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World Cup 2011

Mishra 'psyched' for Australian test

Siddarth Ravindran in Bangalore

March 10, 2011

Comments: 9 | Text size: A | A

Kenya's fifth match of the tournament is coming up and the side has been a shambles so far, with heavy defeats in all the four games they have played. The latest loss was perhaps the most disheartening as it came against fellow Associate Canada, one of the two encounters Kenya realistically hoped to win in the World Cup. To make matters worse, their next match is against triple world champions Australia, a prospect Kenya batsman Tanmay Mishra tried to remain upbeat about.

"It's a challenge; you have to be psyched for games like these," Mishra said. "Australia are a world champion team; 28 to 29 games unbeaten, possibly the best attack in the tournament; we just have to remain positive."

That Australian attack will prove a difficult proposition for the misfiring Kenya batting. Though their scores have gradually improved through the tournament, the team has been bowled out in all their matches, and is yet to put up a strong total. "We haven't really done well; the top order hasn't really connected," Mishra said. "We've spoken about it; we have Australia up next, and we've still got to look positive, still do the basics right, and bat positively, not just bat the 50 overs."

Tanmay Mishra checks his bat during a training session, Bangalore, March 10, 2011
Kenya batsman Tanmay Mishra says structures are finally being put in place for cricket in his country © AFP

The Canada match was the first time Kenya played out all their overs in this World Cup, but it was mostly a rebuilding effort after the top order failed once more, and eventually they posted a total which was too small. Mishra said the loss to Canada hurt Kenya, particularly because they had come into the tournament in good form. "The Canada defeat was a difficult one to swallow because we had been playing really well against the Associates. Even in Dubai (in the warm-up matches before the World Cup) we had some really good results. It was just the top-order collapse that delfated us; we were 41 for 4, and after that everyone's heads were down, but these things happen in cricket and you have still got to be positive. We spoke about it and we have left it behind us."

Though Kenya have regressed from the performance level they displayed both in their inaugural World Cup in 1996 and in their high point in 2003 when they made the semi-finals, Mishra expected improvements in the next few years. "We are going through a transition period; we've got a lot of youngsters including myself coming through. Structures are being put in place. To be honest it is a bit late but it is getting in place, we are re-developing, cricket is spreading; in 3 or 4 years this team will rise up again."

Siddarth Ravindran is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by Rakesh on (March 12, 2011, 7:21 GMT)

@SRT_GENIUS ,you got it right man. @Gizza.Nobody will send cricketers. I am suggesting each Cricketers considers it an option to come up in their profession. You get a job when you are trained based on your merit. But you need to pursue the dream. If First class cricketers wants to do something more than just being First class cricketers they have to explore other avenues by which they achieve the dream of playing international cricket. This is what South African cricketers do ,if they cannot make it in SA they try elsewhere as well. My sincere request to author of this article to pass on this advise to thousands of cricketers.

Posted by al on (March 11, 2011, 20:08 GMT)

@Gizza: IIUC, Rakesh_Sharma's point is that the 20 who play for India are not necessarily the best 20 Indian cricketers - they were best looking players when they were 18-19. And once selected, due to international exposure, they do improve to a certain level. So if players ranked 20-40, who are 25+ and have no hope of making it to Indian squad & getting international exposure, can emigrate to associate nations to get a fresh look there. While I am not sure if what Rakesh suggests is a practically workable solution, I think India definitely has spinners, wicketkeepers and batsmen at state/zone level who can make it to playing X1 of other countries. Case in point : Bala/Canada, Tanmay Mishra/Kenya. Maybe making it to NZ/WI is much more difficult but I am sure some state level spinners can make themselves useful there as well. Or look at Mohd Kaif/Badrinath/Rahane - they may never play for India due to the current Indian batting/selector mindset, but they can walk in most teams.

Posted by Rakesh on (March 11, 2011, 17:03 GMT)

@Gizza , I mean to be more specific cricketers from Sub continent.To say that we have only one type of Tendulkar or Sehwag is wrong. These are the players who get extensive international exposure and develop overtime.You find people going to US Europe for jobs right? I know so many of my friends in IT,technology etc etc doing well in Ireland,Netherland. Why not cricketers. This is the age of globalizartion. It is aquestion of the home boards of minnows taking a right approach. India exports everything, why not good cricketers. The First class cricketers in India nobody really cares.Why should they not have better careers.international.In India few players are persisted. This is the way to cherish the dream to play international game. Come on cricketers take example of IT, Tech guys and look for progression in Ireland,Netherland,Kenya,Zimbabwe.This is win win situation for all. May be they need recruitment agency???

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 11, 2011, 7:13 GMT)

That was a really beautiful suggestion by Rakesh_Sharma. I believe that there is tremendous potential in players who are never allowed to come up due to the systems in place and other factors in India. These players should seriously consider Canada, Zimbabwe or Kenya to migrate to and represent. This is the only way they can do justice to the God given talent they have. And who says they wont get endorsement opportunities there??

Posted by Pradeep on (March 11, 2011, 1:48 GMT)

I have lived in Kenya and other East African countries for nearly 30 yeas before returning to India. The best course of action for Kenyan cricket administrators is to come and lure some real good cricketers from India, and offer them good compensation packages along with Kenyan citizenship. Thereafter, these youngmen should shuttle between Kenya and India so that they play in the Indian domestic circuit. In addition, Kenya should try to insert their ethnic African cricketers in various state and zonal Indian teams. Starting point, perhaps, would be to negotiate a deal with BCCI.

Posted by Andrew on (March 11, 2011, 0:22 GMT)

Too many IFS you'd think for Kenya to be competitive. I'd like to know what the bookies are running on a Kenya win? 200-1? That being said - IF Kenya field to their best ability, & IF they bowl tight lines to the field that is set, they may make it intersesting, then they would also have to bat well. Smart money is on a very quick game if Kenya bat first. If Oz bat first (hoping for), then we'll see a big win. I don't expect Oz to make a massive total - probably sub 300, as I think time in the middle is the biggest importance. If Kenya do bat first I'd consider taking the foot well off the pedal in the field if I was - to get a reasonable total to chase.

Posted by Girik on (March 10, 2011, 23:38 GMT)

@Rakesh Sharma, India's team itself doesn't have enough depth so why by fringe players or the batch below going overseas you would expect those teams to improve? With a billion+ population India can only find one decent fast bowler in Zaheer Khan and their spin stocks are wrose than they were 10 years ago let alone 40 years ago when they possessed the famed quartet. Among the young batsmen only Kohli truly has potential to be a great cricketer. India looks like they will struggle to replace Tendulkar and Sehwag so I think sending Indian cricketers elsewhere is silly. If any team should do this, it should be South Africa and Australia (well not Aus anymore but 5 years ago yes). Both of these teams traditionally have a lot of depth, at least in batting and pace bowling (not so much in spin). South Africa A is pretty much represented in England and Netherlands atm.

Posted by Mick on (March 10, 2011, 18:46 GMT)

Quadruple world champions thankyou very much.

Posted by Rakesh on (March 10, 2011, 17:53 GMT)

India has a huge base of cricketers .Probably more than the total NZ population.However it is just around 20 players or so who represent India for almost a decade.It is enough to show slight glimses of talent and must be young around 18 to 19 years.Than the indian selectors persists with you so that one fine day you show the potential. eg, Yuvraj, Ravi Shastri etc etc. If Indian cricketers want mor international exposure and oppurtunity ,they must seriously contemplate migrating to countries like Kenya, Zimbabwe etc etc. It will benefit the cricket of these countries and provide oppurtunity fame etc to players, they can develop their game and raise the standard of these countries. This can be real globalization. Go ahead young guys if you are unluck ignored by selectors for more than 2 to 3 years, always try these option. These way it will help to raise the standard of cricket worldwide. Cricketers can target,Namibia, Netherland, WI,Ireland,,NZ etc.Teams will be competitive.

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