Wednesday, November 12, 2008

This is Not a Ball-by-Ball, Nor an OBO ...

Update 1:

The day began with Shoaib Akhtar ruled out of the 1st ODI due to a calf injury delaying his comeback by another couple of days.

I hope he's fit by Friday when I am at the ground.

The pitch at the Sheikh Zayed stadium is a batting paradise. In the matches I've played there, the new ball swings for about 3-4 overs and that too only under floodlights. During the day there is hardly any swing.

It spins though. Spins quite a bit.

Gayle won the toss and chose to bat. No brainer.

West Indies were 24-0 after 7 overs.

Now they are 67-0 after 11.

What happened!?

Gayle went crazy.

The millionnaire skipper is batting on 49 off only 33 deliveries - 3 sixes and 7 fours.

He tore apart Abdur Rauf who has given away 33 in 4 overs and is now smashing Umar Gul all over the place.

Why is Umar Gul bowling so short? Oh I forgot, he always bowls too short.

Nothing to worry about. We have Afridi!

Update 2:

Khurram Manzoor is playing his 2nd ODI.

Thank God Malik has gone in with a specialist opener and not used Kamran Akmal as was being reported.

Fawad Alam is playing in Yousuf's place. He should bat at 6, not lower than that.

Misbah is slated to come in at 4 but I feel he should stay at 5 with Younis coming in at 4 and Malik at 3.

The team management thinks otherwise I guess. It will be interesting to witness Pakistan's batting without either of Inzamam and Yousuf, something that hasn't happened in over a decade and a half.

The Windies' are cruising at 76-0 in 13 overs.

Gayle has got to his 50 and looks set for a big one.

Afridi needs to come into the attack NOW.

Chattergoon has been quiet, unlike his name suggests - he's batting on 18 off 40.

Update 3:

Sorry about that, my late lunch came in between my udates.

Gayle has just got to his 100. His 2nd successive one.

SP in the comments says he's batting like a billionnaire. Totally is!

And there's 20 overs to go. Very dangerous for Pakistan.

YPU Soulberry?

My brother is at the ground. I'm still contemplating whether I should go or not. Maybe for the 2nd half.

Everytime a batsman gets to 100 by the 30th over I start thinking of that first double in ODIs.

The last 2 times I thought of that Jayasuriya lost his wicket. Hopefully Gayle will go soon.

Afridi came into the attack 3 overs too late I reckon.

177-1 in 31. Windies looking strong. Pakistan need breakthroughs.

Update 4:

Appeal for a run out. Looks close. Not out. Gayle's in.

Akmal appeals for a caught behind. Afridi doesn't. Not out.

Windies croooozing!

Afridi's bowling a tight line. Fielding well of his bowling too. His fellow pathans have thronged the stadium.

8,000 in says Sanjay Manjerekar. Friday will see 25,000!

Surprisingly I see a number of West Indies supporters. They're definitely not from this part of the world.

Khurram does good work at the boundary off Malik's bowling.

Waqar compares Gayle to Jayasuriya. I see the similarity.

Umar Gul returns to the attack.

194-1 in 34 overs.

Update 5:


Afridi shows how not to!


198-2 in 35.

Update 6:

Maik has done well with the ball. 9-0-40-1 and bowling his last one now.

He put the breaks on the Windies. They could have been close to 230 right now.

How can Chanderpaul bat with a stance like that?

200 up for the millionnaires.

Afridi hasn't picked up a wicket. I'm surprised. He's got 2 overs to go.

A word for Tanvir - in this situation his figures look outstanding: 7-0-22-0.

Malik ends his spell. He should bowl more often.

201-2 in 36.

Update 7:

Have I mentioned how well Sarwan plays the square cut?

He's done it twice now in this over to Umar Gul. And he's got to 50.

Aqib Javed was trying to show how Gul should be bowling. He's got Waqar Younis' job right now, wonder what Waqar thinks about that.

Tit for tat as Waqar once got the jeep Aqib was supposed to get.

Gul has lost his touch. Or was that there only in 20-20 cricket?

213-2 in 37 overs now. 310-320 looks likely.

Morrison talks about how stunning the full moon is. I suggest a dinner at the Royal Meridien's roof top Danny.

Afridi does some stretches. His fellow pathan is shown relaxing on the grass.

Another pathan there!

Sarwan caught behing down the leg side. Great stuff by Akmal. And finally Afridi has a wicket!

213-3 in 37.3.

Update 8:

Afridi would have had his 2nd if Akmal had not dropped that catch!

I'm switching the updates off now. Going to watch the last 10 overs and then head out to the ground.

Match update tomorrow morning.

Make your pitch on this post...

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32 Pitched:

  1. Soulberry said...

    Yaaaaaa...Pakistan need a wicket!

    Ypu still in playing shape buddy? :)

  2. Soulberry said...

    Batting paradiso you said?

    Gayle is taking this away.

  3. straight point said...

    millionaire skipper is playing like a millionaire... :)

  4. straight point said...

    opps...i meant billionaire... ;-)

  5. Q said...

    ypu SB? U asking about me?

    I'm only 28, I should be in playing shape ;-)

  6. Q said...

    He totally is SB!

  7. Q said...

    I meant SP!

  8. Soulberry said...

    uh oh...Somehow I thought you were older! My bad.
    The million dollars appear to have made a serious difference in their self-esteem.

    The pitch is flat. Pakistan shouldn't lose heart and make errors when batting.

  9. Soulberry said...

    Pakistan has done excellently to pull this back from the realms of easy 300+

  10. Damith S. said...

    heading for a good finish atm.
    but man is the running bad.

    the pitch looks very good.

    fuck butt just got out ! what a useless shot !!!

  11. Anonymous said...

    Once again Misbah got out playing a silly shot proving he is not a finsher.

  12. straight point said...

    i hv to admit that i have never seen malik so charged up...he seems to be in 'zone'...if only somebody stands with him...

  13. Anonymous said...

    Misbah and Afridi again let Malik down, Younis kept on taking singles of nudges never tried to play power strokes in front of the wicket.
    Malik is battling alone thats the whole story of his tenure as a captain if key players won't assume their roles then there is nothing much a captain can do.

  14. Anonymous said...

    This is Malik's third consecutive 50 in Odi's, Afridi in the last innings has one score of 84 against zimbabwe other than that his average is 14, no matter who becomes the captain of Pakistan team, if the key players will not fullfil their roles Pakistan team will never win consistently.

  15. Anonymous said...

    Who says Odi's are boring?
    who says Pakistan cricket is dead?

    The victory belongs to Malik and Akmal, Malik showed his class once again, todays match clearly showed what I have been talking about all along, key players not delivering up to their potential and Malik fighting the battle along with youngsters.

    It is always important to win the first match in a three match series,now Pakistan will be in a comfortable position to win the series.

  16. Soulberry said...

    Congratulations Q! What a match that was! Guess it will be fun tomorrow...Kamran Akmal, why do they ever drop him? Wonderful and exhilirating match....pretty spent at the moment after the thrills. :)

    G'night see you tomorrow.

  17. Anonymous said...

    What about Khurram Manzoor who was the highest scorer from Pakistan's side? If he had played like Butt Pakistan would probably have lost.

    Fawad didn't take many risks but he stayed there till the end finishing the match along with Akmal.

  18. SledgeHammer said...

    Q - I'm jealous! What a match to have been at. I'm sure you enjoyed!

  19. Q said...

    Thanks for all your comments boys! it was truly an amazing experience at the ground! I said it would be a charged up contest and boy was it charged.. the crowd, even thought half the capacity was totally charged up.

    The last over and th were going mad with Akmal throwing his bat around.

    None more charged than Malik.


    Looking forward to Friday.

  20. Anonymous said...

    the last over was special....and you had to be at the ground to really enjoy the moment...and akmal's shots those were beauties! the weather was awesome too..ideal time to host matches in abu dhabi! looking forward to friday and sunday! :)

  21. Q said...

    I totally agree LIB..

    Do I know you btw?

  22. Anonymous said...

    Q, no you dont know me personally but we have a few common acquaintances i believe! it was one of them who had introduced me to this blog and i have been an avid follower of it since then! excellent work ure doing!

    it would be nice to put a face to this blog..prolly we can meet at the upper south tier and party it well-pitched style on friday! ;)

  23. Anonymous said...

    Q, no you dont know me personally but we have a few common acquaintances i believe! it was one of them who had introduced me to this blog and i have been an avid follower of it since then! excellent work ure doing!

    it would be nice to put a face to this blog..prolly we can meet at the upper south tier and party it well-pitched style on friday! ;)

  24. Anonymous said...

    Khurram could have scored a bit faster but I guess Butt added pressure on him by not scoring.But he made a valuable contribution to the victory and he proved me right I wanted him to get selected a head of Khalid Latif, Fawad Alam he didn't finished the match he watched it getting finished from the other end.
    He should bat higher and should establish himself as a batsman only and not as an all rounder he will still have a long career, the guy has guts and he can bat.

  25. Q said...

    Sounds like a plan LIB.

    Which common acquaintances btw?

    If all goes to plan I will have a K painted on my T-shirt with the rest of boys around me haveing the letters P A I S T A N on theirs ;-)

  26. Q said...

    Khurram could not have batted faster Wasim - I think he played very sensibly.. he did well.

  27. Anonymous said...

    Yes he could have batted faster I am not accusing him of deliberately doing that I have seen him batting in domestic cricket.Probably he was a bit cautious which is understandable its only his second match,
    His innings was still an important contribution to the win and of the two openers he was the best.
    I still believe that both openers batted a bit too cautiously Salman was the major culprit, there were too many dot balls if they focus on working the ball for singles consistently and look for odd boundary it can reduce the number of dot balls and can improve their strike rates.

  28. Anonymous said...

    Q, make sure it is 'K' then, otherwise it would be a bemusing site asking all the letters if ure Q!! ;)

    does Mustafa Bilal aka MB and Bilal Lodhi ring a bell??

  29. Q said...

    The ball swings quite a bit under lights in this ground - i think the cautious approach was needed. Wickets in hand was a must but then as u said Butt just looked totally out of it... Khurram grew as his innings progressed.

  30. Q said...

    Oh wow - MB and Lodhi were with me in LUMS... r u from that college?

  31. Anonymous said...

    No Q, im not from LUMS, though i would have loved to be part of it!

    MB and Lodhi were my flat-mates back in states and also my bowling and batting coaches respectively! ;)

    btw any idea where can i get hold of tickets for tomorow's match!?! its a last minute thing and i checked all the places selling them in AD but only tickets for the pathan stands were available which is not a very good idea since i need the tickets for my sister and her friends!! any info would be appreciated!

  32. Q said...

    Thats amazing LIB. I played a lot of cricket with MB and Lodhi.. Lodhi used to be my opening partner at LUMS and we were captain, vice-captain respectively in our senior year.

    Sorry abt the tickets buddy, they've been all sold out since 2 days now as far as I know.

    Hope to see you there. Look out for the K ;-)

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