There are enough distractions to take the spotlight away from cricket this time around-what with Ganguly's retirement, talks about the Fab-four and of course Sachin's land mark feat.
But, a grave issue confronting India is the form of Anil Kumble. He has looked very pedestrian in the last few series and showed no indications of returning to form in the first test. His average has risen dangerously close to 30.00 and by almost a point since the beginning of 2008.
Picking up new batsmen, debutantes, tail enders, used to come naturally to Kumble and unfortunately for India, Kumble and the viewer, this quality seems to have deserted him, hopefully for the time being.
Very uncharacteristically, he was bowling to much on the pads of the batsmen and the likes of Watson, Haddin and White (who used to be his "staple diet" in his prime) had an easy outing against him. He was not very economical as well and that is also a huge cause for concern since he is also a stock bowler for India.
His captaincy has drawn a lot of flak from experts. From what little I saw of the first test, it appeared as though he was being very defensive and unimaginative, much like Rahul Dravid. For a short time, when Dhoni was leading, on the fourth day, suddenly there was a buzz all over the stadium and always looked like something was going to happen. Ponting's dismissal in the second innings is a classic case in point. As soon as Kumble came back, field placing was very conservative (on a dead track) and there was never a moment again when it seemed the bowling was on top. He delayed his introduction into the attack too much (after he had to wait for not being on the field). He never troubled the Aussie batsmen one bit and looked to contain more than picking up wickets, which he did not.
With what may well be his swan song, I just hope Kumble comes back strongly at his favourite ground. He wouldn't want to go on a low (and I certainly don't) after serving the country so well.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Life in the US is already getting a little too fast for me. What with 3 assignments to submit every week, and the the worst part is that I have to do them all alone ! "Get up-take bath-have break fast-go to class-have lunch-do assignments-cook-eat-sleep", is what pretty much makes up my routine and it doesn't take an Einstein to figure out that it's a boring routine to have.
But, amidst the dull monotony an interesting thing happened this weekend. I was on a call with home and was taking a walk on a bright Sunday evening. I was just a few blocks away from my house.
I was happily chatting away on the phone and hence didn't realize that a car had pulled up right next me. A couple of guys walked out of the car and approached me. One from behind (B1) and the other from the side(B2). When B1 was a couple of feet away from me, he told me (in a 'soft' voice) not to run. Instinctively I just took off and B2 followed me. Thanks to Ruby Cup and the cricket playing culture at NITT, I quite 'easily' managed to outrun B2!!!
With my house only a few blocks away (luckily!!), I manged to enter the "safe" zone very quickly and even before I could enter my compound, I could see the guys speed off in their car ( a Volkswagen Jetta!!) shouting out at me.
They must have been furious with themselves for having missed out on a nice gold chain and a mobile phone. And what must have added insult to injury is the fact that I managed to outrun them!!
(I guess the title is explanatory)
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