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Sunday, May 2, 2010

GREAT INNINGS BY SURESH RAINA - T20 WC AT ST LUCIA



The ICC World T20 Group C match – 5th match of the tournament generated lot of interest because of Sanu, (Sanu Who ??)

Unlike its bigger cousins, T20 is relatively new and this is only the 155th match.  Till recently, 1957 Test matches and 2978 one dayers have been played.  Today’s match was played at Beausejour Stadium, Gross Islet, St. Lucia.  In the inaugural edition in 2007, India created history in topping the 12 teams format, beating Pakis in the finals.  (Remember Misbah shot !) in the next edition in June 2009, India went crashing down and this time the expectations are very high, especially after the IPL mania just getting over.

Today’s arena is the island country in the eastern Carribean sea founded in 1886 by Sir Arthur Sidders setting sail from port of Bristol, England.  St. Lucia is located in the islands of St Vincent and Grenadines, near Barbados.  This picturesque island nation has been the home of two nobel laureates Arthur Lewis and Derek Walcott.  The ground formerly known as Beausejour Stadium has been in used from 2002. In 2006 it became the first ground in the West Indies to stage a floodlight ODI when Zimbabwe were the visitors. Constructed on 22 acres, the stadium has a seating capacity of 15,000 including 18 hospitality suites and a modern pavilion that offers each team its own gym, lounge, balcony and conference room. 

Today, Greame Smith  Smith won the toss and chose to utilize the moisture by putting Indians in.  Gauti is not playing today and Dinesh Karthik is his replacement.  Another change is Piyush Chawla coming in for Zaheer khan.  Murali Vijay was out for a first ball duck and SK Raina walked in of the fourth ball of the first over with score reading 4/1.  Raina was born in Muradnagar, Ghaziabad, UP on 27th Nov 1986 and is more or less a regular player in shorter versions with Dhoni having great confidence in his abilities.  He did good justice to his potential today.

Proteas employed 6 bowlers against him and all were treated with disdain – scoring 20 & 33 of Kallis and Kleinveldt respectively.  In the matches played thus far, only two players have registered scores of 100.  CH Gayle against SA at Johannesberg in 2007 and BB Mccullum against Aussies at Christchurch in 2009.  Today with Karthik gone at 5.3 (32/2), India badly wanted Raina to score.

Over no. 18 was the one Indians cherished.  Kelinveldt was hoisted over midwicket by Yusuf for a 6; second was a single; Raina hit the third on the leg side for 4; followed with one over extra cover for 4; hit straight for a four and the last one was dispatched nonchalantly over long off for a six – 25 runs.

Raina has reached 93 and expectation run high for his and India’s maiden century in T20.

The last over – 3rd ball Raina hoisted over midwicket and from the moment it hit the middle, it was certain.  Raina confidently showed his hand and celebrated even before the ball landed.

Great moment.  A century and perhaps a match winning knock at that.

Regards – Sampathkumar.

4 comments:

  1. definitely one of the best knocks by an Indian batsman...the story would have been different if the Morne Morkel ball had not been called an illegal delivery. But Raina gained his confidence and never again did he play a tentative shot in that magnificient innings. And what more he attributed his success to the wonderful food that his mother made! Truly a wonderful tribute made by a talented young Indian on Mother's Day! Mothers rock!!!

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  2. Raina is a great entertainer - gives 100% on field, a great fielder. People try to write him off speaking of his weakness against rising deliveries. Could be - but can score against any attack on his day and an asset for the team in ODI & T20 - Kumaran

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  3. Raina is a fighting daughty cricketer - sad he is not in India Test team to play england - Ajay

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