Category Archives: Ranji Trophy

Asia cup Indian ODI squad – Team looks fitter!

Yuvraj has been dropped. Add the dropping of Amit Mishra and the average fitness of the team has already gone up. Kris Srikkanth has also said that a lot of stress has been on fitness. The selectors have also looked at the record over the last year and seen how matches have been lost because of poor fitness and fielding! A pity they did not do that a year ago! They have also apparently looked at the consistency of the players’ performance to pick the team. The only consistent player in the current India A team has been Saurabh Tiwary and he has been rewarded with a call up. After all did he not score 3 fifties in the IPL? In case people forgot he also scored 3 centuries at an average of 98 in 5 matches for Jharkhand in the Ranji Trophy plate!!!!!! He might as well have scored 18 centuries in 20 matches for Alwarpet CC at the Chennai 1st Division League! Who cares about the Ranji Plate? BTW in case people missed it his last first class game was a Duleep Trophy match for East Zone and he scored 22. Forget those domestic giants like Pujara, Rahane, Badrinath, Manish Pandey, Abhinav Mukund etc etc. Did they perform in the IPL???? They only scored runs for their domestic teams! And that in the Ranji Elite or whatever that’s called. Of course Uthappa is injured and so was not considered. Yusuf Pathan has been dropped and rightly so. Ashwin has been retained because he is the only off spinner in the country at the moment who can keep Bhajji on his toes. Yuvraj can twitter about his daily visits to the gym but that’s not enough. He has to show off six packs in the next chewing gum ad before he will be considered fit. After all he is a proven performer and does not have to score runs anymore right? Jadeja has been retained because he can bowl the 5/6 overs that Yuvraj was bowling in the past. Cmon show me another left arm spinner in the country who can bat and field. And forget Iqbal Abdulla, he is only a domestic performer! So we minus Tendulkar we probably have the best team that has been selected. Except for my own personal opinions which are the following. Iqbal Abdulla for Jadeja and Badrinath/Pujara for Tiwary.


Curtains for Badrinath?

Several months and a few dozen posts back, I had made a statement that Subramaniam Badrinath tends to fail in key national games. Someone challenged me to it and I was going to dig into stats and prove my point. I hope to be able to find the time to get around doing it but, for certain, his performance in the ongoing Duleep Trophy game against Central Zone will only improve my statistics. Is this curtains for him or is there still hope? With Rohit Sharma banging on the doors with strong performances in the Ranji finals and Dinesh Karthik not calling quits yet, does Badrinath even stand a chance? While only time will answer this question, my personal feeling is that his performance combined with age will soon place him in the Mohd. Kaif category.

The Duleep Trophy game has raised some interesting thoughts . Is Abhinav Mukund ready for big leagues? Is AS Yadav that terrible, even he has scored a half century? Is Balaji back in the reckoning and has Sreesanth done enough to earn a recall? I am quite impressed with Dinesh Karthik’s attitude, he seems much better placed than Parthiv Patel to qualify for the second wicket keeper spot at this time and his approach to batting provides him an opportunity the likes of Suresh Raina for a middle order spot in the one day side.

All action seems to bode well for an interesting year ahead.

– Srikanth

Cricket news – Good, Bad and Ugly

The cancelation of the tour to Pakistan may have benefited the domestic season more than any recent seasons that I can think of. The last two or three rounds of ranji games have seen all the top players involved actively. It is anticipated that all the Team India players will represent their respective zones in the Duleep Trophy. While the East Zone selectors seem to play stunt regarding MS Dhoni’s participation, they could have dealt it in a professional way and established contact with him way before he went on vacation. I am predicting that he will still lead the side and play. Whatever the outcome, the tournament has never been so exciting for a long time.

The Ranji trophy finals has been a drag so far. UP is trying to attempt a repeat performance from its semi-finals “win” and, as a result, has made the game extremely boring. I seriously think that they should consider changing the rules of the game atleast in the knock out stages, possibly using the Buchi Babu or Moin-Ud-Dowla rules of limiting the number of overs in the first and second innings. It was rather unfortunate to see TN exit in the semi-finals. While TN may not have had the bowling to restrict UP, they had more victories in the earlier stages of the tournament while UP sneaked through to the finals with only one outright victory if I am not mistaken.  It was good to see Rohit Sharma hit form in a crucial game, while Suresh Raina threw away an opportunity by stupidly running himself out.

There have been several positives from this season’s ranji games. Wasim Jaffer continues to be a possible candidate to the opening/one down slot because of his consistency and his success abroad. His 301 in the semi-finals was a beautiful innings. While A. Rahane was consistent through the season, I can see his “playing away from the body” technique as a limitation when playing international attacks. Abhinav Mukund, for me, has been the biggest story of the season. He scores and scores big. All we can hope  is that he continue playing the way he is now and success will come his way. I see him take over India’s opening slot within the next few years. I was disappointed, in general, with the bowling department. If Sunil Joshi continues to be a major force in the domestics, while good for him, it does not bode well for the future of Indian cricket. Apart from the current international bowling lineup, nothing much can be written about domestic talent. The re-emergence of L.  Balaji, is a postive sign however.

English cricket cannot be in a more laughable situation than what it is going through in the last few months. Geoff Boycott, in his column for the Daily Telegraph, states that “We are not the best cricket team but we are the best at making ourselves a laughing stock”. Absolutely true. In my opinion, it all began with the way the ECB handled the IPL/EPL/Stanford saga. The disaster in the carribean and the subsequent handling of the Pietersen/Moores controversy will seriously affect the chances that England may have had to make it a fight during the Ashes series.

– Srikanth

Ranji player watch – After round 1

Round 1 of the Ranji matches have finished, and here is how the players in my Player watch series (batsmen, bowlers and all rounders) went –

S Badrinath 72*
A Chopra 16 and 32
S Raina 203
M Tiwary 203
C Pujara 64 and 109
M Vijay 4
M Kaif 4
R Bose 1 for 83 and 0 for 45
M Patel 2 for 22
YoMahesh 1 for 81
P Chawla 1 for 44 and 3 for 89
P Ojha 4 for 151
R Ashwin 6 for 133
I Abdulla 0 for 39 and 3 for 73
P Patel 49 and 62
J Sharma 4 for 64 and 2 for 57
7 and 16


Of the lot, Raina and Tiwary had outstanding double centuries. Badrinath came out to bat in spite of food poisoning and shows the kind of commitment he has. Pujara has also played to his potential in round 1 scoring a 50 and a hundred. As the list shows there are some notable failures like Kaif, Bose and Chopra, but this is just the first game of the season…

Of the others not in my list, but whom I am still watching, Pankaj Singh took a ten wicket haul –  5 for 43 in the first innings and 5 for 110 in the second.


Ranji player watch – All-rounders

I had earlier posted on bowlers and batsmen to watch out for in the current Ranji Trophy championship. The list of allrounders completes the over all list of players to watch out for:

  • Parthiv Patel has been scoring in the India A games consistently and he doubles up as a wicketkeeper. It would be interesting to see if he is able to challenge Dinesh Karthik as the reserve wicketkeeper for India. But more than his keeping abilities, it is his batting that has been impressive – notching up a successive centuries (126, 124, 164 and 110) in his last four innings for India A and following it up with a 179, opening the batting for Rest of India against Mumbai in the Irani Trophy.
  • Joginder Sharma has already made his ODI and T20 debut for India and although I don’t see him make into the test team any time soon, he is certainly one to watch out for. He was the second highest wicket taker in the Ranji Trophy last year and also impressed with the bat, particularly in the Duleep Trophy.
  • Praveen Kumar opens both the batting and bowling in domestic one day competition and his performances with India A and in the Challenger Trophy has already earned him a call up to the national ODI squad, although he is yet to make his debut.
  • Yusuf Pathan is another allrounder who could be useful in the T20 and ODI games, although his induction into the Test squad seems unlikely at this stage. Would be good to see how he performs this season.


Ranji Trophy 2007-08 Roundup :: Round-1

The first round of Ranji Trophy (2007-08) games got over yesterday, Wednesday 7 Nov 2007. The results summary is provided below along with a list of the key winners and grinners.

Super League:

Group: Match Result Result Notes Key Players
A: Himachal Pradesh v Saurashtra

[HP v Sau]

Sau: 291, 273
HP: 181, 220-4
Sau 1st Inns Pts
HP: A. K. Thakur 6-73, 5-53; S. Sharma 82, 7; M. Gupta 0, 104
Sau: C. Pujara 64, 109; Makvana 6-41, 3-81
A: Mumbai v Karnataka

[Mum v Kar]

Kar: 195, 397-6d
Mum: 337, 70-2
Mum 1st Inns Pts
Kar: R Dravid 40, 214; B. Akhil 57, 1
Mum: SO Kukreja 66, 23; RR Powar 5-69, 1-122
A: Delhi v Rajasthan

[Del v Raj]

Del won by 172 runs, 5pts
Del: 119, 387
Raj: 85, 249
Del: V. Kohli 19, 106; M. Manhas 4, 100; R. Bhatia 0, 83; Sangwan 3-29, 2-45
Raj: G Khoda 0, 61; R Bist 14, 69; P Singh 5-43, 5-110
A: Tamil Nadu v Maharashtra

[TV v Mah]

Mah: 430
TN: 338-7
Mah: HH Khadiwale 126; YV Takawale 79; MM Patel 2-29
TN: KD Karthik 56; S. Badrinath 72*; R Ashwin6-133
B: Orissa v Uttar Pradesh

[Orr v UP]

UP won by an innings
Orr: 216, 222
UP: 448
Orr: SS Das 75, 9; P Jayachandra 55, 50; H Das 14, 71; P Das 5-63
UP: S Raina 203, S Tyagi 6-46, 4-46
B: Bengal v Hyderabad

[Ben v Hyd]

Ben: 461
Hyd: 227, 302-6
Ben: M Tiwary 203; WP Saha 111; SS Lahiri 4-65, 1-100
Hyd: A Shinde 90, 33, 3-95; SA Pai 8, 119; VVS Laxman 0, 18; PP Ojha 4-151
B: Punjab v Andhra Pradesh

[Pun v AP]

AP: 334, 287-0
Pun: 372-9
AP: HH Watekar 137, 100*; LNP Reddy 8, 114*;
Pun: U Kaul 144, P Dharmani 94


Next games: Nov 15 2007 to Nov 18 2007.


Group: Match Result Result Notes Key Players
A: Gujarat v Assam

[Guj v Ass]

Guj won by 248 runs
Guj: 228, 367-4
Ass: 189, 158
Guj: DM Popat 63, 5; ND Modi 17, 151; NK Patel 31, 124; PA Patel 49, 62; MB Parmar 1-25, 5-52; TK Patel 4-38, 1-32
A: Vidharba v Kerala

[Vid v Ker]

Kerala won by 150 runs
Ker: 169, 332-8
Vid: 114, 237
Ker: SR Nair 20, 72; KSS Sarma 11, 79; S Anish 5-20, 4-52
A: Tripura v Services

[Tri v Ser]

Ser: 102, 321
Tri: 198, 202-9
Ser: D Israni 46, 10; Y Singh 1, 103; H Prasad 3-35, 4-50;
Tri: J Debnath 4-13, 1-48; V Jain 2-41, 3-76
B: Railways v Jammu & Kashmir

[Rail v JK]

Rail won by innings and 88
JK: 194, 123
Rail: 405
JK: S Beigh 5-115
Rail: H Singh 4-97, 2-36; SB Bangar 0-15, 4-29; K Sharma 120;
Vid: HV Shitoot 1-3, 4-38
B: Jharkand v Madhya Pradesh

[Jhar v MP]

MP won by 170 runs
MP: 223, 203-5
Jhar: 139, 117
MP: JS Saxena 125, 22, 2-16, 4-54; R Bakshi 56, 66*; A Ali 1-11, 4-35
Jhar: SS Rao 4-66, 3-59
B: Goa v Haryana

[Goa v Har]

Goa won by 26 runs
Goa: 271, 221
Har: 246, 220
Goa: A Ratra 15, 86; SK Kamat 40, 60; SB Jakati 6-52, 4-94
Har: S Rana 44, 67; J Sharma 4-66, 2-57


Next games: Nov 15 2007 to Nov 18 2007.

— Mohan

Ranji player watch – batsmen

The Ranji season is just about to begin, and following on from my earlier post about bowlers to watch out for, here is a list of batsmen I’ve made –

  • S. Badrinath
  • V. Sehwag
  • Akash Chopra
  • R. Uthappa
  • S. Raina
  • Rohit Sharma
  • M. Tiwary
  • Chateshwar Pujara
  • M. Vijay
  • M. Kaif

I’ve restricted the list to just 10 players and some people like Shikar Dhawan have missed out. Of the list of players in this list, S. Badrinath could still get a call up to the Test squad that plays Pakistan. Chopra and Sehwag are other batsmen who would be in the selectors radar. It would be interesting to see how people like Uthappa, Sharma and Raina who have represented India in ODIs fare this season. Uthappa was the top scorer in the Ranji Trophy last season, followed by Tiwary, who had a Bradmanesque average of 99.50. M Vijay who made his debut for TN last season took the third spot last year in terms of run aggregates and he would be hoping to continue his impressive form. Pujara is another batsman who is rated very highly and people expect him to play for India some day. Kaif has led the India A team brilliantly, but he will have to prove his worth in the domestic circuit this year if he has to win back his India cap.