More on that later. A fantastic comeback by the Indian side to rescue a forlorn effort at 69/5 inside 15 overs to winning the match by 16 runs. Most of the plaudits have been awarded to Sachin Tendulkar and Harbhajan Singh, rightfully so too – to an extent.
Tendulkar stamped his unequivocal class all over the innings, once again, to prove he is far from over the hill. Bhajji showed us what he can do with help from the other end. One remembers Harbhajan bowling 10 overs for 20 to 25 runs in ODIs last season, without managing to pick up a bag. I had put it down to bad luck and I am sticking with that call. As Bejaan Daaruwala will rightfully lecture you, when the stars are misaligned, there is precious little a mere mortal can do.
However, the real hero of the night for me was my man Sreesanth. As Dileep Premachandran testifies here, Sreesanth was “bowling just about the quickest spell seen from an Indian since Ashish Nehra's heroics at the World Cup in 2003.” Whats more, is that he was bowling it in the right places.
Sreesanth is undoubtedly talented. Nevertheless, it is his attitude that has the capability to inspire his peers. It is his confidence that wins him half his battles. These qualities oozed from both, Harbhajan and Sreesanth last night and helped the team overcome a helpless situation. These are the very qualities that the team should thank the venerable Sourav Ganguly for, for it was he who opened their eyes to this state of mind.
It is for these very qualities that I believe the Indian selectors have erred horrendously in omitting Sreesanth from the Champions Trophy squad. He is a livewire. He is a match winner. He should be assisted in reaching every pedestal he can, in order to display his wondrous wares.
PS. I hope Irfan was watching him closely last night. He may have snuck a glimpse of how he was when he first wowed us with his mastery.
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