India v Sri Lanka, Asia Cup, Mirpur

The fatal full toss, and the animated celebrations

Plays of the Day from the Asia Cup match between Sri Lanka and India in Mirpur

Siddarth Ravindran at the Shere Bangla National Stadium

March 13, 2012

Text size: A | A

Gautam Gambhir is pumped up after his hundred, India v Sri Lanka, Asia Cup, Mirpur, March 13, 2012
Gautam Gambhir's reaction after reaching his century has become part of a trend this Asia Cup © Associated Press
Enlarge
Related Links

The full toss
A low-profile tournament, an easy-paced subcontinental pitch, an opposition missing several frontline bowlers. Perfect for Sachin Tendulkar to end the wait? No. He was surprised by a high full toss from Suranga Lakmal in the sixth over, handing a catch to cover. Perhaps Lakmal was carried away by the manner of that wicket, as he bowled a slew of full tosses throughout his spell, without further success.

The message
Much was made of Tendulkar's search for a 100th hundred now lasting a full year, but Gautam Gambhir has been century-less in international cricket for even longer, stretching back to December 2010. After 41 overs in Mirpur, both Virat Kohli and Gambhir were on 99, and you'd have expected that of the celebrations to follow, Kohli's would have been the more expressive. Instead, it was Gambhir who went ballistic - an aggressive fist pump followed by plenty of screaming and pointing towards the dressing room. That's sort of becoming a trend in this tournament, with Tamim Iqbal also celebrating similarly two days ago after reaching his half-century.

The miss
Gambhir wouldn't have had the chance to send that message to the dressing room, if Dinesh Chandimal had hit the stumps when Gambhir was on 94. A notoriously poor runner, he has been run out 16 times in ODIs already, and would have been for the 17th when he set off for a single after tapping the ball towards short cover. Gambhir was way out of his crease when Chandimal swooped in and let fly from close range, but missed. It was the second reprieve Chandimal handed to Gambhir, after shelling a tough low catch at long-on early in the innings.

The adjustment
After timing one straight to the mid-on fielder and then hitting the stumps with a straight drive, Gambhir needed to try something differently. For the next pitched-up delivery from Nuwan Kulasekara, he merely stepped away from the pitch of the ball and opened up the shoulder slightly. The little movement helped him to his first boundary, a beautiful on-drive past mid-on's right hand and Kulasekara's left. More than the timing or placement, it was the adjustment that caught the eye.

The shot
Mahela Jayawardene routinely makes batting look effortless, and on Tuesday, there was another demonstration of that skill. In an hour of stylish strokeplay that even Indian fans wouldn't have minded too much, Jayawardene rarely resorted to brute force, instead relying on timing and placement. Picking out the highlight of his 59-ball 78 is tough, but it was probably a perfectly placed on-the-up extra cover drive off Vinay Kumar in the 10th over.

Siddarth Ravindran is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

RSS Feeds: Siddarth Ravindran

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

TopTop
Email Feedback Print
Share
E-mail
Feedback
Print
Siddarth RavindranClose
Tournament Results
Bangladesh v Pakistan at Dhaka - Mar 22, 2012
Pakistan won by 2 runs
Bangladesh v Sri Lanka at Dhaka - Mar 20, 2012
Bangladesh won by 5 wickets (with 17 balls remaining) (D/L method)
India v Pakistan at Dhaka - Mar 18, 2012
India won by 6 wickets (with 13 balls remaining)
Bangladesh v India at Dhaka - Mar 16, 2012
Bangladesh won by 5 wickets (with 4 balls remaining)
Pakistan v Sri Lanka at Dhaka - Mar 15, 2012
Pakistan won by 6 wickets (with 61 balls remaining)
More results »
News | Features Last 3 days
News | Features Last 3 days
Sponsored Links

Why not you? Read and learn how!