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Monday, 25 May 2020

Top five Srilankan batsman of all time


 Top 5 Srilankan Batsmen Ever


Srilanka was not a cricketing power to reckon until 1996 world cup. Before 1996 they have won only 4 world cup games. Under the coach Dav Watmore and captain Arjuna Ranatunga, Srilanka did the unexpected in 1996. They lifted the world cup defeating Australia in the final. From then on Srilanka has been one among the best teams in the world. They had the services of many great batsmen like Arjuna Ranatunga, Aravinda De Silva, Mahela Jayawardene,Kumara Sangakkara, Hashan Tilakaratne , Roshan Mahanama and many others. The spin wizard Muttiah Muralutharan was a great influence in the team success. Other than Muralitharan, bowlers like Chaminda Vaas, Lasith Malinga,Nuwan Kulashekhara all provided their best efforts for Srilankan Cricket. Here 'Team Predictors' discuss about the top 5 batsmen in the Srilankan history.

1. Kumara Sangakkara


Kumara Sangakkara is the best batsman that Srilanka has ever produced. The wicket keeper batsman has scored tons of runs for his team. The former Srilankan captain is the second highest ODI run aggregator with 14,234 runs in 404 matches at an average of 41.98. Sangakkara is known for his class and cricketing acumen. The consistency he displayed was alarming for most of his opponents. In 2015 World Cup he scored 4 consecutive centuries. The 4 consecutive centuries were 105* against Bangladesh, 117* against England, 104 against Australia and 124 against Scotland. He was quite used to scoring centuries in a trot. He has achieved a similar fete in tests too, when he became the first batsman to score 150+ runs in 4 consecutive tests. In tests he has scored 12,400 runs from 134 matches at a whopping average of 57.40. 



Sangakkara has scored 11 double centuries in his career. Only Donald Bradman with 12 double centuries has more double centuries in tests than the former Srilankan captain. Sangakkara has also scored 38 centuries in his test career. The Srilankan wicket keeper batsman is the quickest to reach 12,000 runs in tests. Sangakkara helped Srilanka to reach many milestones and sometimes he was there to fight it alone. Sangakkara guided Srilanka to their maiden T20 world cup title in 2014 and earned the Man of match award in the final against India. In 2007 world cup final against Australia he scored a valiant century, but could not guide the team to victory. In short, Sangakkara is regarded as one of the best batsmen who has ever played for Srilanka.


2. Mahela Jayawardene


Mahela Jayawardene has been an act of class for Srilanka for many years. The batsman with silky touch was always a treat to watch. Mahela is the only batsman to score a century in both semifinal and final of a world cup. He achieved this fete while scoring centuries against New Zealand in 2007 World cup semifinal and against India in 2011 World cup final. Mahela Jayawardene has scored 11,814 runs in 149 tests at an average of 49.84 with 34 centuries. In ODIs he scored 12,650 runs from 448 matches at an average of 33.37 with 19 centuries and 77 half centuries. His average in ODI was not as charismatic as in test matches. Mahela never reached 150+ score in ODIs. 


His highest score was 144.  His knock of 103* against India in 2011 World cup finals was one the greatest quality innings. The Srilankan's highest score in tests is 374 against South Africa. It is the highest individual score in test for Srilanka. Mahela Jayawardene was an exceptional captain and a great close in fielder too. He is the only non wicket keeper player to take 200+ catches in both tests and ODIs. Muttiah Muralitharan and Mahela Jayawardane formed a great bowler and fielder combination. Batsmen getting out caught by Mahela, bowled by Muralitharan was a regular event. Mahela's excellence was not limited to ODI and Tests. He found himself comfortable in T20 format also. He is the first Srilankan to score centuries in all three formats of the game. Currently he is the highest run getter in T20 World Cup history.


3. Aravinda De Silva


The name of Aravinda De Silva brings into the mind of cricket lovers, the Srilankan heroics of 1996 Cricket World Cup. De Silva played a major role in helping Srilanka to win their first World title. The Srilankan was known for his attacking batting. Aravinda De Silva scored century against Kenya, and half centuries against Zimbabwe and India in the tournament. The major innings came in the final against Australia, where he scored a match winning 103*. The innings earned him the Man of Match award in the final. Aravinda De Silva has scored 6361 runs from 93 tests at an average of 42.97 with an highest score of 267. In ODIs he has scored 9284 runs in 308 matches at an average of 34.90. In ODIs his highest score is 145. He has scored 20 centuries in tests and 11 of them in ODI.


Aravinda De Silva was one of those key players who helped the Srilankan team to raise from underdog status to world champions. He was awarded the Man of Match award in 1996 World Cup Final for scoring the century and picking up 3 Australian wickets. Aravinda is the first batsman to score unbeaten centuries in both innings of a test match. He scored 138* and 105* against Pakistan in 1997. He scored a double century in his final test innings, which was against Bangladesh in 2002. He also picked up a wicket in the last ball of his test career.

4. Sanath Jayasuriya


Interestingly Sanath Jayasuriya came to the Srilankan team, as a bowler who could bat. But things turned up nicely for the left hander as his batting skills were exploited by the team management and he was promoted up the order. Jayasuriya was one of the best attacking batsman in late 90s. Such fierce was his onslaught that there were rumours about a spring in his bat ! Sanath Jayasuriya along with Ramesh Kaluwitharna exploited the initial fielding restrictions in 1996 world cup matches. It was a new idea for the cricketing world, where everyone used to start the innings slowly and then had a go at it. But the 'Matara Marauder' used to attack from the very first ball and tried to destroy the morale of the bowler. Jayasuriya smashed a 17 ball 50 and 48 ball century against Pakistan. At that time it was the fastest 50 and century.


Currently the records are held by AB de Villers of South Africa. Jayasuriya has scored 13,430 runs from 445 ODI at an average of 32.36 with the help of 28 centuries. He has also taken 323 wickets in one day format of the game. In tests, Jayasuriya has compiled 6,973 runs from 110 matches at an average of 40.07. Jayasuriya was one of the main architect of Srilankan victory in 1996 World Cup. He was adjudged as Man of Series of the tournament for his contributions. His top score in ODI is 189 and in tests he has scored 340. Sanath Jayasurya has second most number of Man of Match awards behind Sachin Tendulkar.
 

5. Tilakaratne Dilshan


Tilakaratne Dilshan played most of his career as a middle order batsman. There he got limited opportunities to express his skills. But later in 2007 he was promoted to the role of an opener and since then there was a drastic change in his approach towards the game. Dilsha proved to be an innovative and explosive opener with an improved consistency. ODI and T20 format was more suited for the Silankan. He  has scored the most runs by any batsman since the age of 35. Dilshan was the second Srilankan to score century in all three formats of the game. In tests he has scored 5,492 runs from 87 matches at a decent average of 40.98 .


 He has scored 16 centuries in longest format of cricket with an highest score of 193. In ODIs he has scored 10,290 runs from 330 matches at an average of 39.27 with an highest score of 161*. In ODI , Dilshan has scored 22 centuries and 21 of them came after he was promoted as an opener. He was the highest run scorer in 2009 T20 World Cup and 2011 50 over World Cup. Dilshan is known for his famous 'dilscoop' shot, which is played over the wicket keeper's head. Dilshan was also a great fielder.

Thursday, 14 May 2020

Performance of Bangladesh in World Cup Cricket History


Bangladesh in World Cups


It was in 1999 when Bangladesh qualified for the world cup. Since then they have played in all world cups. So far their best performance came in 2007 and 2015. In 2007 they reached the super 8 stage and in 2015 they managed to reach the quarterfinals.
Bangladesh in 50-over World Cup

1999 World cup:


It was in the 1999 cricket world cup that Bangladesh made their world cup debut. Based on their previous records, not much was expected from this team which was in their developing stage. In their first match against New Zealand they were bundled out for 116 and Kiwis won the match by 6 wickets. Their first world cup victory came against Scotland when they defeated the European nation by 22 runs. Minhajul Abedin made an unbeaten 68. They lost the next match to West Indies by 7 wickets. Again they continued their losing streak when they lost to Australia by 7 wickets. But Bangladesh sprang up a surprise against Pakistan. They defeated Pakistan by 62 runs. Batting first Bangladesh made 223/9. Akram Khan was top scorer with 42 runs. In reply Pakistan could only make 161 before being bowled out in 44.3 overs. Khaled Maumud picked up 3 Pakistani wickets conceding just 31 runs.

Akram Khan

2003 World Cup:


After defeating Pakistan in 1999 world cup Bangladesh had nothing to boast about in their performances leading up to the next world cup. They were losing matches in continuous streaks. In 2003 World Cup, held in African continent they lost all the matches and one match was washed out. Everyone expected them to win their first match against Canada. But Canada successfully defended their first innings score of 190. Bangladesh were all out for 120 runs. In their second match against Srilanka they were bowled out for 124 and Lankans chased down the target in 21.1 overs without losing a single wicket. Their third match against West Indies was washed out. In the fourth match Bangladesh innings ended in 108 in 35.1 overs. South Africa making a mockery of the Bangladeshi bowling attack chased down the score in 12 overs without any loss of wickets. Against the Kiwis, Bangladesh while batting first made 198/7. New Zealand batsmen cruised to the target with 7 wickets in hand. In their last match in the tournament they faced Kenya and there was a chance of ending the dismal show in some flurry. But to the dismay of Bangladeshi fans Kenya successfully defended their first innings score of 217/9.Bangladesh was all out for 185.


2007 World Cup:


There was a much improved performance from Bangladesh in the 2007 World cup held in West Indies. In the group match they defeated India and Bermuda. They lost against Srilanka but advanced to the Super Eight stage. The victory against India was a big boost for the team. Batting first, India could only muster 191 in 49.3 overs. Sourav Ganguly made a laborious half century. He scored 66 runs from 129 balls. Mashrafe Mortaza returned figures of 4/38 and played havoc on Indian batting. In reply Bangladesh made 192/5 in 48.3 overs with wicket keeper Mushfiqur Rahim scoring 56 runs. Bangladesh defeated Bermuda by 7 wickets in the league match. In the super eight stages they defeated South Africa. Bangladesh made 251/8 riding upon Mohammed Ashraful's 87. But South Africa's innings ended in 184 runs. Abdur Razzak picked 3 Proteas wickets for 25 runs. But, apart from victory against South Africa, Bangladesh put up a dismal show in the rest of matches in super 8. They lost against Australia by 10 wickets, against New Zealand by 9 wickets and against England by 4 wickets. They lost the match against West Indies by 99 runs. They even lost the match against Ireland by 74 runs. Batting first Ireland made 243 with the help of 83 from William Porterfield. In the second innings of match, Bangladesh chase ended up in 169.

Mushfiqur Rahim

2011 World Cup:


Bangladesh had the advantage of being co-hosts in 2011 World Cup. They were playing on their home soil. But 2011 World Cup turned to be a nightmare for the tigers. They lost the opening match against India by 87 runs. They won their next match against Ireland by 27 runs. In the very next match against West Indies, they were bowled out for 58 runs in 18.5 overs. West Indies spinner Suleimen Benn picked 4 wickets for 18 runs. West Indies reached the target with 9 wickets on hand. In their next game against South Africa they were bowled out for 78 runs and they lost the match for about 200 runs.

2015 World Cup:


After a disastrous 2011 World Cup Bangladesh was better equipped this time. Their performances has improved vastly post 2011 and they had a point to prove. In their first match in 2015 World Cup, held in Australia and New Zealand, Bangladesh defeated Afghanistan by 105 runs. The match against Australia was washed away and the points were shared. In the third game they were crushed by the Srilankans. Srilanka made 332/1 batting first and in reply Bangladesh could only make 240. Bangladesh bounced back in their next game against Scotland when they chased down a target of 319 runs. Bangladesh reached the quarter final stage where they had to face India. India made 302/6 and Bangladesh chase ended in 193 off 45 overs.

2019 World Cup:


The 2019 Cricket World Cup was held in England and Wales. Bangladesh raised their fans expectations when they defeated South Africa by 21 runs. Batting first, Bangladesh made 330/6 with Mushfiqur Rahim making a score of 78. In reply South Africa made 309/8 and lost the match by 21 runs. Mustafisur Rahman took 3 wickets for 67 runs. Bangladesh lost their match against Kiwis by 2 wickets when New Zealand chased down the target of 244 with the loss of 8 wickets. Bangladesh lost their matches against England, Australia, India and Pakistan. The match against Srilanka was washed away. Bangladesh registered wins against West Indies and Afghanistan too after their victory against South Africa. Against West Indies, Bangladesh chased down 322 with the loss of 3 wickets. Shakib Al Hasan who was in great form with the bat and ball in the tournament smashed 124 from 99 balls. In the match against Afghanistan, Bangladesh made 262. But Aghan response ended up at 200.Shakib Al Hasan took 5 wickets. Shakib Al Hasan became the first player to take more than 10 wickets and score 600+ runs in the same World Cup tournament.

Shakib Al Hasan 

Bangladesh has certainly come a long way and they have improved a lot in the recent years. There transformation from 'minnows' to a competitive team has been hearty for the cricket fans. Advancement of cricket in Bangladesh could be clearly seen when Bangladesh defeated India to lift the Under 19 world cup in 2020. Bangladesh will be a team to reckon in the near future. There is a surge of quality players in the team and the team which once were just known as giant killers in world cup when they defeated Pakistan, India and South Africa in World cups is on the verge of becoming capable of defeating those teams on a regular basis. Watch out for the Bangla Tigers for the next world cup.


Bangladesh in T20 World Cups


Bangladesh played in all the T20 world cups held so far. They had started off their T20 world cup campaign in style when they defeated West Indies in their first match in 2007. But they couldn't continue the trend in the later games and failed to erase the tag of 'minnows' in T20 format.

2007 T20 World Cup:


Bangladesh raised the hopes of their fans when they kicked off the tournament with a victory against West Indies. Batting first West Indies made 164/8. In reply riding on a 27 ball 61 by Mohammed Ashraful and 49 ball 62 by Aftab Ahmad Bangladesh reached the target in 18 overs. But things fell apart for Bangladesh in rest of the games. They lost all their remaining games. In their next match, they were restricted to 144 by South Africa. The protease won the game in 18.5 overs and 7 wickets in hand. Bangladesh lost the match against Australia by 9 wickets. Against Srilanka, chasing a target of 148, Bangladesh was all out for 83 runs in 15.5 overs. Pakistan defeated Bangladesh by 4 wickets in their next outing.

Mohammad Ashraful

2009 T20 World Cup:


Bangladesh crashed out of 2009 world cup after they lost both of their matches against India and Ireland. It was an upset against Ireland. In their first match chasing a target of 181 set up by India, Bangladesh was all out for 155. In their second match they lost to Ireland. Bangladesh made 137/8 batting first. Ireland chased down the target in 18.2 overs and 4 wickets down.
2010 T20 World Cup:

Still there was nothing for Bangladesh to cheer much about in the World T20 tournament. In 2010 they lost both their matches. Against Pakistan, chasing a target of 173 Bangladesh could only make 151/7. In their second match they restricted Australia to 141/7. But in reply they could only make 114.

2012 T20 World Cup:


In 2012 too it was the same old story. Bangladesh once again failed to advance to the next stage of the tournament. In their first match against New Zealand chasing a huge target of 192, their innings terminated in 132/8. In their second match against Pakistan, they put up a better show. Bangladesh made 175/6 batting first. But Pakistan managed to reach the target with 8 wickets in hand. So once again Bangladesh had to return without any real success.

2014 T20 World Cup:


Bangladesh started off 2014 edition of T20 World cup in style. In their first match they folded out Afghanistan batsmen for just 72 runs and chased down the target with the loss of just 1 wicket in 12 overs. In their second match they defeated Nepal by 8 wickets. They chased down the target of 127 with the loss of only 2 wickets. But in their third game Hong Kong sprang up a surprise when they defeated Bangladesh by 2 wickets. Hong Kong restricted Bangladesh to 108 and got to the target with 2 wickets in hand. Inconsistency was the term you could easily relate to such a performance. In next matches Bangladesh lost to India by 8 wickets, to Pakistan by 50 runs and to Australia by 7 wickets.

 2016 T20 World Cup:

 
After an unexpected loss to Hong Kong in previous edition, Bangladesh had to make sure that there was no scope for another upset. Bangladesh made sure they defeated Netherlands and Oman in 2016 World Cup. But, except against India, their performance against other regular main teams was not much enviable. Against Netherlands they won by 8 runs. Chasing a target of 154, Netherlands innings managed only 145 runs. Against Oman, Bangladesh made 180/2 and in reply, Oman made only 65/9. Bangladesh won by 54 runs using D/L method. The match against Ireland was washed out. Bangladesh lost to Pakistan by 55 runs and to Australia by 3 wickets. The match against India was a close finish. India batting first was restricted to 146/7. Bangladesh was on the verge of a victory, but couldn't hold their nerves and they lost the match by 1 run. In their next match, New Zealand made 145/8 in first innings. But Bangladesh batsmen were folded out for 70 runs in 15.4 overs by New Zealand bowlers.

Saturday, 9 May 2020

Formation of cricket in canada

In the present world Canada is not a country which is known for its cricketing skills. The country couldn't even qualify for the recent World Cup event. Cricket is slowly growing in the country, but needs to go a long way. Cricket is not new to Canadians. Cricket was introduced at a very early age in the country by the British. Due to its popularity cricket was chosen to become the national sport of Canada, but the idea was later changed and ice hockey was chosen to be the national sport. But in the time being cricket started to lose its popularity in the American country. It was mainly due to the growing popularity of base ball, one of the favourite games among their neighbouring country USA, among the Canadians. It was more suited for their cold climate. They found base ball faster paced and well suited for them. The US influence too played its part. But today, the conditions are slowly changing. Presently a lot of people are migrating to Canada from the Asian countries like India and Pakistan, and gulf countries. As we know, these regions are well known for the die-hard attitude towards cricket. Presence of these groups in Canada is lifting its cricketing prospects. Most of the team members of Canada are born in above mentioned regions.

John Davidson

Despite the low profile of Canadian cricket, it will be surprising to know that, the first ever international match took place between Canada and USA in 1844. But the Canadian cricket failed to grow beyond the limits. Even after being one the first countries to play international cricket, Canada continues to be only an associate member of ICC. The Canada Cricket Association was formed in 1892. Canada played in 4 World Cups in 1979, 2003, 2007 and 2011. But the thing is, they never managed to reach beyond the first round in all World Cups. Canada played its first ODI in 1979 world cup, against Pakistan. In 2004 Canada participated in their first ICC Intercontinental Cup. They lost in the finals against Scotland. Canada was the champions in ICC Americas Championship in 2000, 2004, 2010 and 2011. 

Austin Codrington

Canada Vs USA : The first international match,1844


The first ever international match in cricket was played between Canada and USA. The venue of the match was St. George Club Ground, New York.USA won the toss and elected to field. In the first innings Canada made 82 runs. 12 runs made by Winckworth, Sharpe and Freeling were the highest individual score in the innings. For USA, Groom took 3 wickets and Wright took 5.
Henry Osinde

In reply USA made 64 in their first innings with Tinson being the top scorer for them with 14 runs. Winckworth and French took 4 wickets each in US innings for Canada. In second innings Canada managed 63 runs with Winckworth scoring 14 runs. Groom and Wright took 5 wickets each for USA. In the final innings of match, the US reply ended in 58 runs and Canada won the match by 23 runs. In the final innings J Turner was top scorer for US with 14 runs. Sharpe took 6 wickets for Canada. It is a sad story that, the country which won the first international match couldn't replicate the success in the international scene to greater extent. 

Canada in World Cups


Canada did not participate in the first world cup in 1975. In 1979 they reached the second spot in ICC trophy held in England, behind Srilanka. Canada qualified for the world cup 1979. There they played the first international ODI, against Pakistan. In the match Canada managed to make 139/9 with G R Sealy making 45 runs. But Pakistan chased down the total in 40.1 overs with 119 balls remaining. Pakistan lost just 2 wickets. In the second game Canada was bowled out for a paltry score of 45.England won the match in 13.5 overs with the loss of 2 wickets and 277 balls remaining .In terms of remaining number of balls this remains as the biggest win in ODIs. In their third outing, they faced Australia. Canada was all out for 105 in 33.2 overs. John Vaughan top scored for Canada with 29.Australian bowler Alan Hurst was the wrecker in chief as he took 5 Canadian wickets for 21 runs in 10 overs. In the second innings of match Australia made 106 in just 26 overs with the loss of 3 wickets.

Ashish Bagai

After 1979, Canada had to wait till 2003 to play their next world cup. In 2003 Canada defeated Bangladesh, which was their only success in the tournament. In the first innings Canada was all out for 180 runs. Bangladesh was expected to defeat Canada with such a low score to defend. But Bangladesh was all out for 120 runs and Canada tasted their first victory in World cup. Canadian bowler Austin Codrington took 5 Bangladeshi wickets for 27 runs. In their match against Srilanka they were bowled out for a paltry 36. Srilanka chased down the target with 272 balls remaining and 9 wickets in hand. In their third match against West Indies John Davidson smashed a 67 ball century to help his team reach 202. He made 111 off 76 balls. But West Indies batsmen made a mockery of the target as they crossed the run mark in 20.3 overs. Against NewZealand once again Davidson smashed a quick fire half century but other batsmen let the team down. Davidson scored 75 off 62 balls with 4 sixes and 9 fours. Canada could only make 196 despite that innings and New Zealand reached the target in 23 overs with 5 wickets down. Canada lost the match against South Africa by a large margin of 118 runs. Against Kenya they lost the match by 4 wickets. Kenya reached the target with 9 balls to spare.

Ravinderpal Singh

2007 World cup was worse for Canada as they couldn't even win a single match. Kenya defeated them by 7 wickets in their first match. In their second match chasing 279 scored by England, Canada made 228/7. England won by 51 runs. NewZealand defeated them by a margin of 114 runs in their last game of the tournament. In 2011 World cup, their first match was against Srilanka. Srilanka won the match handsomely by 210 runs. Canada was again defeated by Zimbabwe by another huge margin of 175 runs. Pakistan defeated Canada by 46 runs in their third match. Canada did manage to defeat Kenya this time in the World Cup. They defeated Kenya by 5 wickets. Batting first Kenya was all out for 198. Canada chiseled down the required runs in 45.3 overs and 5 wickets down. Henry Osinde of Canada was awarded the Man of Match award for taking 4 wickets by conceding just 26 runs. This was their second victory in World Cups. Canada lost the match against NewZealand by 97 runs and against Australia by 7 wickets. Canada did not qualify for 2015 and 2019 World Cups. 

Statistics

1. John Davidson scored a 67 ball century against West Indies in 2003 World cup, which was then the quickest century in World Cup. Currently the record is held by Kevin O'Brien of Ireland.
2. Anderson Cummins represented Canada in 2007. He had played for West Indies in 1991-92.
3. Highest team total for Canada is 312/4 against Ireland in 2007 at Nairobi.                          
4. The highest Individual score by a Canadian is the 137 not out scored by Asish Bagai against Scotland in 2007.He has also the most ODI runs scored by a Canada batsman.
5. The best bowling figures of a Canadian bowler is 5/27 by Austin Codrington against Bangladesh in 2003. The bowling effort gifted Canada with their first world cup victory.
6. The highest team total for Canada in T20 is the 196/6 against Cayman Islands in 2019.
The highest individual score for Canada in a T20 match is 101 by Ravinder Singh against Cayman Islands in 2019.


With more people migrating to Canada from the Asian countries, cricket is slowly growing in popularity. Let's hope that in near future we can see the American country reach greater heights in cricketing field. Recently countries like Afghanistan and Bangladesh have done decently well and Canada can draw inspiration from those performances and make it large.

Tuesday, 5 May 2020

Analysis of Diminishing talent of fast bowlers in this century

Batsmen in cricket often get more fame and laurel that most of the bowlers. The role of bowlers is often undermined in the game. Many don't realize that bowlers too have the same importance of batsmen in the game of cricket and they too deserve the same honour and celebrity status as some of the batting superstars. There is a general notion among cricket lovers that there is a fall in quality of pacers in current age compared to 80s and 90s. Many are found to be nostalgic about the fiery tight spells of some of the vehement mercurial bowlers of past years. Many complain that in the current age we don't have those fiery pacers who bring terror into the minds of batsmen. But is that a reality? Is the quality of pace bowlers going downhill? Let's check out.

Dale Steyn

The rules of the game have evolved with time, and it has become more and more indulgent towards the batsman. The introduction of powerplays and fielding restrictions has given the batsman more freedom to play his shots. The opening bowlers are thrashed by the batsmen on those flat wickets. Many of cricket fans hail the yesteryear bowlers of their reverse swinging capabilities. According to the current rule two different balls are used from the two ends of wickets in an ODI. So the ball doesn't get old enough for the reverse swing to come into the picture. Also the spinners may find it tough to spin it in the early part of innings because the ball remains relatively new.

Mitchell Starc

A spinner may find an older ball more suited for his art. But due the usage of two balls, even after 30 overs, the balls are just 15 overs old.  The free hit after the no ball, is another rule which attacks the morale of any bowler. The batsman can have a go at the bowler almost without any chance of being getting out. Of course the batsman can be run out or stumped, but those chances are minimum. The bowler may produce peach of a delivery and get the batsman bowled. But alas! Despite being a perfect legal delivery the batsman have the legal protection of cricketing rules of a free hit and he can just continue the batting.

Jasprith Bumrah

The tight schedule in the present age is also affecting the fitness of the bowlers, especially the pacers. The modern cricketers don't even have enough time for rest and they are running from one tournament to the other. The mental stress experienced by many cricketers is the proof of this rush. Recently Australia's Glenn Maxwell took some time off from the game citing the same reasons. This is an age of T20s. Many cricketing nations have their own premier leagues. In these leagues, national as well as foreign players are being engaged.

LasithMalinga

 These premier leagues are adding to the already hectic schedule of these fast bowlers. Their body may find it tough to adjust to these playing schedules and this can affect their performance. Kagiso  Rabada is a very talented South African pacer. He had too much of a tight schedule that his World Cup performance were affected. Prior to world cup in addition to his national duties he played in IPL. His South African Captain Faf Duplessi once admitted that these heavy schedules are affecting his premiere pacer's performances.

James Anderson

Technology can also be a reason for the ill fate of the bowlers. They are studied with great precision by the use of available technologies and familiarised to a big extent. These are some of the reasons among many, due to which we may get a feeling that there is a fall in quality of the pacers worldwide. Commercial interests are another reasons for the dominance of batsmen in cricket. The advent of T20 has also changed the mindset of cricket fans. People pay to watch entertaining cricket. And these ordinary fans don't want to see ball seeming or turning too much and troubling the batsmen. They don't want to watch those low scoring games where the runs just dry up and the wickets just pile up. People want to see high scoring games where boundaries just seems to come easily and batsmen score those big centuries .They want to be entertained by those countless sixes and fours. It is the age of T20s where audience expect you to score at the rate of 10 or 12 runs per over. In order to attract more audience they prepare such batsmen friendly pitches. Bowlers are made to suffer on these flat pitches. Acres above 300 have become more common these days. More batsman are touching the 200 run mark in ODIs. Score above 400 have been made more than 20 times and at time they are being chased down too. The numbers of audiences for test matches are dwindling. These majority of audiences don't have any particular interest in those battles between ball and bat. They don't find it dashing enough. ICC is trying out different tactics to keep the interest in test matches among the audiences alive. The introduction of day-night test matches is one such tactics. It can be any of those dead pitches where bowlers don't get any help, and it just gets away without any controversies. But once you prepare a pitch where a test match ends in three days everything seems to go wrong. There can be some sort of economic reason too in such controversies. The broadcasting channel will be able to achieve maximum benefits through advertisements only when a test match lasts through all five days. If the pitch turns or seams too much there is a great chance that the test match may end within 3 or 4 days and bring some economic loss to the broadcasters. Green grass is often shaved off from the pitches just before the start of matches. Despite these drawbacks bowlers have found ways to control those batsmen even of flat pitches. Slow deliveries, slow bouncers, knuckle balls, in-cutters are some of those deliveries which was developed to deceive the batsmen and trap them.
Shane Bond

The quality of pace bowling has certainly diminished in some countries. But that is not the case of bowlers only but batsmen too. West Indies and Srilanka are the best examples. Many may lament that West Indies don't produce enough fast bowlers like Michael Holdings or Joel Garner. But in the present age do they have batsmen like Clive Lloyd, Vivian Richards or Brian Lara? So it is not the case of fast bowlers only, but the quality of cricketers in general. The decline of West Indies cricket was due to feud between the players and the board. But still they had some quality bowlers in Fidel Edwards, Jerome Taylor and so on. Similar is the situations in some other countries too. South Africa after the retirement of Allan  Donald and Shaun Pollock were well served by the likes of Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel, Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada, Ngidi and so on. So we can see that there is no shortage of real pace in the ranks of South Africa. Dale Steyn did overtake Pollock to become the highest wicket taker for South Africa. Sometimes South Africa's team combination suffers due to reservations.In case of Australia they were always blessed with real pace bowlers. Brett Lee, Josh Hazelwood,Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc have all been great for Australia even in this 21st century. In fact Mitchell Starc deliverd at a pace of over 160 kmph  to Ross Taylor in a test match. So that shows there is no shortage for real pace in the modern era.Till now he has taken 244 wickets from 57 test matches and 178 wickets from 91 ODIs.That is an enviable record especially when we take into consideration , the flat tracks on which they play most of the games. England too have a great pack of fast bowlers led admirably by James Anderson.He is the highest wicket taker for  England in their test history with 584 test wickets at an average of 26.83 which is better than Ian Botham's average . Anderson was well supported by the likes of Sturat Broad,Andrew Flintoff,Mathew Hoggard,Steve Harmison and so on. Indians never had many fast bowlers in early years. Kapil Dev, Javagal Srinath, Amarnath were some of the rare Indian fast bowlers who came to the scene up to 90s. In 21st century India can boast of the presence of some genuine pacers in her ranks. India was known for her batting and spin bowling skills. But now the pacers like Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar are world class and are among the best in the world. In early 21st century India was well served by the likes of Zaheer Khan,Irfan Pathan,S Sreeshant and many others. Zaheer Khan was a wile customer who could swing it both ways. He was skilled in the art of reverse swing. Presently, Jasprit Bumrah is one of the best fast bowlers. If we take the case of NewZealand the names like Shane Bond,Tim Southee, Trent Boult may pop up in our mind. Shane Bond could only play in 18 test and 82 ODI matches. But from them he has picked 87 and 147 wickets respectively and a great average of 22.09 in tests and 20.88 in ODI. For Pakistan, in early 21st century they had the services of then worlds fastest bowler Shohaib Akthar. Now they have the world class Mohammed Amir,Mohammed Abbas, Wahab Riyas and so many likes in their pool. Lasith Malinga of Srilanka was a revelation in pace bowling. His toe crushing yorkers created headache for most batsmen. The slinger is a specialist in death overs and could bowl yorkers at will.
Shoaib Akthar


So in reality there is no shortage of pace bowlers in the current cricketing world. The world has produced quality bowlers every now and then. But it is the commercial interests of organizers which is hindering the dominance of bowlers. Despite all those rules and regulations in support of batsmen, our pace bowlers have developed new weapons to tackle the batsmen. Pace bowlers have always been an integral part of the game and a treat to watch.

Friday, 1 May 2020

90s Great Bowlers

Best Bowlers in 90s

90s was a time when some of the best bowlers reigned in cricket. Many bowling records were made by the bowlers of that era. Team Predictors discuss about the two best bowlers from each team in 90s.

1. Australia: Glenn McGrath & Shane Warne 


Glenn McGrath:

Glenn McGrath was a disciplined bowler who was too precise with his line and length. Consistency was the term you could relate with the great bowler. McGrath was a part of 4 Australian World cup squads from 1996 to 2007. He has the most number of wickets in the world cup. The pacer has picked 71 wickets in world cup. He was the highest wicket taker in 2007 World cup with 26 scalps.  He is second in the list of fast bowlers behind James Anderson with the most number of wickets. McGrath has 563 test wickets from 124 matches at an average of 21.64.
In ODI he has 381 wickets from 250 matches. McGrath was very economical in his outings and just hated to give away runs. The bowler has the rare distinction of picking up wickets in the last ball of his test, ODI and T20 careers and also holds the record of dismissing most number of batsmen for a duck.His career best performance of 8/24 in tests came against Pakistan. In ODIs his best bowling figures of 7/15 came against Namibia.

Shane Warne

Widely regarded as the best leg spinner to ever play cricket Shane Warne has more than 1000 international wickets. He has 708 wickets from 145 test matches at an average of 25.41. He had an ordinary beginning to his test career where he could only pick 1 wicket for 228 runs in the series against India.But as we all know, he ended up as the second highest wicket taker in tests. Everyone remembers the 'ball of century' from Warne which dismissed Mike Gatting of England in Ashes 1993. The ball turned from well outside the leg stump to clip the offstump .Warne was caught in some controversies when he was charged guilty for giving informations regarding pitch and whether conditions to the bookies. In 2003 he was banned from cricket for 1 year when he was tested positive for some banned drugs. His career best figures of 8/71 came against England at Brisbane in 1994.

 In ODI his best figures are 5/33 against West Indies in 1996 at Sydney.In ODI he has 293 wickets from 194 matches at an average of 25.73. In 1999 World Cup final he took 4 wickets for 33 runs and was adjudged as Man of the Match. He was the highest wicket taker of the 1999 World Cup tournament.

2.India: Javagal Srinath & Anil Kumble 


Javagal Srinath

After retirement of Kapil Dev, Javagal Srinath was the leader of the Indian pace attack for some years. He could generate real pace and was a great asset. He has taken 236 test wickets in 67 matches at an average of 30.49. In ODIs he has 315 scalps from 229 matches at an average of 28.08. Javagal Srinath is the only Indian fast bowler to take more than 300 wickets in ODIs. 


He has played in 4 world cups from 1992 to 2003 and his tally of 44 wickets is the highest number of wickets by an Indian bowler in world cups. Zaheer Khan also have take the same number of wickets.His best bowling figures in tests of 8/86 came against Pakistan at Kolkata. In ODI his best bowling figure is 5/23 .

Anil Kumble

Anil Kumble is the most successful bowler for India in terms of the wickets. Unlike his contemporaries he was not a great turner of the ball and depended more on pace and bounce. He hurried the batsmen into their shots and at times deceived them with his googly. He has 619 test wickets,which is the most number by an Indian and also third highest in the world behind Muttiah Muralitharan and Shane Warne. Anil Kumble has also picked 337 wickets from 271 ODIs which is the highest for an Indian in ODI. 


Anil Kumble is the only bowler after Jim Laker of England who has picked all the 10 wickets in a test innings. He got the record against the arch rivals Pakistan at Ferozshah Kotla,Delhi. But he could not dismiss Waqar Younis in both innings. That marked his best bowling figures of 10/74 in tests. In ODI his best bowling figure is 6/12 against West Indies. Anil Kumble had a great year in 1996 when he picked 61 wickets in the calendar year. It continues to be a record for most number of ODI wickets in a calender year by an Indian.

3. Srilanka: Chaminda Vaas & Muttiah Muralitharan 


Chaminda Vaas

Chaminda Vaas had been the opening bowler for Srilanka for some time. The swing bowler had led the bowling attack with grace. At times Vaas was overshadowed due to the towering presence of Muttiah Muralitharan. Vaas was known for his accuracy and swing. Vaas has taken 355 wickets from 111 test matches at an average of 29.58. Vaas had a smooth running action and seldom got injured unlike his fellow pacers in world cricket. 


He took 400 wickets from 322 ODI at an average of 27.53, which included a career best performance of 8/19 against Zimbabwe. The Srilankan took a hat-trick off the very first three deliveries of Bangladesh innings in a 2003 world cup. Chaminda Vaas was the highest wicket taker in 2003 world cup with 23 wickets.

Muttiah Muralitharan

Muttiah Muralitharan was one of the first wrist off spinner to play  international cricket. His super flexible wrist has gifted him a whopping 800 test wickets from 133 matches at an average of 22.72. He is the ever time leading wicket taker in both Tests and ODI. In ODI he has taken 534 wickets from 350 matches at an average of 23.08.

 His unusual wrist action has also landed him in trouble. There were incidents when on field umpires called his action illegal. But later ICC cleared him off the charges and the spinning wizard continued his journey.
  

4. South Africa: Allan Donald & Shaun Pollock


 Allan Donald

Often described as the 'White Lightning' Allan Donald was  lightning quick and could destroy any batting units with his fearsome bowling. The name Allan Donald might bring into the memories of cricket fans , the unfortunate run out in the 1999 World Cup semi final. But lets not forget that Donald had taken 4 wickets for 32 runs in the same match.


In fact he had taken 16 wickets at an average of 20.31 in 1999 World Cup. Allan Donald has a tally of 330 test wickets from 72 matches with a career best performance of 8/71 at an average of 22.25. In ODI he has 272 wickets from 164 matches at an average of 21.78.

Shaun Pollock

Shaun Pollock the great South African fast bowler comes from a family of cricketers. His father Peter Pollock and Uncle Graeme Pollock have donned South African jersey before him. Pollock was known for his disciplined bowling. He could move the ball both ways and he was a genuine all rounder.


 He announce his introduction to the ODI scene with a four wicket haul and a half century in his debut game. The former South African captain has taken 421 wickets from 108 matches at an average of 23.11.In ODIs he has taken 393 wickets from 303 matches at an average of 24.50.His economy of 3.6 in ODI is one of the lowest among modern day cricketers.

5. England: Darren Gough & Andrew Caddick 


Darren Gough

Darren Gough had an impressive start to his test career when he took 4 wickets in the first innings and then scored 65 runs. But unfortunately Gough could not continue his batting heroics as he could only score another half century in his entire career. But Gough was the bowling spearhead of England in mid and late 90s. 

The late swinging yorkers of Gough created headache even to the best of batsmen. Darren Gough took  229 wickets from 58 tests at an average of 28.39. In ODI he took 234 wickets from 159 ODI at an average of 26.42. He is the second highest wicket taker for England in ODI.

Andrew Caddick

England lacked those fearsome pacers or sharp turning spinners in 90s. So Team Predictors find it quite difficult to choose a second great bowler in the English team in 90s.


Andrew Caddick was a good bowler and found it easier in test set up rather than in ODIs. His records in test cricket is found to be far better than that in ODI. In test cricket he has picked 234 wickets in 62 tests at an average of just above 29. He has taken 13 five wicket hauls in tests. In ODI he has taken 69 wickets from 54 ODI. Unfortunately he never had a five wicket haul in ODI and his career best performance in ODI is 4/19.

6. West Indies: Curtly Ambrose & Courtney Walsh


 Courtney Walsh

Courtney Walsh, the former West Indies captain is one of the greatest bowlers ever to have played for his country. Walsh was more successful in Tests than ODIs. Walsh was the first bowler to take 500 test wickets.In tests he has 519 wickets from 132 matches at an average of 24.44.


In ODI he has 227 wickets from 205 matches. That was a bit low by his standards. He famously picked 5 wickets conceding just 1 run against Srilanka in an ODI in 1986. Interestingly that was his only five wicket haul in the ODI.In test his best bowling figure is 7/37.

Curtly Ambrose

Curtly Ambrose was a real menace for even the greatest of batsmen of his era. With his height he could produce more bounce off the pitch and together with his pace and line, it was difficult to score against him. Ambrose came as a replacement for Joel Garner in the team and in his ODI debut match against Pakistan he had a bowling figures of 4/39. But his Test debut were not so impressive where he could take only 2 wickets for 121  runs. 

The fearsome fast bowler was responsible for several victories for his team and West Indies was in a state of decline during his last playing years. Ambrose has 405 test wickets from 98 test matches at an impressive average of 20.99 and career best figures of 8/45. In ODI he has picked 225 wickets from 176 matches at an average of 24.12.

7. Pakistan: Wasim Akram & Waqar Younis 


Waim Akram

The name Wasim Akram brings into our mind that one word, 'Swing'. The Sultan of swing, Wasim Akram is the second highest wicket taker in  ODIs with 502 wickets from 356 matches at an average of 23.52.He has a career best performance of 5/15. He was the first bowler to take 500 wickets in ODI.From 104 test matches, he has taken 415 wickets at an average of 23.62. 


Wasim has taken 23 five-wicket hauls in test matches. He has taken 4 hat-tricks in international cricket, two apiece in ODI and tests. He had a great weapon in his repertoire in addition to the normal swinging deliveries, that was the reverse swing. He was one of the bowlers who spread the art of reverse swing, which was till then unknown to the cricketing fraternity.His highest score in tests is 256 not out against Zimbabwe.

Waqar Younis

Waqar Younis along with Wasim Akram formed the deadliest pace attack in cricket. Waqar could reverse the ball and that too at great pace. Batsmen found it hard to tackle those swinging deliveries. Waqar was the youngest to take 400 wickets in ODI.


He has 416 wickets from 262 ODIs at an average of 23.4. In test matches he has taken 373 wickets from 87 matches. Waqar was found in some controversy when he was banned for tampering with the ball in 2000.

8. New Zealand: Daniel Vettori & Chris Cairns 


Daniel Vettori

Daniel Vettori was the first left arm spinner to reach 300+ wickets in both ODI and tests. The player who made his debut at an age of 18 is the most capped player for Newzealand. Vettori was not a great turner of the ball, but depended on flight and variations.


The crafty bowler has 362 wickets from 113 test matches at an average of 34.36. In ODIs he has 305 wickets from 295 matches. Vettori was more than a useful batsman. He has scored 6 test centuries with a top score of 140. His best bowling figure in test and ODI reads 7/87 and 5/7 respectively.

Chris Cairns

Chris Cairns was one of the greatest all rounders ever to have played for NewZealand. Cairns has picked 218 wickets from 62 test matches at an average of 29.40. Cairns' injuries necessitated a drop in pace and in latter stages he depended on tight length and slower deliveries . 



He has 200 wickets from 215 ODI matches . Cairns have a test batting average of 33.53 with a highest score of 158. He is the sixth highest wicket taker for NewZealand in tests