• In the trailer of Fire in Babylon, destined to be top of the Christmas wish-list for any serious cricket fan, Viv Richards says: "It's history that you'll never forget". It's also a requiem for an Empire that time forgot, a team that evoked such awe that those who didn't watch them will never quite fathom just how good or intimidating they were. Years ago, when I asked Michael Holding about Steve Waugh and 'mental disintegration', he just smirked. "We spoke with the ball," said the Rolls Royce of pace bowlers. "We didn't have to say anything."

     

    Just how good were they? Well, between March 1976 and March 1995, they lost just one series, in New Zealand, a contest marred by officiating so wretched that it should have hastened the emergence of neutral umpires. There was also a 2-0 loss in India in 1978-79, of little relevance when you consider that the cream of Caribbean talent was on show in Kerry Packer's World Series at the time.

     

    Rob Steen, who reviewed the movie recently, put their

    Read More »from The Greatest Team. Ever
  • Now that India is firmly perched on top in the ICC Test rankings and are second in the ODI rankings there is praise being heaped all round. Not unexpectedly, the batsmen have received the lion's share of the encomiums but the bowlers too have garnered their share of praise. There have been plaudits too for Dhoni's leadership qualities – though he is still considered by many to be the Man with the Midas touch – while a few good things are said every now and then about coach Gary Kirsten. 

     

    But there is one set of people associated with the game who never get any praise even when the team is doing well. And, they are harshly criticized when the team fares badly as if it is only their fault. Oh yes, selectors have a thankless task. They cannot please everyone and are sitting ducks for potshots. Some of the comments on the selection of Indian teams can be downright uncharitable. A few years ago, a website carried a scathing article terming the selectors as 'five blind men'. The piece was

    Read More »from Selectors have a thankless task
  • - This game was abandoned without a ball being bowled providing the 76th such occasion in the history of one day internationals.

     

    - This game provides the eighth occasion of an abandoned game in India. The eight occasions are – vs New Zealand at Jammu on 19.12.88: vs New Zealand at Margao on 21.11.95: vs Australia at Cuttack on 27.10.96: vs South Africa at Chennai on 22.11.05: vs England at Guwahathi on 09.04.06: vs Australia at Mum-DYP on 11.11.09: vs Australia at Kochi on 17.10.10 and vs Australia at Margao on 24.10.10.

     

    - India is second in the list of countries with most abandoned games. Sri Lanka leads the list with 12 abandoned games.

     

    - Countrywise break up of 76 abandoned games read thus – Australia {03} : Bangladesh {02} : Canada {03}: England {05}: India {08}: Ireland {02} : Kenya {04} : Netherlands {03} : New Zealand {05} : Pakistan {06} : Scotland {05}: South Africa {06} : Sri Lanka {12} : West Indies {06} and Zimbabwe {05}.

     

    - Margao is the only ground in India to

    Read More »from 3rd ODI: India va Australia at Margao – Statistical Highlights

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