A proud moment awaits the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore when India and Australia resume battle in their see-saw series today. It will be the 19th time the venue will have hosted the Indian team in ODIs making it the most for any ground in the country.
And it sure couldn’t have hoped for a better game to mark the occasion. Thanks to another sensational run chase by India at Nagpur, the seven-match series, reduced to five due to rain affecting two fixtures, is deadlocked at 2-2 and set for an enthralling finale.
Nagpur reiterated what we witnessed in Jaipur that these aren’t easy times for bowlers. On that note, Australia’s task of trying to contain the rampant Indian batsman will be that much harder without the services of Mitchell Johnson.
In a series that’s been raining fours and sixes, Mitch has been really impressive and, unsurprisingly, has been summoned back prematurely to Australia with the upcoming Ashes in mind.
I’m not sure whether Yuvi will be relieved at Mitch’s abrupt exit or disappointed at being denied the opportunity to get one back against the man who’s had his number in this series. Disappointed, seeing as Yuvi has traditionally always done well in Bangalore.
He’s had a lot of success at the Chinnaswamy, most recently against the West Indies ‘A’ team when he struck a scorching century. Players always feel comfortable on grounds where they’ve had success, and therefore, Yuvi too will draw confidence from his record in Bangalore to give himself a fillip.
Undoubtedly, Virat Kohli too will be happy to return to his virtual second home, seeing as he skippers the Royal Challengers Bangalore. And the local fans whom he has endeared himself to during the IPL will surely be hoping for an extension to his ongoing batting heroics.
To get back to back hundreds off 60-odd balls in successive run chases is simply extra-ordinary. Inevitably, the media and the public have been quick to coronate him as the successor to Sachin Tendulkar. I always maintain that as long as the team’s cause is served, there’s no need for such comparisons as each player has his own unique ability.
The wicket in Bangalore does offer some bounce, but overall, I believe the batting strengths of both teams will again come into play. So I’ll take the opportunity to wish everyone a Happy Diwali; expect another exciting game with plenty of fireworks!
Professional Management Group