Club/league cricket

APRIL 05, 2014

Indian cricket

Wadekar's shoes and a Karnataka triumph

ESPNcricinfo staff

In the Telegraph, historian Ramachandra Guha reminisces about Karnataka's semi-final against Bombay in March 1974, en route to their first Ranji Trophy title. Guha writes that Karnataka beat Bombay in that game (on first-innings basis) due to two human errors - the first an umpiring decision that went in favour of Gundappa Viswanath off the first ball he faced; and Ajit Wadekar's slip, which resulted in his run-out and allowed Karnataka to take a lead.

Some 20 years after I watched Karnataka defeat Bombay for the first time, I met Ajit Wadekar at a reception in New Delhi. I reminded him about the match and how he had got out, adding that had he not slipped he would still be batting at the Chinnaswamy Stadium. His answer, offered with a laconic shrug of the shoulders, was: "New shoes."

APRIL 05, 2014

Remembering the glory days of the Hindu Trophy

V Ramnarayan: One of the oldest limited-overs in India used to be a thrilling affair, with Test and club cricketers fiercely competing for the title
APRIL 03, 2014

The golden land of pre-season

Nicholas Hogg: It's that time of year when you dust your kit and conveniently forget how the last season went
FEBRUARY 04, 2014

Kiwi fans, soak in this winning feeling

Paul Ford: New Zealand played like a team that cared a lot. This unexpected win is one to savour
FEBRUARY 01, 2014

New Zealand cricket

Corey Anderson thrives on confidence

Corey Anderson began 2014 with the fastest ton in ODI cricket and has since moved from strength to strength to become something of a phenomenon. Belief forms a big part of his game and it's been cultivated ever since he picked up a cricket bat. Anderson reveals his stunning rise from backyard cricket to national hero in an interview with Alan Perrott for the New Zealand Herald

In 2006, Anderson's form saw him named secondary school player of the year - alongside current Black Cap fast-bowler Tim Southee. It also attracted the attention of the Canterbury selectors and Anderson got the first shock of his life when the provincial team's coach, Dave Nosworthy, called to offer him a professional playing contract. "That still amazes me," he says, "I hadn't even played a senior club game or anything. But I'd been tossing up which sport to follow and that kind of made my decision for me, I jumped at it." It wasn't until later that he found out the coach had already discussed the offer with his parents. At just over 16, it made Anderson the country's youngest professional cricketer in 59 years and Canterbury's youngest in 129 years, achievements that were always going to attract media attention.

JANUARY 27, 2014

Down and out in Galle

Jonathan Wilson: One of cricket's great attributes is that it has room even for the not-so-competent. Sometimes, though, that allowance does not seem to apply
JANUARY 24, 2014

The beauty of the maghrib chase

Ahmer Naqvi: The Sharjah chase took you back to the days of playing street cricket and wanting to complete a game before the sun set
JANUARY 21, 2014

What being thrashed does

Jon Hotten: It can be a lightning-rod moment, a realisation that the world is a lot bigger and badder than you might have realised
NOVEMBER 06, 2013

Spare a thought for Vinay Kumar

Subash Jayaraman: Having suffered against belligerent batsmen at the club level, the writer empathises with a bowler who conceded 102 runs in nine overs
OCTOBER 24, 2013

Moving past a howler

Nicholas Hogg: How do you deal with a costly mistake on the field? By sobbing, praising your opponent's skill, or by using the power of your imagination?
OCTOBER 22, 2013

Indian cricket

A day with Dravid

Rahul Dravid might have retired from all forms of cricket, but his desire to assist players at the grassroots level is as undimmed as his appetite for runs. The former India captain turned up for a club side in Bangalore as they looked to qualify for the next stage and Arjun Dev Nagendra, who was part of the opposition, presents a few highlights from the game in Wisden India

He did not disappoint. He scored a century. When his partner, who also scored a hundred, was cramping a little, Dravid walked down and helped him stretch. He had a go at the umpires a couple of times as they were missing out on no-balls. Yes, Rahul had a go at the umpire in a club game because they missed out on no-balls. And you thought club cricket might not be important to him. I told him in between overs that in our innings as well they had missed a few. He was really angry and made a gesture with his hands suggesting that they were missing huge no-balls

OCTOBER 19, 2013

The Vatican Cricket Club

The cricket team that shoulders a billion hopes? No, we're not talking about India, but cricket's new converts - the Vatican. With ecclesiastical records numbering members of the Catholic church at around 1.2 billion worldwide, the ICC, in their bid to expand the game, would sure welcome the news of the Vatican being interested in cricket.

And that's what it seems to be, with the Pontifical Council for Culture announcing plans to form cricket teams - one for men, made up of priests from around the world, and a women's XI comprising nuns. Australia's ambassador to the Vatican, John McCarthy, a former SCG Trust member, is helping to put the teams together, and hopes to organise a match against a Church of England XI.

Cricket, McCarthy said, was already popular in Rome, with priests and religious arriving there from around the world, and the Vatican's teams would draw on talent from everywhere cricket is played. "Internationally one would have a team representing the Vatican drawn from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Australia, England, New Zealand, South Africa and the West Indies," McCarthy told Vatican Radio. "We are looking for Sri Lankan, Indian or Pakistani sisters who have played cricket and if they are found, they certainly will be invited to join the [women's] cricket team."

OCTOBER 14, 2013

Practice makes perfect?

Nicholas Hogg: Does a technical, complex sport like cricket contain new tricks that can't be taught to old dogs?
OCTOBER 11, 2013

What's happening to Australia's cricket grounds?

Russell Jackson: Local venues taught kids to love cricket, but they're vanishing fast, victims of development and commerce
SEPTEMBER 30, 2013

'My biggest mistake was refusing the Pakistan captaincy'

Interview by Subash Jayaraman: Former Pakistan allrounder Azhar Mahmood talks about his brief Test career, touring the world as a T20 franchise cricketer, and passing on bowling tips to younger players
SEPTEMBER 24, 2013

When dream dies, fantasy takes over

Jon Hotten: What men in lycra who believe they are pro cyclists can teach us about cricket fandom
SEPTEMBER 20, 2013

English cricket

Durham reaps the rewards of empowerment

On Thursday, Durham won their third Championship title in 21 years, a victory that was built entirely by players picked from the community. In the Telegraph, Scyld Berry says that the Durham's victory is an example of what can be achieved when new regions are empowered with first-class status. While admitting that the addition of another county may stretch first-class cricket resources too thin, Berry also suggests that the road ahead for English cricket may lie in empowering communities.

I suspect our inner cities contain many cricketers who play below the official radar of premier leagues, or never play formal cricket at all, now or in the past. Not a single England Test player has been born in Wolverhampton, one in Hull, two in Stoke-on-Trent, and one in Liverpool since the nineteenth century.

There needs to be a pathway for inner-city players of all ethnicities, who either have no access to proper cricket facilities or cannot afford to join the few inner-city clubs that exist, with their costly membership and match fees, quite apart from expensive kit.

SEPTEMBER 05, 2013

Indian cricket

The Kanga League, where '50 equals 100'

The Kanga League, one of Mumbai's and the country's toughest domestic environments, is slated to begin on Septmeber 7. The players walk out to wet, uncovered pitches that offer ready and often exaggerated help to seam bowling. As former Mumbai captain Shishir Hattangadi puts it, "If a batsman scored 30 or 50 runs, it would be considered equivalent to an 80 or a 100." Though the tournament has sustained several changes, stark among them being it beginning after the monsoon instead of during, former India cricketers reminisce the Kanga League's impact on their game in the company of Venkat Ananth of Livemint.

"The wet and soft pitches definitely helped develop my technique," says former wicketkeeper Chandrakant Pandit. "The wickets were a bowler's paradise and even after they eased out and got harder, they were usually two-paced. Survival was important. Your shot selection improved drastically. Whenever there were loose balls, you had to put them away, because they didn't come that often."

AUGUST 18, 2013

The five stages of grieving

Scott Oliver: A village cricketer begins his quest when his youthful heart is first sent soaring by a hero, and is thereafter tantalised by the possibilities of batsmanship
JULY 06, 2013

Australian cricket

I came here for a safe life, not for the cricket - Fawad Ahmed

Fawad Ahmed had led a difficult life after his application for asylum in Australia was rejected for a third time in September 2012. Memories of fellow state cricketer and friend of 10 years, Nauman Habib's unexplained death in October 2011 made him dread his return to Pakistan. But just when the legspinner, who had received threats from "terrorists" at home, was losing hope Derek Bennett, president of the cricket club Ahmed played for, received an important phone call, writes Warwick Green in the Herald Sun.

"The key moment came when Ed Cowan rang,'' Bennett said. The Australians, preparing for the first Test of the summer against South Africa, were looking for a net bowler whose action resembled Proteas leg-spinner Imran Tahir. Cowan recalled seeing just such an action when Ahmed was bowling in the MCG nets.

"And then Ed said, 'Do you reckon Fawad could come up and bowl to us?''' Knowing full well that the assignment could help generate some timely publicity, Bennett had no hesitation in agreeing on Ahmed's behalf.

After several days of having his face and story plastered across the nation's media, Ahmed found his application for permanent residency status granted by the Minister