The former Indian cricket captain, Sourav Ganguly is back in the Indian Premier arena once again. He has been appointed by Delhi Capitals, as an advisor for the upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 season. With IPL beginning on March 23, Delhi will be starting their campaign on March 24 and will face three times champion Mumbai Indian at Wankhede Stadium.
Ganguly To Share Dressing Room With Ex Cricketers
Delhi Capitals welcomed Sourav Ganguly and welcome him on their official Twitter handle, “Tigers, say hello to our Royal Bengal Tiger! We’re delighted to welcome @SGanguly99 to Delhi Capitals, in the role of an Advisor.”
Sourav Ganguly’s IPL journey began in 2008 as the captain of Kolkata Knight Riders. He played for the Kolkata-based franchise till the time Gautam Gambhir was handed over the responsibility. Gambhir led KKR to two IPL titles. While Sourav Ganguly is joining Delhi as an advisor, has been already appointed Mohammad Kaif as their assistant coach. These two ex-teammates will be joining former Australia Captain Ricky Ponting to make the strategy for Delhi.
Rejuvenated Delhi Capitals for IPL 2019
Shreyas Iyer led Delhi Capitals launched their new jersey a few days back. With the captain, Rishabh Pant and Prithvi Shaw were featured in a video with the new jersey. Delhi has been one of the most inconsistent teams in the Indian Premier League. Now with everything new- from advisor and mentor to jersey and name, hopefully, they will be able to change their IPL luck this season.
During any season of the IPL, all eyes are naturally on the captain of any national side, as all their fans expect them to score the maximum number of runs.
In the case of teams such as Chennai Super Kings, for example, a large number of people follow the team mainly because their favorite captain, MS Dhoni is in the franchise. However, there have been various instances where international skippers have failed to perform, showing various weaknesses about their technique and footwork.
Here’s taking a look at some captains who have failed in the T20 league.
Misbah-Ul-Haq was one of the success stories from Pakistan, becoming one of the most celebrated cricket captains of the country. However, he failed to replicate his success in the IPL. His first stint with IPL team Royal Challengers Bangalore proved to be a mismatch, as he managed a measly 117 runs, averaging at 16.71. Moreover, as Pakistan got banned from the tournament, a rehash of his work was never seen.
With a debut with Kolkata Knight Riders, all seemed well for the Sri Lankan skipper. However, he was dropped after just one match and was picked up by Pune Warriors India henceforth (2011-2013). His only half-century in the tournament was an unbeaten 65 against Deccan Chargers. Furthermore, he picked up only 20 wickets for the franchise, with best bowling figures at 4/19. He went on to play for Delhi Daredevils scoring 176 runs in two seasons and was eventually ignored.
The skipper from West Indies was just a bench warmer for Chennai Super Kings all throughout 2013, but in 2014 he did not help his team at all, getting 2/84 in six matches. After that, he was picked up by Sunrisers Hyderabad, but also could not contribute anything substantial, picking up one wicket in the single match he played. Lastly, he went on to KKR, but the stint did not suit him as well, as he picked up merely 2 wickets in 4 games.
Beginning with Royal Challengers Bangalore, Ross Taylor was in for a rocky ride from the beginning. He scored just one fifty the entire season, totaling 149 runs. He did not score a fifty till 2012 when he played for Delhi Daredevils. His IPL record is poor, with 1017 runs in 55 matches, and only three half-centuries.
The Indian stalwart could not live up to his legendary status during the IPL. Starting off as the skipper for KKR, he scored just 349 runs in 13 games, with a strike rate of 113.68. His captaincy was heavily criticized alongside his game. In 2009, despite the team bending over for him with different captains, he could score only 189 runs in 13 matches, with an average of 17.18. 2010 was his best year, with 493 runs in 14 matches. Once released from KKR, he went on to play for Pune Warriors India but failed there as well.
After a thrilling Sydney test match, 2008 that India lost with few minutes of the last hour remaining on the final day Perth test became a stage for India to bounce back.
On January 19, 2008, India won their 5th test match on Australian soil in Perth. The victory was significant and vital for the Indian team due to a lot of reasons.
2008 Sydney test match saw one of the most controversial encounters between India and Australia. On the 5th day of the match, Australia scored 333 runs and declared innings just before the lunch. With only two sessions left to chase that massive target, India lost 3 quick wickets including Laxman and Tendulkar with just 54 on the board, although one of those was on a No-ball. Dravid and Ganguly batted together for more than 15 overs and added 61 runs. Then Dravid was given out caught-behind when his bat was nowhere close to the ball. Few overs later Ganguly was given out caught in the slip but the catch by Michael Clarke was not at all conclusive. But instead of checking with the third umpire, Mark Benson checked with Ricky Ponting and gave out. India collapsed at the last moment and got all out with just 9 minutes of play remaining. Later in the post-match press session a visibly upset Indian captain Anil Kumble asked a question on Australian team’s integrity. In fact, BCCI made an official complaint about incompetent umpiring.
During the same match, Harbhajan Singh and Andrew Symonds went into racism controversy. The entire scenario is known as the ‘Monkeygate’ saga almost threatened to affect the relations between the two countries.
When men in blue appeared for the Perth test match, they were definitely not in the best of their mental state. However, Indians were keen to prove their metal with an inspired performance which could have been the best possible reply to the yellow brigade. Elected to bat first India were soon 59 for 2 when Rahul Dravid took the charge. Rahul Dravid (93) and Sachin Tendulkar (71) with a steady contribution from lower order helped India to reach 330. The partnership of 139 between Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar was all that India required at that stage. In reply, Australia were all out for 212. Only Symonds (66) and Gilchrist (55) could perform decently against India’s outstanding bowling. Only RP Singh took 4 wickets in the first innings and secured a 118 lead for India.
India were struggling in the second innings when VVS Laxman again showed his very very special skill against Australia and scored an elegant 79. Indians finally put a target of 413 for the mighty Australians. Indian bowling side had everything in store to trouble Ponting and co. Irfan Pathan was devastating. He picked up the openers in Australia’s both innings and finished the match with 5 wicket haul. A young, 18-year old Ishant Sharma’s spell kept troubling Ponting and gave him memories that he would probably never forget. The angry Indian captain poured all he had on the track and took four wickets in the match and joined the club of 600 wicket takers along with Shane Warne and Muttiah Muralitharan. Australia kept trying to defend but in the end, on day five, 19th Jan, India won the match by 72 runs.
This was a much-needed victory for the Indian team after those couple of troubled weeks. This was even the first win for any sub-continental team at Perth and a memorable comeback for India in the series. In fact, this was the second time that India denied a consecutive 17 test win for Australia after they did the same in 2001 Kolkata test.
It was Independence Cup third final in 1998. India and Pakistan, the arch-rivals were facing each other on this day, twenty one years back in Dhaka. Pakistan set a daunting target of 315 and India had to chase it in just 48 overs, which was quite an impossible task back then. Even the biggest Indian cricket fan didn’t hope that India could chase the score.
The tournament was played in round-robin format which means each team had to play against all the other participants i.e India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Bangladesh didn’t even acquire the test status at that time and a look at the records could easily guess the two finalists.
The first match saw an excellent fight between India and Bangladesh, although India won the match by 4 wickets. The second match between India and Pakistan ended with an 18-run win for India. The Pakistan Bangladesh match turned out to be more one-sided and Pakistan almost thrashed Bangladesh to win the match comfortably by 9 wickets with 100 balls to spare.
Due to the format, India and Pakistan had to face themselves in three finals. India won the first final by 8 wickets and Pakistan won the second final by 6 wickets. So the third final was basically the tournament decider.
Indian captain Azharuddin was playing his 273rd ODI and equaled Allan Border’s world record. He won the toss and elected to field first. Rahul Sanghvi made his debut on the same match who was picked up based on his first-class match against Himachal Pradesh. Rahul took 8 for 15 and made his way to the international stage.
Due to the insufficient light 2 overs were deducted from each side. Pakistan had a good start but were soon 66 for 2 in 12 overs. Saeed Anwar was joined by Ijaz Ahmed. India already had not so pleasant memory of those two batsmen and was certainly not ready for another flashback. Both of them outplayed Indian bowlers and especially made Rahul Sanghvi’s debut a nightmare. They were in the devastating mood and added 230 runs in just 202 balls. When Harvinder finally broke the partnership, the job was done. Harvinder Singh took three wickets among the five wickets Pakistan lost. But none of the Indian bowlers could make any difference and the duo went on. Anwar’s 140 off 132 and Ijaj’s 117 off 112 helped Pakistan to set a mammoth score of 314 in 48 overs. The required run rate was 6.54 which was almost a distant dream in those days.
If India had to chase the score decently they had to do it from the very beginning. Sachin Tendulkar understood it soon and showed the way. Both Sachin and Sourav took time to settle down and then Tendulkar decided to attack. Sachin Tendulkar continued the momentum and kept on hitting boundaries. The then greatest spinner, Saqlin Mushtaq was brought to the scene to stop Tendulkar. But Sachin was on his own zone. India were 71 without no loss after 8 overs. Then Latif brought Shahid Afridi to stop the onslaught and it worked! Sachin was gone for 41 off 26 balls. But he did exactly what India needed to begin the chase; he gave the strength and faith.
Indian captain had something else in mind that no one could imagine. He promoted Robin Singh at the number 3 position which came as a shocker. When everyone was thinking that India might go slow for the time being to keep the wickets alive, Azhar sent a big hitter to accompany another big hitter Ganguly. He probably didn’t want to slow down on the momentum that Sachin instigated.
Neither Robin nor Ganguly was in the mood to waste any time and the show began. Ganguly dismissed Saqlin Mushtaq in the very next over and shot him off the back foot. They kept on rotating strikes and smashing the bowlers with fours and sixes. Ganguly stepped out against Afridi and hit the shot called ‘bapi bari ja’. Robin was doing what he was sent for. He exploded time to time ensuring they could match the required run rate. Both batsmen had few narrow escapes and every time they blasted even more. Robin Singh scored 83 off 82 balls and the duo added 179 runs in 179 balls. Ganguly meanwhile reached hundred and Mohammed Hussain finally broke the partnership. India were 250 for 2 in 38.1 overs.
India still needed 65 runs to win the match but batting became extremely difficult due to low light. India lost their skipper in no time and were soon on 268 for 3. Ganguly had a bad cramp and was in a difficult condition to carry on. Azhar came to rescue for him and became his runner. On the other hand, each run and minute was crucial for India. Ganguly decided to take the risk and was bowled by Aaqib Javed. For Aaqib it was the single wicket he could manage in the match but it was the most crucial one.
With Ganguly sent back to the pavilion, Indians were almost sure of losing the match. But Indian team decided not to give up till the last ball was bowled. The stadium did not have adequate floodlights for a cricket match as it was mainly designed to host football matches. If the Duckworth-Lewis method was taken into consideration due to bad light Pakistan would have won the match. So when the umpires decided to call the match when Azharuddin intervened as India wanted to carry on.
After the dismissal of Sourav Ganguly India were losing wickets in regular intervals. There was a time when India required 18 runs in 2 overs to win the match
Indian wicketkeeper Nayan Mongia was in the middle with young Hrishikesh Kanitkar, son of ex-Indian test player Hemant Kanitkar, playing just his 3rd ODI. Even in the darkness, Mongia managed to get a boundary and after few singles and two’s in the last ball of the 47th over, Mongia got out while stealing a single from a Bye. India got 9 from that over and left with 9 runs for the last over to get a memorable victory.
Javagal Srinath came to join Kanitkar in the last over bowled by Saqlin Mushtaq. After a single in the first ball, Srinath tried two lofty hits shots on consecutive deliveries. The second one went up very very high and three Pakistani fielders converged to take the catch, but at the heat of the moment, none of them attempted the catch thinking the others would try and the ball, fortunately, fell in the middle.
Finally, it was 3 required from 2 with Kanitkar on strike. Saqlin bowled and Kanitkar played a wild slog which was connected well and the ball crossed the midwicket boundary to give India a historic victory in the darkness. This match also went into records as it was the highest successful one day chase till the date. Last time Pakistan tried to chase 349 in 1996 against Sri Lanka and lost the match. The irony is that Pakistan could also score 315 in 50 overs at that time.
Indian team has reached Australia and is already playing the twenty 20 series. They will soon compete in the test series on and from 6th December.
Since the first time India traveled to Australia to play test cricket, both teams faced many controversies that shook the cricket world from time to time. Whereas there are numbers of such infamous incidents, we are listing just five of them at the Australian soil.
Just months after the independence Indian team led by Lala Amarnath went to Australia to face Don Bradman’s Australia for the very first time. During the second test of the tour at Sydney Indian all-rounder Vinu Mankad became a part of one never-ending controversy of world cricket that gave birth to a term called ‘Mankading’. The test ended in a draw but the way Australia lost the first wicket, it eventually became a saga. Mankad ran out Bill Brown when, in the act of delivering the ball, he held on to it and removed the bails with Brown well out of his crease. This was the second time he did the same with Brown. Earlier he had warned Brown but this time he didn’t wait before running him out. This act was termed as ‘Mankading’ and Vinu Mankad was criticized for this unsportsmanlike attitude. This act of running out has been practiced on many occasions since then whereas many experts are against this like Sunil Gavaskar who thinks this should be scrapped from international cricket.
2. Walk Out
In the 1981 series between Australia and India, the Indian team was already under pressure after losing the first test at Sydney in three days and somehow managing a draw in the second one at Adelaide. During the third test match at Melbourne, Sunil Gavaskar was on 70 when a Dennis Lillee in-cutter caught the attention of umpire Rex Whitehead who was standing in just his third Test and raised the finger. Gavaskar stood in stock and protested as according to him the ball had touched his bat before hitting the pad. Rex already was in news for giving some poor decisions against Indian during the entire series. Lillee showed his happiness with some gestures and indecent words which fuelled Gavaskar further. On receiving a negative response from the umpire he walked out of the ground taking his partner Chetan Chowhan along with him. At the boundary line Indian team manager Shahid Durrani and the assistant manager, Bapu Nadkarni took initiative to calm the batsmen down. Chetan Chowhan returned to the ground to resume his innings. Not just the Australian media, but later the team managers also criticized this act by Gavaskar. Recently on many occasions, Gavaskar regretted his act of dissent at Melbourne.
When a batsman doesn’t offer a shot and tackles the ball using the leg, the umpire gives the fielding side a certain amount of benefit believing that the ball would have hit the wicket and gives an LBW. During the 1999-2000 series in Australia, a similar leg before wicket was given against Sachin Tendulkar by the umpire Daryl Harper. But in this case, it was far from the leg before wicket. Tendulkar was ducking Glenn McGrath;’s delivery and the ball hit him at a far higher position. But Harper raised his finger during the test match at Adelaide. That dismissal became famous as shoulder before wicket. Later Harper went on saying that out of the decisions he gave, “I would like the world to forget is the Sachin one”. Sachin was out on 0 and India lost the match.
Ever since Sourav Ganguly made Steve Waugh wait during toss at Eden in 2001, the controversy became a regular part of India Australia battles on the crease. When India played against Australia at Sydney in 2008, the controversy reached a new feat. The cold war between India Australia became quite evident. It all began with some questionable umpiring decisions, and then Harbhajan Singh and Andrew Symonds went into racism controversy that threatened to affect relations between the two countries. Sachin was in the ’80s when Harbhajan joined him. Harbhajan was irritated by the sledging of Andrew Symonds. Sachin asked Harbhajan not to react. After crossing his individual 50 during a heated argument Harbhajan Singh allegedly called Andrew Symonds, the only colored cricketer of Australian cricket team, ‘Monkey’. Post the match Harbhajan Singh was banned for three test matches. But after the hearing, the racism charge wasn’t proved and the ban was lifted. Harbhajan was charged 50% of the match fees.
5. “Only one team was playing cricket”
During the same test match infamous for monkeygate incident, the behavior of Australian cricket disappointed the whole cricket world. BCCI made an official complaint about incompetent umpiring. On the 5th day of the match, Australia declared just before the lunch giving India an improbable target of 333 runs in just over two sessions. For India, the key was to survive. India lost 3 quick wickets including Laxman and Tendulkar with just 54 on the board, although one of those was on a No-ball. Dravid and Ganguly batted together for more than 15 overs to add 61 runs in the total. Then the umpiring reached its nadir. Dravid was given out caught-behind in the bowling of Symonds when his bat was nowhere close to the ball. Few overs later Ganguly was given out caught in the slip when the catch by Michael Clarke was not at all conclusive but instead of checking with the third umpire, umpire Mark Benson checked with Ricky Ponting, the Australian captain on the legality of the catch and gave out. India collapsed at the last moment and got all out with just 9 minutes of play remaining. Later in the post-match press session a visibly upset Indian captain Anil Kumble asked question on Australian team’s integrity and mentioned “Only one team was playing with the spirit of the game, that’s all I can say,” a Statement very close to what the Australian captain Bill Woodfull supposedly told Plum Warner, the England team manager, during the infamous Bodyline series.
Since the time Virat Kohli won the under- 19 World Cup in 2008, a lot of words have been dedicated to dissecting his game and other aspects of his life.
Kohli has broken many records and on a mission to continue this for the next few years. He is certainly one of the best limited over batter of this generation.
Let’s have a look in a few of the memorable feats achieved by Virat Kohli.
Kohli started playing cricket at the age of eight. His first coach was Rajkumar Sharma. In 1996-97, Rajkumar Sharma started his academy and Kohli was one of the first 200 students of that academy. Virat’s towering talent and enthusiasm convinced Rajkumar of his specialty. According to him, “his eagerness to learn the nuances of every aspect of the game impressed me thoroughly.”
During Tendulkar’s last ODI innings Kohli was at the other end. It was at the Asia Cup, 2012 in Dhaka where Kohli and Tendulkar had a 133 run partnership against Pakistan. Interestingly, Kohli replaced Tendulkar after he was dismissed during his final Test Innings against West Indies in Mumbai. Kohli applauded Tendulkar before entering the field as Tendulkar waved goodbye.
Kohli surpassed Sehwag to score the fastest ODI hundred for India in 2013. While chasing 360 in an ODI against Australia in Jaipur, Kohli smashed a ton off only 52 balls. It broke Virender Sehwag’s record, achieved in 2009 when he scored 100 off 60 balls against New Zealand in Hamilton.
Kohli is a part-time bowler. His first twenty 20 wicket was interesting. During a T20I against England in Manchester in 2011, Kohli bowled a wide first up and the batsman Kevin Pietersen was stumped. It was a wicket on a wide delivery.
Virat is the first Indian player to score a hundred on his World Cup debut which he scored against Bangladesh in Dhaka during India’s first match in that tournament. Before Kohli’s 100 not out, the highest score for India in World Cup debut was 97, achieved by Sourav Ganguly in Hove against South Africa during 1999 World cup. Interestingly Kohli again scored a century in India’s first match in 2015 World cup against Pakistan.
Virat Kohli is the only player to notch up four centuries in one IPL season. He reached this extraordinary form during 2016 version of the tournament when his 973 runs in the season with four 100’s and seven 50’s took Royal Challengers Bangalore to the final of the tournament before losing out by just 8 runs to Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Virat Kohli has a memorable captaincy debut during India’s last test tour in Australia. He scored a century in both innings, became only the second player to achieve the feat in captaincy debut after Australia’s Greg Chappell. However, Kohli was the first one to achieve this in an away ground. Also, Kohli’s match aggregate of 256 runs is recorded for captaincy debuts. India lost that thrilling Test match in Adelaide by just 48 runs.
Rohit Sharma has been famous for making and breaking records from time to time. He has been around for a while now and proven his class. Former Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly has praised Rohit Sharma and backed him at number 6 position for the upcoming Australia tour.
The balance of the entire team will be highly dependent on the Rohit Sharma. While team India is all set for Australia tour, let’s have a look at some interesting facts about our very own hitman!
Rohit Sharma started playing cricket at a very early age as an off-spinner. His coach Dinesh Lad saw the spark and suggested him to become a primary batsman. Although Rohit does not bowl regularly in international cricket, he is quite helpful for the team with his off spins. Rohit has an IPL hat-trick for his earlier team Deccan Chargers. The opponent was Mumbai Indians, Rohit’s next franchise. Interestingly Dinesh Lad’s son Siddesh Lad is a teammate of Rohit for Mumbai in Ranji and for Mumbai Indians in IPL.
Rohit Sharma is known for playing massive knocks in ODIs. He is the only player to have three double centuries in one-day internationals. Moreover, he has seven scores above 150 in ODIs, another world record achieved by him. Interestingly during his first two double centuries, he and Virat Kohli batted together briefly and ended with Kohli getting run out in both the cases. During the third double hundred, Kohli didn’t play.
Art of Captaincy
Rohit Sharma has proved himself to be a very good captain in the small opportunity he got during Kohli’s absence in limited over format. Rohit has won 11 out of the 12 T20 internationals he led India which is a record as no other captain has won 11 out of their first 12 T20 international matches as captain. Rohit is also the only Indian captain to have two 3-0 series wins for India. The only other India captain to win a T20 series as 3-0 is MS Dhoni. Rohit is also the first captain to win the IPL 3 times, the achievement which was later followed by MS Dhoni. Another interesting trivia is that Rohit is the only other player to play the 100th, 200th and 300th ODI of MS Dhoni.
The Curious Case of No. 45
In international cricket, Rohit’s first victim was Chris Gayle in an ODI. Interestingly both Rohit and Gayle sported the same jersey number 45 in that match. For Rohit, this jersey number was chosen by his mother when he was playing for India in Under- 19 world cup 2006. The players were asked to pick a number. Rohit wanted 19 but it wasn’t available. So finally his mother came to his rescue and chose the number for him. Since then Rohit is using the same number with a few breaks in between.
Outside cricket Rohit Sharma is involved in multiple initiatives for the different awareness program. He is a longstanding supporter of People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). He has earlier spoken up for animals in circus and other issues. Recently Rohit has placed his support to WWF- India’s rhino conservation effort in the country along with other big names from different industries.
Shanthakumaran Sreesanth is in news again. This former Indian bowler is a participant in the latest edition of much controversial show Bigg Boss and is being anything but loved by the other contestants.
Sreesanth had already enough reasons to be disliked by the fans for his past and now he is adding some more to that. People from various fields come to the show to regain popularity or to change the image and here Sreesanth is becoming famous for all the negative reasons. One of his roommates termed him as enemy whereas he is being criticized for showing the least sportsman spirit in the house.
Sreesanth was banned by BCCI in 2013 for spot-fixing during IPL. Post that, he tried to make a comeback through the entertainment industry. Apart from few films, he was also seen in Jhalak Dikhla Ja before Bigg Boss.
Although Bigg Boss 12 has not been very effective for Sreesanth as of now, there was a time when this former cricketer used to win matches for India and was loved by the fans. Few of his iconic performances are still remembered by them.
The Test vs South Africa, 8 wickets by Sreesanth
When Rahul Dravid led Indian team finally won a test match on the South African soil in 2006, Sreesanth became the man of the match with his massive contribution. The match drew huge media attention not just for the ill record of the Indian team, but also for Sourav Ganguly who was making a comeback after a gap of 10 months.
Indian team scored 249 in the first innings which included Ganguly’s 51 and made his comeback worth remembering for fans. The score wasn’t enough to defend the South African side consisting of Smith, Amla, Kallis, and AB de Villers but the Indian side bowled in a splendid way to restrict them for just 84 runs. Sreesanth took 5 for 40 with Zaheer and Kumble each taking 2 wickets. India came to bat again and with Laxman’s 73 put a score of 236 with South Africa already trailing behind by 165 runs. In the second innings, Anil Kumble led the show with Sreesanth and each of them took 3 wickets. South Africa was all out for 278 and India won that historic match by 123 runs.
Sreesanth played his first test in 2006 in Nagpur against England and took 4 wickets in debut match. The performance in South Africa test showed his consistency and temperament. The aggressive bowler showed calm whenever he was on the crease, unlike his off-field image. He had an interaction with Allan Donald before the South Africa tour which helped him to deliver that magical spell. He played 27 test matches and 53 ODIs with 37.59 and 33.44 averages respectively.
It won’t be an exaggeration to say that he was here to stay but he lost it all for himself. We can certainly hope for his sanity in the show so that he doesn’t make it worse for his fans.
The unparalleled, the remarkable Virender Sehwag turns 40 today and Twitter can’t ‘Keep Calm’ about it. Fans, former teammates, associates, stars have all made star-studded birthday wishes for the Indian great. Regarded as one of the most destructive batsmen of all time, Viru stands out amongst all-time greats.
Besides being an aggressive batsman, a brilliant hitter, and a run machine, Sehwag is also an all-rounder. No, on the Cricket field he was more of an opener. Beyond the field, he’s a hilarious commentator who lights the Hindi commentary box with comical takes on cricketers and incidents going on in the field.
His comical stint on social media has made him one of the most popular Indian cricketers on Twitter. He has been into twitter fights with celebrities like Piers Morgan and has successfully trolled the Englishman over his prejudiced comments. Therefore, Sehwag is always trending, be it his birthday or not. ‘Like no other’ best fits as his introduction.
Stars and friends wish Viru on Twitter:
Hailed as the “Nawab of Najafgarh”, Sehwag started off his career with the Delhi cricket team in the 1997-98 season. Born in Najafgarh, Delhi a young Virender Sehwag aspired to play for his national team. Over the years Sehwag has never missed an opportunity to mention how big a Sachin Tendulkar fan he has been since his starting days of pursuing cricket. Little did he know back then that he’d share the dressing room with the “Little Master” 241 times in international cricket.
Sehwag’s reply to his role model’s tweet:
∞ , not just a symbol, but when it came to scoring runs, that’s how much our God ji @sachin_rt scored. Thank you very much for your wonderful creative wishes ‘Sach’In Paaji 🙏🏼 https://t.co/O65lchF1vv
Sourav Ganguly, addressed by the world as ‘Dada’, was Virender Sehwag’s captain in 134 matches in International Cricket. Their Twitter conversation today was all about praising each other. Dada’s sacrifice of his opener position led to the shaping of Sehwag’s career. Since then, it’s been a bond based on mutual respect between the two.
Often addressed as Viru Paaji, this veteran Indian cricketer has earned love and respect throughout his career on and off the field. He has 17,253 runs at 40.31 in 374 international matches(all formats combined) which includes two triple centuries. The journey from ‘Nawab of Najafgarh’ to ‘Sultan of Multan’ has thus been remarkable. No wonder he remains extremely popular in Cricket even after three years of retirement.
Cricket is a game in which the anticipation starts as soon as the opening duo gets on that field. A solid initial partnership can go a long way for the later part of the game. It builds the basis for the rest of the batting line-up to build upon. Here are some of the best opening duos in the history of cricket:
(1) Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar: The two Indian legends top the list as one of the greatest, if not the best, opening pairs the cricket world has ever seen. Years after their retirement, they are still praised and bowed down to for the mark they made individually and together on cricket players and fans alike. The duo played for Team India for almost eleven years, for around 136 innings and a combined total of 6609 runs. The unbeatable pair has scored 21 hundred-plus scores and 23 fifty-plus scores, clearly, they almost always took the team to a flying start. The highest score their partnership fetched was 258 runs
(2) Adam Gilchrist and Mathew Hayden: This Australian pair was no less as the two world-class players brought Australia onto the map for cricket. Gilchrist’s power hitting and Hayden’s pace complimented each other very well as they played for Team Australia for seven years, including 114 innings and a combined total of 5372 runs. Their highest partnership score is 172 runs. Together they scored 16 hundred plus scores and 29 fifty plus scores.
(3) Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes: This West Indies duo made the headlines during the prime time of cricket in the country. West Indies was known as the ‘Team of the Gods’ and this pair were the major reason why. With their explosive contribution, they played for almost 12 years for the team for a total of 5150 runs from 102 innings. Their highest partnership score was an unbeaten 192 runs. They have 16 hundred plus scores and 24 fifty plus scores under their name. They were ahead of their time and they may have created a better name for themselves if they were playing at this time and age.
(4) Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar: The “Cricket God” makes the lost again but this time with a different Indian player – Virender Sehwag. They quickly became a crowd favorite with Sehwag’s power hitting and Tendulkar’s stroke play. Their deadly combination was the talk of the town for a long time as they fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. Playing for the team together for almost 12 years, they scored 3919 runs from a total of 93 innings. The highest score the duo has made is 182 runs and they have scored 12 hundred plus scores and 18 fifty plus scores together.
(5) Adam Gilchrist and Mark Waugh: Gilchrist also makes the list once more with Mark Vaugh. Mark Vaugh opened with Gilchrist before Mathew Hayden made an entry into international cricket. This Australian duo made a fine partnership, playing for about four years for the team. The period was short but their alarming total of 3853 runs from 93 innings says otherwise. Their highest partnership yielded 206 runs. They have together scored 8 hundred plus scores and 20 fifty plus scores.
(6) David Boon and Geoff Marsh: Another great pair for the Australian cricket team – David Boon and Geoff Marsh. Geoff Marsh switched to opening after a few years of playing in the mid-lineup and found a great partner in David Boon. The duo served their team for six years for around 88 innings and 3523 runs. The highest score their partnership has yielded is 212 runs. Together they have scored 7 hundred plus scores and 25 fifty plus scores.
(7) Marvan Atapattu and Sanath Jayasuriya: This duo created a storm in Sri Lanka that hasn’t been beaten till date. The understanding and coordination between the two were almost impossible to recreate. Atapattu played on the defensive side while Jayasuriya went ahead with the big shots. This pair served their team for almost a decade, playing for 79 innings and scoring 3382 runs in the process. Their highest partnership score is 237 runs. They have score 8 hundred plus scores and 19 fifty plus scores.
(8) Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Tharanga: Finally a pair that is still currently in game. Another deadly duo from Sri Lanka, these two have made significant contributions recently in the country’s current world ranking in cricket. Dilshan is the power hitter while Tharanga plays it more safe, balancing it out between the two. They have served the team for four years and running, having played 67 innings so far in which they have together scored 3052 runs. Their highest score in a partnership has been 282 runs. They have scored 9 hundred plus and 13 fifty plus scores so far.
(9) Herschelle Gibbs and Graeme Smith: This opening duo from Proteus has left-hander Graeme Smith and right-handed Gibbs giving the pair the best of both worlds. Both are not just spectacular together but also amazing individually, They have many a time provided South Africa with a solid start. They have played for the team for around seven years, consisting of 74 innings and 3007 runs. The pair’s highest score is 174 runs. They have 8 hundred plus and 13 fifty plus scores in their pocket.
(10) Aamer Sohail and Saeed Anwar: Concluding with this opening pair from Pakistan, they have been the main strength for the team and have often won the game for them. They have served Pakistan for ten years with 73 innings and a total of 2856 runs. The highest score fetched by their partnership is 173 runs. They have scored 3 hundred plus and 20 fifty plus scores.