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IPL 2010 – Truly Global

Friday, January 22nd, 2010

As the players auction concluded , we are all set to see the 3rd edition of Indian Premier league embark on. Lalit Modi has made a giant leap in pursuit of making the IPL a global event, by singing a 2 year deal with the Google-owned YouTube. As per this deal, YouTube users can see the live streaming of IPL 2010 through internet. This will also enable the UK spectators to see the IPL, as they would have missed the action due to television rights disputes.

The snubbing of the Pakistani players has sent a strong signal across the cricketing globe that, the players cant take the IPL for granted. If they are willing to lay majority of the matches, then they will get  contract. Many Australian players lost the contact due to this and Pakistanis lost it due to the animosity among the two nations.

So, after all the auction and broadcasting drama, the stage has set for breathtaking season of the Indian Premier League. Shane Bond is coming for his maiden IPL year, so is Keron Pollard. There are lot of quality bowlers and hard-hitting batsmen in this years IPL and we hope we will witness some scintillating matches like in 2008 and 2009.

ERRAND OF A COACH

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

What enters into the preamble of the role of a coach? How it is effective in the slice of sports and games? What is the real indication of a tutor and the way of his instruction to the pupils? All the above interrogations are often coming to mind of people who are involved in the field of sports and games. While we are instructing something about sports and games, a coach should be aware of the morrow of that particular game and he should have penchant on that game.

A real Coach should be a very good Communicator for providing clear instruction and feedback to the team and Individual players. Coach should be a good Teacher for developing the players’ skills and team tactics. Coach should be a very good Motivator for maintaining and controlling interest in players. Coach should be a very good Leader for organizing training, match day activities. Coach should be a very good Psychologist for dealing with various individual’s need and team. Coach should be a very good Manager for dealing with a wide range of players, officials and supporters. Coach should be a very good Sports supporter for developing fitness programs, injury prevention, care and management. Coach should be a very good Selector for selecting the team to best represent the club. Coach should be a very good Student for seeking continually to upgrade his knowledge of the game. Coach should be a very good Public Relations Expert for representing the club at official functions and community activities. Furthermore, there are some fundamental qualities of a coach viz; respect the individual, should have professionalism, capabilities to keep goal setting, using assistants, should have virtual planning for the preparation of innovative sessions, responsible for safety & fitness, should keep communication with learners, should have player discipline, should have potentialities for developing team spirit, should have ability to praising players’ responsibilities and skills, and capability to sustain team plan etc.. Moreover, a coach should summaries key points learnt from the exercise and encourage further practice.

It is a rhythm of coach that he never ever be a negative character or possessing discouraging attitude. Normal theory is that a coach should merely love the game and his players. It is not in a way of compelling students to improve their game and spirit. Real coach should express his views and skills and convert it into the mind of his/her students. Never ever use any abusing language in front of any learners, never demoralize any learner and do not create any misbehaving situations. Praise well, treat well and love them always, so that he could create a quality sportsman or a sportswoman.

Extra-time or Sudden-death?

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

ODI cricket has reached a critical juncture now and the success or failure of Champions Trophy 2009 will determine its future. The cricketing world is abuzz about ‘Saving ODI’ Cricket or scrapping it off. Plenty of attractive ideas have been invoked by several former and current players including the likes of Sachin Tendulkar.

This edition of Champions Trophy is perhaps the best edition according to format. It is short, sweet and would provide plenty of high-voltage contests due to the participation of all the strong teams. A mediocre West Indies would remain as an aberration, however most of the matches promise high-octane contests.

This is the first ICC tournament after a draggy World Cup at the Caribbean in 2007. The criticisms raised from that tournament could be decisive in the growth of ODI’s.

If the Champions Trophy turns out as a failure, then ICC would be pondering on different ideas to improve ODI Cricket. And, if it turns out as a success, then also ICC would have to take some measures to make this attractive, as at present, several bi-lateral series are being played in front of fewer crowds. So this Champion’s Trophy would be either give some extra-time for the ODI’s or it will mark its demise.

Too Much of Cricket Will Spoil the Game

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

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There have been a lot of heated discussions prevailing in the cricketing world to ‘control’ the game. What does this ‘control’ imply? Is this to control the T20 matches to make the traditional versions alive or to truncate the Test matches and the ODI matches to increase the gush of money to cricket? ICC, at the helm of cricket is in a dilemma to choose the best for cricket; to make it popular at the same time not diluting it.

FIFA – the perfect example

So, what is the real concern? There are lots of wise men at the helm; however they couldn’t come to a conclusion to find the resolution for this ‘concern’. There are many things which cricket could learn from Football.  Being a game of small-duration, spectators endorse the brevity of Football, which perhaps is the main reason why it has roots across the globe. Being played in over 200 countries, football hardly has any crisis which threatens its existence. FIFA, the governing body of Football has the last word in football, when it comes to a decision. They continuously improve the game by applying new rules that would entice the spectators at the same time won’t kill the soul of the game. ICC should come up with new revenue models so that they stay on the top of the national cricket boards. Currently, ICC hardly has any power to stand against the power houses – India, Australia, England and South Africa. BCCI, the Indian cricket board stands tall due to the chunk of revenue coming from India.

Too Many Matches

‘Too many cooks spoil the broth’ is perhaps 100% correct in the case of cricket. Let’s take the example of India – Pakistan matches before 2005 and after 2005. Though the matches played after 2005 were in front of a full house, the intensity plunged due to matches played often between them. The 80’s and the 90’s experienced lot of high-voltage contests between the two and never lacked the exuberance. Contrary to the current scenario is the Ashes series, which is not played very often, attracts lot of spectators and never lacks the intensity. It is the dream of every Aussie or English player to win the Ashes urn more than a World Cup simply because of the legacy it carries. Downsizing the number of bilateral series and implementing more 3 nation or 4 nation tournaments is also another solution.

Fortifying the grass-root level

The respective Cricket Boards should strengthen their domestic structure to form a good pool of potential players, who could represent their nation at any point. If the domestic structure is robust then, the team won’t lose its momentum when a senior player retires. Apart from this effort, the ICC should conduct the U-19 World Cup and other junior level ICC tournaments in more serious ways as these tournaments are the stepping stone for the youngsters to the International cricket.

All the efforts will go fruitless, if the member nations won’t participate actively. ICC could only formulate plans, which should be carried out by the member nations, who should not show their financial arrogance when decisions concerning the fate of the game are made.

BCCI Flex Muscles Yet Again

Monday, August 31st, 2009

In what is said to be a controversial revelation, the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) chief Julian Hunte has told reporters that India, the financial super power of cricket has dismissed the proposal by ICC to setup a World Test Championship around the four year cycle. Being a full-time ICC member, Hunte’s disclosure will wallop the cricketing world that is already rocked by several controversies.

According to Hunte, ICC was considering a Super League – a four year structure resulting in a World Test Championship as a part of changing the structure of the Future Tour Programs (FTP) after 2012. Hunte exposed the decision-making power of 4 commercially valued members headed by India in the ICC meeting. Though Hunte hadn’t revealed their names, it is well understood that the other 3 super powers are England, South Africa and Australia.

Hunte also revealed that a few members of the ICC are skeptical about the motives of the IPL team promoters. He told that the ICC should take reasonable steps to take hold of the game as it’s in a crucial juncture.

The main reason for BCCI’s rejection is the sharing of broadcasting revenue from a central pool, which would not be profitable for them unlike other tournaments. As 70% of the ICC’s revenue comes from India, it makes it difficult for the ICC to stand against India.

Cracking The WADA Code

Monday, August 3rd, 2009

The Signing of WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) code has triggered another confrontation between the International Cricket Council (ICC) and the Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI). The tension has now stepped up after the Federation of International Cricketers (FICA) warned the ICC for giving any leeway for the Indian players.

The International Olympic Committee too has initiated WADA as a part of its continuous endeavor to wipe out doping from the world of sports. The signing of this code which started off with the athletes from the Olympic events later spread across events outside Olympics.

The main constraint in this code is revealing the whereabouts of the players to WADA, which is unacceptable for the Indian players. Due to their tight match schedule and security issues it will be tough for them to reveal their details in advance. Though several other celebrity players have signed this code including Roger Federer and Usain Bolt, the level of security threats against the Indian players are quite higher.

FICA’s intervention in this clash is not really related to any player’s concern but to voice against the Indian players, who are not part of them. ICC has begun talks with BCCI to sort out this issue, however WADA has made it very clear that there will not be any leeway for the Indian players as several other players have signed this without any hesitation.

History Beckons The Arch Rivals

Sunday, July 19th, 2009

This Lords Test will go down in history, irregardless of its result, apart from a draw. If Australia wins, then they would create the record of the highest successful run chase in the history of cricket. Vice versa, England will end their 75-year-old winning drought at the Cathedral of cricket, against the mighty Aussies.

Earlier, England declared at their overnight score of 311/6, with Australia needing 521 to win the test match. Andrew Flintoff jolted Australia with his rattling pace, dismissing Phil Hughes and Simon Katich in the early overs. Greame Swann joined the party with a couple of wickets after Stuart Broad sent back Ricky Ponting with an inswinger. A slaughter had looked apparent at that time. However, Brad haddin joined Michael Clarke and the pair put Australia in a position, from where they could seriously look for a victory. Australian batsmen cannot be blamed completely for their dismal batting as Hussey and Hughes fell due to poor umpiring. This would trigger off another controversy, if Australia come anywhere close to their target of 521 runs.

England looked solid on day four after their enterprising declaration, which would get them six sessions to bowl-out the Australians. Flintoff showed no signs of injury as he bowled long overs with good pace. He was rewarded with the wickets of both the openers, though Phil Hughes’s dismissal was doubtful. Swann bowled with lot of variations and he got couple of wickets, which included an arm ball to dismiss Marcus North. Stuart Broad became the second fastest English bowler after Ian Botham to get 50 wickets. He couldn’t get a better one than Ponting’s wicket, as he scalped the Australian captain with a perfect inswinger.

Another nail-biter awaits the spectators at the home of cricket and it won’t get any bigger than this. To seal a win, England needs to take five wickets and Australia need to score 209 runs. Test Cricket is joining the excitement created by the T20 matches. If we witness more test matches of this quality, then Test Cricket will definitely have its place in cricket, even if there are 100 T20 matches played in a year.

Persistent Strauss propelled England to 364

Friday, July 17th, 2009

Andrew Strauss marked a delightful as well as a mesmerizing knock at the cathedral of cricket, which propelled England to 364 for the loss of 6 wickets. At one stage, they were 222 for the loss of 2 wickets but a dismal performance by their middle order helped Australia to gain the momentum exactly like the Cardiff test.
Earlier, once again, the coin swung in favor of England and they hardly had any hesitation to bat first on a placid track. Mitchell Johnson’s woe with the new-ball continued as he bowled a terrible opening spell that helped the English openers to cut loose. He bowled cross-seam deliveries, which had no effect on a flat track and was comfortable for the batsmen to put it way with the pace he was bowling. Siddle was fiery from the start but the wickets column doesn’t reveal the truth. It was a huge blow when Hauritz walked off the pitch due to a finger dislocation but England failed to capitalize on that. Kevin Pieterson got a good start, however a ripper from Siddle ended that. In his last test at lords, Andrew Flintoff never looked comfortable against reverse swing and finally gave his wicket to a determined Hilfenhaus.
It is now a huge responsibility on the shoulders of Andrew Strauss to get a score defendable for the English bowlers. According to the wicket, 500 would be a par score but with Strauss as the only specialist batsmen, it looks highly unlikely. On the other hand, Australia will be looking to wrap up the tail in no time so they can post a good total to come back in to this match. Nevertheless, the contest is getting more compressed as it is hard to choose the winner. Anyway it is good for test cricket, which has been choked after T20 emerged as the favorite brand of cricket.

Flintoff Is Off Again

Tuesday, July 14th, 2009

After twisting his knee during the first innings, Andrew Flintoff is all set to miss the second test of the 2009 Ashes, which will begin on Thursday. Having salvaged a draw at Cardiff, England would definitely be looking for a better performance in the next matches and it will be a huge blow if Flintoff is ruled out. He was definitely the pick of the English bowlers who looked to threaten the Australian batsmen.

The inclusion of in-form Harmmison will be a boost for England, however they cannot overlook the all-round abilities of Flintoff, who was instrumental in the Ashes triumph in 2005. The England lacked zip and never looked ominous apart from Flintoff. Their decision to play 2 spinners backfired after both Panesar and Swann were whacked by the Australian batsmen. Anderson was economical and got couple of wickets, however Stuart broad had an under whelming performance with just a wicket to talk about.

Strauss won’t have many things to ponder, apart from the dismal form of Alastair Cook, who failed in both innings. England might give him another chance since they wouldn’t want to change their combination amidst an important series.

Collingwood Rescued England On An Action-Packed Final Day

Monday, July 13th, 2009

The final day started off with an altercation between Kevin Pieterson and Mitchell Johnson when the former hit a ball at the Australians during the pre-match practice session. This tension spread to the turf and until the end of the match, few more spats happened. This gave new vigor to the match which lacked energy when it commenced.

England started off the final day with tremendous pressure of having to save the match. Australia ran into the English top order, confining them to 55 for 4 wickets at drinks. Pieterson was the first man to go after missing a straight one from Hilfenhaus, who bowled extremely well right throughout this test match. England found itself in deep trouble after Strauss was caught behind by Brad Haddin off Nathan Hauritz. They went in to lunch with a sorry-looking scorecard of 102 runs for the loss of 5 wickets. In the 50th over, Flintoff edged a Johnson delivery to captain Ricky Ponting which resulted in yet another verbal exchange. As soon as Flintoff perished, victory looked apparent for the Australians and they bowled with zest to knock England out.

Peter Siddle bowled a fiery spell against Greame Swann, who looked rather uncomfortable against his short deliveries. Siddle targeted his head couple of times and the English physio had a busy 5th day nursing these blows. Few times, when the ball hit Swann’s helmet and gloves, Siddle got elated and sent few pleasantries at the batsman. Even amidst these tense moments, Haddin and Swann shared a grin, which you would see very rarely in the Ashes. After a long and hard battle, Swann was finally trapped in front of the wicket by Hilfenhaus. This dismissal almost sealed an Australian victory, with 18 odd overs to bowl. However, Collingwood had other plans in mind and he was well supported by a defiant Anderson who worked hard to save his wicket. Finally, Peter Siddle sent back Collingwood after a match-saving innings from the latter.

Tension loomed large over Cardiff as dusk began to fall. Australia juggled their bowlers in pursuit of that odd wicket, but was denied it by a determined Panesar and Anderson. In the end, it can be termed as England sealed a draw. However the Australian captain was miffed at the on-field disruptions by the physio and the 12th man, which eventually lost an over for Australia and also a victory.

Cardiff test started off as an ordinary test match yet had everyone on the edge of their seats at the end. Now as the teams move towards the home of cricket at Lords, the flow of adrenaline has intensified and the on field tiffs will set ablaze this exciting test series.

Both teams were matched even on papers before the start of the series and now Australia hold a slight edge for the intensity at which they are playing. It would be an uphill task for the English men to reclaim the Ashes urn against this defiant Australian outfit.


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