Millennium Post

Sweet revenge

For the first time in a World Cup tournament, India defeated tournament favourites South Africa by a massive 130 runs at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Man of the Match Shikhar Dawan’s career-best 137 propelled Team India to 307, which was soon followed by a disciplined bowling performance to restrict South Africa to 177.  It was yet another commendable show by the Indians, who came into the tournament with a string of poor results in the tri-series preceding the mega-event. Despite coming into this tournament after a string of poor results, experts believe that this performance showed exactly why no one was writing Team India off. The one element of this victory that struck the discerning audience most was the level of calmness Team India displayed. The team played with a definite, yet simple game plan. Both Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli began their innings with much caution and made sure Team India had a solid platform before they began to pick up the pace. Although Kohli was dismissed for 46, Ajinkya Rahane walked in and maintained the momentum with 79 runs of 60 balls to aid Dhawan along. The bowling performance, however, was one to savour. Experts and avid fans alike had feared for India’s inexperienced and out of form bowling attack before the tournament. Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni’ strategy, however, was rather simple, which was to bowl as few bad balls as possible. Unable to pick up the pace at any stage of the run chase, South Africa imploded in classic fashion. The margin of defeat, though, raises further questions not on South Africa but International Cricket Council President David Richardson’s decision to limit the number of teams in the next edition of the World Cup to ten. His rationale behind the decision was that the tournament should be played between teams that are evenly matched. The pounding that some Test-playing nations are receiving, however, blurs the lines between competitive teams and minnows.
Next Story
Share it