Tuesday, August 07, 2007


Twenty20 World Cup: Gazing Into Indian Cricket's Crystal Ball

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Ladies and gentlemen, congratulations on witnessing an almighty miracle.

The Indian selectors, whether by their own design or by somebody else's, have finally showed us their future hand. They were not "burdened" with the need to select any of the seniors and, for probably the first time in the history of Indian cricket, have chosen an international squad based solely on form and ability.

After Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly made themselves unavailable for selection for the Twenty20 World Cup, we will be able to grab a glimpse of what the future of Indian cricket really has in store for us; whether there the talent cupboard is, in fact, totally and utterly bare.

Cricinfo reports that Dilip Vengsarkar and his band of foolish merry men have chosen the likes of Joginder Sharma, Yusuf Pathan, Piyush Chawla and Rohit Sharma to play alongside the comeback men - Virender Sehwag, Harbhajan Singh and Irfan Pathan.

I still don't know what Sehwag and Harbhajan have done to deserve a recall to international ranks since their dropping, but, I figure that this is merely an attempt to allow them the slam-bang format to whip themselves into form. Irfan Pathan, by all accounts (even his), has had a very fruitful spell at the MRF Academy and on the India A tour of Zimbabwe.

I have a feeling Manoj Tiwary would have made the team had he not injured his shoulder. It would have been interesting to see which player missed out had Tiwary been included. One figures it would have been Gautam Gambhir or Robin Uthappa, as opposed to a Virender Sehwag.

Dhoni's chance to show is tactical abilities as captain also comes with a great sense of responsibility, especially in how he chooses to handle the likes of Piyush Chawla and Yusuf Pathan. Discounting the success of Dinesh Mongia's slow bowling in County Twenty20 cricket, most spinners would find the going a little tougher than they would be used to. It will be for Mahendra Singh Dhoni to prove that he can handle these young lads with skill and care.

Lets hope that the least we see from this group is some attitude, some skill and a hell of a lot of fight. It will stand them in the best stead for when they are called up to play with the big boys.

The full squad for your perusal and honest comment:
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Captain), Yuvraj Singh, Virender Sehwag, Harbhajan Singh, Ajit Agarkar, Dinesh Karthik, Gautam Gambhir, Robin Uthappa, Joginder Sharma, Yusuf Pathan, Piyush Chawla, Sreesanth, Irfan Pathan, RP Singh and Rohit Sharma

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