World Cup 2011 March 15, 2011

Unexpected and instant fame for the number 29

This increasingly compelling World Cup has continued to prove far more exciting than anyone could reasonably expect of a tournament that, by this time next week, will almost certainly have sent eight of the world’s top nine ranked teams into the
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This increasingly compelling World Cup has continued to prove far more exciting than anyone could reasonably expect of a tournament that, by this time next week, will almost certainly have sent eight of the world’s top nine ranked teams into the quarter-finals, as was almost universally predicted before it had even begun, and taken more than month to do so. A recipe that looked deeply unappetising on paper has transpired to be surprisingly tasty, to a cricketing palate if not an English one, and the dessert course looks set to be a champion pavlova of a knockout stage. Cricket has been lucky. In Group B, at least.

I have seen only snippets of the last few games, as I have been on holiday with my young family on the southern coast of Sri Lanka. One of the benefits of a holiday on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, or indeed anywhere in Sri Lanka, is that all the hotels come fully equipped with staff who are able to provide accurate and well-informed information about and in-depth analysis of international cricket.

From score updates to well-reasoned arguments explaining why Sri Lanka’s middle order could prove to be their Achilles heel, from potted player biographies to tactical critiques of captaincy, the service is exemplary, and far, far superior to anything I have experienced in Europe. Rome may be a magical city in many respects, but in terms of hotel staff cricket knowledge, it is to Galle what Jimi Hendrix is to Shane Warne in terms of leg-spin bowling.

I managed to see only brief snippets of India’s alarm-bell-clanging defeat to South Africa. I saw Tendulkar place the entire city of Chennai on cricketing history red alert for his next match on March 20 by majesterialising to his 99th international century. “Looks like India are hitting form at the right time,” I thought to myself in a sage piece of internal punditry. I left the TV room to return to my hitherto vain attempts to persuade my children that flies are not necessarily lethal. India promptly collapsed like a prim Victorian lady at the unexpected sight of a gentleman’s unshirted chest. From 267 for 1, their last nine wickets evaporated for 29, equalling the World Cup record for Most Useless Final Eight Partnerships In An Innings, set earlier this tournament by Kenya when uselessly capitulating against New Zealand.

The worst last-nine-wickets figure for a Test nation in a World Cup before this tournament was 59 by England, as Joel Garner chunked them into cricket marmalade in the 1979 final. All this after Tendulkar, Sehwag and Gambhir had combined to reach the fifth-highest ever World Cup total for the loss of one wicket. It is fair to say that India did not make the most of their brilliant start, as if Neil Armstrong had turned to Buzz Alldrin and said, “Looks a bit chilly out there, let’s just head home.”

29 for 9 – the equal fourth worst nine-wicket collapse to end an innings in ODI history. Coincidentally, 29 is also the number of times during breakfast the following day that Sachin Tendulkar looked up from his cornflakes with an expression on his face that unmistakably read: “Are any of you guys going to attempt to (a) explain and (b) apologise for that?”

That India’s middle order should fail more convincingly than a learner driver ploughing into a crowded bus stop whilst flicking a v-sign at his instructor during his driving test is concerning enough. India’s bowling, which had always looked like their Achilles heel, began to look like an Achilles leg as the unfortunate Nehra was planked into the Nagpur stands by Peterson, and MS Dhoni began to think: “Maybe, with the benefit of two balls’ worth of hindsight, I should have let Harbhajan bowl this one after all.”

It is beginning to appear that India’s greatest problem is their insufficient number of bowlers whose names begin with H or Z. In their three matches against Test opposition in this World Cup so far, Harbhajan has conceded 5.24 per over, and Zaheer 4.90. Munaf, Sreesanth, Nehra, Chawla, Yuvraj and Pathan have been clonked for 597 in 90.4 overs, each at a run a ball or worse, collectively at 6.58 per over. It may not be impossible to win a World Cup with only two fully functioning bowlers. But it will not be easy.

(I have a two-year-old son who has an H-commencing first name to go with his Zaltzman surname. He does not currently hold an Indian passport, but I’m sure these things can be arranged, and he has a South-African-born grandfather, which I think means he is eligible to play for any country of his choosing. His two-year-old bowling action, however, is unlikely to pass ICC scrutiny. And he frequently oversteps. And they should probably let R Ashwin have a go first.)

Fortunately for India, they are not alone. Every team left in this tournament is nervously flexing its metaphorical lower leg, urgently seeking physiotherapy for its own niggling Achilles heel, checking the internet to find any versions of the ancient Greek myth in which Achilles turned out fine after all, and wishing its metaphorical mother had taken a little more care when dipping it in the river of cricketing invincibility.

Andy Zaltzman is a stand-up comedian, a regular on the BBC Radio 4, and a writer

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • hemant on March 18, 2011, 17:33 GMT

    "I left the TV room to return to my hitherto vain attempts to persuade my children that flies are not necessarily lethal. India promptly collapsed like a prim Victorian lady at the unexpected sight of a gentleman’s unshirted chest. "

    It is fair to say that India did not make the most of their brilliant start, as if Neil Armstrong had turned to Buzz Alldrin and said, “Looks a bit chilly out there, let’s just head home.”

    "I have a two-year-old son who has an H-commencing first name to go with his Zaltzman surname. He does not currently hold an Indian passport, but I’m sure these things can be arranged, and he has a South-African-born grandfather, which I think means he is eligible to play for any country of his choosing. His two-year-old bowling action, however, is unlikely to pass ICC scrutiny. And he frequently oversteps. And they should probably let R Ashwin have a go first."

    - Pure Genius!

  • kaybee on March 18, 2011, 14:17 GMT

    @Prashanth Cherukuri Keep your tasteless comments about match-fixing and South Africa to yourself, buddy. Churlish, childish and unmerited. Oh, AND pathetic.

  • Qaiser Shahzad on March 17, 2011, 8:52 GMT

    While you would have been showered with praise by lot of readers of your blogs/articles, I have to admit that you as a writer, are something special. May AlMighty give you a lonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnng life so that you keep on churning incredible stuff like this one.

  • jeevan on March 17, 2011, 8:29 GMT

    It was really brilliant 2 read ur article and ur comments. Now something what goes on the ground is neither predefined nor predictable. Neither what Sachin did, he knew it earlier nor the collapsed lower order was a preplanned action. The matches prove every time about the unpredictability of the game. Every nation that plays with full, having lot of experience go for winning a game but alas! the team like England never won a world cup,and team like South Africa miss several chances, and even if the small Srilanka and Pakistan becomes terror sometimes in this world-cup tournament.

  • Munno on March 17, 2011, 6:44 GMT

    Almost passed out reading the following para:

    (I have a two-year-old son who has an H-commencing first name to go with his Zaltzman surname. He does not currently hold an Indian passport, but I’m sure these things can be arranged, and he has a South-African-born grandfather, which I think means he is eligible to play for any country of his choosing. His two-year-old bowling action, however, is unlikely to pass ICC scrutiny. And he frequently oversteps. And they should probably let R Ashwin have a go first.)

  • Raj on March 17, 2011, 5:59 GMT

    Reading all this reminds me of Ravi quoting in commentary as "Bhajji being best off spinner in world". kewl right !!! and I also feel 29 will also be the number bhajji is gonna hit for in an over in a very near future :)

  • Someone on March 17, 2011, 5:01 GMT

    Nobel Prize for literature andy, you the bomb

  • santosh on March 17, 2011, 4:48 GMT

    Their are few dubious people in India who belives that sachin cannot play well in pressure situation. but these play donot have the cricket knowledge,first have a proper knowledge,and then speak.

  • Paul on March 17, 2011, 1:43 GMT

    29 is not just the number of times Sachin looked towards his teammates, it's also the number of times I have read this article so far ... and I still think it's hilarious. Andy is the Genius.

  • jay on March 17, 2011, 0:02 GMT

    Zaltzman u r one real sob man !! Keep it up !!

  • hemant on March 18, 2011, 17:33 GMT

    "I left the TV room to return to my hitherto vain attempts to persuade my children that flies are not necessarily lethal. India promptly collapsed like a prim Victorian lady at the unexpected sight of a gentleman’s unshirted chest. "

    It is fair to say that India did not make the most of their brilliant start, as if Neil Armstrong had turned to Buzz Alldrin and said, “Looks a bit chilly out there, let’s just head home.”

    "I have a two-year-old son who has an H-commencing first name to go with his Zaltzman surname. He does not currently hold an Indian passport, but I’m sure these things can be arranged, and he has a South-African-born grandfather, which I think means he is eligible to play for any country of his choosing. His two-year-old bowling action, however, is unlikely to pass ICC scrutiny. And he frequently oversteps. And they should probably let R Ashwin have a go first."

    - Pure Genius!

  • kaybee on March 18, 2011, 14:17 GMT

    @Prashanth Cherukuri Keep your tasteless comments about match-fixing and South Africa to yourself, buddy. Churlish, childish and unmerited. Oh, AND pathetic.

  • Qaiser Shahzad on March 17, 2011, 8:52 GMT

    While you would have been showered with praise by lot of readers of your blogs/articles, I have to admit that you as a writer, are something special. May AlMighty give you a lonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnng life so that you keep on churning incredible stuff like this one.

  • jeevan on March 17, 2011, 8:29 GMT

    It was really brilliant 2 read ur article and ur comments. Now something what goes on the ground is neither predefined nor predictable. Neither what Sachin did, he knew it earlier nor the collapsed lower order was a preplanned action. The matches prove every time about the unpredictability of the game. Every nation that plays with full, having lot of experience go for winning a game but alas! the team like England never won a world cup,and team like South Africa miss several chances, and even if the small Srilanka and Pakistan becomes terror sometimes in this world-cup tournament.

  • Munno on March 17, 2011, 6:44 GMT

    Almost passed out reading the following para:

    (I have a two-year-old son who has an H-commencing first name to go with his Zaltzman surname. He does not currently hold an Indian passport, but I’m sure these things can be arranged, and he has a South-African-born grandfather, which I think means he is eligible to play for any country of his choosing. His two-year-old bowling action, however, is unlikely to pass ICC scrutiny. And he frequently oversteps. And they should probably let R Ashwin have a go first.)

  • Raj on March 17, 2011, 5:59 GMT

    Reading all this reminds me of Ravi quoting in commentary as "Bhajji being best off spinner in world". kewl right !!! and I also feel 29 will also be the number bhajji is gonna hit for in an over in a very near future :)

  • Someone on March 17, 2011, 5:01 GMT

    Nobel Prize for literature andy, you the bomb

  • santosh on March 17, 2011, 4:48 GMT

    Their are few dubious people in India who belives that sachin cannot play well in pressure situation. but these play donot have the cricket knowledge,first have a proper knowledge,and then speak.

  • Paul on March 17, 2011, 1:43 GMT

    29 is not just the number of times Sachin looked towards his teammates, it's also the number of times I have read this article so far ... and I still think it's hilarious. Andy is the Genius.

  • jay on March 17, 2011, 0:02 GMT

    Zaltzman u r one real sob man !! Keep it up !!

  • Faizan on March 17, 2011, 0:00 GMT

    "Coincidentally, 29 is also the number of times during breakfast the following day that Sachin Tendulkar looked up from his cornflakes with an expression on his face that unmistakably read: 'Are any of you guys going to attempt to (a) explain and (b) apologise for that?'"... Simply hilarious! I can't stop laughing and imagining the scenario in my head! Very well written...

  • Shakeel on March 16, 2011, 22:52 GMT

    Simply the best Z! None can top your humorous take on the Cricket World Cup!

  • Shakeel on March 16, 2011, 22:51 GMT

    Simply the best Z! None can top your humorous take on the Cricket World Cup!

  • ds on March 16, 2011, 20:06 GMT

    very funny!

  • Salim Tyrewala on March 16, 2011, 18:21 GMT

    This is funny, but I can be funnier.

  • Salim Tyrewala on March 16, 2011, 18:20 GMT

    This is funny, but I can be funnier.

  • hardik on March 16, 2011, 18:05 GMT

    awesome post. really enjoyed. keep up the good work :)

  • Bakhtiar on March 16, 2011, 17:51 GMT

    Nice write Andy. What's all this fuss about India? Did they forget the last worldcup so soon?

  • harikris on March 16, 2011, 16:37 GMT

    Whenever Sachin plays well India loses.

  • CricketIsOverrated on March 16, 2011, 16:36 GMT

    Is there something called "Achilles Head"? I think that is what all the cricket infatuated people -- selectors, players and fans -- are suffering from in India. LMAO.

  • Nick de Jong on March 16, 2011, 15:39 GMT

    "and he has a South-African-born grandfather, which I think means he is eligible to play for any country of his choosing"

    I absolutely hosed myself at this line!!!

    LOL

  • Ravi on March 16, 2011, 15:08 GMT

    Andy Z remains the only writer on Cricinfo who can actually write a humorous piece and: (a) be appreciated for it, (b) not have something completely uncharitable to say about the BCCI and the IPL, even in articles that are supposed to be about, for example, Cricket Australia or Giles Clarke and the ECB, (c) finally, and most importantly, make a valid cricketing point through it all. Yet another super piece.

  • MV on March 16, 2011, 12:40 GMT

    Dhoni must be thinking .... is Andy's son "H-Andy" ... as a replacement ;-)

  • Sameer on March 16, 2011, 12:16 GMT

    Dear Andy,

    Hope you can make it to India for a bit, we'd like to have a look at your son. Chances are he's one of the top 29 bowlers in the country.

    Thanks, Sameer

  • RealityDan on March 16, 2011, 11:52 GMT

    Acid tongued cricket-guru with excellent observations! I loved it.

  • Rohan on March 16, 2011, 11:20 GMT

    the guy is an epic......Zaltzman you Legend.

  • SageIndian on March 16, 2011, 10:43 GMT

    Brilliant, funny and GOD must Sachin be pissed off at his teammates :)

  • Shahid Khan on March 16, 2011, 10:38 GMT

    Nice Article Andy.

    Well If Dhoni continues to believe that Munaf Patel is Mcgrath and Piyush Chawla is next Shane Warne, I am sorry but the Indian fans wont be happy bunnies in next few weeks.

    Remember, India has to score above 300 and chase above 350 in next knock out rounds with every team because of their bowling.

  • Indraneel Mukherjee on March 16, 2011, 10:21 GMT

    Sachin's breakfast n Ashwin being given a chance.. just awesome!!!

  • Zain on March 16, 2011, 9:36 GMT

    Excellent read as usual Mr. Zaltzman - always look forward to your column. I would suggest that if you liked Sri Lanka you will like the hospitality here in Pakistan even more - look forward to seeing a stand-up show from you in Lahore in happier times!

  • mukund joglekar on March 16, 2011, 9:36 GMT

    Dear Andy, Sir!

    Is it possible to slip your "one of the funniest jokes involving Graham Gooch currently available on the British live comedy circuit" into one of these reports of yours? Failing that, could you post a link to the said joke?

    And now for something completely different, could you talk ICC into replacing the World Cup with just your reports on it? Much more interesting, slightly cheaper, and no Duckworth/Lewis!

  • John on March 16, 2011, 8:47 GMT

    What happened that day was nothing new - when Sachin fires, it is as if the whole team conspires against him. India are plain tired of SA hanging on to the exclusive rights to the title - CHOKERS - so they are out to break that exclusivity at any cost. Give them a few more matches please..

  • Ashwin Kumar on March 16, 2011, 8:46 GMT

    A wonderful article Andy. It was disappointing to see an Indian team labelled as top favourites to collapse in such a manner against SA but you have helped me in seeing the lighter side of it. Cheers mate !

  • Raj on March 16, 2011, 8:34 GMT

    Now we know what talent is required to be a good columnist! This article is very well-written and apt for the current situation. Keep up the good work, sir.

  • MV on March 16, 2011, 8:11 GMT

    Dhoni must be thinking .... is Andy's son "H-Andy" ... as a replacement ;-)

  • magicunc on March 16, 2011, 7:43 GMT

    I think that everyone was worried that Sachin/ Sehwag/ Gambhir will be hungry after all the scoring that was done, and they'd not have enough for their lunch. So they just hurried back!

  • Abe on March 16, 2011, 6:51 GMT

    Brilliant!!...as usual....tell me does usual brilliance diminish the value of brilliant???,,,,,nah....as i said Brilliant!

  • Mad Fan on March 16, 2011, 5:05 GMT

    what an eye opener for Team India, Indian team need pounding horns of an incoming train to wake them up from their hibernation only to rise up in afterlife after becoming a casualty to one

  • ad ed and eddie on March 16, 2011, 5:00 GMT

    to save indian batting collapse sachin and sehwag should bat at no. 9 and 10 and dhoni must open with tailenders if he wants to keep his average intact.

  • Alfi on March 16, 2011, 4:32 GMT

    Hey, your thoughts are as complex as Dhoni's instincts on field. For god sake lets watch, talk and write cricket..... When luck fades, depend on stats and when stats shock, rely on experience.... I hope this gets into our ever pretending captains head...Please play cricket skipper... Anyways good luck India....

  • Sriram on March 16, 2011, 3:41 GMT

    It is fair to say that India did not make the most of their brilliant start, as if Neil Armstrong had turned to Buzz Alldrin and said, “Looks a bit chilly out there, let’s just head home.” That's brilliant Andy :).

  • Vikram on March 16, 2011, 3:27 GMT

    Neil Armstrong would surely feel bad for having missed out on that line of yours that would have etched him a special place in history!

  • Anwar Khan on March 16, 2011, 2:13 GMT

    Anything less than a knighthood for AZ and I shall go on a hunger strike!

  • OBJ on March 16, 2011, 2:12 GMT

    An excellent article with great sense of humor and command. Cricket write up at it's best, keep on rolling and enjoy Sri Lankan hospitality, I wish I was there too. (S/L n living in U.S.) Before you depart, take your sons to the top of Galle Fort and witness a young guy diving into the ocean.

    Thanks

  • Prashanth Cherukuri on March 16, 2011, 2:02 GMT

    I hope for heaven's sake that India does not win this World Cup. The World Cup will lose meaning for me if that happens - imagine a team with 2 above average bowlers, 2 substandard bowlers, a middle order that is good only for modeling and a captain who thinks captaining decisions are like the toss of a coin - it will be a shame for India to win. Atleast a team like Australia will be deserving of the cup, and I don't see any other team coming close. South Africa are a bunch of clowns, and who knows maybe they're fixing matches. Sri Lanka is good, but not close to Australia

  • Arnab Saha on March 15, 2011, 23:45 GMT

    Lovely writing!!! Wonderful!!!

  • Varun on March 15, 2011, 23:35 GMT

    Andy, I believe you were both a threatening left arm fast bowler and a menacing off spinner back in the day. I think you have a really good chance to be in the Indian XI.. Hurry!!! BTW-The salary is awesome!!

  • Mudassar Rana on March 15, 2011, 23:09 GMT

    The english football team and the indian cricket team have an extra burden placed upon them by their respective media. The media hype them up so much that they whip the public into a frenzy and invariably when they disappoint or fail to live up to massive expectations they are character assassinated.

    there is no doubt india has a brilliant batting line up and without doubt up there amongst the best if not the best. However its not runs that win matches but bowlers. Minus Zaheer Khan and bajji they dont have the same class as they do in batting and this will eventually be the cause of their downfall. Both South Africans and Australians have very decent bowling attacks and this is what makes them stronger contenders.

  • Brendon on March 15, 2011, 22:25 GMT

    Huge fan here, mr Zaltzman, keep up the good work! Maybe you should work on a MAD Magazine for cricket?.

  • mike on March 15, 2011, 21:39 GMT

    @Vijaynarain

    How can you even compare your teams loss to the disaster that struck Japan? Not very considerate. Im pretty sure people losing their lives is much worse then india not beating South Africa

  • S Roy on March 15, 2011, 20:36 GMT

    Andy did you hear about this one: India has only lost one game...

  • Vivek on March 15, 2011, 20:07 GMT

    Andy, you are the funniest thing in cricket since Inzy with a by-runner!

  • Sam on March 15, 2011, 19:33 GMT

    Beautiful, beautiful article Andy. Keep it up. A certain Mr. g here, doesn't have any sense of humor at all. His other name is 'I take every word literally'!!

    Andy, can you send a personal note to Dhoni, asking him to drop his arrogance and start seeing things more clearly. Entire country knows that Yusuf Pathan is a suspect against fast bowling, somehow Mr. Dhoni was unaware of that.

  • Bertie on March 15, 2011, 19:03 GMT

    This trip to the subcontinent seems to have sauteed your cricketing as well as humor fibers with some real spice! Pip, pip my good man - what a smashing blog, WROMDCLANIIAO (Was Rolling On My Dirty Carpet Laughing And Now I'm Itching All Over)!!

  • Seher A on March 15, 2011, 18:49 GMT

    "(In fact 100% of male and .0001% of female population)"

    Glad to know I am that rare! Btw, I think you are way off on both these stats Mr. Abul Hasan.

  • Seher on March 15, 2011, 18:47 GMT

    "(In fact 100% of male and .0001% of female population)"

    Glad to know I am that rare! :) Btw, I think you are way off on both these stats!

  • prash on March 15, 2011, 18:47 GMT

    Andy...go and try to save England from getting kicked out of world cup....wat a load of rubbish you have been writing....have you ever played cricket in your life...another english expert...english are crap at sports, but satisfy their bulging egos by criticising others....i hope you also go back with the english team after their next match and hopefully we can see more sense on cric info...

  • Richard Carter on March 15, 2011, 18:34 GMT

    I'm all for humour in any piece on cricket and most of this is excellent, but does anyone really think that "a learner driver ploughing into a crowded bus stop whilst flicking a v-sign at his instructor during his driving test" is the least bit amusing? What exactly is funny about people being knocked down by an incompetent driver? What next, "the bowlers were as effective as a Japanese caught in a tsunami? For shame, Zaltzman!

  • Don B on March 15, 2011, 18:26 GMT

    Hi Mr Z Enjoyed that as usual. You look like a younger version of that mad professor in Back to the Future. Would love to hear you talk. Can you do a video clip sometime? It would be much more enjoyable and funnier than some of the clips that are dished out. Cheers

  • Sachin Fan on March 15, 2011, 18:22 GMT

    "Sachin Tendulkar tried to outrun the horrific performance from his team-mates, but failed" Failed? do you expect him to score 200 every single time? I know what the comment actually meant but man be careful whenever you try to write anything withing 7205 km [Distance between Bombay to London]around him. I am not offended but just not pleased to see "Sachin Tendulkar" and "Fail" in one sentence ;)

    Nice blog anyways...

  • bhanu on March 15, 2011, 18:13 GMT

    super article!

    "India’s bowling, which had always looked like their Achilles heel, began to look like an Achilles leg as the unfortunate Nehra was planked into the Nagpur stands by Peterson"

    so true.

  • Kyle on March 15, 2011, 18:13 GMT

    Brilliant article Andy. I think you also forgot to mention one blatant point though. In all 19 years since re-admission, this is the first time a team has... 'interfered with the respiration by compression or obstruction of the larynx or trachea'... AGAINST the proteas.

    It was a truly momentous day for cricket. An Sri-Lankan cricketing experts.

    Keep up the top-notch writing Mr Zaltzman!!

  • Ankur Mehta on March 15, 2011, 18:04 GMT

    Hahahaha...absolutely hilarious...I loved every moment of it...especially the bit about your son & the amount of times Tendulkar looked up from his breakfast! I think it's too humble of Sachin, otherwise I would've definately asked for a public press release apology from the entire team towards the great man!

  • Nauman on March 15, 2011, 17:50 GMT

    The paragraph in parenthesis regarding Andy's 2 year son is extremely hillarious!!! Keep it up Andy. You keep us entertained.

  • Sachin on March 15, 2011, 17:40 GMT

    I take my topi off to you Andy. At the rate you are churning out these superlative writings, knighthood may not be too far. Thanks for bringing a big smile to our faces.

  • Mogan707 on March 15, 2011, 17:23 GMT

    Indian team is now submerged in the waves of South African earthquake and Tsunami.If I come face to face to Dhoni I would ask him what was he doing in the middle when all other batsmen were getting out?I expect an answer such as "I was seeing them" a ridiculous answer.I was puzzled by the way he reacted.Is it a match-fixing?ICC must look into this match as one of the unusual matches in ODI history and enquire the whole Indian team.Virat Kohli is wasted down the order or at least once he has played carelessly.Harbhajan Singh bowled brilliantly ,himself and Raina were outstanding in the field But others are pale shadows of their own standards.I suspect Kohli not being 100% in the field.Zaheer Khan and Munaf bowled too many slower balls and Ashish Nehra is an utter flop player in the match;First during giving a tame catch and then bowling freebies during the bowling.India now has plunged to a new low.No regrets for that Players in India are fit only to play for IPL.Players all resign and go and play IPL matches for the rest of their careers including Sachin Tendulkar.I hate this Indian Team very much.I hope they forfeit the match against Windies bcoz fear of losing by a big margin and then go and sit in their homes and watch the others play

  • MOhan on March 15, 2011, 17:22 GMT

    Indian team is now submerged in the waves of South African earthquake and Tsunami.If I come face to face to Dhoni I would ask him what was he doing in the middle when all other batsmen were getting out?I expect an answer such as "I was seeing them" a ridiculous answer.I was puzzled by the way he reacted.Is it a match-fixing?ICC must look into this match as one of the unusual matches in ODI history and enquire the whole Indian team .Virat Kohli is wasted down the order or at least once he has played carelessly.Harbhajan Singh bowled brilliantly ,himself and Raina were outstanding in the field But others are pale shadows of their own standards.I suspect Kohli not being 100% in the field.Zaheer Khan and Munaf bowled too many slower balls and Ashish Nehra is an utter flop player in the match;First during giving a tame catch and then bowling freebies during the bowling.India now has plunged to a new low.No regrets for that Players in India are fit only to play for IPL.

  • MOhan on March 15, 2011, 17:20 GMT

    Indian team is now submerged in the waves of South African earthquake and Tsunami. If I come face to face to Dhoni I would ask him what was he doing in the middle when all other batsmen were getting out?I expect an answer such as "I was seeing them" a ridiculous answer.I was puzzled by the way he reacted.Is it a match-fixing?ICC must look into this match as one of the unusual matches in ODI history and enquire the whole Indian team

    Virat Kohli is wasted down the order or at least once he has played carelessly.Harbhajan Singh bowled brilliantly ,himself and Raina were outstanding in the field But others are pale shadows of their own standards.I suspect Kohli not being 100% in the field.Zaheer Khan and Munaf bowled too many slower balls and Ashish Nehra is an utter flop player in the match;First during giving a tame catch and then bowling freebies during the bowling.India now has plunged to a new low.No regrets for that Players in India are fit only to play for IPL.Players all resign and go and play IPL matches for the rest of their careers including Sachin Tendulkar.I hate this Indian Team very much.I hope they forfeit the match against Windies bcoz fear of losing by a big margin and then go and sit in their homes and watch the others play

  • MOhan on March 15, 2011, 17:20 GMT

    Indian team is now submerged in the waves of South African earthquake and Tsunami. If I come face to face to Dhoni I would ask him what was he doing in the middle when all other batsmen were getting out?I expect an answer such as "I was seeing them" a ridiculous answer.I was puzzled by the way he reacted.Is it a match-fixing?ICC must look into this match as one of the unusual matches in ODI history and enquire the whole Indian team

    Virat Kohli is wasted down the order or at least once he has played carelessly.Harbhajan Singh bowled brilliantly ,himself and Raina were outstanding in the field But others are pale shadows of their own standards.I suspect Kohli not being 100% in the field.Zaheer Khan and Munaf bowled too many slower balls and Ashish Nehra is an utter flop player in the match;First during giving a tame catch and then bowling freebies during the bowling.India now has plunged to a new low.No regrets for that Players in India are fit only to play for IPL.Players all resign and go and play IPL matches for the rest of their careers including Sachin Tendulkar.I hate this Indian Team very much.I hope they forfeit the match against Windies bcoz fear of losing by a big margin and then go and sit in their homes and watch the others play

  • Mohan on March 15, 2011, 17:19 GMT

    Needless Batting Collapse.Not once But twice.Every Time a batting powerplay is taken Men in Blue rush like mad men and return instantly like tame ducks.Go India go and lose the West-Indies Match by a margin of more than 100 runs or by a margin of 6 wickets with 15 overs to spare and get knocked out.The Indian Team is a bunch of individuals who now are concentrating on the lucrating IPL.That is why,all are out of focus and team spirit is missing.Sometimes calmness also means recklessness and Dhoni is an example of it.

  • Asma on March 15, 2011, 17:04 GMT

    Wonderful as always. Andy, in Siri Lanka, India, Bangladesh and Pakistan, not only are the Hotel staff "experts", so are Taxi Drivers, Shopkeepers, Curators, Undertakers etc. etc. (In fact 100% of male and .0001% of female population)

    I disagree! A lot more than .0001% of south asian women are deeply interested in cricket. It is our game!

  • Hiphop on March 15, 2011, 17:00 GMT

    Nice Article, Tendulakr is a great batsman when he is not under pressure. He is not a Ponting, Dravid, Ranatunga, Dhoni,Gooch etc. The Indian team as a whole have a hard time chasing. I always find it hilarious that Indian supporters take delight in individual achievements then the team's results. As for the Indian supporters who criticize Dhoni, he is the greatest captain India has ever had , he is a calm presence on the field unlike Kumar Sangakarra & Afridi what a despicable sight jumping up and down and screaming like buffoons. Now Now fans let us not get emotional and criticize my posting

  • Anish chacko on March 15, 2011, 16:37 GMT

    Nice article.. saying your two year son be better except for H and Z.. hahah.. but dhoni must keep trying chawla for he staying in good spirit for future glory of indian cricket, then dhoni must think about bring back noel david , for he must too keep in good spirit, then allround spinner sunil joshi,amith mishra, pragyan ohja.. who ever in the subcontinent can bowl a spin and english born Zaltsmam's son before giving chance to ashwin because he will be non playing eleven because he is a mentally very tough guy..to be happy after being dropped for bowling good. if you have any cricketing skills you will be dropped but mental skills comes for loosing matches.. lol.. alos no one is curious about those middle overs 20-30 where botha was considered as the best spinner of the wholw wrold , where sachin and gambhir was creating nervousness in the dressing room.. whicj caused the guys to cause the havoc in the floor..

  • Ersatzid on March 15, 2011, 16:04 GMT

    My suspicions have now been confirmed. Andy has been bribing players. First he bribed the Proteas to snatch defeat from The English. For Her Majesty and Loyalty and all that balderdash! Then he bribed his fellow Englishmen to snatch defeat from B'Desh! Next he bribed Shohaib Akhtar. Kamran Akmal was a bonus the Pakistanis gifted him to test his alliterative epithet prowess. And then when he couldn't bribe Sachin and Sehwag, he went for the entire Indian team - en masse! No, no, dont get me wrong, he didn't want India to loose the game. He just needed meat for his column! I could see his eyes light up with similies, allegories, examples, metaphors, you name it when we crashed out like teh proverbial Victorian lass on sighting the hirsute torso and/or other anatomies. 'fess up Andy, the teams are playing this World Cup primarily to provide you the situations for your wit and acid tongue. How much did you pay, mate?

    Brilliant writing, mate... :-)

  • Ahmad. on March 15, 2011, 16:03 GMT

    Hahahaha.........Hilarious.

  • RK on March 15, 2011, 15:31 GMT

    Just an addendum to my earlier Comment - India won only 5 matches of the Last 10 ODIs where Sachin scored a Century, batting first..

    Jinxed ???

  • Sriram on March 15, 2011, 15:30 GMT

    Let your son grow up. In the mean time we will settle for your Steyn and Morkel.

  • Jim Reeves on March 15, 2011, 15:23 GMT

    Wow, Andy enjoyed your article though this match has given me a toughest time as an Indian Fan...very dissapointed with the performance of middle order..But our Master is in superb touch..thats a good sign..May this match could be an eye-opener for the team..But, still wondering that how many eye-openers do they required to be productive..I thought that 2007 WC & match against England have taught a good lesson but not enough though...

  • RK on March 15, 2011, 15:22 GMT

    Amazingly Witty.. :-D Especially the Last part of a Son..

    Though I dont have statistics, Sachin's Century off late in First Innings seems to make India "not-win".

    Poor Sachin !!!

    Superstitious or otherwise!!!

  • Abhay on March 15, 2011, 15:13 GMT

    Mr. Zaltzman, Absolutely hilarious article! Always been a fan of your work.

    India's batting collapse was one of the single most shameful displays of 'tail-between-your-toes' cricket that I have had the misfortune of witnessing. Or was it, 'lets-screw-up-our-eyes-and-see-if-i-can-hit-the-ball-with-them-shut' approach. Ofcourse this wasn't helped by the fact that after every wicket an advertisement aired with one of the lovely nine telling me to go out and buy their particular endorsed product right now, or I would die!

    I am throughly enjoying the fact that you are writing every day (or atleast when you get the time off from tanning yourself!) as the confectionery stall is not posted half as often as I would like.

    Keep writing the way you do so as to constantly tickle the funny bone of each and every one of us.

  • presto on March 15, 2011, 15:02 GMT

    Zaltzman you legend ! Now Im thinking, I should do a road trip round India to rank cities by the cricket knowledge of their chai stall owners. its the only thing worth knowing about a city really, if one gives the matter a bit of thought.

    (I could also correlate my findings with various data about demographics, incomes, ingrowing toe nails and such, and sell it to market research and consultancy firms, offerring my conclusions and insights on indian society as reflected by the cricketing engagement of its downtrodden !)

    its a holiday, business plan and book idea all in one. its what life ought to be, when one gives this new matter a bit of thought :)

  • Ravi on March 15, 2011, 14:53 GMT

    Awesome article Andy -- “Are any of you guys going to attempt to (a) explain and (b) apologise for that?”

    i can almost imagine Sachin saying this while Sehwag orders for 4 more of those delicious madras dosas!

  • Dr Anurag on March 15, 2011, 14:51 GMT

    "His two-year-old bowling action, however, is unlikely to pass ICC scrutiny. And he frequently oversteps. And they should probably let R Ashwin have a go first". What a misfortune for our great nation that we will be deprived of an illustrious Zaltzman.Andy you should have planned your family a little earlier.

  • Rohan on March 15, 2011, 14:35 GMT

    Andy, there is only one reason for great Indian Collapse ... as you said "I left the TV room to return to my hitherto vain attempts to persuade my children that flies are not necessarily lethal" ... Now we all know... you should not have left the room!!! The cosmic balance shifted in SA's favour when you moved out of the room!

  • Chandra on March 15, 2011, 14:07 GMT

    I watched this game thinking that my favorite team, Sri Lanka, may have to face either of these teams later on. I was shocked to see how Indian players threw their wickets while going for big hits. It appeared as if every new player that came to the crease was not aware of the scoreboard and that the team already had a big total that ONLY needed a little push - perhaps 4 runs an over. I wonder what were the last words of advice given to them in the dressing room. That aside, I think the game could have been saved by India if slower spinners had been used in the last few overs. I feel sorry for India but I congratulate South Africa as they did a great job in fighting back.

  • Mohit Mahajan on March 15, 2011, 13:57 GMT

    "Rome may be a magical city in many respects, but in terms of hotel staff cricket knowledge, it is to Galle what Jimi Hendrix is to Shane Warne in terms of leg-spin bowling."

    Brilliant piece yet again Andy. And its an absolute privilege to read your thoughts and views so frequently in this world cup .. Don't really have any disruptively incisive and deeply meditative comments like 'Hi there, who are you and what's your article about?', but still thought I should say something.

    Shine on !

  • Anil on March 15, 2011, 13:54 GMT

    Great, as always! "...at the unexpected sight of a gentleman’s unshirted chest" is wonderful; if I were to write one, I would have gone upto a mere "bare-chested gentleman", leaving an unfathomable gap between Andy Z and the ordinary. The lunar dialogue between Neil and Buzz, Sachin's breakfast glare, the H/Z stat...all make wonderful reading. By the way, so far the only team that looks like a just winner is SA. They may never reach the Final and another can win, but the non-SA winner will win just another final, and cannot be called a World Champ.

  • Akbar Ali Major on March 15, 2011, 13:45 GMT

    Nice Reading. I enjoyed reading it. It was fun to read the article. I would like to read more such articles. Good Work dude keep it up.

  • alex on March 15, 2011, 13:40 GMT

    nice one

  • Sagar Bora on March 15, 2011, 13:10 GMT

    Yes, India should drop every bowler besides Z and H from the squad, and pick any 4 bowlers from Lagaan, I am sure they would do a better job.

  • Rahul on March 15, 2011, 12:59 GMT

    Its funny how everyone was criticizing Harbhajan before the match and after the match, everyone opined that Bhajji should have had the bowl in the last over. 13 off the last over is always gettable and if bhajji would have suffered the same fate, everybody would have had that look "see, i told u he is good for nothing" More than bowling, i think India's problem lies with the fact that apart from people on the ground, everybody else thinks that they would have won the match for India had they been there.

  • njr1330 on March 15, 2011, 12:53 GMT

    Andy,

    At last...back to absolute top form. The Neil Armstrong/Buzz Aldrin comment had everyone in the office in stitches!

  • Sujit on March 15, 2011, 12:39 GMT

    After analyzing and later over analyzing the match in question, felt this article was a well deserved comic relief for all the die hard Indian supporters of the game...if 267/1 was not a start from which India's famed middle order cannot capitalize, then I am not sure what score will be "winnable"

  • Abin on March 15, 2011, 12:39 GMT

    Once again Andy does it again....;)...India collapsed like a pack of cards....it was fascinating to watch(unless u re an Indian)...i personally think they won't go further than the semi's(prove me wrong!)....SA vs Australia fr final anyone???

  • Charindra on March 15, 2011, 12:35 GMT

    "India promptly collapsed like a prim Victorian lady at the unexpected sight of a gentleman’s unshirted chest." LOL!! Legendary! :D

  • Budhaditya on March 15, 2011, 12:16 GMT

    Simply brilliant. I love your sense of humour. Been following your blogs for quite a bit now and I can never wait for the next one to come around.

  • KM on March 15, 2011, 12:13 GMT

    Andy...nobody could sum it up better than "India promptly collapsed like a prim Victorian lady at the unexpected sight of a gentleman’s unshirted chest."

    How can a cricket fan not let his thoughts go back to "match fixing" when witnessing such incidents.

    Off course, it is easy for us viewers to "talk" - but probability would state the possibility of India having crossed 325 much higher than ending at 297:-(

    Let us not go in to why Dhoni gave the last over to Nehra - if it was to build his confidence and experience...I rest my case. But if it was to win that match then all I can think is "why"?

  • Sridhar Kalyan on March 15, 2011, 12:01 GMT

    Andy - get your son to grow up fast; with a H and a Z, you can bet your last ZAR that the Indian Selectors wont look beyond him, even if some bloke called R Ashwin manages to bowl within a 6.97 or less....

    Great work, Mr. Zee....continue your holiday at those lovely beaches - that way you can have best of both - the beaches and the bums (who are playing for India currently).

  • Ali on March 15, 2011, 11:57 GMT

    few can match your ability to evoke laughter :) its looks questionable how many of those playing for India realize how important an historic opportunity they have in their hand. And that sadly include their captain as well, with his naive attempt to diffuse a much potent weapon but an extremely silly block called Sreesanth.

  • Ben on March 15, 2011, 11:56 GMT

    Great stuff Andy - keep em coming !

  • Pushpa Ranjan Wijesinghe on March 15, 2011, 10:54 GMT

    Why everyone in Sri Lanka is an expert comentator like say Tony or Ian is understandable. Even before test status, people used to enjoy cricket matches. Even in the temple, they dissect the outcome of a previous game. It is in built into the culture. There are scenes where people in paddy fields listen to radio comentaries on their poratble sets while working. Wariors during the war listened to commentaries during the time of war. They play it at home as kids, play it at school, then at work place and fortunate ones go to represent the country. Yet all are experts with selection points. This reminds me two other countries which are similar to Sri lanka in the world. This is in terms of the physique of people, religion, passion for cricket. That is my old lovely trinidad and beautiful rural guyana in the west Indies. Arrack in SL Rum in WI, Baila in SL, Chutney in east Indian belt. both people are experts in the game in their own way. happy to be a part of two great cricketing powers

  • Ankur on March 15, 2011, 10:27 GMT

    I don't know how but, you read Sachin's mind correctly. :D

  • Robbie Singh on March 15, 2011, 10:16 GMT

    If someone told me " Robbie the world cups in 2years, you can have one of the most devastating batting line ups who can score over 300 without problem, a consistent bowler in Zaheer khan and half decent spinner in Harbhajan, all you need to do is prepare 2-3 bowlers to compliment them and train them to bowl line and length. I would take up that job in a heart beat, i would recruit 2 young chaps with the most raw potential, put them through intensive line and length training for the first year, hire the best bowling experts or whoever i can get hold off. 2nd year i would give them as much exposure as i can.

    2nd biggest population in the world, No.1 country of Cricket Fans, With so much Passion that they could probably stage worldwar 3 if cricket would stop in existence, yet they cant breed 5 decent bowlers out of the whole country.

    And, yes, I follow the Indian Cricket Team religiously!!!

  • Dipal on March 15, 2011, 9:54 GMT

    I might want to have a look at your two year old's bowling. There are two things going for him a) his name begins with H and b) his surname begins with Z. I'm sure I can find some genius numerologist who can add the two up (YES they can add alphabets here!) and give him his rightful place in the cricketing sun. Although, I must add here that I am not K. Srikanth to give him his deservedful due but there is every chance I can get him around half a million from one of the IPL teams! You might want to chance that Zaltzman... - Billionaire baron of boredom brought to life by zaltzing!

  • Vaibhav on March 15, 2011, 9:52 GMT

    One of the best article I ever have read.

  • hari on March 15, 2011, 9:49 GMT

    I would Vote Zaltzman Jr. to the Indian team, but I'm not Krishnamachari Srikkanth, The whole of India would vote Ashwin Ravichandran into the Indian team, but they are'nt the Selection Committee of the BCCI.

  • Zaltzmanfan on March 15, 2011, 9:12 GMT

    This, Andy, was like the very first World Cup match you viewed, in 1983 at Turnbridge Wells, in reverse. There, with 5 down for 17, the Indian top order represented the learner driver flashing the V-sign while ploughing into the bus stop. Kapil Dev was fortunately the second half, and therefore by the time India came out to bowl, they felt less stunned. This time Sachin and Sehwag collectively did the Kapil thing first up, and then the rest did whatever the 1983 heroes did in the first half of their innings.

  • mahesh on March 15, 2011, 9:12 GMT

    red alert alright! cant wait for sachin's 100th century. hopefully he'll do it during this cwc rather than make us wait like he did for the 50th test century.

    i used to hesitate to say it, but after two decades of stuff-ups from incompetent teammates, a sachin ton is better than india winning!!

  • Anonymous on March 15, 2011, 9:11 GMT

    Whats wrong Andy? There's actually some cricket sense in what you've written! Looks like you listened too much to the Sri Lankan hotel staff!! Yet, it was good to read as your earlier pieces had become quite repetitive. India's problem is not the bowlers, cos India has been winning against the top teams in spite of that. The problem is if the middle order again decide to make any more small numbers famous.

  • Vijaynarain on March 15, 2011, 8:55 GMT

    Finally something that actually made me smile in the wake of the twin disasters that struck in Nagpur and Japan

  • Anonymous on March 15, 2011, 8:54 GMT

    "He does not currently hold an Indian passport, but I’m sure these things can be arranged"

    Certainly, if you agree to swap him with Nehra.

  • stanford mandizvidza on March 15, 2011, 8:44 GMT

    hilarious - as usual!

  • Mohan N. Pai on March 15, 2011, 8:25 GMT

    Terrific, as usual. Keep 'em coming, Andy!

  • Devdeep Ahuja on March 15, 2011, 8:21 GMT

    Nice one.... and I agree that Ashwin does deserve a chance before a certain H. Zaltzman...

  • Mandy on March 15, 2011, 8:05 GMT

    It's a hilarious and glorious, or should I say ghilorious, article. We do need to inject some humor in the other wise, a drab contentions of billion plus captains of competing teams in world cricket. Now talking of know it all captains, I truly believe that Ashwin will be the trump card to partially solve the bowling woes of India. It's akin to what SL did to India by bringing in Ajantha Mendis, resulting in the infamous middle order meltdown. I pick SA, Australia or India, in that order of odds to be holding the ICC cup title...!

  • dr nauman shad on March 15, 2011, 7:57 GMT

    a very hilarious and amusing article with all the facts rightly adjusted into humour!

  • ASd on March 15, 2011, 7:55 GMT

    Are any of you guys going to attempt to (a) explain and (b) apologise for that?”

    Man You crack me up all the time..!!..

  • Jade on March 15, 2011, 7:50 GMT

    That is one hilariously concise article. Kudos!

  • Saud Sami on March 15, 2011, 7:49 GMT

    When u think about it, it is quite ridiculous that 42 matches were needed to pick out 8 teams from the total 14, when almost everybody more or less knew who they would be. And in just 7 games the best from these top 8 will be decided. The real world cup is just 7 games!

  • Deepak on March 15, 2011, 7:36 GMT

    You are as good a master of words Mr. Zaltzman as Sehwag is of those first ball boundaries.. or the Indian team is of the spectacular middle order collapses.. or the Sri Lankans are of falling painfully short in most crucial games.. or Australians are of completely flying under the radar in this WC.. or the Irish are of flattering to deceive and then repeaing that.. This one is a good one..

  • Neal Collins on March 15, 2011, 7:21 GMT

    Loved the image of India as a Victorian woman swooning... just hope England can hang in there...

  • cricfan on March 15, 2011, 7:20 GMT

    Great commentary!!!!

    The way of using vocabulary in this blog it’s incredible!!!

  • Nitish Bhushan on March 15, 2011, 7:12 GMT

    An extremely humorous article indeed! But addressing very serious shortcomings. It is indeed going to be very difficult winning this world cup with only two fully functioning bowlers!

  • Primal on March 15, 2011, 7:05 GMT

    This is one awesome article ... :D :D And you are dead right on the cricket literacy among the Sri Lankan hotel staff ... Even if you ask a Bus conductor you could get a similar analysis. I am from Sri Lanka and I know it.

  • Surender Azad on March 15, 2011, 6:59 GMT

    Excellent piece, Brother Zaltzman. Unfortunately we have an Achilles leg and a Pig Headed Captain ,so a pretty intresting and formidable combo. I just feel sorry for Sachin because he realy desrved to be a part of the World Cup Winning Team but you can't have everything in life , can you? I am sure none of the team memebers except probably Sehwag would have had the grace to say sorry to Sachin and Sehwag need not have apologized in the first place.

  • Amandeep Singh on March 15, 2011, 6:58 GMT

    i love you, zaltzman

  • Ubin on March 15, 2011, 6:57 GMT

    Zaheer is the only match winning bowler india have in their ranks... even bhajji has struggled to take wickets in this tournament , batsmen are easily milking his 10 overs ....

  • blue-eyed on March 15, 2011, 6:56 GMT

    the inimitable zaltzman at his best...keep em coming andy...loved this one

  • Munish Sharma on March 15, 2011, 6:55 GMT

    Superlyk it Mr. Zaltzman. Especially the thing that your Son is eligible to play for any team in the world just because he has South-African-born grandfather..

  • Abul Hasan on March 15, 2011, 6:43 GMT

    Wonderful as always. Andy, in Siri Lanka, India, Bangladesh and Pakistan, not only are the Hotel staff "experts", so are Taxi Drivers, Shopkeepers, Curators, Undertakers etc. etc. (In fact 100% of male and .0001% of female population) I hope you keep on enjoying you stay in the subcontinent. I look forward to your blogs. If you are intending to write a book about your trip, I would like to pre-order one.

  • arun on March 15, 2011, 6:41 GMT

    Coincidentally, 29 is also the number of times during breakfast the following day that Sachin Tendulkar looked up from his cornflakes with an expression on his face that unmistakably read: “Are any of you guys going to attempt to (a) explain and (b) apologise for that?” - Hilarious, Andy..Keep going.

  • Surya on March 15, 2011, 6:40 GMT

    Sachin may just stop having breakfast with his team at this rate any ways!! They may just be more qualified to get him his breakfast than share the same breakfast table.. For better or for worse!!

  • Anonymous on March 15, 2011, 6:40 GMT

    Sachin may just stop having breakfast with his team at this rate any ways!! They may just be more qualified to get him his breakfast than share the same breakfast table.. For better or for worse!!

  • Akashdeep on March 15, 2011, 6:37 GMT

    Very well written. Balanced viewpoint. It is not just India with an "Achilles heel", at this point, no team seem to have exactly peaked. Who is good enough to win 3 matches in a row... There are 4 or 5 teams which seem incapably capable. India is getting more than its fair share of criticism..

  • Vikram on March 15, 2011, 6:34 GMT

    "And they should probably let R Ashwin have a go first"

    Come on Andy, what are you saying?

    Per Dhoni's theory which is probably the most marvellous thing that ever happened since Newton saw an apple fall; the two year old with H-commencing first name will be given an opportunity first. I am wondering if Dhoni has been mistaking Piyush for your H-commencing first name son all this while.

  • amit on March 15, 2011, 6:31 GMT

    Lol

  • g on March 15, 2011, 6:25 GMT

    Hi man, first try to respect number 29 then u start talk and writing these senseless blogs.

    FYI, Sachin had never participated in any running race nor his colleagues, they r cricketers.

    Hope this clarifies and I would lik to see more meaningful posts from you if Cricinfo permits.

  • g on March 15, 2011, 6:15 GMT

    who r u to post

  • g on March 15, 2011, 6:15 GMT

    who r u to post

  • Arjit on March 15, 2011, 5:59 GMT

    Awesome write up as usual Mr. Zaltzman.

  • srtb on March 15, 2011, 5:53 GMT

    God-level article!!

  • Rishabh on March 15, 2011, 5:52 GMT

    I'd pick your son. I find it unfair that South East Asians play for several other countries but no one wants to return the favour.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • Rishabh on March 15, 2011, 5:52 GMT

    I'd pick your son. I find it unfair that South East Asians play for several other countries but no one wants to return the favour.

  • srtb on March 15, 2011, 5:53 GMT

    God-level article!!

  • Arjit on March 15, 2011, 5:59 GMT

    Awesome write up as usual Mr. Zaltzman.

  • g on March 15, 2011, 6:15 GMT

    who r u to post

  • g on March 15, 2011, 6:15 GMT

    who r u to post

  • g on March 15, 2011, 6:25 GMT

    Hi man, first try to respect number 29 then u start talk and writing these senseless blogs.

    FYI, Sachin had never participated in any running race nor his colleagues, they r cricketers.

    Hope this clarifies and I would lik to see more meaningful posts from you if Cricinfo permits.

  • amit on March 15, 2011, 6:31 GMT

    Lol

  • Vikram on March 15, 2011, 6:34 GMT

    "And they should probably let R Ashwin have a go first"

    Come on Andy, what are you saying?

    Per Dhoni's theory which is probably the most marvellous thing that ever happened since Newton saw an apple fall; the two year old with H-commencing first name will be given an opportunity first. I am wondering if Dhoni has been mistaking Piyush for your H-commencing first name son all this while.

  • Akashdeep on March 15, 2011, 6:37 GMT

    Very well written. Balanced viewpoint. It is not just India with an "Achilles heel", at this point, no team seem to have exactly peaked. Who is good enough to win 3 matches in a row... There are 4 or 5 teams which seem incapably capable. India is getting more than its fair share of criticism..

  • Anonymous on March 15, 2011, 6:40 GMT

    Sachin may just stop having breakfast with his team at this rate any ways!! They may just be more qualified to get him his breakfast than share the same breakfast table.. For better or for worse!!