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india should consider playing five specialist bowlers...

by straight point

the kind of wickets that are prepared for one day internationals these days... where even lesser mortals can plant the foot forward and play through the line of the ball without worrying about the deviation... and dispatch hapless bowlers out of the park even if its a miss hit... playing with seven batsmen is nothing but a defensive mindset...

if the batting is as strong as india has, more often than not the seventh batsmen wont have any say in the proceedings... and then a place gets wasted for flimsy reasons... that start with... 'just in case...'

the mindset of almost all captains has been to put a mammoth total on board so that opposition teams just cannot chase it but this strategy is found wanting of late coz of two reasons...

first there is constant pressure on batsmen to put up a huge score to compensate lack of bowling choices... and i have seen many teams floundering chasing that pre-conceived unbeatable total irrespective of prevailing conditions...

second being... opposition teams knows it too... so attack your weakest link by putting your front line bowlers under enormous pressure to come out good every time they bowl... meaning one of your main bowler having an off day is not an option...

since the next world cup is going to take place in india in 2011... india must give the five bowler strategy a go and see if it yields the desired results which i am sure it will... as seen in last match that the match was not won by batsmen but by great bowling at death...

as i have said before... i would use praveen kumar in the role of allrounder that india has been searching endlessly for after irfan pathan and field five bowlers... either 2 spinners + 3 pacers or 1 spinner + 4 pacers combo depending upon how dhoni is feeling about bhajji...

10 comments:

Cricket Tragic said...

I, too, have always loved the concept of 5 specialist bowlers. As far as India are concerned, they could really squeeze in Sree or Ojha in place of Jadeja.

Nothing against Jadeja, he's a good lad, but I just feel that he isn't worth picking for his bowling and he doesn't compensate for it with consistent batting.

Kumar, like u mention, can be put in at number 7 with Harbhajan at no.8.

However, perhaps the presence of Raina might make India think twice about this strategy.

In order to use 5 bowlers in an ODI, you have to have 6 in-form batsman. Other than Raina, everyone else seems to be good. Raina still hasn't sorted out his problem with short-pitched deliveries and it will keep affecting him...it's starting to become like how Philip Hughes doesn't have a leg-side game!

straight point said...

However, perhaps the presence of Raina might make India think twice about this strategy.

ct... i just don't understand why team strategy should change because of one player not performing upto desired level...

its not as if we have dearth of talent... last match one of india's most successful player yuvraj dint played the match and we dint even feel the pinch... ditto with gambhir who missed two matches and still murli eased in effortlessly...

that is why i feel on pitches which are prepared for LOIs these days... strengthening your bowling department makes more sense than batting...

pRAFs said...

I think harbhajan should bat higher.
if he can bat six, why not 3?

no, really.

Cricket Tragic said...

SP

Frankly, the Rajkot pitch was an aberration. I'm not saying this cos SL lost, but because the pitch never deteriorated one bit! If a team can give a serious chase of 400+ runs, then something is seriously wrong with the pitch.

The reason why I say that Raina's presence could hinder the 5 bowlers strategy is because every team has a bad day and if they lose quick wickets, then you don't have that 7th batsman to pull you out of a hole...

moreover, if you lose 5 wickets too quickly, you might not have that extra batsman to push you to a really good total in the slog overs..

straight point said...

ct... if this pitch was an aberration... then what about last odi series in which two 350+ scores were posted on board...

look around and you'll see 300/325 scores becoming norm or par score... it means the pitches and conditions everywhere are getting batsmen friendly... boundaries are getting small everywhere...

...and even then you need an assurance of one extra batsman (for what might happen once in 10/15 matches) then you know what i mean... :)

straight point said...

pRAFs and here i was thinking at least a right arm fast bowler will support me... ;-)

Anonymous said...

what difference one extra bowler will make on these lifeless tracks?? do you seriously think Ishant or sreesanth would have fared better than RJ?? with the kind of bowlers we have I would rather play Irfan or abhishek nayar in place of PK

pRAFs said...

SP,
I'm finding it difficult to even blog about the pitches.
that's the state of us fast bowlwers.

Rohit said...

It's not even about whether the batsmen are required, it's about how their presence allows for a little freedom at the top in terms of mindset. If we go with 6+5, we'll end up having to watch Dhoni hold it all together on his own and nurdle away to glory very frequently. It just doesn't work because Raina is still suspect. I would put my money on Kohli or Sharma taking his spot before WC 2011. I think giving Jadeja a long run seems a better idea, seeing Yusuf Pathan's precipitous drop in form. He seems to be a half decent bowler and the other day he showed that he can put them away as well. Now if he could somehow manage to do these two things in the same match, we may have a permanent no. 7 on our hands.

Mahek said...

How I hate Warne for making people think Jadeja is a batsman who can bowl! The guy is a bowler! He just happens to be good with the bat, a lot better than C******an Singh. As far as I'm concerned we're not short of frontline bowlers, they just happen to bowl filth and the fielders make them look worse. The last match may have had a completely different look had Kohli held on to that sitter. Praveen Kumar is a good bowler and he was unlucky to have two sitters dropped off his bowling. He's also a more than handy number 9.

I'll take Raina over Nohit and Kohli anyday. Kohli is just another showpony in the field and his batting isn't much to write home about. People tend to forget Raina scored two fifties down the order against Australia. He's batting out of position, give him some time to settle there.