Wednesday, June 17, 2009

T20 World Cup......match updates !!!!!

Sixth & the last day of the Super eight clashes, & it was Sri Lanka shutting out New Zealand in the first match & the South Africa humbling defending Champions India in a spinning track.

Sri Lanka vs New Zealand :
Having won the toss, Sangakkara decided to bat first. Openers Dilshan & Jayasuriya walked to the crease, but Jayasuriya was out for a nought in the 1st over itself. Chamara Silva too perished soon in the 4th over with the score at 25 for 2. However Dlishan stood ground & along with skipper Sangakkara took the score to 87 in the 12 over before getting out. Later, Jayawardane carried on the good work, as the Lankans reached a respectable total of 158 for 5 at the end of 20 overs. Dilshan with 48 of 37 deliveries, Sanga with run a ball 35, & Jayawardane with an unbeaten 41 of 29 deliveries motored the innings. The Kiwi bowling was not upto the mark & only Vettori put up a decent show with 2 wickets. Oram & N McCullum were economical, but did not really trouble the batsmen. The Kiwi run chase was expected to be fast & furious, but losing McCullum early took away the steam. Though Redmond(23 of 13 deliveries) & Guptill(43 of 34 deliveries) put up some resistance, finally the asking became too much to handle & the Black Caps just folded & surrendered to some magnificiant bowling by Ajantha Mendis. he was ably assisted by Murali, Malinga & Udana, as the Kiwis innings ended at a dismal 110 all out in the 17th over. The Lankans had stormed into the semis, with a match against giant killers West Indies. The match certainly promises to be a cliffhanger & cricket fans can look forward to some good contest.

South Africa vs India :
South Africa, with already an assured berth in the semis continued their winning ways against defending champions India, who, having ousted from the tournament were playing for pride. The Proteas lost Gibbs early & also realised that the pitch was playing dual & assisting spin. They did not go for fanciful shots & kept the scorebook ticking with neatly placed singles & occasional boundaries. AB DeVilliers was in sublime form & he carried the innings along. While no one else could really establish control against some very good spin bowling from Jadeja, Bhajji & Yuvi, The Proteas innings folded at a paltry 130 for 5 at the end of 20 overs. At that stage, it looked like, Indians would be able to make a credible exit with a win. Indians are known to be good players of spin & despite the pitch assisting spin, it looked an easy reachable target.
However, Rohit Sharma & Gautam Gambhir opened the innings & looked comfortable initially with the score reacing 34 for no loss in 5 overs. The introduction of spin had an immediate effect & Gautam in an attempt to hoik Botha ended up in a catch to Duminy in the covers. Raina, the next man in was clearly short of confidence & scratched for 3 before holing out Botha at long on. His performance in the tournament had been nightmarish with just 20 runs in 4 outings. Poor by any standards. Rohit was the next to go & India was 58 for 3 at the halfway mark. The first 6 overs had produced 47 runs without a loss & the next 6 overs had given only 17 runs for the loss of 3 wickets. It was simply inexplicable. Dhoni was the next to go for a dismal 5 of 15 deliveries & Yusuf Pathan was out for a duck, as India slipped to 69 for 5 in the 14th over. Yuvi & Bhajji tried long handle hitting out & got some success taking the score to 100 before Bhajji holed out to AB off Botha. Yuvi & Zaheer followed next & India finally ended their pathetic run with a total of 118 for 8 in thier quota of 20 overs. Botha had super figures of 3 for 16 in 4 overs. Any Indian fan watching the batting was red faced with shame. It was an abject surrender of sorts. The batting lacked a plan, or punch & as Dhoni said in the post match presentation ceremony, that batting let the team down miserably.
Dhoni's captaincy has also come under severe criticism & many have questioned his tactics. The Indian Captain has now started to feel the pressures of the Indian Captaincy.

The Proteas continue their unbeaten run in this tournament & are the current favourites to lifet the title. If they manage to shrug off theit choker's tag in the knockout stage, the men in green can certainly claim to fame their first major World Cup title under Greame Smith. Semifinals for them is against a resurgent Pakistan who have started to come good. It would be an interesting contest ahead.