India v New Zealand, 5th ODI, Chennai

Gambhir praises Ashwin, team after series sweep

ESPNcricinfo staff

December 10, 2010

Comments: 74 | Text size: A | A

R Ashwin enters his delivery stride, India v New Zealand, 5th ODI, Chennai, December 10, 2010
R Ashwin led all bowlers with 11 wickets in the ODI series against New Zealand © AFP
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Gautam Gambhir has hailed offspinner R Ashwin as the find of the one-day series against New Zealand and praised the professionalism of his side after India beat the visitors by eight wickets in the fifth and final ODI in Chennai to sweep the series 5-0.

"Ashwin for sure was most impressive. He is a quality bowler even as we saw in the IPL, the way he bowled in the Powerplays ... If you have an offspinner who can bowl well in the Powerplays and slog overs, it can be a great asset for the team.

"I have always stressed that no one takes any match lightly when you are playing for your country. I think a lot of credit goes to young bunch as we didn't get complacent after clinching the series. That's what professionalism is all about and speaks a lot about your character."

Gambhir captained the team in the absence of MS Dhoni, who was rested for the one-dayers along with several senior players, and said it was a great sign for India that the reserve players had done so well. "It's a good thing that there is healthy competition and that can bring the best out of any player. You can never afford to be complacent at any stage because you know there is another one waiting in the wings."

India bowled New Zealand out for 103 on a turning track on which the spinners took seven wickets after the seamers had made early inroads "I think this is the first turning track we got and you don't expect the ball to turn and bounce so much in a one-dayer," Gambhir said. "So it was always difficult for them to bat because we have a lot of quality spinners in our side."

He also praised Yusuf Pathan, whose savage maiden ODI century carried India to victory in the fourth one-dayer in Bangalore, where they had to chase 316. "I have always felt that Yusuf is someone who has the talent to turn the game on its head. If you see the last game, he turned it completely. Given the situation, not many would have given us a chance to win the match, but he won it for us."

Despite the success against New Zealand, Gamhir cautioned that the team can expect a much tougher test in the 2011 World Cup, which will be played in the subcontinent. "There will be far more pressure and there will be a lot of expectations from us as well. If you really want to be No. 1 and you really want to sustain that position, you need to improve all the time."

One area where he felt the team could improve was their fielding. "If we compare ourselves to the New Zealanders, they were far more brilliant in the field. If we can improve as a fielding unit, we will be strong contenders for the World Cup as we have a very potent batting and bowling line-up."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by peterss on (December 14, 2010, 11:43 GMT)

ashwin should certainly be in world cup 11. and play alongside him or replace him if harbhajan underperforms in the first few games as he does usually. but with dhoni's sticking to player policy, future doesnt look bright for younger cricketers.

Posted by DINESHCC on (December 14, 2010, 7:54 GMT)

D.Sharma and Bkraks21: Your comments may be correct to some extent had it said about D.Kaarthik. But not Vijay and Ashwin. They are selected based on their good performances only. There is always criticism if a player is selected from the same State which the Selection Committee chairman belongs to. I hope had Vijay and Ashwin played for some other State you would have appreciated them. I thank you D.Sharma for open heartedly coming out to the support of Badri. But what to say. His career is almost over and he is in 30s.

Posted by ssenthil on (December 14, 2010, 5:05 GMT)

@D.Sharma: I appreciate your effort. Do you really think they are getting the Chance becoz they play for CSK? Never. Just follow the Domestic Matches, I never seen any Selection Panel as good as this and in India making Happy of all is Never a Possible one, Even if you select 10 teams one gut come and ask where is He? Why he is not selected? all, Look at their Domestic Record also dude, Ashwin Captained TN during 2008-09 Vijay Hazare Trophy Title. He earned Grade D after that from BCCI Contract, check all those, Vijay and Mukund had a opening Partnership of over 450 and then only Vijay called to the Indian team and A Mukund done well for India A as an opener and that kid surly will come up good, His List A record Pretty Impressive, He scored a Century in England when India A chasing 349, the Match ended in a Tie. Look at what Ashwin has done in Domestic Cricket and then say. He deserves to be Selected and if Given a Chance he will outplay H Singh for sure but M Vijay is good for Tests.

Posted by D.Sharma on (December 13, 2010, 13:08 GMT)

@senthil... Not sure if my 1st comment was posted so I'll try again... Overrated may not be the right word, but guys like Vijay and Ashwin got their fame from the IPL. When you have the Chairmen of selectors well involved in the CSK team then one has to wonder. What about the recent talk about Mukund? I only would only like to see guys like Pujara, Rahane, Mithun and the unluckiest of them all, Badrinath. 90 odd matches with an average of 60! Domestic cricket all the way and not IPL. To give credit where it's due, I'll applaud Ashwin for having a KUmble like attitude.

Posted by ssenthil on (December 13, 2010, 12:17 GMT)

@ bkraks21, He has Bowled 12 Overs During Batting Power play and Taken at least a Wicket every time during Batting Power play and NONE of the Indian Fast bowlers bowled more then 6 overs During Batting Power play while he also Bowled 5 more overs After 40th Over. He bowled a Lot better then Fast Bowlers during Batting Power play and Slog Overs. I don't think H Singh so far would have Bowled 22 Overs during Power play in his Entire Career which Ashwin bowled in a 5 Match Series

Posted by ssenthil on (December 13, 2010, 10:22 GMT)

D.Sharma: Now Answer me, Guptil, McCullum, Taylor and Styris are Tail Enders and Bowling 22 Overs during Power play and 5 More Overs after 40th Over(Note Few Power play Over he bowled after 40th Is not added) and Bowling 12 overs During Batting Power Play, you need Big Heart and Guts and Ashwin have it all.. Ashwin have guts and He Never afraid to bowl at any time and He proved his worth in Champions League also. Still you are a Blind and biased then nothing can be done. I doubt any Indian Spinner so far bowled this many overs during Power play including H Singh in his so far Bowling(All Matches)

Posted by bkraks21 on (December 13, 2010, 10:18 GMT)

@Nampally - what are u talking abt? Ashwin is in the Team because of the selectors like Shirkant.

Posted by bkraks21 on (December 13, 2010, 10:17 GMT)

What has ashwin really done? He is good in powerplay but then compensates that by giving too many later on. I think Gambhir has been made to say these by Chief Selector Mr. Chica

Posted by ssenthil on (December 13, 2010, 9:53 GMT)

@D.Sharma: Here we have a Brain Check. Let see, how much you scores. 1st ODI Wickets - M Guptill - Opener and He took his Wicket by bowling in the Mandatory Power Play(PP), 2nd Wicket R Taylor and He Took his Wicket in the Batting PP and his 3rd Wicket is Hopkins also in the Batting PP. Ashwin has Bowled 7 Overs during the PP. 2nd ODI He again took out the Top Scorer M Guptil during the Batting PP and he Bowled 4 overs During the PP and 3 Overs after 40th Over.3rd ODI, He took out S Styris and N McCullum (2nd and 3rd Highest run scorer, 1st Remain N.O) and again he bowled 3 Overs in the Batting PP which Taken from 45th over. 4th ODI - B McCullum and R Taylor both During PP and again He bowled 6 Overs in the PP and 2 More Overs after 40th Over. 5th ODI, He taken out Styris, K Mills and T Southee. He again bowled 2 overs during the PP. Batting PP is not Taken. Whenever NZ Taken Batting PP Ashwin Bowled 3 overs out of 5 in all 4 Times and overall he bowled 22 Overs During PP out of his 47

Posted by vpk23 on (December 13, 2010, 6:03 GMT)

COMING BACK TO THE CURIOS CASE OF THE PROXY CAPTAIN

WHICH SUCH FLATTERING FIGURES FOR A STAND IN CAPTIAN I GEZ ANY SELECTION PANEL WILL HAVE A TOUGH TIME DECIDING WHICH CAPTIAN TO GO WITH...DOHNI WILL BE HAVE A LOT THRU HIS HEAD..

FEELS LIKE DOHNI LITERALLY HAVE TO GO DOWN ON BOTH HIS DHO KNEES IN FRONT OF THE SELECTORS TO SECURE HIS CAPTIANCY IN THE LONG RUN...CHEERS!!!!!!

Posted by D.Sharma on (December 13, 2010, 2:38 GMT)

Another overrated TN guy like Vijay. Most of his wickets are those of tail enders. IPL was his only decent performance like Vijay.

Posted by AvidCricFan on (December 12, 2010, 20:12 GMT)

Unlike what some others are trumpeting about Yusouf, I think Yuvraj is still a proven choice. Yusouf's records are very ordinary and fires once in 20 innings. This is not consistent performance that will be needed in the world cup. Yuvraj has delivered better batting consistency than what Pathan has shown so far. In the spin bowling, I would rate both to be similar. The real finds are Ashwin and Parthiv. Parthiv was ignored for long time inspite of consistent domestic performance. I would not consider even Dhoni's position for granted any more.

Posted by sportsfansav on (December 12, 2010, 17:50 GMT)

Glad to see all the fringe players and youngsters making most of the opportunity given to them. It is very encouraging to see that they're all capable of carrying the torch forward. I would have liked to see Irfan Pathan given a chance too. The selectors shouldn't give up on him. I'm sure he can make an impactful comeback.

Posted by   on (December 12, 2010, 9:15 GMT)

Pathan has a good comeback..but need to prove his consistency..he has faltered in the past. But never the less an exciting Bat on his Day!!

Posted by Ulysses on (December 12, 2010, 6:41 GMT)

The world cup team:

First 11: Sehwag, Tendulkar, Gambhir, Yuvaraj, Dhoni, Raina, Pathan, Harbhajan, Zaheer, Nehra, Ishant

Bench: Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Ashwin and Praveen Kumar

Posted by vpk23 on (December 12, 2010, 5:39 GMT)

MAYBE WE WILL GET TO SEE AN EPIC AGAIN..

WHAT ABOUT " A SREE SHAUNT REDEMPTION"

Posted by ms.arjun on (December 12, 2010, 4:18 GMT)

Ashwiin has grwon as a real international player. His form is getting better from this years ipl, where he was not afraid to bowl to some of the batting giants in powerplays and he delivered too. Bhajji and Ashwin would make a perfect duo in one day circuit. But selectors wouldl still go for 3 pacers and 1 spinner and few part time bowlers. I am just afraid that he might end up like macgill, who never really got a good chance, because of warne and his accomplishments were always in shadows. Picking AShwin over Bhajii is like never as of now until Bhajji goes wicketless and gives more than 60 runs every match for almost 50 mathces, given Dhoni's trust on his players.

Posted by   on (December 12, 2010, 0:25 GMT)

i really don't think harbhajan should be picked merely on laurels of the past. based on current form, perhaps ashwin should be given the thumbs up ahead of bhajji. this apart, his versatility and ability to bowl in powerplays gives dhoni an extra option. with yusuf in at 7 with his destructive batting and spinning capabilities, and raina as an intelligent part-timer, there will be no need for a second purebred spinner.

Sehwag, Sachin, Gambhir, Kohli, Raina, Dhoni, Pathan, Ashwin, P.Kumar, Khan and Nehra. (I'd like to play Yuvraj as well but sadly, the team only permits for 11). That being said, our bench strength is probably the best in the world with people like M.Vijay, S.Tiwary, Patel and maybe even Yuvraj Singh on it.

Posted by SudeeptaMajhee on (December 11, 2010, 20:31 GMT)

Hi Mr ABP235, I want a little changes on ur listed batting line up... Sehwag, Sachin, Gambhir, Yubraj, Raina, Dhoni, Yusuf, Harbhajan, Zaheer, Praveen, Nehra and on bench Kohali, Ojha, Munaf and one more all-rounder. I think Yubraj is better player than Kohali, although Yubraj is not in good form, but we all know what he can do on his day...

One more thing we are badly missing few old starts like Irfan, RP, Kaif... I dont know what happen to these guys...but they sud improve their skill and try to get back their place in team....

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 18:15 GMT)

Harbhajan should get the message now.......the way Ashwin bowled he should get the world cup ticket........Bhajji should remember he is a bowler..so bowling wicketless 10 overs and batting like batsmen will not do the work........

Posted by sweetspot on (December 11, 2010, 14:17 GMT)

Ashwin is a brainy bowler, who could go for a few once in a while, but for most part, he is tough to negotiate, because he's a wonderful talent when the boil is on. There are at least 4 Test playing sides in the world that would buy him if they can. Let's not forget he started off as an opening batsman! All the exchanges here indicate India is RICH in this department. May this convert to success!

Posted by Alok505 on (December 11, 2010, 13:48 GMT)

ashwin need to be get a chance in the world cup , bcoze he is so good in death overs & powerplays , even he can be dangerious than harbhajan sure,

Posted by AvidCricFan on (December 11, 2010, 13:45 GMT)

Ashwin is a good find and he can bat too. However, with Bhajji firmly in place for righ or wrong reasons, Ashwin may have to warm the bench. It was nice to see Parthiv Patel back in action. He has consistently performed very well in the domestic games and has shown much better technique and temparament than other backup WKs like Saha and Karthik. Hope he gets more chances going forward. Rohit Sharma again failed to capitalized on these opportunities. He had decent scores but not good enough to draw attention.

Posted by CandidIndian on (December 11, 2010, 13:19 GMT)

Finally Ashwin getting chance to play for India, no wonder he did well.He has much better temperament than R.Jadeja who just gives up under pressure.Ashwin is doing well in domestic cricket for long if he got chance instead of Jadeja earlier he could have done much better with bat and ball than Jadeja.If he learns how to bowl DUSRA he will be more dangerous and useful bowler .

Posted by Arok on (December 11, 2010, 13:07 GMT)

Pls be reminded that all great bowlers have started their careers as local bowlers only. Ojha is not a bad bowler at all, he has delivered in the past; at the same time Ashwin has been performing really really well in the recent past as well as in his previous domestic and IPL assignments. Also, Ashwin is very handy with the bat, given a chance he can become a reliable batsman in the lower order also; he has the ability and talent to play long innings with the bat. More than anything else his attitude is very pleasing and good than many other young talents in the team. Come on Ashwin prove us once more, this time in SA..

Posted by vpk23 on (December 11, 2010, 11:24 GMT)

ALL I WOULD SUGGEST IS GO WITH AGE OLD SAYING ' STRIKE WHILE THE IRON IS HOT'..GET THE STEAM ROLLING HOT GUYS ON THE BURNING DECK AND THEY ARE SURE TO DELIVER.TALENT OR NO TALENT...

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 10:36 GMT)

hey pinku sabat ashwin is not local player he is a superb bowler he is bowling superbly ojha only local player he will be hit for atleast 5 or 6 sixers a match if he bowls

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 10:23 GMT)

yes... i do support Pinku.. Ojha shud be picked ahead of ashwin.. i agree that ashwin is a great talent.. he shud be in the team, but not for the WC.. bcoz of 2 reasons: he is not tested under 100 bar pressure yet.. how ll he react wen he was hit for 2 or 3 sixes in his 1st over by, say, chris gayle or AB de villiers? another reason: we already have bhajji for off spin, 2 off spinners wil be a luxury.. ojha has handled all types of pressure, delivered under pressure, and forms a nice combo wit bhajji.. he shud be there..

Posted by BeeArr on (December 11, 2010, 10:14 GMT)

what is so world class about P.Ohja

Posted by ABP235 on (December 11, 2010, 10:02 GMT)

Ashwin's talent was always there to see, but he was not given proper opportunity because India was so obsessed with Harbhajan despite his repeated failures. Even now, when Harbhajan returns, they will stick to Bhajji, and our chances will go in thin air once again. Bhajji has lost the ability to bowl the middle overs, leave alone the power play ones. Same will apply when other seniors return - there wont be a place for Parthiv Patel. There will be a tough competition for 2 middle order places as Sehwag and Sachin return to the top and also that Gambhir will have to move down to No3 leaving the spot for the little master which will upset the opening combination! It appears Yusuf Pathan has sealed one spot in the WC team but he has shown inconsistency in the past. So the most likely team (as per selectors or Dhoni) for WC will be: Sehwag, Sachin, Gambhir, Kohli, Raina, Dhoni, Yusuf, Harbhajan, Zaheer, Praveen, Nehra. Now where is place for Vijay,Parthiv,Yuvraj,Ashwin, Munaf,Ozha?

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 9:53 GMT)

how dare you call him a local bowler when he is performing . he represents a country and performing . he has been reason for his states success. better you dont be partial before commenting any others.ojha will be replaced by aswin in test if given oppourtunity.

Posted by vpk23 on (December 11, 2010, 9:50 GMT)

Cheers Ghambir & boys!! Great Effort!

But boys remember lets take it series by series and leave the world cup for the month of Feb. Before that make sure we do well in South Africa. Get the point. Our morale make sure is HIGH AFTER THE SOUTH AFRICAN TOUR. PERIOD!!! THE WORLD CUP CAN WAIT. MIND YOU THE SCENARIO CAN CHANGE IN MATTER OF WEEKS. FOCUS AND MAKE SURE THAT. We are all backing you guys.

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 9:14 GMT)

@Pinku Sabat, wow showing ur local here. P Ojha can't even think about bowling in the Bowling Power plays alone leave it bowling in the Batting power play or in the Slog overs. P ojha just too flat and no Variations and never flights the ball. He is just a wicket to Wicket bowler and his SR in Test and his Avg in Tests shows all despite he played all his Tests in Sub Continent and Turning Tracks, Compare both their Stats before talk

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 8:40 GMT)

I think p.ojha should be selected instead of Ashwin, bcz ojha is a world class player where Ashwin is local.........

Posted by khalith on (December 11, 2010, 7:17 GMT)

congrats guys finaly v got clean sweep against under pressured kiwis but i think we played wit more than XI players yesterday, i m talking abt umpires, y i say dis means wen v lost a match against SL due 2 poor umpiring of Mr.Kumar Dharmasena v al told that SL played wit d extra plyr K.Dharmasena, v al criticised him include my self but now v have to accept that poor umpiring cost kiwis very worst lose of dis series, ofcourse Ind played wel throughout d series but the thing is there for kiwis to feel bad abt is umpiring, wen u have al wires walki talkie every thing wit u den y dont u guys make use of it, y guys not consult wit d tv umpire wen u have doubt ofcourse it'l take time so wat ? i accept that umpirirng n keeping are the difficult jobs in cricket but there must be a rule of strict action to be against poor umpiring beware guys dis wil turn around and may happen to india also

Posted by khalith on (December 11, 2010, 7:15 GMT)

congrats guys finaly v got clean sweep against under pressured kiwis but i think we played wit more than XI players yesterday, i m talking abt umpires, y i say dis means wen v lost a match against SL due 2 poor umpiring of Mr.Kumar Dharmasena v al told that SL played wit d extra plyr K.Dharmasena, v al criticised him include my self but now v have to accept that poor umpiring cost kiwis very worst lose of dis series, ofcourse Ind played wel throughout d series but the thing is there for kiwis to feel bad abt is umpiring, wen u have al wires walki talkie every thing wit u den y dont u guys make use of it, y guys not consult wit d tv umpire wen u have doubt ofcourse it'l take time so wat ? i accept that umpirirng n keeping are the difficult jobs in cricket but there must be a rule of strict action to be against poor umpiring beware guys dis wil turn around and may happen to india also

Posted by Cricketlover645 on (December 11, 2010, 7:15 GMT)

Well,It is actually nothing to boast about. It is easy to win against poor NZ team. They also lost to bangladesh for 4-0. After all, all these wins are off flat tracks made for indian team. Go to SA and face the challange of bouncy wickets. gud luck

Posted by Raj_pandian on (December 11, 2010, 7:15 GMT)

Guys I Pathan is injured and he is not even playing ranji.... wonder why everyone are blaming the selectors for not picking him...

Posted by fkauser on (December 11, 2010, 6:46 GMT)

Ghambir the best decesion you made for this series was not playing jadeja in first 11 after 1st odi....the best team india have at present after ganguly captaincy.......ashwin is very good bowler with diffrent variation but i believe he gives lot of runs too.....infact in this series he has given 50 plus runs in two matches he take wickets but he should stop runs too.Both brother are the best all rounder in indian team but i dont know why irfan is not getting chance.Team india should play with (1:shewag:Tendulkar:Gambhir:Raina:Kohli:Dhoni:Yusuf:Irfan:Harbhajan:Zaheer:Nehra) Ashwin: Rohit: Sreeshant:Tiwari:Parthiv .......if india will play with this team we gets batting till harbhajan coz he can also come and bat.In spare we have two batsman...two bowler and one keeper.Think about this selector.......let praveen and ishanth be out coz ishanth is good for test and praveen i dont think should be played in subcontinent.

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 6:09 GMT)

It is good sign for Indian cricket. There is going to be tough competition between players for a permanent spot in the playing 11. Now players who have been performing not to their caliber, should start worrying as new breeds of talent consistently knock the selectors' doors.I think this is India's best chance to win the world cup again and maestro's only chance to be part of world cup winning team, the only milestone for him yet to achieve. My only fear is whether India has peaked performance before world cup. I hope Indian players prove me wrong once fighting for cup stats. Fingers crossed..

Posted by Pathiyal on (December 11, 2010, 5:57 GMT)

this in no way was a convincing series for india. unfortunately there was no stiff competition from dan's team although they had a good start and were able to put pressure occasionally. the series against SA will really give us the correct stance. regarding ashwin, yes he is consistant and try his varieties whenever needed.

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 5:32 GMT)

India Played Well...!India's Big Concern Is Death Bowling(40-50). Normally India Taking Wickets In Regular Intervals Upto 30 Or 35th Over Then A Pair Stands In For 5 Overs Then That Pair Smash India's Bowling In Last 5 Or 10 Overs.In My Opinion, If India Take A Wicket In Every 3 Or 4 Overs During 35-47 Then India Can Manage Death Overs (40-50). India Can Achieve It Easily By Using Well Played Pace Bowler From One Bowling End & Well Played Spin Bowler From Other Bowling End During 35-45 And Well Played Pace Bowlers During 46-50 (Normally India Use Well Played Bowlers For 40-50 & Well Played Pace Bowler After 43 Overs And Spinners For 35-40). Normally If A Pace Or Spin Bowler Get Some Early Wickets Or Contain Runs, They Used To Bowl A 6-7 Over Spell, If That Happens Then Who Will Bowl In Last 15 Important Overs.....? For Me, Any Player Should Not Bowl More Than 4 Overs In A Spell....!I Confidently Say This Method Of Bowling Will Work Well In ODIs. Does Any One Agree With Me.....?

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 5:09 GMT)

@The_Professor, Are you awake? I Pathan? Why he is in the team? Can't bowl, Can't Bat and Can't field also, He already became a R Jadeja and If u r still not aware Start to Follow Domestic Cricket or at least See IPL 3 Stats. I wonder people without following any Domestic Cricket start to curse and Bash Selectors for not Picking I Pathan. Wake up peoples

Posted by KannanSR on (December 11, 2010, 4:29 GMT)

Well Said Gauti!You have matured as a Captain ALSO.Wonderful job by this Indian ODI team.MSD might be feeling relieved,that he can afford some well deserved breaks.The courage shown by this second string Indian team is something that was missing for sometime.As put up by Gambhir it is hightime that our boys do some homework on their Fielding.World Cup Crown will come automatically.Kudos to the Seniors as well.

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 2:47 GMT)

Congrats to the Indian Team.Now if they come back from South Africa with their heads held high we can think of ourselves as a World Cup contender.

Posted by kalyanbk on (December 11, 2010, 2:15 GMT)

Ashwin should be given an opportunity in tests. He has this knack of picking wickets. Strangely CSK has chosen to release him in the IPL auction.

Posted by swaroopjammula on (December 11, 2010, 1:57 GMT)

@Hardik Jogani :its all fair and square when umpiring is concern.rohit got one in his favour so did franklyn in the 4th odi. in 5th odi gauti got one against him and nathan mccullum got one against him. @Alexk400:there is lots to boast about because this i think is india A team.and u see except for the 4th odi in none of them nz seems threatening.

Posted by The_Professor on (December 11, 2010, 1:20 GMT)

Gambhir is spot on - both Y. Pathan and Ashwin are great players and a must for the WC. India need to quickly find a fast-bowling all-rounder or they will have a very long tail. Perhaps they could go in with a pace bowler short, eg. 1.Sehwag 2.Tendulkar 3.Gamhir 4.Kohli 5.Yuvraj 6.Dhoni 7.Raina 8.Y.Pathan 9.I.Pathan 10.Harbhajan 11.Zaheer Reserves - Ashwin/ Pathiv (wk)/ Praveen/ Nehra/ S, Tiwary/ R. Sharma? Only question mark would be on the last name. All the above players get top rating for talent and performance. Slight question mark over commitment towards team for Kohli and Rohit.

Posted by   on (December 11, 2010, 0:34 GMT)

@Alexk400 Just in case you have not noticed we have removed almost all the bigshots. Sachin, Sehwag, Dhoni, Gambhir, Ishant, Zaheer(last match), Harbhajan, Raina and kept weakening the team by even replacing the likes of Sreesanth(who is coming back to form) and still won re-soundingly!

Posted by MasterClass on (December 11, 2010, 0:23 GMT)

I confess I'm a HUGE Gambhir fan, but his captaincy was even a revelation to me! Way to go Gauti!! It was so refreshing to see him set aggressive field to support the bowlers. And the young guns responded under his leadership. On a side note: @Alexk400 - This was the 2nd string ODI team, and it's not only the fact that they won 5-0 (after sealing the series 3-0), but the way they overhauled NZ every time with utter ease! He and every Ind have a right to be proud! Of course SA is the bigger test, but his "no mercy", "proud to play for India" attitude is great and exactly what the current crop of youngsters need (as opposed to the Yuvi-types)! I hope more youngsters should follow his example!

Posted by indianpunter on (December 11, 2010, 0:01 GMT)

will someone please show R. Jadeja the door? You were a pretender for a long time. Now the real deal has arrived. Thanks. Your job is over.

Posted by Bytheway on (December 10, 2010, 23:46 GMT)

Ashwin is India's #1 bowler in any form of the game. Even if India play two offspinners, he must play Tests in SA. India need to improve their fielding (ha ha ha) and bowling at the death if they are to win the World Cup.

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 22:32 GMT)

not unhappy that india won the series but gotta feel bad for the kiwis against whom lots of bad umpiring decisions were made...

Posted by piperatom on (December 10, 2010, 22:29 GMT)

This is smart of Gambhir - mentioning fielding as India's weakness. Kohli and Raina are the only decent fielders we have. The good thing for India is that we have 5 ODIs against SA before the world cup. That will really tell us where we stand.

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 21:18 GMT)

world cup in India means no threat of fast bowling maybe intiall 10-20 overs maximum, fielding is our problem do agree team should be 15 palyers Shewag/ghmabir/sachin/yuvraj/raina/ yusuf/ dhoni/ harbhajan/ zaheer/nehra/praveen/ kholi/ohaja/ ishant/ p patel

Posted by royalg on (December 10, 2010, 21:16 GMT)

defo find of the series is CHENNAI SUPERKINGS ONE AND ONLY RAVICHADRAN ASHWIN, HAS TO BE SAID BUT HE IS BETTER THAN BHAJJI WHEN IT CUMS TO BOWLING, GENUINE WICKTETAKKER AND USES HIS VARIATIONS VERY WELL, THERE IS NO WAY I CUD SEE BHAJJI BOWLING ANYWHERE NEAR AS GUD AS TAT, EVEN VETTORI HAS TO ADMIT HE'S BEEN PRETTY ODINARY THIS SERIES COMPARED TO ASHWIN, JUS HPE HE CAN BE A BIT MRE AGGRESIVE AS A BATSMAN IN ODI'S WILL CUM IN HANDY DOWN THE ODER, AND ITS GUD INDIA HAS FOUND A BACKUP OPENER PLUS WICKTERKEEPER IN PARTHIV PATEL, BUT STILL SAHA IS A BETTER KEEPER, BUT WUD PREFER PARTHIV, ALSO VERY IMPRESSED IS BY MUNAF'S CONSISTENCY, NT MANY BOWLERS HAV CONSISTENCY AT ALL, HOPE EVERYTHING GELS TOGETHER IN TIME OF WORLD CUP,

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 20:27 GMT)

Thats true Gambhir. Now after Parthiv Patel performing so well in two consecutive matches, we may have the problem of aplenty. This world cup has all the making of a pure entertainer as the team is shaping up nicely. Hope team India doesn't suffer a bumpy ride in between at the proteas.

Posted by Alexk400 on (December 10, 2010, 19:45 GMT)

It is easy to win agains BAD NZ team. They also lost to bangladesh for 4-0. It is nothing to boast about.

Posted by yuva19 on (December 10, 2010, 19:41 GMT)

Also bowling in the depth overs are a great concern...india need to improve in that particular area...

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 19:34 GMT)

now india team look like 2000 to 2007 aus team. but i still feel bowling and fielding depart must be imporve more b4 world cup. anyway all the best India bring world cup back again to India. .Chake de India.. We can able to do it.. keep this spirit always..

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 19:29 GMT)

Gambhir is certainly talking the right talk - encouraging his players, pointing out errors etc. It'll be interesting to see how he fares when the going gets a little rocky. He is known for his short temper ...

Posted by ssenthil on (December 10, 2010, 19:10 GMT)

I always Believe Ravichandran will become the Best Spinner in India Soon and He delivers at International Stage also. Great to see, I m following him ever since He took TN to Vijay Hazare Title(2008-09 Domestic 50 Overs Tournament). I was surprised He captain the Side with many Seniors in the team but He deserved it and he is a Good Batsman Too. Hope can repeat this Performance against other Top Teams also at a consistent basis and Soon He will find a place in the Test Team also. All the best to Ravichandran Ashwin

Posted by mrmonty on (December 10, 2010, 19:09 GMT)

Too bad he will be left out in favor of Harbhajan, who has been under-performing for years.

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 18:55 GMT)

I dont follow the ODIs closely these days but it was good to see India not stepping off the gas pedal after 3-0. It augurs well for teh emerging unrelenting pursuit of wins and teh bench strength seems to be quite comfortable. However we need to note that this 5-0 win came against a weak Kiwi side whose spirit was already broken and confidence shattered by a 4-0 drubbing in the hands of Bangladesh before they crossed over to India.

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 18:39 GMT)

harbhajan and ashwin can do wonders in world cup 2011.

Posted by landl47 on (December 10, 2010, 18:26 GMT)

Well, I guess it's good that India did as well as Bangladesh in the ODIs against New Zealand. Now comes the real test, in South Africa. If India can win there, they'll be set up for another 1-2 series, against England in England in 2011. Of course, if India lose both series, they'll be down with Sri Lanka and Australia, so they should be motivated.

Posted by sweetspot on (December 10, 2010, 17:53 GMT)

What I most like about Ashwin - he is always looking to get the batsman OUT! An attacking spinner after Kumble is good news for India. Ashwin and Ojha make a great combination, and Harbhajan can fit into that wonderful #7 position.

Posted by vikicork on (December 10, 2010, 17:46 GMT)

Indian starting eleven for world cup should be Tendulkar,Sehwag,Gambhir,Yuvraj,Raina,Dhoni,Y Pathan,Harbhajan,Zaheer,Praveen

the last spot would be either taken by the third seamer in Munaf or Nehra or the extra batsman in Virat Kohli ,probably the extra seamer considering i dont see 20 overs being bowled by Yuvraj,Pathan

no room in starting eleven for Ashwin unless they play him instead of Yusuf in which case they might be able to take Kohli instead of the third seamer and divide the fifth bowlers overs between Yuvraj and Raina

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 17:44 GMT)

Well done India....! There is going to be a big challenge for Indian team selectors. But it is their responsibility to select a team which can get the World Cup for India...........

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 17:42 GMT)

well said gambhir, fielding needs to be improved, also another important area is bowling at death overs, india need to do better in death overs and avoid giving 30-40 extra runs, if they stand to wear the imperial crown. MS Dhoni please take a note of it.

Posted by Nampally on (December 10, 2010, 17:23 GMT)

Gambhir made appropriate comments. Ashwin has been very badly treated by the Indian Selectors.Harbhajan with his current form & fitness does not deserve a place in the team as a bowler.Ashwin completely outclasses him. Will Ashwin make the Xi despite Dhoni & Selectors reluctance remains to be seen.Gambhir is also 100% correct about the Indian fielding. Raina, Kohli and Yuvraj are 3 good fielders in the side. Others are average are below average with the Pace bowlers like Munaf Patel and Zaheer needing gross improvement in the fielding department. Catches win matches. Bowling also needs to be improved with length & direction both need consistency. Currently India has one open spot each for pace bowling, spin bowling and batting. It looks like India will have to decide between Yusuf & Harbhajan (spin),Raina & Kohli (batting), Munaf & Nehra(pace). Sachin, Sehwag, Gambhir, Yuvraj, Dhoni, Ashwin, Zaheer & Kumar may be other 8. But the Selectors have the final say & no one can predict it.

Posted by muski on (December 10, 2010, 17:21 GMT)

Most Certainly Ashwin is the find of the series. He should be tried out in SA as well. He could be the support at the other end which Bhajji is looking forward to. As I have maintained much before the start of this series, Ashwin will be the dark horse for India in the WC.He has most certainly shut the case for the Ojhas and Mishras. At this juncture let us give credit to Lalit Modi- it was his IPL that has helped us unearth talents like Ashwin and Tiwary.

Posted by   on (December 10, 2010, 17:06 GMT)

Aswin took 11 wickets in 5 matches while Sreesanth took 8 wickets in 2 matches. gotta praise him too Gauti.

Posted by gaithersburgman on (December 10, 2010, 17:06 GMT)

Finally a Captain has openly acknowledged the significance of fielding. It is equally as important as Batting or Bowling. Well done Gautam. Well done India.

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