tendulkar, Yuvraj Singh.

2009 (South Africa): India entered the tournament as favourites but once again failed to make the semifinals. Chasing a 303-run target, India lost their opening match against Pakistan by 54 runs. Their next game against Australia was washed out. However, India registered a convincing 7-wicket win over the West Indies. Virat Kohli played a vital 79-run knock off 104 balls to ensure India did not return home winless.

Squad: MS Dhoni (c & wk), Rahul Dravid, Gautam Gambhir (vc), Harbhajan Singh, Dinesh Karthik, Virat Kohli, Praveen Kumar, Amit Mishra, Abhishek Nayar, Ashish Nehra, Yusuf Pathan, Suresh Raina, Ishant Sharma, RP Singh, Sachin Tendulkar, Yuvraj Singh. 

Indian squad for 2013 tournament in England:

MS Dhoni (captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Dinesh Karthik, M Vijay, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Irfan Pathan, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Amit Mishra, Vinay Kumar.

Good platform for youngsters says MS Dhoni: CT2013

Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Tuesday said that his Team India has got the "right mix" in the fast bowling department that could exploit the seamer-friendly conditions during the Champions Trophy in England.

Bhuvaneshvar Kumar has impressed in a few opportunities he has got to play for the country. Umesh Yadav has regained fitness and Ishant Sharma did well for his side Sunrisers Hyderabad during the just-concluded IPL. (Also Read: India Squad-ICC Champions Trophy 2013)

The trio will have a crucial role to play in the favourable conditions in England.

"When it comes to the fast bowling department, there are people who can exploit the conditions. Someone like Bhuvneshwar (Kumar) can swing the ball, there is Umesh (Yadav) who has pace. It's a good department," Dhoni told reporters in Mumbai on Tuesday.

The team is leaving for England later tonight (Tuesday night) for the June 6-23 tournament.

"They need to adjust to the new (ODI) rules. it's important how quickly they adjust to the length and bowl in the right areas. We have got the right mix," he added.

The India skipper indicated that the team was free of injuries.

"There is no official report from the physio so it's a good sign."

India are clubbed with Pakistan, South Africa and the West Indies in group B, but it is the match against the arch-rival on June 15 that is most eagerly awaited.

"Both sides are balanced, (Saeed) Ajmal is a mystery bowler, we need to figure him out," Dhoni said.

Dhoni also wants openers Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan to utilise the opportunity.

"Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan have done well in Tests, ODIs is different but as (coach) Duncan (Fletcher) said, it's a good opportunity for them to capitalise."

Talking about modifications in ODI rules, Dhoni said, "There are a few challenges, especially with the rule changes in ODIs. It will be the first time we will be playing outside the sub-continent after the rule change."

And about the tournament, he said, "We have never won a Champions Trophy, this is a good opportunity for us, the tournament is being played for the last time so this is our last opportunity."

India and Sri Lanka were joint winners in 2002 when rain had washed out the summit clash.

"We have got a balanced side. We will have a lot of time to prepare ourselves... there are also two warm-up matches.

"Lot depends on the conditions. It's a good platform for youngsters to prove themselves in international level, there are few places up for grabs. Everything looking good now, there are lot of time in between the three matches in the league stage.

Asked about the team's last tour of England where India lost all the ODIs after being whitewashed in the Test series, he said, "The last time in England we didn't do well in the Test series, but in the ODIs we were decent, rain was a big factor and then losing all the tosses... it was difficult for the spinners to use the wet ball," he said.

source: ndtv.com

Monday, 27 May 2013

Sachin Tendulkar ends IPL career

Sachin Tendulkar enjoyed a "perfect ending" to his Indian Premier League career as he retired from the competition following Mumbai Indians' title-winning victory over Chennai Super Kings.  (Also Read: CSK vs MI - Final Report & Stats: IPL 2013)

The 40-year-old India superstar did not play last night in Kolkata because of a hand injury, but - moments after his side secured a 23-run victory - he announced he was to bow out of the IPL.  (Also See: IPL 2013 Winner Mumbai Indians Celebrations - Pics)

His casual announcement came in an IPL pitchside interview shortly after the match when asked where the Mumbai Indians' maiden triumph rated in his long and illustrious career.

"The World Cup I had to wait for 21 years, and this for six years, so it's never too late. This is my last IPL and it's perfect way to end IPL," he said, to the interviewer's apparent surprise.

He added: "I've got to be realistic here, I've enjoyed my six seasons with Mumbai and it's been a fantastic journey, especially this season which was also superb.

"I thought until now our third season was our best season, but this one is the icing on the cake."

The 'Little Master' cited his age as a main factor while revealing it had not been a sudden decision but one he had already made.

In quotes reported elsewhere, Tendulkar said: "I think this is the right time to stop playing.

"I am 40. I have to face the reality. I had decided that this would be my last season."

Tendulkar had announced his one-day international retirement towards the end of last year.

source: ecb.co.uk

Would trade Orange Cap for Trophy: Michael Hussey


With each of his 733 runs in IPL 2013, Michael Hussey evoked a question in the minds of many. ‘Why on earth did he retire from international cricket so early’? So prolific and fluent has he been in the young man’s game that leaving the overwhelming and buzzing fresh batting talents behind, he walked away with the Orange Cap – presented to the highest run-getter in the tournament.  (Also Read: CSK vs MI - Final Report & Stats: IPL 2013)

Team man that he is, Hussey found little consolation in the individual reward as his team, Chennai Super Kings, fell short by 23 runs of their third IPL title. (Also See: IPL 2013 Winner Mumbai Indians Celebrations - Pics)

Gracious in defeat, the former Australian batsman spoke to IPLT20.com after the final. He talked about his team’s shortcomings in the big game, lauded Mumbai Indians’ performance and re-lived his favourite 2013 IPL moments.

Is the Orange Cap a consolation?

Not really. I’d give the Orange Cap back away for the Trophy definitely. It’s quite an honour to have got it but it would have been nice to perform on the last day and in the big game.

Isn’t it a bit ironical that CSK played their most consistent cricket throughout this season and yet, you don’t have a Trophy in the end?

That’s how the game goes, doesn’t it? T20 cricket is such a fickle game. You’ve got to stay positive and philosophical about it. We’ve had a fantastic season and it’s just unfortunate that we got beaten by a better team on the day and we couldn’t get over the line. But we can still be very proud of our efforts throughout the course of this season. It’s been brilliant.

What went wrong with the batting today; on another day CSK would have chased down 150 without much fuss?

We obviously got off to a very bad start, losing two wickets in the first over. That set the negative tone for us and then we just kept losing wickets; couldn’t get a nice, busy partnership going, which would have given us a chance. Credit goes to the Mumbai Indians; they started very, very well with the ball and had us on the back foot right from the start.

Talking about MI; they revamped their entire team management this year. How big a factor did that play in their resurgence?

They have got some great people around who know cricket, who understand the game and know how winning teams work. Having quality people around definitely helps get results on the field.

What is your most favourite performance from this IPL?

We had great run-chases at home against the Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rajasthan Royals. 
They were two very memorable victories for us. But personally, I really enjoyed the performances of obviously Chris Gayle getting a 175 but also David Miller’s century. That innings of him was a real standout for me.

CSK have always been good batting team. But the in-coming pacers have added a lot of value this season.

Yes, we have always been a good batting team and it was a goal of the franchise to strengthen the fast bowling stocks and we have been able to do that. Mohit Sharma in particular has been fantastic over the course of the season and hopefully it gives him a lot of confidence going forward.

Looking forward to the CLT20?

Without a doubt, yes! It’s just nice to be able to see each other more than once in a year. So, to get together as a team, from all parts of the world again after a few months should be really good fun.

source: iplt20.com

Bowling at the death helped me: Dwayne Bravo


The Chennai Super Kings may have lost the IPL 2013 final to the Mumbai Indians, but they still can take heart in the fact that two of their own won both the Purple and Orange Caps. While Michael Hussey’s exploits at the top of the order helped CSK on the batting front, it was Dwayne Bravo’s wicket-taking form that deflated many an opposition line-ups.  (Also Read: CSK vs MI - Final Report & Stats: IPL 2013)

The newly appointed West Indies ODI captain was on song throughout the tournament and ended up claiming a staggering 32 wickets this season. He duly won the Purple Cap for his efforts.  (Also See: IPL 2013 Winner Mumbai Indians Celebrations - Pics)

In an exclusive chat with IPLT20.com, Bravo mentioned how bowling in death overs gave him the freedom to change his pace and use more variations this year. 

Here are excerpts from his interview:

What did you do different this year when it came to bowling?

This year what I did different was bowl more overs at the death. I have to give credit to Mahi (MS Dhoni) for having faith in me. I always love the challenge of bowling in the latter stages of the game when batsmen tend to go for it. So, I change the pace and use variations. I am happy that I was able to produce results with the ball for the team at crucial moments.

Along with taking wickets, you have become popular for your unique celebrations and dances as well.

The celebrations and dances are all for the fans. We are entertainers, and we come here to give the fans their money’s worth. I like having fun on the field. All of us West Indians, we tend to enjoy our cricket. That is part of our culture.

You squared off against Kieron Pollard four times this season. You two compatriots seem to have a special rivalry brewing. 

I always love playing against Pollard. He is one of the best players in the world along with Gayle and Dhoni in this format of the game. So, there is a great competition between us and we never back down. I enjoy that competition we have. And it is great that he is part of a good side now. And credit to him the way he played in the final and in this IPL. 

Apart from Pollard, even other West Indians seem to have struck form during this IPL. This must please you as the West Indies ODI captain.

All the West Indians did well this season. Darren Sammy, he came in late and still did well. Then there is of course Chris Gayle and Sunil Narine. It is a good tournament for us West Indians, and we hope to continue doing well and are looking forward to the next IPL. Right now, it is good to have so many West Indians in form ahead of the Champions Trophy. The shorter formats really suit us. And we just hope to come together as a team and try and bring these individual talents together and hope they perform the same way.

source: iplt20.com

One of the best days of my career: Aditya Tare


For a youngster like Aditya Tare, playing under the watchful eyes of some of the most respected coaches itself provides an invaluable opportunity. Add to that the chance to fill in Sachin Tendulkar’s shoes atop the Mumbai Indians order and you have the perfect baptism by fire for an up and coming cricketer.  (Also Read: CSK vs MI - Final Report & Stats: IPL 2013)

The 25-year-old showed a lot of promise during the handful of chances he got this year for MI. He even managed to score a remarkable half-century during one of his outings for the franchise. However, he was completely awestruck after his team won their first IPL title. (Also See: IPL 2013 Winner Mumbai Indians Celebrations - Pics)

“Winning the Ranji Trophy and the IPL this year is two of the best days of my career,” said Tare during his post-game chat with IPLT20.com. 

Tare also relished the opportunity to replace the Little Master as one-half of MI’s opening pair. “This is a big responsibility and I am glad that the support staff and the captain have put the faith in me to open the innings. I relish this opportunity and I just want to bat to the best of my ability,” he said.

Tare also looks forward to the invaluable advice Tendulkar offers him, both as his Ranji and MI teammate. “He is always talking to me about my game even in the Ranji team. He always shares whatever information he thinks is important to be shared with me,” Tare said.

He added that in a diverse set-up like MI’s, even an experienced leader like Ricky Ponting offers great insight into the game. “He is a great leader even when he is not playing. He has been leading the side well in the dressing room. And I have learnt a lot from both Tendulkar and Ponting this year,” he said

Thanks to his stint with the Mumbai Indians, Tare says he has improved as a cricketer. Given that he has spent the last four years under some of the most brilliant minds in the game, he takes back a lot from his IPL experience. “I have learnt a lot from coaches like Shaun Pollock, John Wright, Robin Singh, Kiran More – he has helped me with my wicket-keeping – and Paras Mhambrey in the IPL.”

This win is for Sachin Tendulkar: Ambati Rayudu


Ambati Rayudu has been an understated, yet integral part of the Mumbai Indians line-up over the last few years. The 27-year-old batter has time and again steadied the MI innings and whenever need be, even unleashed big hits to steer his side to a favourable position.  (Also Read: CSK vs MI - Final Report & Stats: IPL 2013)

For him to finally get his hands around the IPL Trophy meant a culmination of four seasons of tireless efforts. “This is extraordinary! Four years of hard work. We have come so close before and were really very hungry for it. This is beyond words,” Rayudu told IPLT20.com.   (Also See: IPL 2013 Winner Mumbai Indians Celebrations - Pics)

He also pointed out that MI gained a lot of confidence from their first perfect home season. “I think the unbeaten run at home set the tone for the Playoffs,” said Rayudu as he spoke about what boosted the team in the highly-competitive league.

The MI batsman was also thrilled about winning the biggest prize in franchise cricket at one of the sport’s most historic venues. “It is unbelievable how a packed Eden Gardens witnessed us. It is a dream. There is nothing better than this,” he said.

And finally, Rayudu dedicated MI’s maiden IPL title to Sachin Tendulkar, the team’s most iconic player, who has been a pillar for the franchise since the inception of the IPL. “I think he is the one who is the backbone of the team,” Rayudu said.

source: iplt20.com

We took the final as a fresh start: Dinesh Karthik


Mumbai Indians’ successful title run in IPL 2013 was propelled by consistent performers in all three departments of the game. Dinesh Karthik was one such performer, who featured in all 19 games for the franchise and excelled both with bat and behind the wickets.  (Also Read: CSK vs MI - Final Report & Stats: IPL 2013)

The 27-year-old, who has been part of the MI squad for a couple of seasons, often came through in the middle order whenever his team was marred by an indifferent start with the bat. Capping off a good season with a league title, courtesy a win over the Chennai Super Kings seemed like a fitting end to his IPL 2013 campaign.   (Also See: IPL 2013 Winner Mumbai Indians Celebrations - Pics)

“It has been a long journey for us. And it feels really good to be on the right side of the final result for the first time,” Karthik said. “The Playoffs loss did not play on our minds. We took it as a fresh game. And we had beaten them twice, so obviously we knew that we could beat them again.”

Karthik also mentioned how MI had to be at their best against a solid outfit like CSK. “They played a real good game against us the last time. So we knew it was going to be a good contest. Playing CSK is always tough,” he said while explaining his team’s approach during the finals.

The ‘keeper-batsman scored a total of 510 runs in IPL 2013 and effected 14 sharp dismissals behind the wicket, thereby marking his best overall season in the league. “My own form has been really good. I am really glad about what I have helped Mumbai Indians achieve this IPL. It feels special and really good,” he said.

He added that the key to his success has been a calm mind. “I have also been working on my technique. My coach has given me a lot of confidence and inputs and I am glad it paid off in the end,” Karthik said.

Karthik stated that along with the 2007 World T20 triumph, the IPL win at the Eden Gardens is something he will ‘cherish for a long time’. 

He even praised senior members of the MI set-up for guiding the side over the last couple of months.

“Hats off to Anil Kumble, John Wright, Ricky Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar! They have been a part of this unit and they have been helping all of us throughout this tournament,” he said.

source: iplt20.com

Glad to win IPL on sixth attempt: Anil Kumble


One of Mumbai Indians’ early recruits ahead of IPL 2013 was their team mentor, Anil Kumble. It was also perhaps, their smartest move, to get on board a man who has tremendous understanding of the game of cricket on the whole and that of the IPL.  (Also Read: CSK vs MI - Final Report & Stats: IPL 2013)

After his illustrious international career, the former India captain has been involved in the IPL as a player, captain and mentor. He dons the administrator’s hat too, thus enabling him of decision-making and planning right.   (Also See: IPL 2013 Winner Mumbai Indians Celebrations - Pics)

MI’s move to hire one of the shrewdest brains in Indian cricket paid rich dividends in the form of the IPL 2013 Trophy.

We, at IPLT20.com, spoke with Anil Kumble about the process that went behind the closed doors of the dressing room to lead MI to their long-desired IPL title.

The whole new leadership group, that MI put together, seems to have done wonders 

Our job was just to create an environment where players could go and play to their potential and the team has responded exceptionally well. I’m really glad that after five years, on sixth attempt –both as player and mentor – I have finally won an IPL Trophy. It’s great to be on the winning side.

With a team in abundance of wealth in their management group, how does the distribution of role work?

We are all professionals and everybody understands their role. It’s always nice to have some experienced heads working together. 

Did it help as the team mentor that there was already a good relationship with the coach?

Oh, yes, of course! As soon as I became the team mentor the first call I made was to John (Wright) to find out whether he was available to coach and he readily agreed. We have a good partnership and we know each other well since our Team India days. The next job was to choose a leader and Ricky (Ponting) was the obvious choice. With Sachin there, it all seemed complete. The owners too have been great and it’s been fantastic for us.

What has been the biggest contribution of Ricky Ponting to the team?

His leadership has been brilliant. It’s never easy when you’re nominated as the captain and you have to sit out of games. It’s not been easy for him too but he has handled it commendably. His experience of being part of winning Australian teams has certainly helped. He knows how to motivate the players and what exactly to say to the players.

How much have you been involved with the spinners in the team?

I have passed on whatever little information I have about playing in the IPL and bowling in T20. I have tried to encourage both Bhajji (Harbhajan Singh) and (Pragyan) Ojha to bowl to their best. I’m glad that they have done well and helped us win.

source: iplt20.com