Kaun Pravin Tambe? Movie Review: Does Shreyas Talpade Revive His Iqbal Magic?

Kaun Pravin Tambe? Movie Review: Does Shreyas Talpade Revive His Iqbal Magic?

By Nitesh Mathur, Broken Cricket Dreams, 04/01/2022

Actor Shreyas Talpade, from Iqbal fame, is back to portray this inspirational story of a man who realized his dream of playing cricket on the national stage at the age of 41.

Can Pravin Tambe’s unlikely journey capture the imagination of the public like other sports movies? Today we review this latest cricket movie released on Disney+HotstarDetails, Summary, Verdict, and most importantly, Life Lessons We All Can Learn from Pravin Tambe. There is also a section of most popular Pravin Tambe videos, his playing career, and stats at the very end.

Also Read:

Kolkata Knight Riders just posted an emotional video on social media regarding a special screening of Kaun Pravin Tambe?, celebrating Pravin Tambe who is on KKR’s support staff in IPL 2022 (video of KKR’s special screening linked below).

Kaun Pravin Tambe Detail & Information

Title Name: Kaun Pravin Tambe? (Who is Pravin Tambe?)

Hotstar Summary: Relentless effort can make an underdog rise to the top, and cricketer Pravin Tambe’s extraordinary journey proves why age is just a number.

Protagonist: Shreyas Talpade as Pravin Tambe

Major Cast:

  • Ashish Vidyarthi as Coach Vidyadhar Paradkar
  • Parambrata Chatterjee as journalist Rajat Sanyal
  • Anjali Patil as wife Vaishali Tambe
  • Nitin Rao as teammate/friend/Mumbai selector/India player Abey Kuruvilla (Check Out Kuruvilla’s debut wicket against the West Indies)
  • Arif Zakaria as Jamil Jalali

Directed By: Jayprad Desai

Release Date: April 1, 2022

Length: 2 hour, 13 minutes

Language: Hindi (English subtitles available, also dubbed versions available in Telegu & Tamil)

Rating: 4.5/5

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Kaun Pravin Tambe Summary and Review

Kaun Pravin Tambe? begins with a clip of a Rahul Dravid, who is portraying Pravin Tambe as the embodiment of passion (full speech below). The movie then tries to answer the question for the audience, who is this Pravin Tambe that Dravid is talking about? Cricket fans have heard about with his exploits with the Rajasthan Royals between 2013 and 2015, but how did he start his career? Why did he have to wait for 20 years?

Also Read: What Rahul Dravid Taught Me

The film begins in the early 2010s, when Tambe is juggling his life as a construction supervisor, father, husband, and cricketer. After brief introduction of the Shreyas Talpade, the movie rewinds to Tambe’s childhood and develops chronologically. We see that at the age of 12, Tambe finds his life purpose—to play Ranji cricket for Mumbai. The essence of the plot is to fill the gap between ages 12 to 41.

The Stories

There are several mini-stories within the larger movie. Tambe begins his career as an all-rounder and specifically, a medium-pace allrounder. How does he then turn into this leg-spinner? (Don’t worry, will not spoil that for you here). Another plotline is the various jobs Tambe takes upon for the sake of financial stability, while still trying to give time to cricket. This is my favorite part of the movie.

Finally, the portrayal of the Mumbai grassroots cricket, Shivaji Park maidaans, and gully cricket is cherry on top of the cake. The actual cricket has the perfect screen time—not too much (like 83’s highlights reels), not too little, just right.

The Acting

What makes this a neat watch is Shreyas Talpade’s bowling action. I loved his bowling action in Iqbal and since Tambe started as a medium pacer, Talpade was a perfect fit. His acting is brilliant as usual, but the minor characters (older brother, childhood friend, wife Vaishali, Abey Kuruvilla, and Arif Zakaria as Jamil) are the heart of the film. Special mention to Ashish Vidyarthi, who does an excellent job portraying Vidyadhar Paradkar sir (influential coach for Zaheer Khan and other great Indian cricketers).

Finally, a note on Parambrata Chatterjee, who is a wonderful actor (you might know him as the police officer in Kahaani & Aranyak). However, his minor negative character as a journalist did not suit him or the script well.

Verdict: To Watch or Not to Watch?

At this moment, there is loads of cricket going on—2022 Women’s World Cup, IPL 2022, Australia Vs Pakistan ODIs, Bangladesh Vs South Africa Tests, Netherlands Vs New Zealand limited overs series, and the 2022 County Championship will begin in a week as well.

On top of this, I am sure you are busy with work, family, or school.

But if you can make time for two hours in this busy world, I hope you can set everything aside and give Kaun Pravin Tambe? a sincere watch. Good, light-hearted movie that will rejuvenate your belief in cricket, specifically grassroot & gully cricket.

My review for Kaun Pravin Tambe? is 4.5/5. Great watch. The only thing that took away from the film for me was the minor conflict with the journalist, which seemed a bit forced.

Before we move on to “Life Lessons we can learn from Pravin Tambe”, check out BCD’s social media pages and consider subscribing to our newsletter. It would really help support this website.

5 Life Lessons We All Can Learn from Pravin Tambe

Pravin Tambe symbolizes Broken Cricket Dreams. His journey has broken dreams, but his story is also full of inspiration, passion, hard work, modesty, and determination.

Tambe is one of the great stories of the IPL. Got his big break before playing a Ranji Trophy match. And guess what? After all his toil, results were evident – hat-trick vs KKR, highest wicket taker for Rajasthan Royals in 2014, and the Golden Wicket taker for RR in 2012 Champions League.

And he played till he was 49 across IPL, CPL, Abu Dhabi T10 leagues. I am sure he still plays a few gully cricket games here and there. Dedication to the max. Here are some of the other life lessons from Pravin Tambe we can apply to our lives.

1. Age Is Just a Number

After almost 30 years of toil, Tambe finally got selected for the Rajasthan Royals in 2013. A few months later, he would get his beloved Ranji Trophy cap.

In this day and age of the internet and focus on fitness, anything is possible. Tom Brady, Pravin Tambe, Brad Hogg, and Chris Gayle can still play professional sports at 42. With resources online, you can obtain a new skill, learn new things, change careers, or start a business. At any point in your life, age is no barrier.

2. Balancing Dreams with Practicality of Life

As Tambe entered his twenties, he assumed more responsibilities. He got married, had two kids, and had to pay bills. Usually, people give up dreams during this time for financial security.

Pravin Tambe did not. He worked multiple jobs instead.

Life is all about moderation and balance. And to survive, money is needed. If you can develop multiple streams of income, while still being within reach of your dream goal, that is the ideal zone.

3. Be Open-Minded

Pravin Tambe reluctantly switched from medium pace bowling to leg spin. And boy, did it pay dividends.

There is a fine line between persistence and inflexibility. Quitting should always be your last option, but if things are not working in your favor, be open to change. Being open minded in the micro can have large positive effects on the macro.

4. Passion Makes Perfect

Dravid’s speech illuminates on Pravin Tambe’s work ethic. Although he did not play much the first year, he attended every optional practice session, every gym session, and was always discussing how to improve his game with other players in the squad.

After his first man of the match award in the IPL, “he was weeping.” He cherished every moment of this journey. Although he has now assumed coaching roles, he still plays for his company (Kanga League, Time Shield) and still bowls 15-20 overs a day in three-day-games.

We usually say ‘Practice Makes Perfect.’ That is true, but what is more is that ‘Passion Makes Perfect.’ If you combine your love or passion for a certain activity and put in the practice and the hard yards, then you will be happy with all your efforts and gradually get closer to your dream.

5. All You Need Is One Good Over. Never Give Up. Dreams Really Do Come True

The main theme of Kaun Pravin Tambe can be summed up by one quote in the movie.

“Whether it is life or match, all you need is one good over.”

Pravin Tambe was in the 40 Probable’s List for a number of seasons, even as early as 2000.

But he had to wait. And Wait. Almost gave up. And had doubts cast upon from friends and society, but he kept on working relentlessly and kept on dreaming a dream till he got his big break that changed his life.

In Tambe’s own words, “Just never give up on your dreams. Really dreams do come true.”

Try, Try, and Try Again Until You Succeed. You may take rest but never quit. The light at the end of the tunnel may be bleak, but there is light, nevertheless.

Pravin Tambe Videos and Interviews

Here are some of my favorite Pravin Tambe videos. In his interview with Aakash Chopra, Tambe reveals that his IPL cap was not his biggest moment. Getting the Ranji cap for Mumbai from legend Wasim Jaffer was his most memorable moment.

Here below is one of his best innings of his career. So much spin! Beautiful.

Here is Tambe’s hat-trick and 5-wicket hall in a T10 match that featured wickets of Chris Gayle, Eoin Morgan, and Kieron Pollard (Bowled!), Upul Tharanga – as a 47-year old. Wow!

Embed from Getty Images

Who Is Pravin Vijay Tambe?

Born: 8 October, 1971 (Mumbai, Maharashtra, India)

Pravin Tambe Stats

T20s: 64 matches, 70 wickets, Best Innings – 4/13, 22.35 average, 6.92 economy

List A: 6 matches, 5 wickets, Best Innings – 2/26

First Class: 2 matches, 2 wickets, Best Innings – 2/127

  • First Indian and oldest player to play in the CPL.

Also Read: 5 Reasons Why BCCI Should Allow Players In Foreign Leagues? Learn From the West Indies

Pravin Tambe Major Teams

  • Indian Premier League (IPL): Rajasthan Royals, Gujarat Lions, Sunrisers Hyderabad
  • Caribbean Premier League (CPL): Trinbago Knight Riders
  • Abu Dhabi T10 League: Sindhis
  • Domestic: Mumbai, Mumbai Cricket Association XI, Dr DY Patil Sports Academy, Orient Shipping

© Copyright @Nitesh Mathur and Broken Cricket Dreams, 2021. Originally published on 04/01/2022. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Broken Cricket Dreams with appropriate and specific direction to the original content (i.e. linked to the exact post/article).

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Indian Premier League IPL 2022 Preview – Everything You Need to Know About IPL 15 Quickly

Indian Premier League IPL 2022 Preview – Everything You Need to Know About IPL 15 Quickly

By Nitesh Mathur, Broken Cricket Dreams, 3/24/2022

Time for IPL 2022! Yep, the festival is back—This time with two more teams. That is right! Welcome Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Kings!

Lot has changed since last time. A massive auction and an end of an era. No Suresh Raina, Chris Gayle, AB De Villiers and although MS Dhoni & Virat Kohli are still here, they are no longer captains.

Without further ado, here is everything you need to know about IPL 2022 QUICKLY—Squads, Schedule, Latest Injury News, Commentators, History, and Predictions! By the end of this read, you should have all your IPL 2022 questions answered.

Also Read: 5 Takeaways from IPL 2021

IPL 2022 Quick Summary

  • Matches: 74 (10 teams, 14 matches each, 2 Groups, Finals)
  • Dates: March 26th, 2022- 29th May, 2022
  • Venues: All the matches will be played in & around Mumbai:
    • Wankhede Stadium
    • Brabourne Stadium
    • DY Patil Stadium (Navi Mumbai)
    • MCA International Stadium (Pune)

IPL 2022 Groups

GROUP AGROUP B
Mumbai IndiansChennai Super Kings
Kolkata Knight RidersSunrisers Hyderabad
Rajasthan RoyalsRoyal Challengers Bangalore
Delhi CapitalsPunjab Kings
Lucknow Super GiantsGujarat Titans
IPL 2022 Groups

*Note: Unlike previous IPLs, this is not going to be a round-robin tournament. To keep the number of games bearable, each team will play teams from their groups twice (as well as one team from the other group), and the rest of the team once. So that is two games against five teams and one game against the other four for a total of 14 matches.

Detailed team-by-team fixtures are displayed with each team below.

Also Read: Most Beautiful Cricket Stadium in Each of the 12 Countries

IPL 2022 Commentators

The big news in this arena is that Ravi Shastri is back in the commentary box after his coaching tenure with the Indian team came to an end. Also joining him are ex-IPL stars like Mr. IPL – Suresh Raina, Piyush Chawla, and Dhawal Kulkarni

English/Global Broadcast

Harsha Bhogle, Ian Bishop, Alan Wilkins, Pommie Mbangwa, Simon Doull, Sunil Gavaskar, Danny Morrison, Graeme Swann, Scott Styris, Neroli Medows, Anant Tyagi, Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, Murali Karthik, Kevin Pietersen, Matthew Hayden, Deep Dasgupta, Anjum Chopra, Nicholas Knight, WV Raman, Daren Ganga, Morne Morkel, Graeme Smith

Hindi & English

Ravi Shastri, Suresh Raina, Aakash Chopra, Mohammad Kaif, Mayanti Langer Binny, Irfan Pathan, Parthiv Patel, Harbhajan Singh, Piyush Chawla, Dhawal Kulkarni, Janti Sapru, Tanya Purohit, Suren Sundaram

Apart from these two major broad categories, IPL 2022 will be broadcasted in at least seven other regional languages with marquee Indian domestic cricketers as commentators.

Also Read: Top 5 Commentators of All Time

History of the Indian Premier League – Winners & Runner Ups

  1. Mumbai Indians: 2013, 2015, 2017, 2019, 2020 (Winners), 2010 (Runner-Up)
  2. Chennai Super Kings: 2010, 2011, 2018, 2021 (Winners), 2008, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2019 (Runner-Up)
  3. Kolkata Knight Riders: 2012, 2014 (Winners), 2021 (Runner-Up)
  4. Deccan Chargers/Sunrisers Hyderabad: 2009 – DC (Winners), 2016 – SRH (Winners), 2018 (Runner-Up)
  5. Rajasthan Royals: 2008 (Winners)
  6. Royal Challengers Bangalore: 2009, 2011, 2016 (Runner-Up)
  7. Delhi Capitals: 2020 (Runner-Up)
  8. Punjab Kings: 2014 (Runner-Up)

*Note: Rising Pune Supergiant reached the final of the 2017 IPL (Deccan Chargers Gujarat Lions, Sahara Pune Warriors India, Kochi Tuskers Kerela were the other teams to have featured in the IPL – Now defunct. Also, Delhi Daredevils and Kings XI Punjab were the earlier names of Delhi Capitals and Punjab Kings respectively).

2022 Indian Premier League News at A Glance

IPL 2022 Injury/Withdrawn List

  • Jofra Archer was eligible to be in the IPL 2022 auctions. However, he will not be playing this season due to an elbow injury. Watch out for MI in future seasons. Bumrah + Archer will be WOW!
  • Deepak Chahar is set to miss the IPL with a recurring quadriceps injury.
  • Anrich Nortje is suffering from an injury but is back with the squad (might not be available right away).
  • Jason Roy & Alex Hales withdraw due to bio bubble fatigue. Mark Wood is out of the IPL with an elbow injury.
  • Suryakumar Yadav is suffering from a hairline thumb fracture. He will miss the first match and may comeback soon.

Other IPL 2022 Major News

  • MS Dhoni steps down from captaincy. Ravindra Jadeja the new captain for CSK. Dhoni will however play as a player for one (or more) seasons.
  • Moeen Ali gets visa (late) and had to be quarantined. Hence, he will arrive by CSK’s second match.

IPL 2022 Team Availability

Every season, team combinations are impacted by international commitments. Here are the ongoing/future series that might collide with IPL 2022:

  • Bangladesh Tour of South Africa: Dwaine Pretorius (CSK), Kagiso Rabada (PBKS), and Lungi Ngidi & Mustafizur Rahman (both DC). However, they may only miss one or two matches since CSA has granted leave for Rabada, Ngidi, Jansen, Markram, and Rassie van der Dussen at the expense of the Test series. Read Firdose Moonda’s article explaining Money Matters.
  • Australia tour of Pakistan: Australian players are not granted a leave till April 6th, which means they will be unavailable for 4-5 matches for their respective teams. This includes Pat Cummins, Aaron Finch (KKR), Sean Abbott (SRH), Hazlewood/Behrendorff (RCB), Marcus Stoinis (LSG), and David Warner (first two matches). Oh and Glenn Maxwell is getting married, so let us leave him alone for a couple of weeks.
  • England tour of West Indies: Jonny Bairstow (PBKS), Alzarri Joseph (LSG) – Misses first two matches due to the Test series
  • NZ Tour of England: Starts in June but if their IPL teams qualify for the playoffs, Tim Southee (KKR) & Jonny Bairstow (PBKS) might miss out.

*Note: Netherlands tour of NZ series is also ongoing but NZ have released all their IPL bound players, so there is no conflict.

IPL 2022 Squads, Possible XIs, and Fixtures

1. Chennai Super Kings (CSK)

Predicted XI

  1. Ruturaj Gaikwad, 2. Devon Conway, 3. Robin Uthappa/Moeen Ali, 4. Ambati Rayudu, 5. Ravindra Jadeja (C), 6. MS Dhoni (WK), 7. Dwayne Bravo, 8. Shivam Dube/Rajvardhan Hangragrekar, 9. Adam Milne, 10. Mahesh Theekshana/Prashant Solanki, 11. Tushar Deshpande

Strengths

CSK’s strength lies in their all-rounders and bench strength. Moeen Ali, Jadeja, and Bravo make up the core but even if they sit out, Santner, Chris Jordan, Pretorius, and Dube are adequate replacements.

Weaknesses

Out and out pace bowling. Without Chahar, Adam Milne is the lone spearhead of their fast bowling attack but Deshpande/Asif are a bit inexperienced.

X Factor

Watch out for Devon Conway, or as he is known in CSK circuits—Mike Hussey 2.0.

Chennai Super Kings IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Ruturaj Gaikwad
  • Ambati Rayudu
  • Robin Uthappa (WK)
  • MS Dhoni (C/WK)
  • Hari Nishaanth
  • Narayan Jagadeesan
  • Subhranshu Senapati

_________________________

Overseas

  • Devon Conway (WK)

All Rounders

  • Ravindra Jadeja
  • Shivam Dube
  • Rajvardhan Hangragekar
  • Bhagat Verma

___________________________

Overseas

  • Mitchell Santner
  • Dwayne Bravo
  • Moeen Ali
  • Dwaine Pretorius
  • Chris Jordan

Bowlers

  • Deepak Chahar
  • Tushar Deshpande
  • KM Asif
  • Mukesh Choudhary
  • Prashant Solanki
  • Simarjeet Singh

__________________________

Overseas

  • Adam Milne
  • Mahesh Theekshana

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • New Zealand: Devon Conway, Mitchell Santner, Adam Milne
  • England: Moeen Ali, Chris Jordan
  • West Indies: Dwayne Bravo
  • South Africa: Dwaine Pretorius
  • Sri Lanka: Mahesh Theekshana

Chennai Super Kings IPL 2022 Fixtures

CSK Fixtures VsKKRLSGPBKSSRHRCBGTMIDCRR
3/263/314/34/94/124/174/215/85/20
4/255/15/45/155/12

CSK Website

2. Delhi Capitals (DC)

Predicted XI:

  1. Prithvi Shaw, 2. David Warner, 3. Mitchell Marsh, 4. Rishabh Pant (C), 5. Sarfaraz Khan, 6. Rovman Powell, 7. Axar Patel, 8. Shardul Thakur, 9. Chetan Sakaria/Khaleel Ahmed, 10. Kuldeep Yadav, 11. Anrich Nortje/Mustafizur Rahman

Strengths

Balance. Solid top order with Marsh/Axar as allrounders and Sarfaraz Khan/Rovman Powell as the finishers. And with Shardul Thakur here, there is no need to fear.

Weaknesses

Replacements. Warner/Marsh/Nortje/the Fizz will be out for the first 4-5 matches.

X Factor

Watch out for Axar Patel-Shardul Thakur. Could be the Sneh Rana-Pooja Vastrakar type lower order players DC need.

Delhi Capitals IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Prithvi Shaw
  • Rishabh Pant (C/WK)
  • Srikar Bharat (WK)
  • Sarfaraz Khan
  • Yash Dhull
  • Mandeep Singh
  • Ripal Patel
  • Ashwin Hebbar

___________________________

Overseas

  • David Warner
  • Rovman Powell
  • Tim Seifert (WK)

All Rounders

  • Axar Patel
  • Shardul Thakur
  • Lalit Yadav

____________________________

Overseas

  • Mitchell Marsh

Bowlers

  • Khaleel Ahmed
  • Kuldeep Yadav
  • Chetan Sakariya
  • Praveen Dubey
  • Kamlesh Nagarkoti
  • Vicky Ostwal

____________________________

Overseas

  • Anrich Nortje
  • Mustafizur Rahman
  • Lungi Ngidi

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • Australia: David Warner, Mitchell Marsh
  • New Zealand: Tim Seifert
  • West Indies: Rovman Powell
  • South Africa: Anrich Nortje, Lungi Ngidi
  • Bangladesh: Mustafizur Rahman

Delhi Capitals IPL 2022 Fixtures

DC Fixtures VsMIGTLSGKKRRCBPBKSRRSRHCSK
3/274/24/74/104/164/204/225/55/8
5/215/14/285/165/11

DC Website

3. Gujarat Titans (GT)

Predicted XI:

  1. Shubman Gill, 2. Matthew Wade (WK), 3. Wriddhiman Saha, 4. Hardik Pandya (C), 5. Vijay Shankar, 6. Rahul Tewatia, 7. Gurkeerat Singh Mann/Jayant Yadav, 8. Rashid Khan, 9. Mohammad Shami, 10. Lockie Ferguson, 11. Noor Ahmad/R Sai Kishore

Strengths

Bowling line-up of envy—Rashid Khan, Shami, Lockie Ferguson, R Sai Kishore. They also bought most of the India allrounders in the last five years (Pandya, Vijay Shankar, Gurkeerat, Jayant Yadav, Tewatia)

Weaknesses

Top order. Without Jason Roy, this is a think looking line up. Pandya-Shankar-Tewatia-Rashid can do wonders once in a while but lot rests of the Gill-Wade opening combination.

X Factor

R Sai Kishore. Consistent performer for Tamil Nadu in Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy and the domestic game. Should finally come off the bench and make his mark in the IPL.

Gujarat Titans IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Shubman Gill
  • Wriddhiman Saha (WK)
  • Abhinav Manohar
  • Sai Sudharshan

____________________________

Overseas

  • Matthew Wade (WK)
  • Rahmanullah Gurbaz (WK)

All Rounders

  • Hardik Pandya (C)
  • Vijay Shankar
  • Gurkeerat Singh Mann
  • Rahul Tewatia
  • Jayant Yadav

__________________________

Overseas

  • Rashid Khan
  • Dominic Drakes

Bowlers

  • Mohammad Shami
  • R Sai Kishore
  • Varun Aaron
  • Pradeep Sangwan
  • Darshan Nalkande
  • Yash Dayal

___________________________

Overseas

  • Lockie Ferguson
  • Noor Ahmad

Jason Roy* (withdrawn)

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • Australia: Matthew Wade
  • New Zealand: Lockie Ferguson
  • West Indies: Dominic Drakes
  • Afghanistan: Rashid Khan, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Noor Ahmad

Gujarat Titans IPL 2022 Fixtures

GT Fixtures VsLSGDCPBKSSRHRRCSKKKRRCBMI
3/284/24/84/114/144/174/234/305/6
5/105/34/275/155/19

4. Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR)

Predicted XI:

  1. Aaron Finch/Ajinkya Rahane, 2. Venkatesh Iyer, 3. Shreyas Iyer (C), 4. Nitish Rana, 5. Sheldon Jackson (WK)/Sam Billings (WK), 6. Andre Russell, 7. Sunil Narine, 8. Pat Cummins, 9. Umesh Yadav, 10. Shivam Mavi, 11. Varun Chakravarthy

Strengths

The All-Round Package. If fit & in-form, Russell-Narine-Cummins-Venkatesh Iyer will be a handful. And captain Shreyas Iyer is in rich vein of form as well.

Weaknesses

Wicketkeeper. With a long tournament, there are not many keeper options apart from Sheldon Jackson (Indian domestic) & Sam Billings. Fitting them into the middle order might change combinations in the XI.

X Factor

Watch out for Chamika Karunaratne. With Cummins arriving after match 4 and Russell’s fitness never certain, Chamika could be a handy lower order bowling all-rounder.

Kolkata Knight Riders IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Shreyas Iyer (C)
  • Ajinkya Rahane
  • Nitish Rana
  • Rinku Singh
  • Sheldon Jackson (WK)
  • Baba Indrajith
  • Abhijeet Tomar
  • Pratham Singh

___________________________

Overseas

  • Sam Billings (WK)
  • Aaron Finch

All Rounders

  • Venkatesh Iyer
  • Anukul Roy
  • Ramesh Kumar

___________________________

Overseas

  • Mohammad Nabi
  • Sunil Narine
  • Andre Russell

Bowlers

  • Umesh Yadav
  • Shivam Mavi
  • Varun Chakravarthy
  • Rasikh Salam
  • Aman Khan
  • Ashok Sharma

___________________________

Overseas

  • Pat Cummins
  • Tim Southee
  • Chamika Karunaratne

*Alex Hales (Withdrawn)

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • Australia: Aaron Finch, Pat Cummins
  • New Zealand: Tim Southee
  • England: Sam Billings
  • West Indies: Sunil Narine, Andre Russell
  • Afghanistan: Mohammad Nabi
  • Sri Lanka: Chamika Karunaratne

Kolkata Knight Riders IPL 2022 Fixtures

KKR Fixtures VsCSKRCBPBKSMIDCSRHRRGTLSG
3/263/304/14/64/104/154/184/235/7
5/94/285/145/25/18

KKR Website

5. Lucknow Super Giants (LSG)

Predicted XI:

  1. KL Rahul (C), 2. Quinton de Kock (WK), 3. Manish Pandey, 4. Marcus Stoinis, 5. Deepak Hooda, 6. Krunal Pandya, 7. Jason Holder, 8. Krishnappa Gowtham/Shahbaz Nadeem, 9. Ravi Bishnoi, 10. Avesh Khan, 11. Dushmantha Chameera

Strengths

The first XI. What a team – Pandey/Stoinis at 3 & 4 means KL Rahul can play his natural game. Hooda-Pandya-Holder are adequate finishers/all-rounders and Bishnoi/Avesh Khan/ Chameera strong bowlers.

Weaknesses

Replacement bowlers might be a slight concern.

X Factor

Watch out for Rahul-QDK as the opening pair of the tournament.

Lucknow Super Giants IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • KL Rahul (WK/C)
  • Manish Pandey
  • Manan Vohra
  • Karan Sharma
  • Ayush Badoni

___________________________

Overseas

  • Quinton de Kock (WK)
  • Evin Lewis (WK)

All Rounders

  • Deepak Hooda
  • Krunal Pandya
  • Krishnappa Gowtham

___________________________

Overseas

  • Jason Holder
  • Marcus Stoinis
  • Kyle Mayers

Bowlers

  • Avesh Khan
  • Ravi Bishnoi
  • Shahbaz Nadeem
  • Ankit Rajpoot
  • Mayank Yadav

___________________________

Overseas

  • Dushmantha Chameera
  • Andrew Tye

*Mark Wood (Withdrawn)

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • Australia: Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye
  • West Indies: Evin Lewis, Jason Holder, Kyle Mayers
  • South Africa: Quinton de Kock
  • Sri Lanka: Dushmantha Chameera

Lucknow Super Giants IPL 2022 Fixtures

LSG Fixtures VsGTCSKSRHDCRRMIRCBPBKSKKR
3/283/314/44/74/104/164/194/295/7
5/105/15/154/245/18

6. Mumbai Indians (MI)

Predicted XI:

  1. Rohit Sharma, 2. Ishan Kishan (WK), 3. Suryakumar Yadav, 4. Dewald Brevis/Tilak Verma, 5. Kieron Pollard, 6. Tim David, 7. Fabian Allen, 8. Murugan Ashwin/Mayank Markande, 9. Jaydev Unadkat, 10. Jasprit Burmah, 11. Basil Thampi/Tymal Mills

Strengths

The same core as before. Rohit-Ishan-Sky-Pollard-Bumrah.

Weaknesses

The bowling cohort. Unadkat/Thampi are adequate players to come off the bench but not the ideal starters. They will also miss the Pandya brothers.

X Factor

Watch out for the foreign recruits. Brevis was the batter of the U-19 World Cup, Tim David is the hardest hitting Singaporean in the T20 circuit, Fabian Allen’s reputation has gone up in the last couple of years, and a fit-Tymal Mills is a treat to watch.

Mumbai Indians IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Rohit Sharma
  • Ishan Kishan (WK)
  • Suryakumar Yadav
  • Anmolpreet Singh
  • Rahul Budhhi
  • Aryan Juyal (WK)
  • Ramandeep Singh
  • Tilak Verma

___________________________

Overseas

  • Dewald Brevis
  • Tim David

All Rounders

  • Arshad Khan
  • Sanjay Yadav

___________________________

Overseas

  • Fabian Allen
  • Kieron Pollard
  • Daniel Sams

Bowlers

  • Jasprit Bumrah
  • Jaydev Unadkat
  • Murugan Ashwin
  • Mayank Markande
  • Basil Thampi
  • Hrithik Shokeen
  • Arjun Tendulkar

___________________________

Overseas

  • *Jofra Archer (unavailable this season)
  • Riley Meredith
  • Tymal Mills

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • Australia: Riley Meredith, Daniel Sams, Tim David (Singapore/Australia)
  • England: Jofra Archer, Tymal Mills
  • West Indies: Fabian Allen, Kieron Pollard
  • South Africa: Dewald Brevis

Mumbai Indians IPL 2022 Fixtures

MI Fixtures VsDCRR KKRRCBPBKSLSGCSKGTSRH
3/274/24/64/94/134/164/215/65/17
5/214/305/94/245/12

7. Punjab Kings (PBKS)

Predicted XI:

  1. Mayank Agarwal (C), 2. Shikhar Dhawan, 3. Liam Livingstone, 4. Jonny Bairstow (WK), 5. Shahrukh Khan, 6. Rishi Dhawan, 7. Odean Smith, 8. Kagiso Rabada, 9. Arshdeep Singh, 10. Sandeep Sharma, 11. Harpreet Brar/ Rahul Chahar

Strengths

The top 5. Agarwal & Dhawan are perennial Orange Cap contenders, Livingstone-Bairstow are T20 legends, and Shahrukh Khan is the newest finisher in the house.

Weaknesses

Not many Indian batters on the bench if Agarwal/Dhawan were to get injured.

X Factor

Watch out for Rishi Dhawan. He has had a pivotal domestic season.

Punjab Kings IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Mayank Agarwal (C)
  • Shikhar Dhawan
  • Shahrukh Khan
  • Prabhsimran Singh (WK)
  • Jitesh Sharma
  • Atharva Taide

___________________________

Overseas

  • Jonny Bairstow (WK)
  • Bhanuka Rajapaksa

All Rounders

  • Rishi Dhawan
  • Raj Bawa
  • Writtick Chatterjee
  • Prerak Mankad

___________________________

Overseas

  • Liam Livingstone
  • Benny Howell
  • Odean Smith

Bowlers

  • Arshdeep Singh
  • Rahul Chahar
  • Harpreet Brar
  • Ishan Porel
  • Vaibhav Arora
  • Baltej Singh
  • Ansh Patel
  • Sandeep Sharma

___________________________

Overseas

  • Kagiso Rabada
  • Nathan Ellis

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • Australia: Nathan Ellis
  • England: Jonny Bairstow, Liam Livingstone, Benny Howell
  • West Indies: Odean Smith
  • South Africa: Kagiso Rabada
  • Sri Lanka: Bhanuka Rajapaksa

Punjab Kings IPL 2022 Fixtures

PBKS Fixtures VsRCBKKRCSKGTMISRHDCLSGRR
3/274/14/34/84/134/174/204/295/7
5/134/255/35/225/16

Punjab Kings Website

8. Rajasthan Royals (RR)

Predicted XI:

  1. Jos Buttler (WK), 2. Yashasvi Jaiswal, 3. Devdutt Padikkal, 4. Sanju Samson (C), 5. Shimron Hetmyer, 6. Daryl Mitchell/James Neesham, 7. Ravichandran Ashwin, 8. Yuzvendra Chahal, 9. Prasidh Krishna, 10. Navdeep Saini, 11. Trent Boult

Strengths

The bowling line up. Ashwin-Chahal area top notch duo and add Boult, Prasidh Krishna, and Navdeep Saini, and this is an envious line-up.

Weaknesses

Too top heavy. Lack of finishers if Neesham does not fire (Riyan Parag has not been consistent enough either)

X Factor

Watch out for Prasidh Krishna. Now an India capped player, lot will rest on his shoulders.

Rajasthan Royals IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Sanju Samson (C)/WK)
  • Yashasvi Jaiswal
  • Karun Nair
  • Devdutt Padikkal
  • Shubham Garhwal

___________________________

Overseas

  • Jos Buttler (WK)
  • Shimron Hetmyer
  • Rassie van der Dussen

All Rounders

  • Ravichandran Ashwin
  • Riyan Parag

___________________________

Overseas

  • Nathan Coulter-Nile
  • Daryl Mitchell
  • James Neesham

Bowlers

  • Yuzvendra Chahal
  • Prasidh Krishna
  • Navdeep Saini
  • Anunay Singh
  • KC Cariappa
  • Dhruv Jurel
  • Kuldeep Sen
  • Tejas Baroka
  • Kuldip Yadav

___________________________

Overseas

  • Trent Boult
  • Obed McCoy

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • New Zealand: Daryl Mitchell, James Neesham, Trent Boult
  • Australia: Nathan Coulter-Nile
  • England: Jos Buttler
  • West Indies: Shimron Hetmyer, Obed McCoy
  • South Africa: Rassie van der Dussen

Rajasthan Royals IPL 2022 Fixtures

RR Fixtures VsSRHMIRCBLSGGTKKRDCPBKSCSK
3/294/24/54/104/144/184/225/75/20
4/304/265/155/25/11

Rajasthan Royals Website

9. Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB)

Predicted XI:

  1. Faf du Plessis (C), 2. Anuj Rawat, 3. Virat Kohli, 4. Glenn Maxwell, 5. Dinesh Karthik (WK), 6. Sherfane Rutherford/Mahipal Lomror, 7. Wanindu Haranga, 8. Shahbaz Ahmed, 9. Harshal Patel, 10. Mohammad Siraj, 11. Karn Sharma/Josh Hazlewood

Strengths

Bowling line up of Siraj-Harshal-Shahbaz-Hasaranga-Hazlewood is mouth-watering.

Weaknesses

How many games will it take RCB to figure out their best XI, which has been their usual problem. I reckon until Maxwell & Hazlewood come in, RCB might experiment with Anuj Rawat-Lomror-Rutherford.

X Factor

Watch out for Finn Allen. If he gets a chance, just remember his debut 29-ball 71 in a T20I. Also watch out for captain Faf du Plessis. Legendary leader – can he help RCB cross the line?

Also Read: Faf du Plessis & AB De Villiers’ Friendship: Broken Dreams of Faf and ABD

Royal Challengers Bangalore IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Virat Kohli
  • Dinesh Karthik (WK)
  • Anuj Rawat (WK)
  • Suyash Prabhudessai
  • Luvnith Sisodia

___________________________

Overseas

  • Faf du Plessis (C)
  • Finn Allen
  • Sherfane Rutherford

All Rounders

  • Mahipal Lomror
  • Shahbaz Ahmed

___________________________

Overseas

  • Glenn Maxwell
  • Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva
  • David Willey

Bowlers

  • Mohammed Siraj
  • Harshal Patel
  • Siddarth Kaul
  • Karn Sharma
  • Akash Deep
  • Aneeshwar Gautam
  • Chama Milind

___________________________

Overseas

  • Jason Behrendorff
  • Josh Hazlewood

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • New Zealand: Finn Allen
  • Australia: Glenn Maxwell, Jason Behrendorff, Josh Hazlewood
  • England: David Willey
  • West Indies: Sherfane Rutherford
  • South Africa: Faf du Plessis
  • Sri Lanka: Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva

Royal Challengers Bangalore IPL 2022 Fixtures

RCB Fixtures VsPBKSKKRRRMICSKDCLSGSRHGT
3/273/304/54/94/124/164/194/234/30
5/134/265/45/85/19

RCB Website

10. Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH)

Predicted XI:

  1. Kane Williamson (C), 2. Rahul Tripathi, 3. Aiden Markram/Glenn Phillips, 4. Nicholas Pooran (WK), 5. Abdul Samad, 6. Priyam Garg/Abhishek Sharma, 7. Washington Sundar/Shreyas Gopal, 8. Romario Shepherd, 9. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 10. Umran Malik, 11. T Natarajan/Kartik Tyagi

Strengths

Umran Malik-Natarajan-Bhuvneshwar Kumar make a solid bowling line-up. Expect Umran Malik to break the speed charts in this edition of the IPL.

Weaknesses

Not convinced with Priyam Garg/Abhishek Sharma at #6. They might be better used up the order with experienced batters to finish off the match.

X Factor

Watch out for Rahul Tripathi. He was the heart and soul of KKR’s run to the final last year and for RPS in 2017. Also watch out for Suchith, the ultimate substitute fielder.

Sunrisers Hyderabad IPL 2022 Squad List

Batters

  • Rahul Tripathi
  • Abdul Samad
  • Priyam Garg
  • Vishnu Vinod (WK)
  • Ravikumar Samarth
  • Shashank Singh

___________________________

Overseas

  • Kane Williamson (C)
  • Aiden Markram
  • Nicholas Pooran (WK)

All Rounders

  • Washington Sundar
  • Abhishek Sharma

___________________________

Overseas

  • Sean Abbott
  • Glenn Phillips (WK)
  • Romario Shepherd

Bowlers

  • Shreyas Gopal
  • Bhuvneshwar Kumar
  • Kartik Tyagi
  • T Natarajan
  • Umran Malik
  • Jagadeesha Suchith
  • Saurabh Dubey

___________________________

Overseas

  • Fazalhaq Farooqi
  • Marco Jansen

Overseas Players (by Nationality):

  • New Zealand: Kane Williamson, Glenn Phillips
  • Australia: Sean Abbott
  • West Indies: Nicholas Pooran, Romario Shepherd
  • South Africa: Aiden Markram, Marco Jansen
  • Afghanistan: Fazalhaq Farooqi

Sunrisers Hyderabad IPL 2022 Fixtures

SRH Fixtures VsRRLSGCSKGTKKRPBKSRCBDCMI
3/294/44/94/114/154/174/235/55/17
5/14/275/145/225/8

Sunrisers Hyderabad Website

Frequently Asked Questions – IPL 2022

Who is the captain of CSK in IPL 2022?

Portrait photo of Ravindra Jadeja in CSK jersey.

Ravindra Jadeja is the captain of CSK in IPL 2022 as MS Dhoni steps down.

Who are all the IPL 2022 commentators?

Harsha Bhogle, Ian Bishop, Alan Wilkins, Pommie Mbangwa, Simon Doull, Sunil Gavaskar, Danny Morrison, Graeme Swann, Scott Styris, Neroli Medows, Anant Tyagi, Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, Murali Karthik, Kevin Pietersen, Matthew Hayden, Deep Dasgupta, Anjum Chopra, Nicholas Knight, WV Raman, Daren Ganga, Morne Morkel, Graeme Smith head the English global broadcast, while Ravi Shastri, Suresh Raina, Aakash Chopra, Mohammad Kaif, Mayanti Langer Binny, Irfan Pathan, Parthiv Patel, Harbhajan Singh, Piyush Chawla, Dhawal Kulkarni, Janti Sapru, Tanya Purohit, Suren Sundaram are the Hindi/English commentators.

Who is the captain of RCB in IPL 2022?

After Virat Kohli stepped down, Faf du Plessis became the captain of RCB in IPL 2022.

What are the two new teams in IPL 2022?

Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants are the two new teams in IPL 2022.

Sources: ESPNCricinfo – IPL

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© Copyright @Nitesh Mathur and Broken Cricket Dreams, 2021. Originally published on 03/24/2022. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Broken Cricket Dreams with appropriate and specific direction to the original content (i.e. linked to the exact post/article).

15 Problems Cricket Has to Solve in the Next Decade | How to Fix Cricket 101

15 Problems Cricket Has to Solve in the Next Decade | How to Fix Cricket 101

By Nitesh Mathur, Broken Cricket Dreams, 1/29/2022

With Inspiration from my friend, Vandit

In 1900, German mathematician David Hilbert proposed a list of 23 unsolved mathematics problems that would keep mathematicians busy for the next century.

And indeed, they did. Over the next hundred years, several of these challenging problems were either completely answered or partially solved. However, some of these problems remain unsolved even after a few centuries and failed attempts by great mathematicians.

So, at the turn of the 21st century, the Clay Institute of Mathematics put a $1 million reward (the hardest way to get a million dollars, I would say) for anyone who would solve any of the 7 proposed problems, known as the legendary Millennium Prize Problems [Millenium Maths Problem Explained in 90 Seconds].

So far, only one of them has been successfully solved (and the mathematician Grigori Perelman rejected the monetary award).

Why Cricket Needs to Solve Problems?

At this point, you must be thinking, “Why I am reading four paragraphs of math when I signed up for cricket?”

Don’t worry. Here comes the cricket.

2021 had a fair share of its problems for cricket—The Azeem Rafiq scandals, Tim Paine’s sexting exit, Thailand women losing a spot in the World Cup due to a flawed system, Glenn Maxwell, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Tom Banton taking time off due to mental health, Quinton de Kock’s kneeling issue in the T20 World & then retiring from Test cricket at the age of 29, the dissolution of the ODI Super League, New Zealand & England pulling out of Pakistan, the Afghanistan crisis, The Hundred Vs County Cricket debate, and just a general overdose of the IPL & cricket.

For a full read on these issues, check the following articles out:

The Structure of the Proposed Problems

Today I propose a list of 15 problems that will keep the cricket community (ICC, administrators, and cricketers themselves) busy for the next decade.

This is by no means an exhaustive list. Neither do I have any monetary reward for you. I offer possible solutions—some of them you might like. Others? Not so much. So, then what is the point of all this?

The point is to churn up debate and conversations in the cricket community so eventually some of these solutions reach the upper echelons of the cricket boards and ICC. Comment below on your thoughts and ideas. Who knows, your idea might one day change cricket altogether.

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I. Global Expansion of Cricket

1. Need for a Global Cricket Calendar and T20 Leagues

The Problem: How can the cricket calendar provide space to the three international formats—Test, ODI, and T20I—as well as the growing T20 leagues?

These days, cricket is here, there, and everywhere. Today, we have the BPL, PSL, IPL, Global T20 Canda, T20 Vitality Blast, The Hundred, CPL, Shpageeza Cricket League, T10 League, SLPL, MSL, Super Smash, and the Big Bash running from January to December.

Cricket will hit its ceiling in the next 5-10 years. With new T20 leagues growing around the world, IPL becoming a 10-team venture (twice a year IPL also proposed), T10 leagues, The Hundred, a ‘Ninety-90 Bash’, & other retired professional leagues adding to the calendar, what is the limit?

And don’t get me wrong. Leagues are not necessarily a bad thing—more opportunities for Associate cricketers, professional life for players who cannot make their international XIs, and more match practice & auditions to make comeback cases, but it does threaten the existence of international cricket as a whole.

Possible Solutions

  1. In The Need For Champions League & a T20 League Calendar article, we proposed that
    1. Two-Three month reservation for the pinnacle of international cricket (T20/ODI WC, WTC Final), without T20 leagues during this period.
    • Reinstatement of the Champions League as the center of the T20 yearly calendar.
    • Enforcement of maximum of 3 leagues per year for a nationally contracted player.
  2. Eventually, cricket may need to adopt the soccer (European football) model.
    • International games reserved only for ODI World Cup qualification, WTC matches, and some friendlies/warm-ups. As many have suggested, bilateral T20Is should be scrapped totally.
    • Players contracted by year-long leagues. They take leave to play a couple of international games every now and then until the World Cup, which dominates the summer every couple of years.
  3. Experimental formats like T10 cricket and ‘Ninety-90’ Bash should end. Who knows, we might be playing a Super Over league at this rate.

Possible Pitfalls

The Indian Premier League and the BCCI holds a bit of influence over the cricket finances. If they reject any of the calendar limits, that may the end of any negotiations even though all the other cricketing nations might agree.

2. Decisiveness and Pathways on Olympics

The Problem: The ICC on cricket’s inclusion in the Olympics—Yes, No, maybe so?

For too long, cricket has dabbled with the idea of being in the Olympics and are closer than ever in making a decision. The 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games will include a women’s 8-team T20 tournament. USA Cricket hopes for the inclusion of cricket in the 2028 LA Olympics and the 2032 Brisbane Olympics being ICC’s long-term goal.

However, what format will it be? T10? T20? If it is T10, does that mean cricket will have a fourth international format? How will qualification work? At this point, there are way too many questions and zero details on a path forward.

If cricket is serious about being in the Olympics, the administrators need to get their acts together. One or two meetings a year just doesn’t cut it.

Possible Solutions

It is worth a try regardless of the format. Ideally T20 cricket, starting from the 2028 LA Olympics (building upon USA’s Major League Cricket) would be great for the game.

The format of soccer’s 4 group of 4 is a good template (16 teams in the Olympics instead of 32 in the FIFA World Cup to keep the WC as the pinnacle product). If the T20I WC expands to 16-24 teams (both men/women) in the next decade, the Olympics can start with 8-12 teams with the best 2-3 teams qualifying from each region.

Also Read: T10 Cricket in Olympics? You Have Got to Be Kidding; USA Cricket: The Next NFL Or NBA – Trillion Dollar Bet?

Possible Pitfalls

  1. Not every country has cricketing infrastructure. To create a consistent following, cricket at Olympics can only succeed if it is at every iteration. Unless cricket stadiums are built in every nation on earth, the ICC will have some complications in the early years at the Olympics.
  2. Another tricky slope to navigate is the West Indies. Since each nation like Jamaica and Barbados will play the Olympics as its own nation, those teams will be significantly weaker in strength than the West Indies cricket team.

3. Expansion of the Women’s Game and Need for WIPL

The Problem: Women’s cricket is now mainstream, but is the structure in place to take the game forward?

Between 2017- March 2020, women’s cricket enjoyed a sort of golden era. The quality of cricket and broadcast in the 2017 ODI World Cup brought new fans to the game, and a record 86,174 attendance at the MCG for the 2020 WT20 Final proved that women’s cricket was on the rise.

However, the pandemic has exposed several gaps in the women’s game. For almost 12 months, women’s international cricket was largely halted around the world while the men’s IPL happened twice. Several smaller boards like Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have not seen much gameplay. Although India have played a few internationals, there does not seem to be a plan for women’s domestic cricket. And a request for the women’s IPL is falling on deaf ears.

Add to that, the crisis faced by Thailand, one of the rising teams in women’s cricket. When omicron abruptly cancelled the qualifying tournament, it was tough to not see them qualify for the ODI World Cup despite being #1 in the group since their ODIs were not given ODI status.

Surely the structure and expansion in women’s cricket needs more thought, structure, and investment.

Also Read: #Controversy Alert: Who Cares About Women’s Cricket Anyway?

Possible Solutions

  1. Multi-format series have been a brilliant idea but should become the standard across all teams.
  2. The Hundred was a huge success for the women’s game in terms of awareness and equal split of men’s/women’s game. Each top league needs to adopt the same structure.
  3. More teams to qualify for the T20 World Cup.

Also Read: History of Women’s Cricket World Cup

Possible Pitfalls

In order for the multi-format series to become the standard, more Test cricket and 3-day practice matches have to become the norm, which will take time.

4. Planned T20 Exposure for Cricket’s Growth

The Problem: Roadmap and resource management needed for the rapid growth of T20I cricket in emerging markets.

While women’s cricket and the Olympics are avenues to cricket’s global expansion, the ICC is utilizing T20 cricket for the spread of the game. In 2018, T20I status was granted to every cricket team (As of January 2022, 91 men’s teams and 53 women’s teams are in the T20I rankings). Further, a regional qualifier structure was provided for future T20 World Cups, which will be held every two years.

All this is good, but how are the resources going to be divided among these nations? Will they get professional international stadiums, broadcasting rights, DRS, and facilities? Will they be able to host tournaments? (like the earlier ICC Knockout tournaments). Step in the right direction, but a lot of work to do in the decade ahead.

Possible Solutions

  • Just like a major Asia Cup tournament, each continent should set up their own major tournament (separate from the regional qualifiers). This will ensure that there is a systematic ranking/room to grow for the newer teams in each continent, and they are not here just to make up the numbers.

Possible Pitfalls

If teams ranked at the very bottom continue to lose, they might leave the game altogether. Some sort of incentive needs to be provided to these lower ranked newer cricketing nations.

II. Standard of Cricket

5. Standardization of Pitches in Test Match Cricket

The Problem: How Can We Balance Pitches to Minimize Boring Draws and 2-Day Tests?

In the 2000s, stellar middle orders and flat pitches combined for some high scoring matches and boring draws. Over the last 5-10 years, a great crop of fast bowlers (and spinners in the subcontinent) combined with pitches suited to the home side has made 2-day and 3-day Tests a recurring event.

Possible Solutions

  1. Keep the pitches suited to home teams with 4-Day Tests (more on this later)
  2. Preparing pitches suited to overseas conditions in domestic cricket (example: More spin tracks – weather permitting – in England’s county circuit) or encouraging/funding spin from an age group level (How India progressively became a better fast bowling nation, England can do that in the long run).
  3. ICC standardize the pitches across the globe.

Possible Pitfalls

The beauty of Test cricket is in its variety. If the batters cannot overcome the challenge, so be it. That is life.

6. The Toss

The Problem: Is the toss leading to too many predictable results?

It was clear in the IPL and the 2021 T20 World Cup in the UAE that teams winning the toss and batting second had a higher probability of winning.

The beauty of the toss is in the uncertainty, and when things start to get predictable, innovation becomes the need of the hour.

Possible Solution

Tosses impact T20Is and Test cricket more than ODIs. So, one thought is to start experimenting with various ideas (listed below and more) in T20 leagues or domestic 4-day cricket, while leaving ODI cricket the same as it is now.

  1. Each team alternates decision to bat/bowl in a series. (If an odd number, last match is decided by a coin toss…)
  2. The bat flip idea like the Big Bash League.
  3. Away Teams in Tests get to choose

Possible Pitfalls

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Cricket is already complicated, why make it more complicated?

7. Bat Vs Ball Debate

The Problem: The Eternal Debate—How Can We better balance bat vs ball advantage?

This is the Riemann Hypothesis of cricket. A seemingly intuitive problem that is always up for discussion, has never been solved, and is the unproven underlying assumption that is the basis of strategy for the rest of cricket.

In limited overs cricket, the bat dominates (bigger bats, flat pitches, stronger players, etc.). In Test cricket over the last decade, the ball has dominated.

Possible Solutions

I have a truly marvelous solution to this, but the margins are too narrow to contain for my answer [Fermat’s Last Theorem].

Just kidding! Here they are:

  1. Abolish wide behind leg side in limited overs. Small margins really do hurt the bowlers.
  2. In Test cricket, one more review to the batting side instead of the bowling side.
  3. In limited overs, one bowler can bowl a couple of overs more than the maximum limit of 10 overs (ODI) or 4 overs (T20I)

Possible Pitfalls

As players get physically stronger and technology increases, the balance will always remain one side or another. However, as spinners have shown in the middle overs in a T20 or fast bowlers during the death with the slower balls, adaptation of skill is required, not so much the mechanics of the bat and ball.

III. Survival of Test & ODI Cricket

8. Disparity Between Level of Performance in Test Cricket

The Problem: How can the gap between top and mid-tiered teams be reduced?

The gap between top and mid-tiered Test nations is gradually eroding confidence in Test cricket. Even though some spectacular matches in the last five years have reinvigorated Test cricket, gaps in skill level between the top sides and mid-tiered/bottom ranked teams makes for a boring viewing on the other end of the spectrum.

Social media’s pendulum swings from “Test cricket is the best format” claims to “Is Test cricket dying?” every few months.

Case and point: Men’s Ashes 2021-2022. Except for Jonny Bairstow’s 4th Test, there was absolutely no resistance. There have been several subsequent calls for the 5-Test Ashes to be reduced to a 3 or 4 match affair. If England, who play 10-15 Tests a year, are not properly utilizing resources and are behind the golden standard, how can we expect the likes of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, West Indies, Zimbabwe, Ireland, and Afghanistan to compete?

Possible Solutions

  1. Regularized international schedule should dominate bilateral agreements. Australia’s refusal to host Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, and now Afghanistan (for other reasons) does not help smaller teams get the experience. The more the Top 4 countries play the mid-tiered teams, the better they will get in the long run.
  2. Prioritizing domestic funding over white ball funding (County cricket vs white ball dominance)
  3. Abolishment of two-Test series (The smaller countries only get to play 2 Tests while the Big 3 and South Africa gets 4-5 matches per series).
  4. Relegation-Promotion system (details outlined below) in three brackets: Bracket A (#1-6), Bracket B (#7-12), and Bracket C (non-Test playing nations)

Also Read: Relegation & Promotion Proposal in World Test Championship: Make Test Cricket Great Again Part III

Reducing the Influence of the Big 3 | How Can the World Test Championship Improve?

Possible Pitfalls

Money, money, money. Even the World Test Champions like New Zealand cannot afford to host more than two Tests due to finances. Ideally, we would like an equal distribution of Test match cricket, but if there are no finances, there is no cricket.

9. Associate nations, the ODI Super League, and the Expansion of Test Cricket

The Problem: Lack of clarity is hurting the survival of Associate nations, the backbone of global cricket.

The ODI Super League provided Ireland and Netherlands much needed game time against the top eight teams. Ireland actually has done a pretty decent job and Netherlands’ cricketers received much needed stability, but the inexplicable cancellation of the ODI Super League has stumped many. The World Test Championship has flaws, but the ODI Super League was a step in the right direction.

Yes, T20I is the right vehicle for growth in globalization of cricket, but should teams like Ireland be alienated, who have invested in ODI cricket and want to play Test cricket?

Possible Solutions

The ICC suggested that they may trial teams like Scotland and Netherlands into Test cricket as a temporary Test status. That might be a good move if it actually happens, but here are some other solutions:

  1. Touring Associate and new Test nations before embarking on a 4-5 Test tour (playing ODIs/T20Is vs Scotland/Netherlands & 1-off Test vs Ireland before a series in England, vs Afghanistan before India, vs PNG before NZ & Aus, Namibia/Zimbabwe vs SA). This is happening more and more with Ireland’s progress, but it is only the beginning.
  2. Revival of the Tri-Series? Similar idea as above, but to reduce logistic and travel issues, two full members plus an Associate nation for an ODI tri-series in a common location.
  3. Mandatory 1-2 Associate players per squad per T20 league. Rashid Khan, Mohammad Nabi, Tim David, and Sandeep Lamichanne are great templates. These players will be a boon for the franchises, not a burden.

Possible Pitfalls

10. 4-Day Tests for Men, 5-Day Tests for Women?

The Problem: Making Test cricket accessible for spectators without jeopardizing the game.

The Decision Review System (DRS) and pink-ball day-night Tests have now been adopted as major innovations in the game which had resistance in the early days. In the age of technology and innovation, cricket has to find ways to re-invent itself and stay relevant every 5-10 years.

One such suggestion is 4-day Tests (plus a 5th day for rain affected games) for men’s cricket, while expanding to 5-day Tests in women’s cricket, especially since they do not play as many Tests.

Possible Solutions

  • Just like D/N Tests were tested one Test per series every now and then, similarly one of the Tests can be scheduled as a 4-day game (and vice-versa for women)

Possible Pitfalls

Draws. One of the major drivers for 5-matches in women’s Tests are the number of draws. This forces teams to declare early (even when they are trailing) and enforce follow-on more often. If men’s game introduces 4-day Tests, then strategies will similarly begin to change and/or draws will increase.

11. Fixes to the World Test Championship

The Problem: Test matches are now better contextualized, but a lot is still left to be desired in achieving a better system.

We have already provided several solutions for World Test Champions in our earlier articles (shown below), so here is a summary:

  • Number of Tests Played is uneven: In the first WTC cycle, England played 21 Tests, while West Indies, South Africa, and New Zealand played 11 each. Marquee series like Ashes, Border-Gavaskar, Basil D’Oliveira Trophy, etc. are 4-5 Tests each while SL & NZ only play 2 Tests regularly.
  • Currently no distinction is made for Home/Away advantage: Bangladesh winning in NZ, West Indies winning in Bangladesh, India winning in Australia, or Australia drawing in England should be worth more than home wins.
  • All-or-Nothing System: Test matches occur over 5 days or a max-of-15 sessions. One session can have a huge impact on the series. Yet, the points are awarded on an all-or-nothing basis.

Possible Solutions

My solution is detailed in Alternative World Test Championship Points Table.

Possible Pitfalls

No system is every going to be perfect, but at least more of an attempt can be made. One of the other pitfalls is the pandemic. This has severely restricted travels between countries and longer, more straining quarantine rules. Hence, even more uneven number of Tests are begin played.

IV. Other Concerns

12. Mental Health Support & Overkill of Cricket

The Problem: Mental Health Awareness A Necessity in Today’s sport

Non-stop cricket alongside heavy quarantine is changing the commitments of a professional cricketer. It is no longer feasible to play three international formats, travel around the world, away from family, and still have a sane mental health.

Marcus Trescothick, Glenn Maxwell, and Ben Stokes are some of the many high-profile players who have taken time off the game to focus on their health. They have paved a way for many others in the future to follow. The real question is, does the cricket fraternity have the support each player needs and deserves?

Possible Solutions

  1. Support Groups/Staff, Paid Leave
  2. Separate teams for separate formats (Maximum of two formats per player)

Possible Pitfalls

Mental health is still looked as taboo in many cultures. Even though awareness is increasing, some players may still keep things to themselves, which is detrimental.

In addition to mental health, physical health is also a concern as more research is done on concussions in general. Concussion substitutes were a great innovation to the game, but it took the death of Phillip Hughes for the radical change. Let us make sure to be proactive before any such incidents. Injury prevention and player health should be duly monitored.

13. Spot Fixing and Associate Nations

The Problem: Match-Fixing for the Next Decade

Brendan Taylor’s story illustrates that even in the year 2022, match fixing & spot-fixing is still an issue cricket needs to be careful against. After the spot fixing that emerged from Pakistan’s tour of England in 2010 and the growth of T20 leagues, there is a lot more education and maturity in ICC’s anti-corruption unit.

However, teams like Zimbabwe and Associate nations, whose players do not earn a survivable income or cash flow from leagues, are easy targets for corruptors (as seen in the UAE). So the nature of match fixing might have changed since the 1990s, but it is still a problem that threatens the core fabric of the sport in one way or another.

Possible Solutions

The structure of the ICC anti-corruption unit and education before every major tournament shows that cricket has already matured in most of this regard. The real responsibility now lies on the players for self-reporting such approaches.

Healthy compensation for Associate players can also prevent such instances.

Possible Pitfalls

In the age of technology, new forms of corruption might appear (cyberattacks, ransomwares, NFTs?) ICC needs to be proactive and take actions earlier.

Also Read: Netflix ‘Bad Sport’ Fallen Idol Review: Must Watch for All Cricket Fans – How Will History Judge Hansie Cronje?

14. The Afghanistan Crisis

The Problem: ICC and cricket boards’ philosophical stand on the Afghanistan women’s team and the status of the men’s team.

Post the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan in September, cricket’s stakeholders have been sending mixed messages. Australia rescinded their invitation to Afghanistan for a Test match due to a lack of a women’s team/Taliban’s stance on women. However, requirement for a women’s team was waived off when Afghanistan became a Full member four years ago.

The ICC allowed Afghanistan in the 2021 T20 World Cup at UAE and many Afghani players are contracted around the world despite the drama. On the other hand, Zimbabwe was not allowed to qualify for the 2019 ODI World Cup due to crisis in the Zimbabwean government.

Why are players/ sports’ teams penalized for government interference? Why is different approach taken against different countries? Who sets the precedent?

Possible Solutions

  • Afghanistan is a cricket-loving country, and we should not stop its growth despite political tensions. They have now qualified for their 2nd U-19 semi-finals in the last three attempts. Let the men’s team continue to blossom while promoting cricket in age levels for women’s cricket if situation allows.

Possible Pitfalls

Each country might have a different political relationship with Afghanistan, which may mean a conflict of interest. As a byproduct, the relationship between other cricket boards can get strained.

15. Player Behavior

Problem: Similar Player Behavorial Issues, Different Consequences

As players gain more power over administrators due to financial security and unions, there have been some side-effects. Players have been acting up a lot lately.

Shakib Al Hasan’s antics (not much backlash), Ollie Robinson’s tweets (socially alienated), Alex Hales & Joe Clarke (not selected in the national side), Sri Lanka’s players in England (suspended for six months), Steven Smith, David Warner, & Cameron Bancroft’s sandpaper gate ball tampering scandal (banned by Cricket Australia for 1 year), Netherlands’ ball tampering (4 matches ICC), Quinton de Kock defying teammates (kneeling and not playing) and Virat Kohli shouting at the stumps (no consequence).

Possible Solution

  • Digging up old tweets should be removed as a cultural practice.
  • For major offences, a uniform code of conduct that applies to every player regardless of the cricket board they are playing under.
  • An impartial body assigned to monitor and judge player behavior for uniform convictions

Possible Pitfalls

Each circumstance is different. Uniform offences might not be ideal. On the other hand, ICC vs national boards hierarchy will become muddled if ICC centralizes power.

Also Read: Gentleman’s Game No More: Shakib Al Hasan & Ollie Robinson Highlight Larger Disciplinary Issue

This is not the end. More avenues and ideas to explore for sure. Please bring in your comments. Would love to hear YOUR opinion. Thanks everyone for reading ❤ Anyway, time to go the duel or swim across the shores of France…

*Thank You Credit: In conversation with my friend, Vandit. Thanks for listening to my ideas and engaging in meaningful discussion.

Further Reading:

Make Test Cricket Great Again Articles:

Analysis Articles

© Copyright @Nitesh Mathur and Broken Cricket Dreams, 2021. Originally published on 01/29/2022. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Broken Cricket Dreams with appropriate and specific direction to the original content (i.e. linked to the exact post/article).

Dinesh Karthik and the Art of Self Correction

Dinesh Karthik and the Art of Self Correction

Hamming Code

Imagine it is the 1940s. You are working at Bell Labs, one of the world’s premier research laboratories, an abode of inventions. Computers are at the beginning of their evolution, and programming still occurs on punched cards.

You work day and night in the week, and guess what? One error in the code and the program stops. Hard work down the drain. On the bright side, the machine detects and warns you that there is an error.

So as a brilliant scientist who has been a part of the Manhattan Project, what do you do? You work nights & weekends and develop an algorithm so that the machine can itself correct the errors, without the need for human intervention.

The year is 1950. You have published this paper and revolutionized computer science & information theory.

Your name is Hamming, Richard Hamming. (For more on Hamming codes, watch this beautiful video).

Dinesh Karthik

Now fast forward to the 2004. You are playing for the Indian national cricket team, one of the world’s premier cricketing nations, an abode of talent. Wicketkeeper batters are at the beginning of their evolution, and finishing limited over games is still at its infancy.

You work day and night on tours, and guess what? One poor series, and the selectors drop you. Hard work down the drain. On the bright side, selectors warn you that you have to play a different role in order to come back.

So as a budding young cricketer who has been a part of the 2004 U-19 World Cup, what do you do? You practice day in and day out, improve your technical faults, and comeback as a successful opener in swinging conditions to help India win a series in England in 2007.

A few months go by. Inconsistency creeps in. Dropped.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

The year is 2021. You have claimed your fame to glory in that Nidahas Trophy final and revolutionized the role of a finisher.

Your name is Karthik, Dinesh Karthik.

Dinesh Karthik’s story is not in the career averages or amount of runs scored. Neither is it in number of comebacks. It is in the way the comebacks were constructed. Over the years, inconsistency has decreased, reassurance has increased, and in his own words, he has managed to stay ‘relevant.’

In simple terms, he has perfected the art of self-correction.

Dinesh Karthik’s Initialization

Algorithms have improved vastly since the Hamming code days. Yet, there are three main components of a self-correcting algorithm: Initialization, self-calibration, and error correction.

Under-19 Days

On the back of good domestic form, Dinesh Karthik was selected for the 2004 U-19 World Cup. This team included future Indian nationals in Robin Uthappa, Suresh Raina, Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, and RP Singh. Following a decent domestic and India A season, he found himself in the national reckoning alongside Parthiv Patel as India were trying to find a permanent replacement to makeshift keeper in Rahul Dravid.

International Debut

On September 4, 2004, he made an immediate impact as a keeper in his ODI debut, inflicting a fabulous diving stumping to Michael Vaughan, being part of the famous Mohammad Kaif run-out, and taking a catch.

He would not bat in an ODI for another two years, but was picked for Tests against Australia, South Africa, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Zimbabwe. After having a top score of only 46 in his first six Tests, he finally made a mark scoring 93 in the second innings against Pakistan. However, a loss of form and Dhoni’s memorable 148 at #3 in that Pakistan ODI series meant Karthik was briefly dropped from the Test side and traveled only as a reserve keeper for the next year.

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When One Door Closes, Another Opens

One of the interesting traits of Karthik’s unusual career has been that when he is dropped in Tests, he finds a place in ODIs and vice versa. Later in his career, he was recalled in ODI & Test cricket based on his T20 form.

Case and point is 2006. Karthik enjoyed a good run in the limited overs although he was out of the Test side.

Did you know he was India’s first T20I player of the match winner? Against South Africa, he marshalled the chase with a 31* not take India home in a low scoring chase of 127. Soon after, an ODI player of the performance against West Indies meant that he found a place in both the 2007 ODI and T20I World Cups.

Although he would not get a game in the ODI World Cup, he played as a pure batter in the inaugural T20 World Cup with Dhoni behind the stumps. Low scores followed in the T20 World Cup, but he provided India with a bit of magic in the semi-final—a one handed diving catch to dismiss Graeme Smith.

Nasser Hussain on commentary summed up Dinesh Karthik’s entire career accurately in one sentence

“They say Dinesh Karthik is the two extremes—he drops dollies and he takes some spectacular catches.”

Here are some of his other catches: IPL 2019 running catch, IPL 2020 Ben Stokes flying catch.

Error Correction Part I: Karthik’s Golden Year in Test Cricket

The year 2007 was DK’s best time in Test cricket.

By this time, it was clear that he could not make the XI based on his keeping skills alone. The Fab 4’s presence meant that the middle order was crowded. However, Sehwag & Gambhir had been dropped, which meant there was a slight opening.

Enter Dinesh Karthik 2.0—the opener. With Wasim Jaffer, he formed a brief yet formidable partnership.

In the third Test at Cape Town, the Jaffer-Karthik experiment paid dividend with a 153-opening partnership in the first innings. Karthik scored 63 as an opener and followed it up with 38* at #7.

In the tour of Bangladesh, he was given a permanent opening spot and returned with scores of 56, 22, and 129, his only Test century. Then, came India’s tour of England. Despite not scoring a hundred, scores of 60, 77, & 91 meant that he ended up as India’s highest Test scorer—263 runs, 3 fifties, 518 balls faced to go along Jaffer’s 409 balls, which helped India successfully dent the new ball.

Once again, a commentator did justice to Karthik’s second phase of his career.

“It’s good story Dinesh Karthik. He began life as a dashing middle order batsman and wicketkeeper, and he has been transformed really into an opening batsman of substance.”

India historically won 1-0, India’s first victory on English soil in 21 years (a decade of horror shows the significance of that series victory).

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Too Many Bugs To Fix

Pushed back to the middle order after just 2 more Tests, he could only muster 157 runs in 11 innings with a best of 52 against Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and New Zealand. He would get another opportunity in Tests in 2010 before being dropped for another eight years.

On his come back against Afghanistan’s inaugural Test in 2018, he himself said in a press conference that in his earlier stint in Test cricket,

“I guess I wasn’t good enough before… I was not consistent enough.”

When he was out of favor in Tests in 2008, he did receive several opportunities in ODIs, scoring a few middling scores and featuring in India’s 2009 Champions Trophy squad. His best ODI innings of 79 runs came in 2010 with a 196-run partnership with Sachin Tendulkar during his historic double century.

14 innings later, with only 1 50+ score & 2 ducks, he was dropped—this time for three years.

Error Correction Part II: Dinesh Karthik, Journey To The Center Again

More competition, more errors, longer time to fix. Enter Dinesh Karthik 3.0—the middle order batter.

It took a 3-year hiatus before Karthik stormed back. In IPL 2013 as the #3 batter for Mumbai Indians, he amassed 510 runs, only behind Rohit Sharma for MI. The innings where his highest score that season of 86 was possibly his best IPL innings (so far).

This performance earned him a ticket on the 2013 Champions Trophy and his best ‘List A’ moment came in the warm-up games, when he scored two back to back centuries, scoring 106* & 146* batting at #6. This tournament is fondly remembered for the beginning of the Shikhar Dhawan-Rohit Sharma opening partnership, which meant Karthik did not get much of a chance with 51* against West Indies his best knock.

A few months later, India failed to qualify for the Asia Cup finals and Karthik’s 21* vs Afghanistan would be his final innings for yet another 3 years.

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Self-Calibration feat Abhishek Nayar

Let us take a slight detour like his career took around 2014.

What is your favorite part about watching Dinesh Karthik? For me, it has always been his unconventional demeanor, starting from his batting routine. The moment he arrives at the crease, it is pure theater. Walking in with urgency, rolling the gloves around, dancing from side to side, taking guard, moving his helmet, meditating on the side. Excitement and apprehension at the same time.

As a keeper he is always chirping and speaking to the bowler, most famously with his partnership in KKR with Varun Chakravarthy or with R Ashwin in Team India.

But surely, so much energy must definitely be a burden. A volcano ready to erupt if the energy is not channeled properly.

A Nervous Bundle of Energy

In order to come back to the Indian national side, DK needed to recalibrate.

In a Breakfast With Champions interview with Gaurav Kapur, he described the time with Abhishek Nayar as a ‘mental bootcamp.’ 40-lap swimming, 45-minute uphill runs, sweeping the house, visualizing match scenarios, and extreme fitness training pushed DK out of his comfort zone. He reflected that

“When you push yourself out of your comfort zone when nobody is watching you and there is no glory attached to it and you just do it quietly because somewhere in life you want to achieve something, overall in time it does help you.”

This experience added an extra dimension to DK’s wide array of skills. He was always a good player of spin, but once he was in a good head space post-Nayar, he literally reinvented his batting—the sweeps, laps, reverse sweeps, and swivel across the crease came with increased frequency.

Errors Correction III – Consistency in Domestic Cricket

While his 2013 comeback was largely on the backs of the IPL, the 2017 comeback was due to the weight of runs in domestic trophy. He was among the runs in Ranji Trophy and has been consistent in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy for the past five years.

At the peak of his batting powers, DK was hitting the ball as nicely as anybody at that time. Sanjay Manjrekar stated that at that time, Dinesh Karthik and Hardik Pandya were the only two Indian batters who could time the ball from ball one.

By this time, the pattern was set. Another Champions Trophy, yet another come back. Although he did not make the XI, in the next few matches after the trophy he scored 50*, 48, 37, 64* in consecutive games across ODIs & T20Is. It was a signal that he had added consistency to his arsenal.

Accuracy Improvement – Dinesh Karthik, The Finisher

After grinding it out in domestic cricket and becoming a much more calm and mature individual, it was time for Dinesh Karthik 4.0 to enter—Dinesh Karthik, the finisher.

From after the 2017 Champions to before the 2019 Cricket World Cup, DK slowly grew into the finisher role, remaining not-out 20 times out of the 35 ODIs or T20Is he played in.

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Nidahas Trophy & the Internet Superstar

After 14 years of sharpening his skills, beast mode was finally unlocked in the Nidahas Trophy in Sri Lanka.

Short & sweet contributions in every game: 13* (6), 2* (2), 39* (25), 2* (2), and 29* (8). He could not be dismissed throughout the series.

The final was a night to remember. With Mustafizur’s wicket maiden in the 18th and a struggling Vijay Shankar at the other end, hope was all but lost.

The Night of the Final

Then comes in Dinesh Karthik. Rubel Hossain steams in and attempts a yorker. DK sits back and hits it over a long on for six. There is still life left in the game. Then came a heave for four and another one for six! Colombo crowd is going wild.

Couple of balls later, Karthik moves around crease and scoops it over fine leg—22 run over.

Final over, DK off strike, India need 12.

Wide, dot, 1,1, 4 (Shankar), Out. Five runs, one ball, one man. Over pitched delivery outside the off stump, DK times it with a full follow through. FLAT SIX. INDIA WIN! Captain Rohit Sharma said that DK was a bit upset being moved to #7, but he managed to channel the anger into good effect.

Given that India have not won a major ICC trophy since 2013, this memorable win stands at a high place for Indian fans. With 120 million and 211 million views for the 19th and 20th over respectively, this is easily the most watched cricket video (and possibly any sports video). Relive those moments below.

The Comeback Ends & The 2019 Cricket World Cup

He continued his Nidahas Trophy form in IPL 2018 with the Kolkata Knight Riders franchise, scoring 498 runs at 49.80 with a strike rate of 147.77.

However selection across formats would come back to haunt him. He would make another comeback in Test cricket, but scores of 4, 0, 20, 1, 0 would be the end of his Test career. He would be in and out of the limited overs side, sometimes batting at #4 in Asia Cup ODIS, and sometimes almost finishing T20Is in New Zealand.

A score of 97* in IPL 2019 followed as he narrowly made the cut in the World Cup squad.

The Russian Roulette selection among Dinesh Karthik, Kedhar Jadhav, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant, Vijay Shankar, and most infamously, Ambati Rayudu probably hurt all five and India in the 2019 Cricket World Cup semi-final. Surprisingly promoted to No. 5, he tried to stem the fall of wickets before Jimmy Neesham’s brilliant catch ended his ODI career.

Is There Another Comeback On The Horizon?

He was one of the casualties of India’s post-tournament analysis, even dropped from the T20I side, where he had reasonable success.

Post-COVID, he had a tough time at the 2020 IPL, averaging only 14.08, his second worst season. Although he took KKR to a playoff spot in 2018, he would relieve captaincy duties to Eoin Morgan for the remainder of 2020 and 2021.

Since then, he has been vocal about fighting for a place in one of the T20 World Cups in the next two years purely as a finisher. Still the best finisher in India alongside Ravindra Jadeja & Hardik Pandya, the real question is, will we see DK 5.0?

Commentary Stint and The T-Shirt Collection

Even though we do not know his cricketing career will pan out, there is already a brief glimpse into the future.

He has become a social media celebrity with his Sky Sports stint providing apt analysis, providing daily weather updates, and most famously, showing the world his enviable T-shirt collection.

Here are his interviews with Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, and Jasprit Bumrah.

Karthik’s Legacy: Did he underachieve or overachieve?

Representing your nation in one international tournament is is an honor. In a topsy-turvy career, Karthik has somehow managed to be a part of the 2007 ODI World Cup, 2007 T20 World Cup, 2009 Champions Trophy, 2013 Champions Trophy, 2017 Champions Trophy, and the 2019 ODI World Cup. Sprinkle a couple of Asia Cups in there as well.

There are two school of thoughts on Dinesh Karthik’s career. Did he fulfill his potential? Maybe. Maybe not.

From a glass half empty perspective, one can observe that as a gifted batter and a giant in domestic cricket, he could not make most of his opportunities and cement a place in the Indian national team. On the other hand, he never got an extended run in one format at a time, constantly playing in different roles and formats. Hence, the fact that we are still talking about him after 17 years is still an achievement.

DK’s career consisted of memorable high peaks in a relatively plateau of a career. Opening in England, twin List A tons in Champions Trophy warm ups, winning an IPL Trophy with Mumbai Indians and T20I World Cup in 2007, stumpings and catches galore, and giving fans the Nidahas Trophy Final to cherish, he has made his mark.

In a press conference, Karthik himself says

“Even if I don’t get the opportunity to play sport at the highest level, I want to be content with the fact that I have given it everything I have had. Not only on the field, but off the field.”

The Road Less Traveled By

Robert Frost wrote in his famous poem The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

When India needed a wicketkeeper, Dinesh Karthik was a wicketkeeper. India needed an overseas opener, in came DK, the opener. When they needed a #4, he became a #4. Finally, when all the spots were filled, he became a specialist finisher.

Although he was an anomaly in the previous era, current Indian wicketkeepers might keep an eye on his career very carefully. It is likely that not all of KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant, Sanju Samson, Ishan Kishan, KS Bharat will get a constant run. So they should be prepared to be dropped and come back stronger, maybe with a different role.

Dinesh Karthik’s career might not have gone according to the original plan but his journey has been interesting nevertheless. He modified his approach, adapted to the circumstances, and always strived to improve his individual game.

What Can We Learn From Dinesh Karthik?

Numerous players were dropped at an early age and could never find a way to come back. Others could manage to comeback only briefly because they were pigeonholed to a single role. Karthik frequently took the road less traveled by, refined his old skills, while learning new ones at the go.

When he arrived in the international arena, he was a good player who had the potential to excel in three formats and don several roles. After years of repetitive self correction and recalibration, he has now developed his own unique niche—overs 16 to 20 as a T20 finisher, a position where he is the best. Power-hitters like Pollard, Russell, and Pandya might be better finishers in general but not many have the match awareness and can play the field as Karthik does in those end overs.

So what can we learn from Dinesh Karthik? Always be self-aware, prepare for the worst, focus on the process, wear nice shirts, be yourself, adapt to the surroundings, be ready for the opportunity, and provide energy to others around you.

I would love to finish this article with a bang, but what can I say—The finisher is not yet finished.

The Stats

Test: 26 matches, 1025 runs, 25.00 average, best of 129, 100s/50s – 1/7, 57 catches, 6 stumpings

ODI: 94 matches, 1752 runs, 30.20 average, best of 79, 50s-9, 64 catches, 7 stumpings

T20I: 32 matches, 399 runs, 33.25 average, 143.52 SR, best of 48, 14 catches, 5 stumpings

T20: 321 matches, 6221 runs, 27.40 average, 133.55 SR, best of 97*, 193 catches, 61 stumpings

IPL & Dinesh Karthik’s Career In a Nutshell

  • 2004: ODI, Test debuts
  • 2004-05: Tests only
  • 2006: T20I debut, ODIs only
  • 2007: ODI World Cup, Test opener, T20I World Cup (winner), Syed Mushtaq Ali winners (captain)
  • 2008: 1 T20I, 3 Tests only, Delhi Daredevils
  • 2009-2010: Mostly ODIs, some T20Is, 1 Test, Delhi Daredevils
  • 2011: Kings XI Punjab
  • 2012: Mumbai Indians
  • 2013: ODIs only, Champions Trophy winner, Mumbai Indians (winners)
  • 2014: ODIs only, Delhi Daredevils
  • 2015: Royal Challengers Bangalore
  • 2016: Gujarat Lions
  • 2017: Champions Trophy, ODIs, Gujarat Lions
  • 2018: T20Is, Nidahas Trophy, Test recall, ODI #4 battle, Kolkata Knight Riders (captain)
  • 2019: T20Is, ODIs, ODI World Cup, dropped, Kolkata Knight Riders (captain)
  • 2020: Kolkata Knight Riders (captain, 7 matches)
  • 2021: Syed Mushtaq Ali winners (captain), Kolkata Knight Riders

Although he has had good time with his IPL franchises, his wish is to end his career with CSK. With an interview with Harsha Bhogle, he said

“The lead up to the [2008 auctions], Dinesh Karthik the person was convinced the best player from Tamil Nadu, the biggest name from Tamil Nadu playing for the country…definitely CSK were going to pick me. The question was whether they were going to make me captain or not….It was the biggest dagger to my heart. It’s been 13 years and I am still waiting for that elusive call from CSK”

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© Copyright @Nitesh Mathur and Broken Cricket Dreams, 2021. Originally published on 10/01/2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used provided that full and clear credit is given to Broken Cricket Dreams with appropriate and specific direction to the original content (i.e. linked to the exact post/article).

Group 2 2021 T20 World Cup Squads Dissected: India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, New Zealand—Asia Cup is Back!

Group 2 2021 T20 World Cup Squads Dissected: India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, New Zealand—Asia Cup is Back!

Group 2 2021 T20 World Cup Squads analysis time.

With India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan in this group already set, this is a mini Asia Cup battle. In the preliminary qualification round, if Sri Lanka is ranked 2 in Group A and if Bangladesh tops Group B, we might see a potential 5/6 Asian teams!

This might not be named the Group of Death from the outside, but I think this group will be closer than it appears. Here is our team-by-team analysis—Most Balanced, Surprise Exclusions, In-Form Inclusions and Predictions!

Also Read:

T20 World Cup Groups

In the mini-qualifier group, there are two groups (Group A & B) of 4 teams each, top 2 of which will go in the main round (Group 1 and 2).

Group A has teams Ireland, Namibia, Netherlands, and Sri Lanka, while Group B has teams Bangladesh, Oman, Papua New Guinea, and Scotland.

Group 2
Afghanistan
India
New Zealand
Pakistan
A2
B1
T20 World Cup 2021: Group 2 Table

The other group, Group 2, will have Australia, England, South Africa, West Indies.

Afghanistan T20 World Cup Squad

Batters Spin Bowling All-RoundersMedium Pace All-RoundersWicket-KeepersSpin BowlersFast Bowlers
Asghar AfghanMohammad NabiGulbadin NaibRahmanullah GurbazSharafuddin AshrafHamid Hassan
Usman GhaniRashid KhanMohammad ShahzadMujeeb Ur RahmanKarim Janat
Hashmatullah ShahidiQais AhmedNaveen Ul-Haq
Najibullah ZadranDawlat Zadran
Hazratullah ZazaiShapoor Zadran
Afsar ZazaiFareed Ahmad
Group 2 2021 T20 World Cup Squads: Afghanistan

Afghanistan Probable XI

  1. Hazratullah Zazai, 2. Rahmanullah Gurbaz (WK), 3. Usman Ghani, 4. Asghar Afghan, 5. Mohammad Nabi (C), 6. Najibullah Zadran, 7. Gulbadin Naib/Karim Janat, 8. Rashid Khan, 9. Mujeeb Ur Rahman, 10. Naveen Ul-Haq, 11. Qais Ahmed
  • Average Age: 28
  • Unlucky to Miss Out: Ibrahim Zadran, Amir Hamza, Fazalhaq Farooqi
  • Surprise Inclusions: Hamid Hassan, Mohammad Shahzad, Dawlat Zadran, Shapoor Zadran
  • Watch Out For: The Spinners—Rashid Khan, Mohammad Nabi, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, and Qais Ahmed

  • Recent Result: Afghanistan won 3-0 Vs Zimbabwe in UAE
  • Prediction: Rank 3rd in Group 2. In spin conditions, if their batters can put up a decent score, expect Afghanistan to surprise a few of the big teams.

Does Afghanistan Have It In Them To Win the T20 World Cup?

Another World Cup. Another captaincy change right before the World Cup for Afghanistan. Rashid Khan had received the captaincy baton from Asghar Afghan, but he has resigned on the eve on the World Cup since he was not consulted for the WC squad. Add to that the current political situation, and Afghanistan’s entry in the WC is not even guaranteed.

Iconic trio Hamid Hassan, Mohammad Shahzad, and Shapoor Zadran return after years of international hiatus. Fitness will be the key concern, but Afghanistan have a good mix of youth and experience. They are also guaranteed 5 games in the main draw.

India T20 World Cup Squad

Batters Spin Bowling All-RoundersMedium Pace All-RoundersWicket-KeepersSpin BowlersFast Bowlers
Virat KohliRavindra JadejaHardik PandyaKL RahulRahul ChaharJasprit Bumrah
Rohit SharmaAxar PatelRishabh PantVarun ChakravarthyBhuvneshwar Kumar
Suryakumar YadavRavichandran AshwinIshan KishanMohammad Shami
Shreyas IyerShardul ThakurDeepak Chahar
Group 1 2021 T20 World Cup Squads: India

Probable XI

  1. Rohit Sharma, 2. Virat Kohli (C), 3. KL Rahul/Ishan Kishan, 4. Suryakumar Yadav, 5. Rishabh Pant, 6. Ravindra Jadeja, 7. Hardik Pandya, 8. Ravichandran Ashwin, 9. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 10. Jasprit Bumrah, 11. Varun Chakravarthy
  • Average Age: 29
  • Unlucky to Miss Out: Shreyas Iyer, Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur (reserves), Washington Sundar (injured), Shikhar Dhawan, Yuzvendra Chahal, Krunal Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Shubman Gill, Natarajan, Khaleel Ahmed, Manish Pandey, Sanju Samson, Dinesh Karthik. If you want the list of all 75 players which form Indian cricket team’s depth, read this.
  • Surprise Inclusions: R Ashwin, Varun Chakravarthy, MS Dhoni (Mentor)
  • Watch Out For: Trial by Spin—Rahul Chahar, R Ashwin, & Varun Chakravarthy can single handedly bamboozle most batting lineups. With Ravindra Jadeja and Axar Patel providing control, India might not have to chase large targets. Expect Ashwin in powerplays, Chahar-Jadeja in middle overs, and if he plays, Varun at the death.

  • Recent Results: Lost 1-2 to Sri Lanka
  • Prediction: Rank 2nd in Group 2. Since this side has not played together, India might drop a game or two till they figure out their best XI, but should find momentum towards the latter stages of the tournament.

Does India Have It In Them To Win the T20 World Cup?

A well balanced side overall. Selectors have finally picked IPL as the standard for T20I selection and separated it from ODI players. IPL dynasty Mumbai Indians have six players in this 15.

Shikhar Dhawan was the highest scorer for India in both the ODI and T20I series against Sri Lanka and has been at the top of the charts (with decent SR) in the last two IPLs, but has still not made the cut. Bold move to cut Chahal but Chahar is the in-form leg spinner.

India have punted on spinning conditions and hence, exposed their fast bowling. Too much responsibility on Bumrah? Will we see a Sharma-Kohli opening partnership? Can India finally add an ICC Trophy after a decade of semi-finals and runner-ups trophy?

New Zealand T20 World Cup Squad

Batters Spin Bowling All-RoundersMedium Pace All-RoundersWicket-KeepersSpin BowlersFast Bowlers
Kane WilliamsonMitchell SantnerKyle JamiesonGlenn PhillipsTodd AstleTrent Boult
Devon ConwayMark ChapmanDaryl MitchellTim SeifertIsh SodhiLockie Ferguson
Martin GuptillJames NeeshamTim Southee
Adam Milne
Group 1 2021 T20 World Cup Squads: New Zealand

New Zealand Probable XI

  1. Tim Seifert (WK), 2. Martin Guptill, 3. Kane Williamson (C), 4. Devon Conway, 5. Glenn Phillips, 6. Jimmy Neesham, 7. Mitchell Santner, 8. Tim Southee, 9. Lockie Ferguson, 10. Ish Sodhi, 11. Trent Boult
  • Average Age: 30
  • Unlucky to Miss Out: Colin de Grandhomme, Will Young, Finn Allen, Tom Blundell, Henry Nicholls/Tom Latham/Ross Taylor, Doug Bracewell/Hamish Bennett/Jacob Duffy/Blair Tickner, Ajaz Patel
  • Surprise Inclusions: Mark Chapman, Todd Astle
  • Watch Out For: Lockie Ferguson & Devon Conway. Ferguson’s KKR experience in UAE might come in handy and can Conway continue his dream debut year?

Does New Zealand Have It In Them To Win the T20 World Cup?

Interesting team selection this based on condition and form. Glenn Phillips-Conway-Seifert had solidifed their positions with a rich run of form last year. This meant that Will Young and Finn Allen could not break in the squad despite great T20I performances toward the end. Great depth in New Zealand cricket means several players had to miss out.

Colin de Grandhomme is the interestesting exclusion for me. If fit, he could have been devastating but Mitchell-Neesham-Santner-Jamieson have booked their tickets with a coule of good performances earlier in the year. Adam Milne unlucky to just be in the reserves because he is been on fire in the Big Bash and The hundred since his comeback. End of T20Is for Ross Taylor.

Pakistan T20 World Cup Squad

Batters Spin Bowling All-RoundersMedium Pace All-RoundersWicket-KeepersSpin BowlersFast Bowlers
Babar AzamImad WasimHasan AliMohammad RizwanHaris Rauf
Sohaib MaqsoodMohammad HafeezMohammad WasimAzam KhanMohammad Hasnain
Khushdil ShahMohammad NawazShaheen Shah Afridi
Asif AliShadab Khan
Fakhar ZamanUsman QadirShahnawaz Dahani
Group 1 2021 T20 World Cup Squads: Pakistan

Pakistan Probable XI

  1. Babar Azam (C), 2. Mohammad Rizwan, 3. Mohammad Hafeez, 4. Sohaib Maqsood, 5. Imad Wasim, 6. Azam Khan/Khushdil Shah/Asif Ali, 7. Shadab Khan, 8. Hasan Ali, 9. Mohammad Nawaz, 10. Haris Rauf, 11. Shaheen Shah Afridi
  • Average Age: 27
  • Unlucky to Miss Out: Fakhar Zaman, Usman Qadir (Reserves), Iftikhar Ahmed, Shoaib Malik, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Faheem Ashraf, Haider Ali, Sharjeel Khan, Imam-ul-Haq, Hussain Talat, Mohammad Amir, Usman Khan Shinwari, Sohail Tanvir, Wahab Riaz, Misbah-ul-Haq, Waqar Younis (Coach)
  • Surprise Inclusions: Asif Ali, Khushdil Shah, Azam Khan
  • Watch Out For: Azam Khan, the power hitter, has hit some big sixes in CPL 2021. Could be the finisher Pakistan are looking for.

  • Recent Results: Lost 1-2 against England.
  • Prediction: Rank 1 in Group 2. Should get through the group with ease before collapsing in the semi-finals.

Does Pakistan Have It In Them To Win the T20 World Cup?

Pakistan have opted for a young squad dropping all of Shoaib Malik, Iftikhar Ahmed, Sarfaraz, and Wahab Riaz. If the lower order of Imad Wasim-Shadab-Hasan Ali can consistently score some quick runs, Pakistan will be in good shape.

The top 4 do not have competition from others in the squad, so expect Babar-Rizwan-Hafeez-Maqsood to play with freedom. Shaheen Shah Afridi-Haris Rauf-Nawaz-Hasan Ali-Shadab-Imad-Hafeez make a potent bowling line up as well. Would have liked Zaman, Qadir, Faheem Ashraf, and one of the seniors in the 15 but overall, the squad is pretty solid nevertheless.

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© Copyright @Nitesh Mathur and Broken Cricket Dreams, 2021. Originally published on 09/12/2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Broken Cricket Dreams with appropriate and specific direction to the original content (i.e. linked to the exact post/article).