World Cup Travel Diaries – Umang

You might have been wondering why we’ve been so silent these past few weeks. After all, it’s the marquee event in the cricket calendar.

Well one of us has been off following the Indian cricket team in Oz. The other one has been…well…drowning at work (sad, I know).

Anyway, the group stage is out of the way.

6 out of 6.

Not a bad gig for a team that was struggling to put bat on ball (and was putting way too much ball on bat) not so long ago.

Tomorrow is the first of the knockouts for us – India v Bangladesh – so we thought it would be a good time to take a look back.

Therefore, with a lot of help from Umang (a senior and friend of ours from school) see below the first instalment of the WORLD CUP TRAVEL DIARIES!

Umang’s World Cup travel diary 

In 2011 I bought tickets to the WC in India about a year in advance. Plane tickets 8 months in advance. Train tickets 2 months in advance. Then planned a trip to India (full on Bharast Darshan) and travelled the length and breadth of the country with Basu, one of my oldest friends.

So obviously with the WC coming ‘home’ to Australia, I was hoping for an encore. Planning started a year in advance again, many things fell apart along the way. But all was well in the end. Read More …

Preview : India v Pakistan

Many say this game will decide the fate of these teams in the World Cup

What to expect from this from crunch game:

1. Sledging : No point to it, yahaan sabko Hindi aati hai! Sadly, no more ‘Speak English’ or ‘Maa-ki’ gate. Expect a relatively tame encounter.

2. Betting: Made famous by my favourite commentator Rameez Raja as an advanced form of batting. No matter which team wins, everyone in this game will be accused of match fixing. Guaranteed.

3. Balling : Self explanatory. Started with Moin Khan’s ‘Balling Saqqi’. India are bad in balling. Pakistan are good.

4. Filding : Who cares about this anyway? We just want to see bowlers ‘ball fast’ (like Shoaib Akhtar, with an American accent) and batsman ‘go get it’ (like Sachin with a baby accent). Asians don’t do Jonty.

Can’t wait, less than 24 hours to go.

GAME ON!

O Captain, My Captain

So the test career is over.

No fanfare, no trumpets. No mess, no fuss. To our simple minds, this is just a practical decision from a practical man (or is there something murkier going on behind the scenes?).

We haven’t been particularly happy with Dhoni’s test captaincy in the past. However, rather than dwell on his ultra defensive tactics, his ugly-yet-effective style of batting or his general lack of interest in the test game, we’ve chosen instead to focus on our favourite test match memories of him: Read More …

PREVIEW: Australia v. India, Melbourne, Boxing Day Test

Heartbreak in Adelaide. A morale-sapping loss in Brisbane. Each game lost from a great position.

Two down. Two to go.

Rumours of a spat between Shikhar and Virat.

Bad food, bad umpires, bad nets.

In the mean time, here’s our XI for the all important Boxing Day test match Read More …

Australia v. India, 2nd Test Match, The Gabba: Preview

Time for the second test!

(We’ve barely had time to catch our breath after the frantic finish in Adelaide but the tests are flying thick and fast – keep them coming!)

Australia has already come out and named their playing XI. Quite a few changes – from Steve Smith being named captain to the inclusion of Shaun Marsh and Mitchell Starc and a debut for Josh Hazlewood. Harris and Siddle are the guys missing out – pretty surprising as they have been the mainstay of Australia’s test squad for a while but perhaps Australia is looking to the future.

Australia will miss the presence of Clarke but on a seaming and quick wicket at the Gabba they seem to have their strategy set, going for the raw pace of Starc.

As we did for the first test, we are going ahead to name the India’s playing XI that we feel is best suited for this game. Read More …