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Suryakumar Yadav’s odd case of resting over format



Suraya Kumar Yadav

Isn’t there a strong case that the right-hander should be one of the first names on the team sheet, no matter how the rest of the eleven players fit together?

On Monday, Rohit Sharma had given a clue about something. It was still surprising that India did not include Suryakumar Yadav in their playing lineup for the first One-Day International that they played against Sri Lanka at the Barsapara Cricket Stadium in Guwahati. Regardless of the distinction that Sharma attempted to make between T20 internationals and ODIs on the eve of the match, he remains India’s finest batter when it comes to limited-overs cricket at the moment.

On Monday, the captain of the Indian cricket team responded to a question about the middle order by saying, “It is a nice headache to have rather than having no headache.” We will look at who has performed well for us in one-day international cricket and analyze the circumstances in which their successes have come about. When you start contrasting several forms, that’s when you run into a difficulty. Those players who have shown promise in one-day internationals will be given opportunities to contribute. It’s as simple as that. Although format is also very important, form is the most crucial aspect.

Shreyas Iyer was selected to start in place of Yadav in the playing eleven on Tuesday as a result of Sharma’s direct reference to ODI figures. Yadav has not yet achieved the same level of success in One-Day Internationals (ODIs) as he has in Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is): 384 runs in 16 matches with an average of 32 and a strike rate of 100.52. Iyer, on the other hand, entered Tuesday with a total of 1537 runs scored over 39 one-day internationals at a strike rate of 96.03 runs per over.

The most important question, however, is whether or not it makes sense to play K.L. Rahul if it means leaving an in-form Yadav on the bench. The results that Rahul achieved in one-day internationals in 2022 were not satisfactory: 251 runs in 10 matches with an average of 27.88 and a best score of 73. His strike rate has also decreased, and it is currently at 80.19. Even though Rahul’s run of bad form has lasted across all formats of the game, he continues to find favor in the game, when it’s possible that returning to domestic cricket and regaining his confidence could be the best route forward.

After India made the decision not to include Ishan Kishan, who had scored 200 runs in his previous one-day international (ODI), they were forced to consider Rahul as an option because he is the only other wicketkeeper they have at their disposal. On Tuesday, Rahul scored 39 runs off of 29 balls, which was obviously not enough runs to support his recent totals.

Irrespective of how the rest of the eleven players fit together, is there not a compelling argument to be made that Yadav ought to be listed as one of the first names on the team sheet? The alleged disparity in performance between one-day internationals and Twenty20 internationals, which Sharma attempted to stress, is also instructive on India’s perspective. If India does not back a hitter of Yadav’s calibre, they run the risk of being stuck in a time warp at a time when nations like England, who are the leaders in white-ball cricket, consider the 50-over format as a lengthier version of T20s.

When they found out that they did not have to cope with Suryakumar’s 360-degree range on a belter of a wicket, the Sri Lankan bowlers must have let out the largest sigh of relief possible. Yadav had delivered the killing punch with an adventurous 112* off 51 balls in the third Twenty20 International that was played in Rajkot on Saturday. This score absolutely stole your breath away. Does the fact that Yadav has a middling record in one-day internationals (ODIs) so far imply that he is not going to get a chance to put things right before the World Cup? There are only 14 bilateral ODIs and the Asia Cup left for India to play before the World Cup.

If the answer is yes, India would be committing a grave error in judgment if they participated in the 50-over World Cup with an outright match-winner warming the bench. It wouldn’t be the first time that they’ve made a poor pick at a large event in recent memory, so it wouldn’t be a surprise either. It’s possible that this is why they haven’t won an ICC competition in the last ten years.

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1000 Runs in ODIs: Kohli’s Cricket Legacy




1000 Runs in ODIs: Kohli's Cricket Legacy

On Thursday, November 2, Virat Kohli achieved an accomplishment. He became the batsman to surpass 1000 runs in ODIs in 2023, following in the footsteps of Shubman Gill and Rohit Sharma. Not that,. He also joined Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, and Pathum Nissanka as the fourth players to achieve this impressive record in the 50-over format within the same year.

Stepping into History with 1000 Runs in ODIs

Virat Kohli celebrating 1000 Runs in ODIs with a jump on the field

Entering the realm of history, Kohli’s unwavering determination and exceptional skills were put on display during his match in 2023. Notably, the cricket maestro, now 34 years old, made an indelible impact by surpassing Sachin Tendulkar‘s record, securing the most number of years with 1000 runs in ODIs. Kohli’s consistent ability to perform at such an exceptional level has been a defining characteristic of his illustrious career, as he had previously achieved this monumental milestone in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, and 2019, before accomplishing it once again in the present year of 2023.

An Unforgettable Journey

In an intense World Cup 2023 clash against Sri Lanka at the renowned Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, Virat Kohli’s pursuit of this historic milestone was realized with an impressive 34 runs. Despite facing challenges, including a rare duck against England at the Ekana Stadium in Lucknow, his overall performance throughout the year has been nothing short of spectacular.

Kohli’s memorable journey was highlighted by an unbeaten century during India’s triumphant seven-wicket victory against Bangladesh at the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) Stadium in Pune. Adding to his illustrious record, he solidified his stature with a brilliant 95 runs, making a significant contribution to India’s thrilling four-wicket win over New Zealand led by Tom Latham at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) Stadium in Pune.

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Shaheen Shah Afridi: Fastest to 100 ODI Wickets




Shah Afridi celebrating a wicket

Shaheen Shah Afridi, on Tuesday, October 31, achieved a remarkable feat, becoming the third fastest bowler to secure 100 wickets in ODIs. His outstanding performance during Pakistan’s World Cup 2023 match against Bangladesh at the renowned Eden Gardens in Kolkata led to this historic accomplishment.

A Landmark Moment

In the thrilling encounter, Shaheen clinched his 100th wicket in only his 51st match, dismissing Tigers’ opening batter Tanzid Hasan Tamim. The left-arm fast bowler displayed exceptional skill as he struck Tamim on the pads, prompting the on-field umpire to raise his finger. Despite Tamim’s referral to the third umpire using the Decision Review System (DRS), the replays confirmed the ball crashing into the stumps, upholding the on-field decision. Bangladesh lost their first wicket with the scoreboard reading 0 in just 0.5 overs.

Surpassing Preceding Records

Shaheen Shah Afridi not only secured this feat in record time but also outshone the accomplishments of esteemed bowlers preceding him. He surpassed the record of the fastest pacer, previously held by Mitchell Starc, who attained the milestone in August 2016 during an ODI against Sri Lanka at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.

Legacy of Excellence

Moreover, Shaheen shattered the long-standing record held by Saqlain Mushtaq, becoming the fastest Pakistani bowler to claim 100 wickets in ODIs. Saqlain had set this record on May 12, 1997, during an ODI against Sri Lanka in Gwalior. It is notable that among the Pakistani fast bowlers, the accomplished Shaheen Shah Afridi follows in the footsteps of the legendary Waqar Younis, who achieved the 100-wicket mark back in February 1993 against Zimbabwe in Sharjah.

Beyond ODIs

Demonstrating his prowess beyond ODIs, Shaheen has made significant contributions in Tests and T20Is as well. Since his debut in 2018, he has garnered 105 wickets in Tests and 64 wickets in T20Is. His exceptional journey began with a strong performance in the U19 World Cup in New Zealand. Notably, he played a pivotal role in Lahore Qalandars’ consecutive victories in the Pakistan Super League (PSL).

A Testament to Talent and Dedication

Shaheen Shah Afridi’s rapid rise to 100 ODI wickets within 51 matches underlines his exceptional talent and unwavering dedication to the sport. As he continues to leave an indelible mark on the cricketing world, his journey serves as an inspiration for aspiring cricketers worldwide. With his remarkable achievements, Afridi has solidified his place in the annals of cricket history, etching his name as one of Pakistan’s most formidable and promising fast bowlers.

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ICC World Cup: Shoaib Akhtar says, ‘Mai India ki tareef kyu na karu’




Shoaib Akhtar, former Pakistani fast bowler

Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar has recently expressed admiration for India’s dominant performance in the ongoing 2023 ICC World Cup. With India securing victories in all six matches, Akhtar highlighted the team’s exceptional display across various aspects of the game. Although the recent batting performance against England in Lucknow was relatively modest, India’s fierce bowling attack, led by Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah, proved instrumental in securing a remarkable win. This triumph not only solidified India’s leading position on the points table but also exacerbated England’s struggles in the tournament, leaving them virtually eliminated.

Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, and Jasprit Bumrah laughing together on the field

India’s Remarkable Bowling Transformation

In his analysis, Akhtar emphasized the transformative impact of Shami’s inclusion in India’s playing eleven following Hardik Pandya’s injury. Acknowledging Shami’s outstanding performances against New Zealand and England, Akhtar credited India’s ability to win matches through their bowling prowess, showcasing a shift from their traditional reliance on batting strength. He commended the collective effort of the Indian bowling unit, particularly recognizing the strategic brilliance of fast bowler Bumrah.

The Indian cricket team is standing for the national anthem at the ICC World Cup

India’s Path to World Cup Glory

Looking ahead, Akhtar voiced his confidence in India’s potential to secure their third ODI World Cup trophy, highlighting the team’s upcoming matches against Sri Lanka, South Africa, and the Netherlands. Expressing optimism, he emphasized the significance of maintaining their unbeaten streak en route to the final, setting the stage for a potential historic ICC World Cup victory. However, Akhtar cautioned against compromising the successful bowling unit once Pandya returns to full fitness, warning against the potential detriment of a partially fit Pandya’s inclusion at the expense of a bowler.

Akhtar’s Praise for India and its Response to Criticism

Addressing skepticism surrounding his praise for the Indian team, Akhtar reiterated the exceptional nature of India’s performance, particularly in their ability to defend a modest total with a significant margin of victory. Undeterred by criticism, Akhtar reaffirmed his admiration for India’s exceptional cricketing prowess, urging acknowledgment and appreciation of their commendable achievements.

Virat Kohli gives a hand gesture on the field during a match

Shoaib Akhtar’s Perspective on Virat Kohli

Shifting focus, Akhtar’s history of praise extends beyond team performances to individual players, notably including former Indian team captain Virat Kohli. Reminiscing on Kohli’s resilience during a challenging phase in his career, Akhtar highlighted the pivotal role played by Kohli’s consistent century-scoring performances, leading to India’s victories. Recognizing Kohli’s contribution to the team’s success, Akhtar emphasized the significance of Kohli’s monumental centuries during crucial chases, solidifying his status as a crucial asset for the Indian cricket team.

In a comparison between Kohli and the legendary Sachin Tendulkar, Akhtar acknowledged Tendulkar’s status as one of the greatest batsmen while highlighting the challenges Tendulkar faced as a captain. Drawing parallels, Akhtar expressed confidence in Kohli’s eventual resurgence, expecting him to return to his prolific scoring form once he finds his equilibrium.

In summary, Akhtar’s acknowledgment of India’s exceptional performance and his recognition of individual players’ contributions underscore the team’s formidable presence in the 2023 ICC World Cup, setting the stage for a potential historic triumph in the coming days.

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