There are some events that take place in one’s life or in a society or in an organisation or in a nation whose timing is just perfect and India winning the Champions Trophy 2013 is one of such events whose arrival was simply perfect.
Indian Cricket was down with a numerous controversies surrounding the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the phase was like every day a new controversy would pop up. Well the controversies aren’t solved yet but yes the Indian Cricket has got a huge reason to be delighted and not to think about those controversies. The amount of relief this win is going to give the fans of Indian cricket, their players and even the BCCI is beyond imagination. Its like that soothing balm on the cut that your body just had and that`s why this victory is special.
India`s batting, bowling and fielding: A tick mark in every field.
Indian Cricket heavily relies on its batting ability and that`s why I believe India has more legends in the batting category than in the bowling category. But it was`t the case this time in CT 13. The batting was fearless and confident, the fielding was electric and the bowling was way beyond everyone`s expectation. Above all, there was hunger in this Indian team. MS Dhoni claimed this team as the best fielding unit in the Champions Trophy and boy, wasn’t he right? Its the fielding of a side that can add great pressure to its opposition.
India had problem with their openers and they weren’t adding much to team`s score. They have now got new openers and we have had two 100+ partnerships for first wicket in this CT 13. The top order was so good that the service of the middle and the lower middle order was least needed.
Before the tournament began many experts said India`s chances of winning the trophy was less as they don`t have an experienced bowling unit. Well, out of the 5 games India played, 2 Match of the Match awards were won by bowlers and 2 more were won by a bowling all rounder. Not to forget Umesh Yadav was also won the MOM award in one of the warm up games India played. Yes the conditions were more helpful for spinners but the fast bowlers have also done a commendable job. Bhuvaneshwar Kumar gave the team early wickets and Ravindra Jadeja got the major breakthroughs when the team needed it the most. The best thing about Bhuvaneshwar was his opening spells where he bowled 7 to 8 overs continuously with an economy of around 2 runs.
The Ball of the Tournament award, Bat of the Tournament award and Man of the Series award, all of them were grabbed by Indian players and that should sum it up on how good the Indians were.
Mahender Singh Dhoni: Captain with the Midas touch.
When MS Dhoni handed Ishant Sharma a 4th over in the final of CT 13, everybody including me were surprised as to why would a captain bowl his most expensive bowler at the crucial phase of a match. But we all know how it turned out in India`s favor. You may call that luck but luck doesn’t work every time. You may call it Dhoni`s instinct but one needs guts to go with his instinct. Dhoni is great reader of the game and for me such decisions are of pure intellect. His prediction that England will take the last 2 overs of the game as power play overs was also bang on and hence he kept his best for those 2, Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin.
Mahender Singh Dhoni has now won every major ICC title and is the only captain in world to do so. World T20 in 2007, World Cup in 2011, Champions Trophy in 2013, Number 1 side in the One Day International cricket and Number 1 side in the Test cricket, Dhoni has achieved success for India in every format. Its a feat that no other Indian captain has achieved so far. MS is undoubtedly the greatest captain Indian cricket has ever had. The thing which I admire the most about Dhoni is his humility and staying grounded even at the peak of success. He doesn’t boast about himself much and knows to keep his feet on the ground. You would also like to read this blog post I wrote about Dhoni some months ago: here.
Ravindra Jadeja: Trolling all those trolled him
I mentioned this earlier that whenever India need a breakthrough, it was always Ravi Jadeja. Its not only with the bowl but Jadeja has also delivered with the bat. He scored those precious 47 runs out of 29 balls in the match against South Africa and took India past 300. Even in the final of Ct 13 it was Jadeja`s heroics that bought India close to 130. He scored 33 of them from 25 balls.
So Jadeja is now a perfect all rounder whom India had been searching for a long time now. With him in the side, India can easily go ahead with 5 bowlers and 6 batsmen combination. He is now ranked 3rd in the ICC bowlers ranking and 4th in all rounders ranking. We all have made a lot of fun about this chap but its now time to stop all that and give him his due credit and respect. Here`s what Harsha Bhogle has to say on Ravindra Jadeja: here.
A special mention to Virat Kohli:
Virat did have a reasonably good Champions Trophy with respect to the his batting and his most important knock came in the final. He was the highest scorer for India with 44 runs of 66 balls. This again goes to show the kind of confidence level he is in these days and can perform well in high pressure matches. I do feel Virat hasn’t got the due credit for his 44 in the final and hence this special mention to him.
How many of you saw what Virat Kohli did to Duncan Fletcher, India`s coach during the victory lap? Well, he bent down, touched Fletcher`s feet to get his blessings. How many time have we seen that in cricket? There have been talks about Kohli having aggression and being not respectful to his seniors and all that. But I tell you what, I can present 10 to 15 points stating why Kohli is a team man and respects his seniors the most. I shall probably do that in a fresh blog post may be.
So in the current Indian team there are just 4 players who were a part of the 2011 World Cup campaign and India have successfully achieved a transition in the ODI format. Going by the form and potential of this team, Indian fans would definitely love to see them dominate over world cricket for many years to come.
Image Source: ESPN Cricinfo