Wednesday, February 29, 2012

the POWER to lead

The team for the Asia Cup was announced today. I’m pleasantly surprised to see the name of Virat Kohli as the new vice captain for Team India. Knowing the conservative mentality of the selectors I was keeping my hopes low for any brave moves. If you revisit the captaincy nominations in the past, it completely lacked wisdom (whenever Dhoni wasn’t available to lead the side). When New Zealand toured India for ODI’s in 2010, Gambir was given the responsibility to steward the ship. During the Tour of Zimbabwe (2010) and West Indies (2011), Suresh Raina marshaled the troop. Then for the Tour of England (2011), Laxman was the Vice Captain in Tests. In the recent ODI’s at home, Sehwag lead in Dhoni’s absence against West Indies (2011). Sehwag was also the deputy to Dhoni in both Tests and ODI’s for the Tour of Australia (2011-12). In all these instances the nominations were based on seniority or political motto, never an attempt to discover/unearth a true successor for Dhoni.

At last, the selectors have arrived at the most logical candidate for Vice Captaincy. In other words put some thought in picking the right candidate to be groomed as the future Captain for Team India. India won the last Under 19 World Cup under his reign. Also he is the only player assured of a spot in the XI in all 3 formats of the game, both Home and Away. Finally, he has the age behind him for the long tenure of Power. It is definitely Good News for India and Kohli fans. I only wish the success/power doesn’t get into his head.

With respect to the squad, it must have surely evoked a mixed response. But, I’m happy with it. Sehwag is rightfully sacked (I don’t buy a bit of the word RESTED) for his spineless display with the bat in Australia. Also his contributions with mouth (I’m deliberately avoiding the word politics) doesn’t help Dhoni/Team’s harmony either. Had selectors given a break to Dhoni and asked Kohli to lead the side right away, it would have been tougher pill to swallow for Gambir.  Now he should realize he is out of the Captaincy radar. I recommend Gambir to take a counseling session with Sehwag/Yuvraj Singh (both sailed this route before) to ease his nerves. At the same time, full marks to Dhoni for retaining Jadeja and Raina despite their poor showings in Australia. As a result, I assume Rohit Sharma was given to him as compliement. I will be curious to see if Yusuf Pathan can upstage Jadeja for a place in the XI. But, it is LOUD & CLEAR, why selectors have to REST Sehwag and not DROP him. Because, if they drop Sehwag, they also have to drop few Dhoni pets. After all, we Indians are always POLITCALLY right.

By all means, this squad should be able to win the Asia Cup comfortably. Considering India experienced downward curve way too long, trophies like Asia Cup are need of the hour. The least it will affirm we are still the Tigers in sub-continent.

Bottom line: With Pakistan’s pathetic showing against England in ODI’s, Sri Lanka should be the only competition for India in the ASIA Cup.

Cricket Lover

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