The year 2015 has been a year of fascination as Cricket is concerned.
Around this time, Team India was in chaos. The mighty Indian batting was annihilated by the Australian fast bowlers and spin bowlers alike. As the World Cup was approaching the whole situation was hopeless. Finally came a dramatic news of MS Dhoni retiring from the Test Cricket. The cricketing commentators had different view on how they interpret Dhoni’s retirement in the middle of an on-going series. He was decorated with all sorts of adjectives. Captain cool to Great Cricketing tactician. He did face his fair share of criticism from all sort of people who know nothing about cricket, But that’s the beauty(Read as: Pain in the neck) of living in a democratic country. Anyways, India promoted Virat Kohli the second in command to lead the paralyzed Indian Test Team. Dhoni’s deputy put up a fight. He scored two brilliant hundreds, one of them came after the death of Australian Batsman Phil Hughes who died while playing a First Class match. Phil was hit by a bouncer in the back of his head. That was the darkest day for all the cricket playing nations worldwide. We had hoped that our cricketing equipment were best in class to protect our players. Honestly we were wrong, no one could see the gap between the head and neck. The cricket helmet which was supposed to protect our players couldn’t do so. Eventually once the cricket series resumed in India vs Australia, India was batting on a good pitch. India lost the first wicket and the first in command comes out to face Mitchelle Johnson. The first ball Kohli faced was 151 KMPH. The ball was short and after hitting the deck kept rising. To Kohli’s expectation it was unplayable & Kohli tried ducking the ball and it was not even near the bat. The ball hit the ‘India flag’ on Kohli’s helmet. It was Deja Vu at that point. Then Kohli shrug his shoulders & waving to the concerned Australians that he was fine. This particular delivery woke him up. After that Kohli launched an onslaught against the short balls of Mitchell Johnson.
March and April 2015
As the cricketing carnival was progressing the epic encounter of the year was knocking on the doors. India vs Pakistan was as usual a hyped contest. India have beaten Pakistan five times in a row in a Cricket World Cup. The sixth defeat was in the making when Virat Kohli scored a gigantic hundred to make the lead a half dozen wins over the arch rival Pakistan. I shared my thoughts on how Pakistan could have won the match against India in CWC 2015. Indian bowlers were doing very well. But finally Australia decimated the old foes. Pakistan went crashing in the Quarter Finals and India in the semifinals. Another stellar performance was that of Wahab Riaz fast and furious spell against the Aussies. You can read more about it here Fast & Furious: Cricket Sledging Night of the year 2015. Finally Australia became the world champions and Michael Clarke bid farewell from the ODI format.
May, June, July & August:
Pakistan toured Bangladesh and were humiliated by the Bangladesh cricket team. Pakistan lost the series 0 – 3 & and these results were gained by Bangladesh in their backyards. Still, I think Bangladesh outplayed Pakistan in batting, bowling & tactics. Once Pakistan left, India was the next team to visit the East Pakistan. The one odd test, ended in a draw. When it came down to the ODI’s Bangladesh trump card Mustafizur Rahman demolished Indian Batsmen. Indian team who has chased down the 300+ fifteen times; was barely reaching 200. The second best team chasing 300 is Australia, they have chased 300+ scored 8 times. After loosing the first two ODI’s Bangla Wash was very much eminent. Fortunately for India, they won the last ODI. Indians must have felt a sigh of relief. We did saw some major issues in Bangladesh team’s attitude & how Bangladesh media went on mocking Indian Team more can be found here
During this time the epic Test Match Series between England and Australia was on the full swing. England won the First Test and Australia bounced back in the second test. The series was poised beautifully. Finally Australia won the last test and even though Australia lost the series 2-3 it was apparent that England learned their lessons quickly. England promoted young people whereas Australian selectors trusted their aging players. Players like Shane Watson, Brad Haddin, Michael Clarke had seen their peaks in the 2013-14 season. Most of the fortuneteller spoke highly of Australian Team who won the limited over world cup before the Ashes Test Series. All of them were confident that another 5-0 would be a great farewell for Clarke, Haddin and Rogers. Fortunately for England they won the Ashes by 3-2. More can be found here
India played a test series against the Sri Lanka where India won the series 2-1. R Ashwin was the pick of bowlers and mind you the series was hosted in Sri Lanka. For your information Sri Lanka is a separate country altogether. BCCI could not have played any role in the wicket preparation. Also note Rangna Hearth was the pick of the bowlers for Sri Lanka.
Blatantly raising points about wickets being custom made to suit Indian Team are just stupid rumors and are baseless.
October, November and December:
India lost the ODI Series 2-3 to Proteas. Even before the ODI India was humiliated in the T20 series. The biggest horror for India was the last ODI which was played in Mumbai. Indian bowlers were decimated by the South African batting prowess. Then came the test series, R Ashwin was in flying colors & helped India win the first test. As the series progressed we saw India win the series convincingly. We all enjoyed watching how ABD batted through out the series. Ending the year 2015 on a high node, India will be facing the old foe Australia for a 5 one day internationals. It won’t be easy for India at all.
That’s all for now.