May 3, 2013

Newsfile, May 3

'Never stuck to a winning combination' - Uthappa

Nikita Bastian

Pune Warriors' wicketkeeper-batsman Robin Uthappa said that constant changes to the playing XI and changes in leadership had affected the team badly. Speaking to the media after his team crashed out of the IPL with a 17-run loss to Royal Challengers Bangalore, Uthappa said: "We've never stuck to a winning combination. It was pretty disappointing for me, as a player. When we beat a strong team at their home ground [Chennai Super Kings], we came back and changed the combination and I think that kind of shook things up for us a little bit."

Warriors crashed to their sixth straight loss against Royal Challengers and are currently last on the points table, with two wins from 11 matches.

Dravid 'wishes' for more foreigners in the XI
Rajasthan Royals captain Rahul Dravid has said it would be beneficial for a team like his if the IPL were to relax the four-overseas-players-per-side rule. "We have a lot of very good foreign players. It is very difficult for us as we can only play four. I wish IPL would change that and allow more foreign players, but it's not possible. Someone has to miss out," Dravid said, in the lead up to his team's away game against Kolkata Knight Riders, according to agency reports. Currently the franchises are allowed 11 overseas signings in their squads, and four in the teams' XIs.

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Nikita Bastian is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by RajeshNaik on (May 4, 2013, 2:39 GMT)

Look who is talking! One good knock in 3 years and he is out speaking. Uthappa better clear out his own priorities as to whether remain an attacking batsman (which is, was and should have been his USP) or become an accumulator (an art he tried with the guidance of Amre but had to be told specifically by Karnataka coach to get back to his original attacking ways). He is horribly down on form and performance in all forms of Cricket. His performance for Karnataka over last 2 years has been very average. Robin, if you contribute at the top of the order your team would win, man! But unfortunately that is not happening. Correct your game. Do not blame on team, selection, captaincy and so on. Good luck.

Posted by Javed_17 on (May 4, 2013, 1:40 GMT)

Two teams have beaten Chennai - Mumbai and Pune of the two Pune showed how to cosistently beat the lions in their den. Yet rest at the bottom of the table. I agree with Uthappa changing sides has proven to be thoroughly ineffective for pune. Take kkr last season, went on a winning streak and even when losing opted for the same team with under performing YKP and Brendan Macullum. The moral - Dont change a winning formula

Posted by soumyas on (May 3, 2013, 19:39 GMT)

Uthappa is right, i too thought they will stick with Taylor as captain after beating Chennai in Chennai, big achievement for them. but they changed the combination. Also they have lost 2 close games, which they shud have won easily. Also get rid of Dinda and any local bowler will bowl better than him, Ishwar Pandey had bad day against GAYLE, they dropped him from all the matches...

Posted by ThyrSaadam on (May 3, 2013, 17:56 GMT)

@Robin Uthappa, have to win a few to figure out the winning combination!

Posted by Javed_17 on (May 3, 2013, 14:51 GMT)

@thinkgood i wouldnt jump on the kallis as motivated by money. Rather i think age is a major factor. Kallis has progressively played less and less cricket yet maintained good performances over all.

Key point: He has not played competitive one day cricket since february 29 last year. he has acknowledged this fact and accepted the reality. Rather than force the selectors hand he has allowed the experience to go to the future of south african all rounders. I think this has cost teams like austrailia and possibly india where replacements or at least players who can compensate do not have the experience to fill shoes like gilchrist, ponting hayden and Sachin dravid ganguly

Posted by thinkgood on (May 3, 2013, 13:11 GMT)

For a very very long time I have been thinking that Kallis was not motivated by money alone and his national duty would stay on top of IPL. But now I know that IPL bug has bitten Kallis too. I am saddened by this. Players such as Kallis , Sachin and Watson are needed for their respective national side to win in international games. They should shun IPL a domestic tournament.

Posted by Nuxxy on (May 3, 2013, 12:02 GMT)

So in your face to all those who have claimed that "Kallis only plays for himself". I hope Miller plays some match winning hands in the Champions Trophy.

Posted by criteek on (May 3, 2013, 11:58 GMT)

Teams are getting stuck in situations where just about the entire team retires and they are looking for replacements. Supporters then are left with watching poorer cricket. Happened to Windies in 90s, India and Australia in last decade. Honor the greats but not at the cost of a team. Hope to see a Kallis and SA board type agreement worked across other teams to maintain the quality of team and game.

Posted by   on (May 3, 2013, 11:55 GMT)

Well..!..If that is not a retirement statement from one day cricket I don't what is? Time waits for no man in cricket even as someone as great as Kallis and such is the honesty & humility of the man he is a class act off the field as well. If he doesn't play 50 ODI cricket again - ever - he will also go down as his stats suggest as one of the all time best all rounders for that format too as his batting average is far superior to that of most specialist batsmen and his bowling figures (in terms of wickets taken) are very similar to his test stats and we all know how impressive they are. A loss to ODI cricket but if it extends his test career and allows the 2015 World Cup to be his international swansong then the game has plenty of time to finally acknowledge him as one of the finest cricketers ever to play it.

Posted by A.Ak on (May 3, 2013, 11:43 GMT)

Kallis is very correct. He is getting old. SA have lots of young potentials to replace him in the shorter formats. He should retire and play Test matches only. And of course IPL, just to spice up.

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