It was fascinating to watch Shikhar Dhawan so comfortably negotiating the likes of Malinga. The man in terrific form, Dhawan called the shots against one of the best bowlers in one-day cricket. And, what I really liked about the southpaw is that he made sure India won the match without any hiccups. That’s the hallmark of a top quality player.
When a batsman is in form, everything looks so easy even on a difficult wicket. The wicket at Cardiff was definitely not conducive for stroke play. Even then, Dhawan batted as if there was nothing wrong with the wicket. That sort of attitude is infectious, and others who follow play with the same frame of mind.
Players like Dhawan are born and not coached and that’s the reason why they must be allowed to follow their instincts rather than be tampered with. We in India have the habit of putting in our two bits as if to say that we must be heard, but I feel that’s wrong and players must be allowed to play their natural game freely to maximise the result.
Millions must be waiting to watch the duel between Dhawan and Anderson and I am no exception. The Englishman, an experienced fast bowler with more than 300 Test wickets, is bound to try and fox the young man, and one would like to see how successfully Dhawan handles every trick thrown at him.
Mind you, the Kookaburra ball hasn’t really helped the seamers and that too in English conditions, and I am sure the administrators in England henceforth will surely opt for Duke balls in future tournaments or series in England.
It will be foolish to stick one’s neck out and predict the winner, but the way the Indians have played so far in this tournament, I would like to believe that they are the favourites to win the championship.
However, it depends a lot on how the Indians bat against the likes of Anderson and Finn to start with, and how the Trotts and Roots bat against the likes of Bhuvneshwar, Umesh, Ashwin and Jadeja. It’s going to be a feast for the cricket fans, and I just can’t wait for the umpire to say “play”, weather permitting of course!
Professional Management Group