Tag Archives: Michael Hussey

IPL 2013 – Dream Eleven

Ganesh Subramanian draws out his dream 11 based on the performances of stars in IPL 2013. Do you agree. 

mike_hussey_630-bcci

1. Mike Hussey: The orange cap winner can walk into any team based on his reputation alone. But as is the quality with great players, they hardly rest on their laurels. Mike Hussey takes the opener’s spot in the playing eleven purely on the basis of his consistency this season. Only in four innings in this year’s IPL does he have scores of less than 20. That should tell us something about this Western Australian’s amazing run of form this year.

chris gayle Royal Challengers Bangalore wallpapers4

2. Chris Gayle: If we look at consistency, Gayle would have struggled to find a place. But given that he has changed his game a little bit particularly in this year’s IPL where he took his time, saw off the threat of the new ball (atleast for 2 overs. I know threat of new ball in T20 hardly makes sense) and then went about his merry ways and pulverized bowling attacks, makes him even more fearsome. I am sure Pune Warriors would agree with this.

rahul-dravid_2004_630

3. Rahul Dravid: Having batted at this position for India for years, he is no stranger to walking in and trying to repair the innings in case of early loss of wickets. Although Dravid opened in most of the matches for RR, still I slotted him at number three for the stability factor.

Shane Watson, Rajasthan Royals

4. Shane Watson: This batting mainstay of Rajasthan also finds a spot easily purely on his allround abilities. Providing crucial breakthroughs with his bowling & batting with a demonic power makes Watson an invaluable asset to any team.

5. A B Devilliers: A brilliant fielder, an excellent wicketkeeper and a freakish batsman, ABD has the ability to turn matches on its head by his sheer genius. His unorthodox batting at the death overs has left many a bowler bewildered.

973798-dwayne-bravo

6. Dwayne Bravo: The purple cap holder on current form finds a place in the eleven. Despite getting his wickets at a higher economy rate, he has been the go-to man for CSK in the death overs often tilting matches in CSK’s favour in the end overs. Plus with Dwayne around, there would be no need of an entertainer too.

DHONI-WITH-FANS2

7. M S Dhoni: Captain of India has also continued his success story well into the IPL. Leader of the most successful and the most consistent franchisee in IPL history, MSD’s finishing capabilities will see him walk into any playing eleven with ease.

8. Azhar Mahmood: This Pakistani born British citizen has often helped Punjab with hi experience this season. Apart from picking wickets regularly for Punjab, his promotion to the No. 3 slot helped him rediscover his batting abilities as well.

9. Sunil Narine: Amongst the top 5 wicket takers in this year’s IPL, Sunil Narine is a definite pick for the spinner’s slot given the mystery he brings with him. Even if he doesn’t pick wickets, he has ensured that the run rate doesn’t increase by bowling economically.

malinga

10. Lasith Malinga: The slinga from Srilanka after a quiet start to the tournament has got his rhythm back in the last few games. He was instrumental in derailing Chennai’s chase in the final by picking up Hussey and Raina with well thought out deliveries. His variety at the death makes him indispensable.

11. Amit Mishra: Again on current form in the IPL, Amit Mishra picks himself. With crucial wickets in the middle overs and a potent googly making his leg break more effective, Amit Mishra has played a major part in Sunrisers getting into the playoffs.

This list aims at picking at the eleven best possible players to form the dream team. Lot of excellent players may have been left out and this list in no way should be considered demeaning them.

Advertisements

Mumbai Indians vs Chennai Super Kings: The Grand Finale

DLF_IPL_Mumbai_Indians_Chennai_Super_Kings

As the cricketing fraternity all over  is shockingly disturbed over the fixing theories going around the IPL, the 76th game and the most important is about to commence in the next few hours.

Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super King are undoubtedly the two strongest teams of the tournament and it makes tremendous sense for the two to make to the finals. At least this could have been natural and without much external influence, you know what I am talking about.

mumbai chennai

Not only did Chennai win most number of games and qualify on the basis of winning the first qualifier, they are also the only team which has won more games outside their home strip than any other. With both the highest run-getter (orange cap – Mike Hussey) and hight wicket-taker (joint Purple Cap – Drawne Bravo) in this unit, they don’t lack a punch for sure. Their fielding is what sets standards for other teams and their batting order can send any bowling attack a shiver down their spine. Mumbai is no less though in fielding and the fact that three out of top 5 catches this season has been held by the jumping Pollard speaks volumes of Jonty Rhodes’ efforts as a fielding coach.

B_Id_372939_Mumbai_Indians

Mumbai on the other hand are a team built with strong people as well. The way they actually dropped an out of form Ricky Ponting (yeah really) and made Rohit Sharma the captain made one clear sound, and that was that they are here to win the tournament. The chopping and changing has worked for them this time and they have been another franchise, alongside Rajasthan, to win all games at their home venue. Unfortunately, the final is at a neutral venue and Mumbai’s record abroad is not as great as Chennai.

Comparative Analysis: 

chennai

While Chennai Super Kings bat deep, Mumbai Indians batting has never let them down this season. With Ambati Rayudu coming into form in the last game, their batting looks an in-form line-up with Dwayne Smith, Rohit Sharma, Keiron Pollard and Dinesh Karthik making a star-studded line-up. If Sachin Tendulkar is fit, this will probably be a test for the Chennai bowlers who have leaked runs in some important games. Lasith Malinga, Harbhajan Singh and Mitchell Johnson have led the Mumbai bowling well and if they have a good day together even CSK batting will look a little less strong.

Chennai batting is no less. Murali Vijay is is top form, Raina is probably batting as best as he always does in the IPL, Hussey is orange-cap holder and we all know what MS Dhoni can do in crunch games. With Badrinath adding the much needed stability to the side, this team does not look any less than the opposition. The bowling though is of concern to Chennai. They do not have match winners in their like a Malinga as the Mumbai team does. There might not be a weak link but at the same time all of them, the Bravos and the Sharma’s we know could leak runs in dozens.

Players To Look For: 

Chennai: Hussey, Dhoni, Bravo, Raina

Mumbai: Smith, Pollard, Rohit Sharma, Malinga and Johnson

Pitch and Ground conditions: Except for the rain impacted last match, the pitch at Kolkata is notoriously famous for being slow and spin friendly. This would assist both sides as they are packed with good spinners. Unfortunately unless it rains again, the team winning the toss might hold a massive advantage batting first.

Mumbai might be a tad more confident winning 2 out of the 3 games played this season between the two sides. The way though they lost the first qualifier would be a cause for concern. Both the teams have a super record at Eden and overall this should be a grand finale for an otherwise controversy prone tournament. Hoping the best team on the day wins, other than the bookies.

CSK-Vs-MI-2

Why CSK Look Good To Win IPL6

whistle podu

Ganesh Subramanian dons the CSK hat and tells us why whistle podu times would be back again this edition of IPL.

As I write this one, CSK are joint top of the points table alongside Rajasthan Royals, a team which just broke some over confidence that might have set in the yellow brigade. For me this loss comes at the right time. It will help the team get back to the drawing board with a few concerns after the easy victories that came their way off late.

They also lead the fairplay awards tally. Apart from this the orange and purple caps sit proudly on the heads of two of the most consistent men in the yellow brigade, Mike Hussey and Dwayne Bravo. So are there chinks in the armour of the most consistent team across all editions of the IPL or are they right on course for another title reign? Let’s explore.

With 10 wins on the board, people expressed apprehensions as to whether CSK are peaking too early. To fuel their belief, CSK lost to Mumbai Indians by a whopping margin. But then look at the next game. They were up against a team that has not lost a single home game this season, the Sunrisers Hyderabad, and needless to say, CSK put the defeat out of its mind and whipped Hyderabad as if the defeat against MI never happened.

Let us look at the key contributors to the success story so far.

hussey

Michael Hussey: While his younger brother is searching for that elusive form for KXIP, the Huss Mikester, as Danny ‘Mad Max’ Morrison calls him, has elevated his batsmanship to another level. Mixing attack and defence as the situation calls for, this Western Australian has dissected attacks with a surgeon’s precision. No wonder he finds himself with the Orange cap at the moment, engaged in a see-saw battle with Chris Gayle for its possession. How much did Australia miss this veteran when they were whitewashed 4-0!

dwayne bravo

Dwayne Bravo: This West Indian has had a dream run with the ball so far with 21 wickets and has been Dhoni’s go-to man in the death overs. Apart from handy contributions with the bat and being more than an electric fielder, he’s making a mark with his dance moves as well.

Mohit Mahipal Sharma: He has been the surprise find for CSK this season with 13 wickets to his name. Bowling at a bustling pace and not afraid to use the short delivery, this Haryana speedster has consistently picked wickets in every match. Dhoni has cleverly used him often finishing his quota of 4 overs in a single spell.

Suresh Raina: With 458 runs at an average of 50.88 and a century and 99 to his name, both being not-outs, the leading run scorer overall in the five years of IPL history, Suresh Raina has hit a purple patch. He shrugged off an indifferent start to the tournament and has come up with match-winning knocks at the key No.3 position.

M S Dhoni with the bat and Ashwin with the ball have made some handy contributions, but they would surely agree that they would have liked to be a lot more consistent. Murali Vijay showed glimpses of form in the last innings and CSK will hope that this Tamil Nadu batsman returns to his run scoring ways sooner rather than later. Chris Morris, Ben Laughlin & Jason Holder haven’t had as much success as they would have wanted. Same is the case with the much trolled SIR Ravindra Jadeja!

Having secured the playoffs spot, I would like to see other players in the squad being given an opportunity and Dhoni has indicated so in his last post-match presentation. I am especially eager to see the Srilankan mystery spinner Akila Dhananjaya.

With great camaraderie, belief in each other, a great captain and different players contributing at vital times, it appears as if it will be difficult to stop the CSK juggernaut from its march towards yet another title reign. Much to the chagrin of a melee of anti-CSK groups that have sprung up on social networking sites and  amidst brainless talks of match-fixing every time CSK wins, one thing is for sure, it’s Whistle Podu time once again !

chennai super kings