Apycom jQuery Menus

The coolest RCB updates, served hot.

Viru the hero, Virat not far behind in India's victorious start to WC

He was tensed before stepping into bat. But returned a much relieved man, not only after partnering the blaster master Virendra Sehwag in a 203 run partnership, but also achieving his century in maiden appearance in a World Cup match. The partnership sealed India's victory in the inaugural match against Bangladesh, but it was the way he paced his innings in the middle that would land hi flurry of accolades in the days to come. Yes we are talking about Virat Kohli, overshadowed by the brilliance of Sehwag's master craftwork, but not undone.

He was tensed before stepping into bat. But returned a much relieved man, not only after partnering the blaster master Virendra Sehwag in a 203 run partnership, but also achieving his century in maiden appearance in a World Cup match. The partnership sealed India's victory in the inaugural match against Bangladesh, but it was the way he paced his innings in the middle that would land hi flurry of accolades in the days to come. Yes we are talking about Virat Kohli, overshadowed by the brilliance of Sehwag's master craftwork, but not undone.

The defining moment of Kohli's innings was in the last over of India's innings, when on 99 and with just 4 balls left in the innings, Kohli, waiting at the non-striker end, pushed Yusuf Pathan to take two runs and further team India's total. It would be easily said that any other batsman would have done the same thing. Perhaps, surely, any other batsman would have done exactly the same, but its not easy to shed the temptation of sacrificing a personal glory for the sake of the team. Kohli, eventually got his chance in the penultimate ball of the innings, completing his century, his 5th ODI hundred, but that act defined the character of a cricket, grounded in reality and looking forward to a larger picture. The ability to take an amorphous view of in critical junctures of life is what makes a man, graduate from a rookie to a composed matured cricketer.

Kohli exhibited that today, as he gradually let himself loose after settling down and playing a waiting game. The wicket was not the easiest to bat one, as the balls kept low and came slow on the bat. It was difficult to score runs freely, especially against the slower bowlers. The strategy was to play correct copybook cricket, but keeping the scoreboard ticking at a reasonably faster rate to maintain the pressure on the Bangladeshi bowlers. Sehwag, being the master and the veteran, could ease through maze. But not for Kohli, who was playing his first world cup match.

When he reached the three figure mark eventually, it was understandably an ecstatic leap to joyous proportions exhaled his tension and perhaps took him to tranquility for a moment. Seeing Sehwag painstakingly stroking to 175 and almost singlehandedly destroying the attack, adds pressure to the other batsmen, especially at the non-striker end to match up to the expectation and live up to maintaining the momentum. Kohli was able to stand up on both the feet. The innings proved that he has arrived.

A 371 target was never going to be easy to chase, but Bangladesh did it with fighting spirit till skipper Shakib Al Hasan was at the crease. But with his return at 234 and still 10 overs to go, the hosts threw in the towel to eventually fold up by 283 and lose the match by 87 runs.

A thumping win, in the end by India is always a fillip to the team spirit at the start of a long tournament, but the match also opened up a can of worms in the bowling department, especially in the opening spells. Sreeshanth in particular, had a forgettable match. The batting middle order was not fully exposed against the weak Bangla bowling, and it remains to be seen how they fare against the pressure. The fielding should have been tightened to save another 10-15 runs. But all's well that ends well for India - starting the WC campaign with a win. Well, the win also erased memories of a bitter loss in the 2007 WC. But should we say it a revenge? I wouldn't, because the team's have changed, the quality has improved and the time has progressed by four years.

Vettori and Dilshan in action

Daniel Vettori and Tilakratne Dilshan will feature in WC campaigns on February 20 for their respective teams. Vettori's New Zealand will face minnows Kenya while Sri Lanka may find it easy against Canada. For Team Royal Challengers, if Kohli provided the perfect start to the WC, Vettori and Dilshan may just provide a little bit more appetisers on a Sunday.

Post a comment

Notify me of follow-up comments?

 

Post comment to Facebook

Latest comments

India's WC chances in hands of VIRU
krishnasa1 on 23 Mar 2011, 08:07 AM
subscribe to rss