Thursday, December 16, 2010

Umesh Yadav Or Jaidev Unadkat - who will make debut at Centurion ?

Indian cricket and rain are inseparable or so one feels - it was raining so heavily in Chennai that one thought that scheduling a match in Dec was preposterous – somehow the match was played and Kiwis contrived to lose in a very short time. This is a time for the Team to prepare for the forthcoming World Cup and there is the predicament of the best 11 not being available due to injuries. Zaheer Khan on whom much is expected to lead from the front is not fully fit, struggling with a hamstring injury.

The hamstring muscle is a group of large, powerful muscles that span the back of the thigh, from the lower pelvis to the back of the shin bone. The hamstring is the important muscle that functions to extend the hip joint and flex the knee joint. A pulled hamstring is a tear of hamstring muscle fibres.

The bowling would now be spearheaded by Ishant and Sreeshant both struggling to find their form and possibly backed by Umesh Yadav or Unakdat – Who ? – both not familiar to many. Whether Zaheer was fully fit at the time of selection is also a relevant question ? remember that Zaheer and Sreesanth pulled out in Srilanka and Ishant had to share with rookie Abhimanyu Mithun.

It should be a green top at Centurion and whether Indian bowlers will live up to the promise is beckoning. For the present, wet weather has delayed the start and the persistent rain over there is threatening to wash out the first day’s play. The good ground facilities would ensure that the game would be on in hours after the rain stops with the outfield ofcourse be more wet and soppy. Statistically there has not been any instance of a Test being washed out in South Africa but history is no pointer in matters like these.

If the going is to be believed, then the debutant could be Umesh Yadav a 25 year old pacer from Vidarbha. He has only two seasons behind him. He comes from a modest background as son of a coal mine worker. He is capable of touching the 140kmh mark, and also possesses an effective bouncer, qualities which would see him through in bouncy wickets. He went to West Indies as a replacement for the injured Praveen Kumar during the World Twenty20 tournament in May 2010 but has not earned the Indian Test cap.

The other is an exciting prospect : Jaidev Dipakbhai Unadkat only 19 years of age hailing from Porbandar, the land of Gandhi. He is a left arm medium pace bowler and left hand bat. He was the spearhead of India's Under-19 squad for the 2010 World Cup. He was picked up by KKR. He had a dream first class debut at England against West Indies A picking up 7/41 & 6/62 ensuring an Indian win in June 2010. He went to Sri lanka as a net bowler and has been included in the squad now.

Neither of them had played Indian domestic much and it is only great hopes that we expect them to succeed against seasoned South African batsmen in their backyard.

Regards – S. Sampathkumar.

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