Archive for the ‘ICC Rankings’ Category


The Champion Team - INDIA..

Winning the World Cup that not only every Indian player had seen, in fact it was the dream that every Indian had seen, and it is not a dream anymore but reality. Yes, India is now the World Champions. They defeated Sri Lanka by 6 wickets to win the final and the tournament.

What an effort this was, simply amazing. India in their last four matches beat every other world champion. They beat 2 time champion West Indies in their last league game, then 4 time champion Australia in the quarters, 92 winners Pakistan in the semis, and then the 96 winners in the finals. This world cup belonged to the subcontinent teams, as three teams finished in the top four, and two of them made it to the finals. This is the first time this has happened. In fact except for 1987, a subcontinent team has been in the world cup final since 1983.

Everyone before the tournament said that they wanted to win the cup for the special Sachin Tendulkar, and this was evident when after winning the players took Sachin on their shoulders for a victory lap. Everyone was emotional, right from Sachin to Sehwag to Harbhajan to Yuraj to Sreesanth as the tears of joy dripped from their eyes. But that was the moment these players, and even every Indian will never forget for their lives. On one side dreams were fulfilled, on the other side dreams broken. Muralidharan quit cricket on not that high as he would have loved to, and Jayawardhane’s century went in vain. This is the first time when a World Cup final centurion has ended on the losing side. 

With this win now MS Dhoni has become the only caption to have won almost every major tournament. He has taken India top of the ICC rankings in test matches, won the T20 world cup, the IPL, the champion’s league, and now the WORLD CUP.

Coming back to the match, it started with Sri Lanka batting first. The start that Indians got was fabulous, with Zaheer Khan bowling 3 maiden overs on the trot. But later Mahela Jayawardhane played an extra ordinary innings scoring a century and taking the total to a formidable 274. Yuvraj was once again the best bowler picking up 2 wickets. Zaheer bowled beautifully and picked up 2 wickets, but his figures were damaged in the last three overs when he gave 44 runs. Harbhajan Singh dismissed the dangerous Dilshan. Munaf was very economical, but the only disappointment in bowling was Sreesanth. Once again, he leaked runs in heaps. I really don’t know why he was included in the playing XI ahead of Ashwin. Overall the bowling was decent, but they way they leaked runs towards the end was horrifying. 275 looked a very tough target, especially when the pressure of chasing in the World Cup final. The best part of the day was the fielding of the team. They fielded like tigers, and stopped numerous runs. They way Yuvraj and Raina fielded was something beyond belief. Had it not been that standard of fielding and the opening spell of Zaheer the target to chase could have been way more than 300.

Nevertheless, India had to chase 275 to win, and all eyes were set on the explosive Sehwag and legend Sachin. And both disappointed, by getting out early as the score read 31 runs for the loss of 2 wickets. Really, I must say I had lost hope at that time. But it was then for gen..next, to step up and Gambhir played one of the finest innings under pressure. He eventually got out for 97, and missed on a very well deserved century. Kohli played a good knock of 35 runs. But it was Dhoni who played another great knock under pressure scoring an unbeaten 91 and Yuvraj finished the proceedings with an unbeaten 21. Must say, Dhoni was criticized all month long for his batting, and what a time he chose to rise to the occasion and silence all the critics. He won the man of the match for the effort, though I feel it should have been given to Gambhir. Yuvraj won the man of the tournament award, and then India picked up the trophy, to be crowned world champions.

But yes I would also like to mention the contribution of Indian coach Gary Kiersten here. He has been an inspiration, and has changed the belief of the side completely. Under him, the team has taken the no.1 spot in test matches, and now the World Cup. With this his tenure as a coach also ends, hopefully he will be back later to take the team to new heights.

This is probably the last world cup for Sachin Tendulkar, but I hope that the he plays in the next one as well (just being optimistic). Now with his biggest dream in his kitty, I hope he does not quit the game. The urge to win the World Cup made him perform better and better, I hope that after the win he should not quit and continue his game as his is in a dream form right now. I think he should not look to retire for at least the next two years if not till the next World Cup.

In the end all I can say is well done India and congratulations for the victory. Keep on going this way, 2015 is not far away.

To two LEGENDS - SACHIN & MURALIDHARAN




Well the final scores do depict that India did thrash Australia, but to be honest it has not really been that easy as the final scores suggest. In the first test match India somehow managed to escape the doors of defeat and ended on the winning side, big thanks to great innings from VVS Laxman and Ishant Sharma.

In the second test also Australia had come all guns blazing in their innings, and made Indian team look an ordinary team for some time, but in the end India did fight back and proved why they are the number 1 team. And finally a great innings from Sachin Tendulkar led to the foundation af a great series win. And then later on the fourth day the Indian bowlers responded and made the series win come as a clean sweep on Australia, the first time they could do it to Australia.

Zaheer Khan was given the man of the match award in the first match because of his bowling performance, but it was Sachin Tendulkar who was adjudjed the man of the match for the second test to go with the man of the series award.

Many other records were made during this series. India won their 3rd consecutive match in a row. Dhoni continued his capataincy form in Test cricket as a he has never lost a series. In fact India have now not lost 8 consecutive series. Sachin notched up his 49th hundred and his 6th test double hundred and in the meanwhile also passed the 14000 run mark in test matches. Dhoni completed his 150th dismissal in test cricket while Zaheer Khan reached the mark of 250 test wickets. Virender Sehwag equalled the record of making fifty or more in 11 consecutive matches (this now equals with Vivian Richards and Gautam Gambhur). In fact Sachin Tendulkar has now scored a fifty or more in 10 consecutive matches (and this is still an active streak).

Well these were definitely the high points of the series. But there were many low points in the firm of injuries as well. Ishant, Gambhir and Laxman got injuries in the first test match. This gave an opportunity to Cheteshwar Pujara, and yes he did not disappoint others by scoring a fluent fifty in the final innings and the setting the platform for a great  victory.

With the no.1 position in test matches confirm for sometime now, India would really be feeling happy of it. But on the other side Australia has slipped to the fifth position in the ICC rankings for the first time. And this could be very hurting for them as this would mean that for the first time they would be ranked lower than England at the start of the Ashes.

I end this here hoping that India continue its good form and defeat New Zealand which is next up in the test series. Though before that we have the ODI series against Australia. But I guess the biggest test of the Indian team would be at the end of the year when they would visist South Africa for the test series. I wwould like to wish the team best of luck for their coming tournamnets.


Sachin Tendulkar today won his first ever ICC award bagging the cricketer of the year award (Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy). I must say he has added yet another feather in his cap. His form in the past year has been outstanding and has also achieved great heights in cricket history in the past year. If we talk about these awards Sachin won the award but missed out in the other two categories where he was nominated. The best ODI player of the year and the best Test player of the year. These awards went to AB Devillers of South Africa and Virender Sehwag of India respectively. Also MS Dhoni was named as the captain of the ICC team of the year. I must say that this year the Indians have been on the top of the list. Here is the complete article from cricinfo:

“Sachin Tendulkar has won his first ICC award, the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy, by being named the Cricketer of the Year during the 2010 ICC Award ceremony in Bangalore. Tendulkar, however, lost out in the other major categories he was nominated in, with Virender Sehwag winning the Test Cricketer of the Year award and AB de Villiers claiming the ODI prize.

“This last season has been really special for the entire team,” Tendulkar, who also received the People’s Choice Award, said. “I think right from the start of the season, when we won in Sri Lanka and I scored a hundred in the finals, and from there on the season took off for us. We became No. 1 in the Test rankings, something we all wanted to achieve, and we’ve been able to maintain our performances in the last ten months.”

Tendulkar fought off competition from Sehwag, Hashim Amla and Graeme Swann, the other nominees in the Cricketer of the Year category. Previous winners of the Cricketer of the Year award include Rahul Dravid, Andrew Flintoff, Jacques Kallis, Ricky Ponting, Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Mitchell Johnson.

During the period under consideration for the award – August 24, 2009 to August 10, 2010 – Tendulkar scored 1064 runs at an average of 81.84 in ten Tests. He made 914 runs in 17 ODIs at 65.28, and also scored the format’s first double-century against South Africa in Gwalior. Tendulkar is presently third on the ICC’s rankings for Test batsmen, and tenth in ODIs.

MS Dhoni was named captain of the Test team of the year, which included Sehwag, Kumar Sangakkara, Swann, Tendulkar, Amla, Simon Katich, Dale Steyn, Jacques Kallis, James Anderson and Doug Bollinger.

Ricky Ponting was captain of the ODI team of the year, leading a side comprising Tendulkar, Shane Watson, Michael Hussey, de Villiers, Paul Collingwood, Dhoni, Daniel Vettori, Stuart Broad, Bollinger and Ryan Harris.

Brendon McCullum, the New Zealand batsman, won the award for the best Twenty20 Performance of the Year for his 116 not out against Australia in Christchurch in February. McCullum edged out Hussey, Mahela Jayawardene and Ryan McLaren, the others nominated for the Twenty20 award.

Netherlands allrounder Ryan ten Doeschate won the Associate Player of the Year award. ten Doeschate’s performances during the English domestic season has made him a sought-after player in international Twenty20 competitions. He has been signed by Tasmania for the Big Bash and by Canterbury for New Zealand’s domestic tournament.

Steven Finn, the England fast bowler, won the award for Emerging Player of the Year. Finn, 21, made his Test debut against Bangladesh in March and has since taken 32 wickets in eight matches.

New Zealand won the ICC Spirit of Cricket Award for the second time in row and the third time overall. Aleem Dar, the Pakistani umpire, also won the Umpire of the Year Award for the second time in a row.

Rachel Heyhoe-Flint, the former England women’s captain, was the first woman cricketer inducted into the ICC’s Hall of Fame, while Shelley Nitschke, the Australian allrounder, was the Woman Cricketer of the Year.”


India script an emphatic win, a very thrilling one indeed. To be honest, if I look back at the situation India were in before the start of their second innings, this should have been a very comfortable win and not a thrilling one. In fact, because of the top order collapse India also were knocking at the doorstep of a loss, but Laxman and Ishant Sharma had different ideas. They from that situation scripted an unbelievable victory.

Talking from the start of the test match, India were on the back foot very early on the first day itself when they lost Ishant Sharma as a bowler due to a knee injury, but an amazing spell of reverse swing bowling by Zaheer Khan towards the end of the day got Indians back on track. So the first day ended on an equal note though one can say that the Indian team just had their noses a little ahead at that point of time.

One can say that the second day was also an equal day but this time Australia were a little ahead as they had a decent total on board and even though India had got off to the flying start they lost both their openers by the time the play ended that day. The third day again was in a similar situation where the match was evenly poised with Australia just a little ahead. The day initially was dominated by Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and Suresh Raina scored fifties to lift the total. Sachin missed his 49th test hundred by two runs and India just fell short of Australian total by the day ended.

The fourth day was the one that had many twists, the first session belonged to Australians after they got of to a flying start, and it looked as if the test match will end in a boring draw unless the Australians want to back themselves by declaring and then press for a victory. The second session saw the opposite and India bounced back very hard to dismiss the Australian side for a low total of 192 and set themselves a target of 216 to achieve in four sessions. By then it looked as if now it should be a comfortable victory India, but then Australian bowlers struck and India were 55 for the loss of 4 wickets by the end of the day, and it looked an uphill task for India to achieve since it had lost its top four batsmen and there were doubts if Laxman could bat. That meant it was left only on Sachin and Dhoni to look at for a victory.

When the day 5 started everyone knew Sachin was the key to Indian success, though in my heart I believed if Laxman could just stay in the middle India would win, because just a month back India were in a similar situation against Sri Lanka when these two batsmen won it for the team. The day started and India moved ahead steadily before Zaheer Khan was dismissed as the fifth wicket and then Laxman walked in to bat. Suddenly the Indian team picked up the momentum and the pair added 40 odd runs in no time before Sacin was dismissed. This led to a type of collapse and when Harbhajan got out the score read 122 for 8, with India needing 94 to win. Then walked in Ishant Sharma to join Laxman in the middle. The task looked impossible to achieve but the kind of determination showed by the two batsmen especially Ishant was extraordinary. Sharma scored 31 invaluable runs and they crossed the 200 hundred mark and then Ishant Sharma was dismissed to a bad decision with India still needing 11 rums more to win. Then Laxman played sensibly trying to score the remaining runs. Ojha got saved on an LBW shout that looked out and that ball went for an overthrow for 4 runs making India requiring just 2 to win. The victory was sealed the very next ball, when the ball was deflected by the pad of Ojha and it moved towards the boundary and in the meanwhile the batsman ran the required two runs.

Laxman played a miraculous innings scoring 73, but one must also praise the performance of Sharma who held his nerve and equally supported Laxman to achieve the impossible.

This must have been a heart break for the Australian team as they almost were ahead in the test match almost till the end but still lost thanks to a spectacular partnership. In the end I would like to congratulate India for a great victory. Now with this it is sure that India will not lose the series (something they haven’t for more than a year now, in fact almost 2 years). And also India has proved why it is ranked the number 1 test team in the world.


India win the third test match and level the series 1 all. There were many questions raised about the no.1 position of the team, especially after the loss in the first test. But India has managed to silent the critics. And they will stay at the top of the ICC test rankings for some more time. Well again India has not lost a test series. As I had written earlier that it has been a very similar story for sometime where India do not start well in the series and then go on to improve as the series progresses. In this test series also India lost the first, drew the second and won the third. Had they managed to draw the first (especially as more than a day was washed out) they would have won the series. But never the less eventually India has managed to draw the series, and with this India has not lost a test series for some time, more than a year (definitely since MS Dhoni has become the captain). I guess that is the one of the main reasons why India is at the top of the list.

This series has not been very easy for the Indians; first of all they were going into the series without their strike bowler, Zaheer Khan. And then before the start of the series, Sreesanth was ruled out which was a big dent in the bowling department, and had become over dependent on Harbhajan Singh especially seeing the form of Ishant Sharma. And then Harbhajan Singh failed to deliver. In the first test match despite more than a day being rained out, India lost the match. The bowlers failed to pick up wickets and the batsman just could not manage to live up the reputation. Overall it was a very much forgetful match for India, but not for Sri Lanka, as with it being the last match of Muralidharan, he also ended up with the magical 800 wickets figure and also the team ended up winning the match.

The second match was again a disappointment, not for the teams but for the game of cricket. It ended as a very boring match were batsman enjoyed, and broke a lot of records. The Indian batting lifted their level in that match but the bowling was disappointing again. Many including me were asking questions if the bowlers in the world number 1 team were capable of picking up 20 wickets in a test match. But that test match will be remembered for Sachin to reach his fifth test hundred. After this I did feel that India might not go back losing the series 2-0, but I also felt that levelling the series would have been very difficult especially after seeing the bowling attack.

Sachin has been, top scoring for India in the series

The third match was special for India as with this match Sachin would become the most capped test player ever. I must say what a record and what a journey he has had so far. But before the start of the test match Indian bowling department was again dented with the loss of Harbhajan Singh. Though after seeing the test match I think it worked in India’s favour as his replacement Amit Mishra not only picked 4 wickets but also scored very important runs down the order. Again India did not start well on the first day were India failed to pick up the wickets but they did come back on second day to dismiss Sri Lanka for just above 400 (though it would have been a very good total if India would have lost early wickets). India started off well with Sehwag and Sachin contributing well. Sehwag again played an outstanding innings. Laxman also contributed his bit for the team, and the new test find Raina again played well proving his selection in the team over Yuvraj. But the most important innings came from the bowlers Mithun and Mishra, both scoring 40s managed help the team cross the Sri Lankan total, and the Sehwag struck twice with the ball putting India a little ahead.

Virender Sehwag, player of the tournament

On the fourth day the bowlers particularly Ojha surprised everyone in the world (I guess that would include the team and yes himself also) by bowling a great spell and picking up three key wickets. And at one time the Sri Lankan team was 87 for 7 wickets. It never looked as if it was an Indian team bowling. I guess the team went into that day to prove the world why they are number 1 in test matches. But then again Indian team had to face the reality and Sri Lankan ended up scoring 267 giving India a target of 257. Then India lost three wickets for less than 50 on the board and again the match had shifted towards the Sri Lankan side. But I believe Sachin came on the field on the final day with a mission. And he was later joined by Laxman, to prove a point to the world. They both played well and laid the foundation for a great win. Sachin scored a good 50; while Laxman went on to score his 16th hundred. And finally the winning runs were scored by the new test team find Raina who again played a fine knock.

Laxman after scoring his hundred

In this series Sachin topped the batting charts scoring 390 runs, while Sehwag was next in line scoring 348 runs. In the bowling Ojha topped the chart picking up 8 wickets and the next in line was Sehwag with 7 wickets. Well I must say this series quite belonged to Sehwag as he contributed very well with both the bat and ball. Also Ojha bowled extremely well in the final match as his figures read 1 wicket for 311 runs before the start of the final match, while in the last match he ended with figures 7 wickets for 204 runs. I must say it has been the bowlers especially the spinners (Ojha, Mishra, and Sehwag) who have won the match for the team as they picked up 15 wickets between them which included 9 in the second innings. This is really a commendable effort if one sees that this bowling attack did have the names of Zaheer Khan and Harbhajan Singh.

Pragyan Ojha, the highest wicket taker in the series for India

All what I can say at the end is that the bowlers really lifted their level and it could not have been a better gift than a win for Sachin who was playing his record test match. With this India have managed to maintain their no.1 rankings in test matches. Also for Sri Lanka it has been a good series as now they become third in the rankings, replacing Australia in the list.

In the end I would congratulate India for a great win, and now as the focus shifts to the tri-series tournament, I would wish India all the best for the series up ahead.

Suresh Raina, the find of the series


India I can say have been a little lucky to maintain their no.1 test ranking because of the ICC ranking rules. Earlier it was being speculated that 2-0 series loss will see India drop down the list and with the wins Sri Lanka would replace India at the top. But that is not going to happen anymore. Because a sought of ICC cut off date (1st August) comes between the series. 

The rankings are calculated for a period of four years from 1st August. All the points get changed after this date. For example, now the points will be calculated from 1st August 2007 to 31st July 2011. So since Sri Lanka had won five tests and lost one test from August 06 to July 07, those points have been ceased. Similarly, India had won two and lost two in that period, and that has benefited the team. Their points have in fact increased from 124 to 130 despite losing the first test. And now they are 11 points away from the second placed South Africa. This change in points has seen Sri Lanka drop to no.5. After the Pakistan-Australia series they had climbed to no.3 position as Australia had dropped to no.4. Now after this change Australia are back at no.3.

Now due these change in points the result of the final test will not affect the position of India at the top. But it will definitely reduce the difference in the points. Yes this true, even India win the last test and level the series they lose 3 points and will end up at 127 points, such is the irony of the ranking system. This change has also helped India in the ODI format as well, as after the change they are back at the second place again.

Well now talking about the series so far. The Indian team’s performance has been disappointing so far. In the first game they were completely outplayed. They could manage to even the test match, something that one does not expect from the no.1 team in the world especially after almost one and a half day was washed out in the rain. The bowlers had a disappointing start, and then they could not wipe out the tail early, The Sri Lankans stitched a record partnership for the eight wicket, and I think that partnership was the primary cause of Indian defeat.

The bowlers have been very disappointing in the series so far. Though one may say it is a depleted bowling attack, I do not agree to it, they only have Zaheer Khan out of the side, the other three bowlers are regular members of the playing eleven. And they have only managed to 15 wickets in the two test matches, leave aside a talk of picking up the 20 wickets in a match. Yes one can give the benefit of the doubt that the second test pitch was not good for bowling, but still I feel the no.1 test team should not give any excuses. The fast bowlers have still been good in patches, the spinners have been disappointing as they have managed only six wickets in the two test matches, and too three of them have been taken by Virender Sehwag. Harbhajan Singh has taken two wickets for 304 runs so far, while Pragyan Ojha has just managed 1 wicket at the cost of 311 runs. Something that is not expected at all specially on the sub continent wicket. The performance of Harbhajan Singh has really been disappointing since he is been regarded as a prospect to break Muralidharan’s record.

The batting department has been okay; they were decent in the first match but still could not avoid the defeat. They all played well in patches, Sehwag, Sachin, Laxman, Yuvraj and Dhoni. Both Gambhir and Dravid were disappointing. Though the batting department came very good in the second match specially Sehwag, Sachin, Raina, Dhoni, and Murali Vijay. Dravid was again disappointing in the match. Though I feel that he is due for a big one and will come good in the final test match.

If I talk about the overall team performance then it has not been good, but the team has shown very similar performance in the past year and are still no.1 in the world. What I mean to say that they have faltered in the first match of the series regularly for more than a year now, have always managed to back strong in the rest of the series. It looks like a very similar situation so definitely I will count on India winning the last test especially after playing well in the second match.

In the end I want to wish India best of luck for the last test, and also hope that they will manage to maintain their position at the top for a long time to come.

The ICC standings as of  30th July 2010 after the change in points.

ICC Test Rankings

    Team            Points
1.  India                   130
2.  South Africa         119
3.  Australia             113
4.  England               111
5.  Sri Lanka             111
6.  Pakistan               84
7.  West Indies           79
8.  New Zealand        78
9.  Bangladesh           7

 ICC ODI Rankings

     Team            Points
1.  Australia              132
2.  India                    118
3.  South Africa          115
4.  New Zealand        114
5.  England               113
6.  Sri Lanka             111
7.  Pakistan               98
8.  West Indies            67
9.  Bangladesh           53
10.Zimbabwe            36
11. Ireland                35
12. Netherlands        32
13. Kenya                   0


Sachin Tendulkar went onto score first fifth double hundred in test cricket today. He reached his hundred yesterday, and completed the double today. For the statistics, this is his 5th test double hundred, 6th International double hundred (he has one in the ODI’s), 48th Test hundred, 94th International hundred, and 75th first class hundred. Also this is his 19th 150+ score in test cricket which equals the record with Brain Lara and also his 24th 150+ score in International cricket, which again is a record. This will again be special because with this match Sachin equals the record Steve Waugh’s record of most test match appearances at 168. Also now he has scored a 150+ score against each test playing nation.

He came into bat when two quick wickets had fallen and then the third also feel in the next over. India was in a situation of trouble as he took guard. But he hung in initially, tried getting in a few runs along with Laxman. After Laxman’s wicket, the debutant Raina joined Sachin in the middle for a memorable partnership. This partnership saw Sachin reach his 48th test ton, while Raina scored his maiden ton in his debut match. Sachin later went onto score his double hundred, and was finally dismissed by Dilshan at the score of 203.

This innings was very important for India, as India were completely outplayed in the first two days, and were looking at the doors of defeat after three quick wickets on the third day. Now it looks as if Sachin has almost saved the match for India (though with still a full day to go nothing can really be predicted). I guess this innings will also save India of falling from their no.1 position in the ICC test rankings. A defeat would have pushed them down the rankings. Also one must say that Raina played very well, especially considering that this is his debut match. Again Sehwag played well, but fell to a bad shot, just 1 run short of a hundred.

If we just talk about Sachin, after the day three ended he was batting at 108 still almost everyone had started speculating him of getting a double, and not just double many had already started talking about him getting to his first triple century. I guess that is the expectation from this little champion whenever he comes out to bat. He did disappoint his fans but not completely as he did score a double century. But all I can say is most of us are disappointed as he could not get a triple. That is the expectation level of all his fans, it just keeps on increasing.

With so many records under his belt, he is literally competing only with himself. I wish him all the best for future and hope that he gives us many such instances in the near future. Now I am eagerly waiting for his 50th test hundred and 100th international hundred, I hope he gets to these landmarks in this year itself.


India finally wins the Asia Cup after 15 years. With this they also win a multi-nation series after some time now. Incidentally the last time won a multi-nation tournament was a tri-series tournament in Sri Lanka. Win this win the team would probably go to the second spot in the ICC ODI team rankings.

Everybody played well in the series, whether it is the batsman or the bowlers. In the first game, it was the bowlers who stole the show, then in the second match it were the batsman who took away the show. In the third match both of them failed and then in the final match both of them came to the party, winning the cup for the team.

Gautam Gambhir performed well in the start of the series, while Dinesh Kartikh did well in whatever opportunities he got. MS Dhoni has been very good in the series, both with the bat and behind the wickets. Surprisingly the bowlers have done well to, especially the faster bowlers (something that is not the strength of the team). In the finals India defeated Sri Lanka with a big 81 runs. In the bowling department, Praveen Kumar, Harbhajan Singh and Jadeja were good, but Nehra and Zaheer Khan were outstanding on the day. They picked up early wickets and at regular intervals, something that the team is not known for. In the batting department too, Kartikh was very good up at the top who laid the foundation for a decent score to defend. But the bowlers made this score look a mountain task to achieve.

Finally I would like to congratulate the team for the achievement and wish them best of luck for the future series. They play Sri Lanka in a test series in some time. Now we will have the return of legends, Sachin and Dravid in the team adding that extra strength. I hope they would win the series and maintain their stay at the top of the ICC Rankings chart.


24 February 2010 will be remembered in history as the day when Sachin Tendulkar created history by becoming the first player ever to score a double hundred in a One Day International. He created this by scoring 200 not out against South Africa at Gwalior. This effort also helped India win the match and seal the series, and along with it the no.2 ICC rankings in the ODI matches. Earlier his efforts in the test matches helped India maintain the number 1 position in ICC rankings of Test Matches. This record helps him achieve almost all the major batting records in ODI’s. The past one year has been great for Sachin Tendulkar in both forms of the game, and this has lead to show in the performance of the Indian cricket team as well. But yesterday’s performance can be called as the icing on the cake.

Sachin Tendulkar scored 200 in 147 balls yesterday, eclipsing many records on the way. This was his 46th ODI hundred; also he crossed the highest individual score of 194 earlier jointly held by Saeed Anwar of Pakistan and Charlie Converty of Zimbabwe. He then went on to become the first player to score a double hundred. Also this is his 5th 150+ ODI score out which 3 of them have come in the last 12 months. His innings included 25 fours which also is a record in an innings.

Many greats have applauded his efforts. While he was playing yesterday, Shane Warne tweeted and asked him to get to the world record and also said that he felt very happy that he is not bowling to him. Sunil Gavaskar applauded his effort and said that now he should try and score a 450 in a test innings and 250 in a ODI innings. Laxman also added that this effort is big and now one of the records left for Sachin is that of Lara’s 400 in a test innings. Amir Sohail added that Sachin literally was capable of this record because of his great respect to the game. I still can remember the moment when Sachin reached the Landmark and Ravi Shastri, the commentator at that moment announced that Sachin has become the first player on the planet to score a double hundred in an ODI. Many many legends came out yesterday and spoke out that Sachin really deserved to achieve this record, many of which include the likes of Kapil Dev, Zaheer Abbas, Javed Miandad, Kumar Sangakara.

If we just come down to the records now holds almost all the batting records. He now has 17594 ODI runs, Sanath Jayasurya stands next in line at 13377 about 4000 runs behind him. Sachin now has 46 ODI hundreds and next is Ricky Ponting who is at 29 hundreds 17 behind the master. Sachin has 93 fifties to his name and 139 50+ scores in ODI’s. Now Sachin also holds the highest individual ODI score of 200 and is also the only player to score an ODI double hundred. If we talk about test matches he has 13447 runs with next being Lara at 11953 more than 1500 runs behind. Sachin has 47 test hundreds and next is Ricky Ponting with 39 and is 8 hundreds behind the master. He has a 101+ 50 scores in test matches which also is a record. One thing that he probably misses is a triple hundred in test matches. If we just see his International stats he has more than 31000 runs and 93 hundreds to go with it. This record cannot be of anyone else except that of the champion’s.

To give him a testimony Vivan Richards said “I think he will fit in whatever category of cricket that has been played.. He can play in any era and at any level. I would say he is 99.5 % perfect.” A banner in Sydney by the Australian fans read “Commit all your crimes when Sachin is batting, they will go unnoticed, bcouz even Lord is busy watching him play”. I would agree with this as yesterday in India the railway budget, one of the most waited events in the country was announced, and by the end of the day not many news channels were interested in it. Everywhere there was just one news… “Sachin Tendulkar”. Even the newspapers today have this genius’s effort as their top news. I guess this really testifies the stature of this master player and also the achievement that he achieved yesterday.

In my earlier posts when I wrote about him scaling the 30000 international runs and the 13000 test run mark I did mention many records that I would love Sachin to achieve. I just forget to mention this double hundred in the list there. The others being a hundred international hundreds, well Sachin has reached 93 already and its just 7 more to go. Hopefully he may get there this year itself. Also I would love to see him win the world cup next year.
At the end I would wish him congratulations for this achievement and also wish him best of luck for his future. Hopefully he will give us many more such moments to be proud of.


The test series between India and South Africa will be similar to clash of the titans. It will be clash for No.1 spot. The winner of the test series will become the no.1 test team in the world.

With the No.1 title at stake and with so many injuries in the batting middle order, it will be up to the younger generation to grasp the opportunity and be counted. Similarly the experience players like Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, MS Dhoni, Harbhajan Singh and Zaheer Khan will have to stand up and deliver. They will have to lead the way for the new players. The form that Sachin Tendulkar, Gautam Gambhir and Zaheer Khan have displayed in the last series, will somewhat lift the spirits of the team and motivate them to give in their best shot.

Meanwhile South Africa is looking set for the clash with their full fledged team. They will definitely come very hard against India. Their bowlers are very much in form, as that is one of the most important factors as to win a match a team needs to pick up 20 wickets. With the series starting in 5 days time it looks to be a cracker of a series.

I wish the Indian team the best of luck for the series hoping that it will win the series and keep the no.1 title with them. The last time a similar series had happened against Australia (One-day), India had lost unfortunately not making it to top spot.

The Indian team for the series is MS Dhoni (capt/wk), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, S Badrinath, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Amit Mishra, Pragyan Ojha, Ishant Sharma, M Vijay, Sudeep Tyagi, Abhimanyu Mithun, Wriddhiman Saha.


Well the final scores do depict that India did Thrash Bangladesh, but to be honest it has not really been that easy as the final scores suggest. On the very first day of first test match, Bangladesh did put India in some sought of a humiliating position, by taking 8 wickets without much score on the board. If it had not been a hundred by Sachin Tendulkar, India could have found themselves in deep problems in the first match. Bangladesh came very hard at India, but just due their inexperience let the situation of the hands. And then as a big team should do India capitalized and won very comfortably.

In the second test also Bangladesh had come all guns blazing in their second innings, and made Indian team look an ordinary team, no way close to a no.1 team. They had India on the back foot. But again it was up to the experience that counted and Zaheer Khan came back to pick up two wickets of both the well settled batsman in the last few over’s of the day to put India back on top. In fact on the fourth morning it was Zaheer Khan again to get the downfall of the team by picking up 4 wickets in the space of 8 balls. And Bangladesh lost their last seven wickets for just 22 runs. India came to bat needing just 2 runs to win, and they won of the second ball of the match and that too without any of the batsman scoring the runs (a very rare occasion).

Zaheer Khan was given the man of the match award for his 10 wickets in the match and was also given the man of the series award for his 15 wickets in the series. Zaheer also became the fourth Indian fast bowler to pick up 10 wickets in an away match. Many other records were made during this series. India won their 4th consecutive match in a row, only their second time they have done it. Dhoni continued his unbeaten form in Test cricket as a captain. India registered its 5th consecutive series win. Gautam Gambhir scored his fifth century in consecutive matches. Sachin notched up his 44th and 45th hundred and in the meanwhile also passed the 13000 run mark in test matches. Dravid scored his 29th century and now is at par with Sir Donald Bradman with the total number of centuries. Harbhajan Singh picked up his 600th international wicket and now has become only the third Indian after Anil Kumble and Kapil Dev to do so. Also Sachin Tendulkar becme only the second Indian to score 22000 first-class runs.

Well these were definitely the high points of the series. But there were many low points in the firm of injuries as well. Sreesanth and Laxman got injuries in the first test match and Dravid and Yuvraj got injured during the second test. With four premier players missing, in fact we can say that complete middle order missing out it will be very tough for India in the coming series against South Africans. This will give opportunity to the young players but it will be up to them how they capitalize on this situation.

With the no.1 position in test matches up at stake in this series it will be a lot of pressure on Sachin Tendulkar, Gautam Gambhir and Zaheer Khan to carry their form from this series into the next. And also guide the young players who will be trying to fill in the void created by the injuries to the senior players.

I end this here hoping that India continue its good form and defeat South Africa in the coming series and also hold on to their no.1 position.


Well I have just got a bit late to write this post but I was just waiting for the series to get over and then write about it. But I just could not wait anymore especially when he has scored his second hundred of the series.

Sachin on his way to his 45th Test Century

Sachin Tendulkar completed 13000 runs in Test cricket in the first test match against Bangladesh on his way towards his 44th test century. He became the first batsman in the history of cricket to do so. He was also the first player to reach the 12000 peak. In fact if you see his ODI record he was the first player to achieve the mark of 10000 runs, and also every subsequent 1000 runs. Now in the second test he has scored his 45th test century and now has a total 13234 Test runs. Well 13234 test runs to go with 17394 ODI runs is a spectacular record. He has now got 45 centuries in both forms of cricket. That makes his stats as 30628 international runs with 90 centuries. Well these are brilliant statistics if nothing else.

Sachin played a spectacular innings in the first match to save the team and help win the match. He stood tall when all the wickets kept falling. Finally India won and he was awarded the man of the match. He along with Dravid stitched a brilliant partnership in the second test and has put the team in a commanding position. Well I don’t think India should lose the match from here and a win looks a very much possibility.

He has shown great temperament in the past, in fact for the past 20 years. And that is why his statistics speak for him. Not many people can get very close to him. With the closest competitors being Ricky Ponting who is about 1300 runs and 6 centuries behind in test matches while Sanath Jayasurya is about 3900 runs and 17 centuries behind him in ODIs.

Now with the No.1 position at stake against the South Africans in the next series starting in about 10 day’s time, I guess Sachin will have to take it from the front. Well if he can continue his form against them, I guess the no.1 position will not go anywhere. With the No. 1 position at stake he will have to continue his good form or the team might just lose the spot. The team will be depending heavily on him to perform especially when they know they might have to miss the experience of Dravid and Laxman due to injuries. 

Well I can hope that he does continue playing this type of cricket in future as well and for many more years. And give us many such incidents to be proud of. Now I am eagerly waiting for his 50th century in either form of cricket and also his century of centuries in international cricket.

Sachin and Dravid


Well India yet again loose in the finals of a tri-nation tournament. In the recent past, or I must say since Dhoni has taken up the captaincy, India have played well, won most of its bilateral series, almost reached to each and every final of a multi-nation tournament very comprehensively. It’s only the Champions Trophy that they could not, at least the only one i remember. But surprisingly, having reached the finals India has not been able to end the tournament as champions most of the times.

I think the team does have a lot more psychological pressure in the final, or maybe I can say that the other teams come out better prepared for the finals and it’s India who treats it just as another match. Because if you see the overall performance of the team, whenever they have played a bilateral match where, each match holds the equal importance the team has performed pretty well, and at most of the times ended the series going into the last match itself, which is very good cricket.

I think the team must look into this final problem of theirs. And its also the players that need to contribute and stand up to the occasion. A final is not just another match, in fact it’s the match that decides the fate of the performance in the tournament. Even if a team somehow manages to reach the finals and an end with winning the finals, no one remembers how they played the tournament, it also happens to the opposite scenario. If the team loses the finals no one remembers how well they played in the other matches.

If India needs to become no.1 One day team in the world and actually stay there for a long time, then the team needs to win matches on consistent basis, and must win tournament finals consistently as well. That’s the way Australians have been doing it and that was one of the reasons why it stayed at top for such a long time. They have players who rise to the occasion of the final day. India needs those kinds of performances at a regular basis. In the last tournament that happened in Sri Lanka which also featured New Zealand, It was first Sachin Tendulkar who scored a huge century and then Harbhajan Singh picked up five wickets to win the finals and become no.1 team at that time.

I feel we need these types of performances on a regular basis, if Indian wants to be No.1 One Day team in the world. The year has somewhat started on a disappointing note but hopefully it will not continue in this way. Hoping that India gives everyone some great moments to feel happy about in the near future.


India have finally reached the place where they had reached probably only in the dreams before. Yes India is now No.1 in the ICC Test Rankings, a brilliant feat to have achieved. I would say it all started with Sourav Ganguly who made the team realize that it can win matches overseas as well with wins in West Indies and Pakistan. Later Dravid proved him correct with series victory in England and also registering its only test match victory on the South African soil. Later Kumble took the position and showed his character down under in Australia. Then stepped in Dhoni where he helped defeat Australia 2-0 at home, defeated England. Went to New Zealand to win its maiden test series victory and now after defeating Sri Lanka at home, he has lead the team to the No.1 spot in test matches.

Coach Gary Kirsten joined the team 18-20 months back, and since then has coached the team to the top. Well this series has been one of those were there have been a few outstanding performances, but overall in every match every player contributed towards a win. Every player stood up to be counted and that is one of the qualities of the champion team, and that is why it has reached the position as well. Dhoni too has been a remarkable captain. He has captained the side in 10 test matches and has won in 7 of them and lost none. Although people will still question his abilities as he has not proved in conditions of South Africa, Australia or England. But I feel when he does tour there he will prove his mettle there as well. The combination is great with likes of MS Dhoni coming in at no 7 to bat and yes finally it looks that India have got the combination to pick 20 wickets regularly. Even overseas the teams will think twice before preparing a green top in front of Zaheer, Ishant and Sreesanth and the calibre of Indian batsman. Yes the spin department is not as strong as it was when kumble and Harbhajan bowled in tandem but yes with the likes of Pragyan Ojha and Amit Mishra it does not look that weak as well.

India has had a shy to the No.1 spot in ODI’s having been there 3 times in the last three months but they haven’t managed to stay there any long. Hopefully this will not happen in the test matches and they will stay there for a long time. But with just 2 matches to play in the year it is more of unfortunate for them as Australia and South Africa (the other contenders for the No.1 spot) will be playing a lot more matches.

This series has been very good for India. Sachin crossed his 30000 international rum mark (although missed his 13000 test runs mark), Dravid reached 11000 test runs, Sreesanth and Zaheer made great comebacks to the team, Sehwag became the only Indian to score 6 double hundreds (although he missed to become the only player to score 3 triple hundreds just by 7 runs), Dhoni took his 100th catch to become only the third Indian keeper to do so and also scored 2 test centuries in the series to become the only wicketkeeper captain to do so, Gambhir became one of the few batsman to score four centuries in 4 consecutive matches. Apart from the individual feats India registered its 100th test victory in the series and yes to top it all it has become the world No.1 test side for the first time ever.

With all these records coming in the series, I can realize what a memorable series it has been for the country. Anyways in the end I would say that I am very happy for what the team has achieved and hope that it can maintain its position for a long time. And in the end I would like to congratulate the team for its great achievement and hope that they give us many more such moments to be proud of in future.

The ICC standings as of  6th Dec 2009

ICC Test Rankings

    Team            Points
1.  India                   124
2.  South Africa         122
3.  Australia             116
4.  Sri Lanka             115
5.  England               105
6.  Pakistan               84
7.  New Zealand        80
8.  West Indies           76
9.  Bangladesh           13

 ICC ODI Rankings

     Team            Points
1.  Australia              130
2.  India                    122
3.  South Africa          119
4.  New Zealand        112
5.  England               109
6.  Pakistan              108
7.  Sri Lanka             106
8.  West Indies            76
9.  Bangladesh           55
10.Zimbabwe            26
11. Ireland                25
12. Kenya                   2