Links: India cricket roundup

1) Yet another story on the supposed rift and differences between Kohli and Dhoni. It goes on to suggest that there is a growing disconnect in the team, alluding to previous dual captain setups but falls short of calling the situation tetchy.

2) The scrapping of the CLT20 news refuses to die- considering the various legal and programming landmines it might tread amidst, no wonder the IPL governing council is treading carefully. This blog considers the cricketing version to be a very poor imitation of the glitzy footballing namesake.

3) BCCI considers performance based pay for cricketers– this one is surely going to get the fans excited. All that is pending is various RTI queries as to how a performance of cricketer A was judged w.r.t performance of cricketer B.

4) A very charming story on Man Singh, the affable backroom staff member from the 1983 World Cup Indian team. This story is dripped in nostalgia, a throwback to another era and offers a window into the world of cricket of the time. What is particularly revealing is the absence of high expectations rife in today’s game. He’s under no illusions as to how the Indian team treated ODI cricket back then:

The 1983 World Cup win revolutionised cricket in India. But, if you look at it, the attitude back then was that we have been invited, so might as well go and play, doesn’t matter if we lose. I don’t blame anyone for looking at it that way, because till that time, we had hardly played any one-day cricket. Though we beat Pakistan in Pakistan in 1978, the cricketers of that era never relished playing limited-overs cricket. Nobody in the BCCI, or anywhere else in the country, expected India to win even a single game in that World Cup. So with that kind of a background, what we achieved was nothing short of a miracle,” points out Man Singh.

Though Kapil Dev has different views on the result and so does Viv Richards, it is not pretty surprising that the defeat rankled some West Indians considering how bad the Indians were during the warm up games:

India played four matches before the start of the tournament, losing three of them, including one to a team called Minor Counties Select XI, a team made up of farmers, salespersons, solicitors and the like. But, as Man Singh says, no one was too hassled about the results. “Nobody questioned us for losing. There was not even a single person from back home asking if we had eaten lunch, or if everything was fine. We were given a huge luxurious bus with video players and everything, and told to go have fun.

One can only imagine the hullabaloo if the present Indian team were to lose similarly today.

5) JSW are in talks to buy an IPL franchise. They own the Bangalore Football club, whose title victory in its maiden I- League season prompted the launch of the ISL which was stuck in a limbo for many years.

6) Two former Indian players retired- Hrishikesh Kanitkar and Ajay Ratra. The first post of this blog pointed to one of the two happy memories associated with Kanitkar- the decisive blow against Pakistan in the Independence cup final. It was the highest successful chase of the time and was doubly sweet for Indian fans as it was against Pakistan. He also pulled off a stunner of a catch on the boundary rope (also against Pakistan)– this was at a time when one could lean over the fence and still legally complete a catch in Australia. Ratra’s most famous contribution came in a snooze- fest of a match which was more known for all the 11 players of the team bowling.

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