Posted on/at 1:39 PM by The Cricket Corollary
Posted on/at 1:27 PM by The Cricket Corollary
It won’t be any sort of consolation but, when they reflect on their achievement in reaching the final, the Black Caps should – and hopefully will – feel very proud of themselves.
Even during the final when things once again looked bleak and their backs were to the wall, they carried on fighting and refused to give up. We’ve all been in situations which seem hopeless – and we all have some experience of escaping from them and winning games which had surely seemed lost. Every run might be vital and that’s the way you have to play, either batting or fielding. Treat every run you score, or save, as though the match depends on it.
Australia, on the other hand, oozed confidence from the first day of the tournament until the last. Ricky Ponting’s men might not be able to repeat the feats of Gilchrist, Hayden and McGrath on the field but they can copy the body language of their great predecessors and learn to play like winners.
Personally I really enjoyed watching the top orders battle against the new ball on a pitch which offered the fast bowlers seam movement. It may have been said a hundred times already but that’s no reason not to say it again: Cricket is a contest between bat and ball and when conditions are loaded unduly in favour of one above the other then it is no longer a contest. At least, not a fair one.
Opening batsmen should have to work hard in the early stages of any game before conditions become a little easier. That’s why I batted in the middle order!
No doubt the debate and discussion will continue about the future of the 50-over format but, in my opinion, this tournament has done more than enough to remind people that there is still a place for all three formats of the game. I would happily entertain the idea of reducing ODIs to 40 overs and using up all power-plays by the 35th over but it doesn’t have to happen as a matter of urgency, if at all.
It may not have been a ‘classic’ tournament or one which will stick in our memories for years to come but it was still a fine tournament, well organised and well supported. You cannot hope for a classic race every time, even when the best teams in the world are involved.
As a batsmen I have to say that watching a man score an unbeaten hundred to win a match is one of the most satisfying things you can hope to see. Goodness only knows how satisfied Shane Watson must feel after doing it twice in consecutive matches!
Posted on/at 5:32 AM by The Cricket Corollary
What do you make of India's early exit in the ICC Champions Trophy?
Posted on/at 5:24 AM by The Cricket Corollary
Posted on/at 11:26 AM by The Cricket Corollary
It is a big tournament for me, especially considering that the third edition of IPL is going to be held in India. So I hope to build a sound platform for IPL by getting to know the sub-continent conditions through the Champions League.
How different is playing in the CL from playing for the Mumbai Indians?
It will be a new experience for me in terms of playing in India as we will be playing in front of a different sort of crowd. While playing for the Mumbai team I had a chance to interact with players from different parts of the world. But here I will be playing with the guys I have known for years. Whether it is for South Africa or Mumbai or for Cobras my aim is to help my team win.
You are a key player for Cobras. Does that put any pressure on you?
Not really. I am not worried about expectations that people have from me. Obviously, it will be big challenge for me to play and excel in a tournament like the CLT20, but that is something I am eagerly waiting for. Here I have to adapt quickly to the sub-continent conditions as they differ from what we get in South Africa. I really feel confident about the tournament and our chances in the Champions League.
Have you assessed your first opponents, the Royal Challengers Bangalore?
Well, they definitely are a good side. That they were runners-up in the IPL shows their strength. They have some exceptional players in their ranks like Dravid and Kumble But Cobras are right up for the challenge.
Does the absence of Graeme Smith affect your chances?
It will be tough to replace a guy like Graeme. But I feel we have enough depth in our ranks to seriously challenge our opponents. I think we have a very good skipper in Andrew Puckett who has good experience of the intricacies of T20 format. We just need to focus on our strengths and a good start will go a long way in boosting our chances in the CL.
There is a lot of talk about T20 affecting the future of Tests and one-dayers. Your take?
I feel Test cricket is going to stay no matter what. We have seen huge crowds in the Australia vs South Africa series in both the countries and the Ashes too draw a lot of viewers. So there will be crowd for good and tight contests. It (T20) might affect the one-dayers, unless the authorities come up with some modifications to the existing format. I guess it will need a special effort to keep the one-dayers going.
Do you think playing in tournaments like CL will help South African domestic cricket?
Oh yes. It will be a good experience for many guys in the team, especially the young ones who will get a hang of different conditions. But the process will take some time to come into full effect.
Posted on/at 11:24 AM by The Cricket Corollary
Diamond Eagles are generally up against the domestic teams of
It is obviously going to be challenging for us but we have tried to collect as much of information as possible about the other teams and have come well prepared to deal with it. Out main focus, though, would be on our own game. We have done very well as a team and we are fully aware of our strengths and weaknesses. We will play accordingly and try to give our best on the field.
Your team doesn't have too many big stars as compared to the other teams in the tournament. Do you think that is going to be a disadvantage?
Which team do you rate as the most difficult to beat in the Airtel Champions League Twenty20 2009?
What do you think about the concept of top domestic cricketing teams contesting in a tournament?
Do you think with no national interest at stake, this concept is going to work here in
How will your own experience of playing international cricket help the team consisting of all youngsters, who do not have much experience of playing outside
On a personal note, do you miss playing international cricket?
Do you think the Airtel Champions League Twenty20 will give you similar opportunities as international cricket used to? How much are you looking forward to it?
Although you could never cement your Test place in the South African squad, you always managed to find a place for yourself in the ODI team for most of your international career. Would you say that your style of play is more suited to the shorter version of the games?
Although, the international records suggest that, I don't think so. I have always enjoyed the longer version of the game more and according to me, scoring runs in a Test match or a four-day game is always more satisfying as a batsman than hitting runs in one-dayers or T20s. No doubt Twenty20 cricket is very good, but Test cricket is obviously the best format of the game.