India v Australia, 3rd ODI, Delhi October 31, 2009

A partnership made in batting heaven

Yuvraj is stylish and makes batting look easy; Dhoni works hard without bothering about aesthetics. And yet, when they combine, they produce something special
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Batting together in the middle-order, MS Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh have saved matches, brought about momentum shifts, set up victories and accomplished so much more in only 49 partnerships. They are an odd pair: Yuvraj is stylish and makes batting look easy; Dhoni works hard without bothering about aesthetics. And yet, when they combine, they produce something special. To the list of great middle-over associations - Arjuna Ranatunga and Aravinda de Silva, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Yousuf, Michael Bevan and Steve Waugh - Dhoni and Yuvraj can easily be added.

When Dhoni joined Yuvraj at the Feroz Shah Kotla, India had slipped from 37 for 0 to 53 for 3, only 16 runs had come from the last 6.4 overs, and the Kotla pitch appeared as devious as it did during the Champions League. Both batsmen looked ungainly and unconvincing initially and scored only 19 in the next six overs. Then Yuvraj broke his shackles without taking any risks by sweeping Nathan Hauritz to fine leg and flicking Moises Henriques to midwicket for fours in back-to-back overs. They were at it again.

Then they started running on intuition, turning three-fourths into ones, and one and three-quarters into twos. There were some poor calls too, but that didn't lead to mistrust between the batsmen. Odd boundaries came but the run-rate was not an issue, sensible batting was. Around the 34th over, they realised the team was out of danger and, even before the ball was changed, Yuvraj opened up. His classy hitting met Dhoni's awkwardness perfectly as it so often does. Batting together in the middle-order, they have now scored 1991 runs. None of the pairs that have scored more are in business now. Today's 148 was their ninth century partnership. For a change they were separated before victory, but Dhoni is not the man for late twists.

The Kotla pitch took batsmen out of their comfort zones but, with each other, Dhoni and Yuvraj find comfort and in their case familiarity breeds runs. Dhoni has often spoken of the reassurance Yuvraj brings. As a batsman Dhoni knows he doesn't need to take risks as long as Yuvraj is around. As a captain Dhoni knows Yuvraj is his go-to man, his Powerplay specialist and his finisher. That Dhoni is a surer captain when Yuvraj is playing is obvious.

Coincidentally it's for the same reasons that Yuvraj likes batting with Dhoni. "I am very comfortable batting with him," he said. "Our running between the wickets has always been good and, whenever there is pressure on me, Mahi [Dhoni] is someone who can get the odd boundary. He has become a bit slow, but he still manages a boundary when the pressure is on. Last game he was fantastic. I think he deserved to be Man of the Match today."

There share mutual respect, banter and a sense of purpose. One can sense when the other is under pressure and both are capable of doing something about it. As Yuvraj said in jest, Dhoni has slowed down a bit, but he can hustle the opposition; he has strength too, to run endlessly or hit sudden powerful shots. Theirs is an instinctive partnership. "We don't really assign goals, we play according to the situation," Yuvraj said.

Dhoni has made a lot of his ODI runs in Yuvraj's presence. But Yuvraj has added more with Rahul Dravid than he has done with Dhoni. When asked to compare batting with both those batsmen, Yuvraj gave glimpses into why he was enjoying batting with Dhoni more. "They are both different types of players," Yuvraj said. "Mahi is more dynamic … not these days. Rahul was more, you know, picking up the singles, getting into partnerships. Mahi is someone who can obviously make it up in the end. No doubt Rahul Dravid is a great player, but the way Dhoni bats in one-day cricket is something we should all learn from."

There's a higher level of comfort with Dhoni. In three minutes Yuvraj made three jokes about Dhoni, but paid him three rich compliments too. While Yuvraj-Dravid was a profitable partnership while it lasted, Dravid was a senior and perhaps Yuvraj didn't express himself as completely as he does in Dhoni's presence.

His relationship with Dhoni could easily have been complex. Yuvraj would have had captaincy ambitions when Dravid resigned and Virender Sehwag was out of the side, but it was Dhoni, about a hundred ODIs his junior, who was chosen to lead India. That doesn't come in either man's way.

For Yuvraj tonight's 78, with his team in strife on the slowest one-day surface he has played on, was a personally satisfying performance. "I often get criticism from you guys [the media] that I don't play well on slow wickets, that I am not a good player of spin, so it's always a challenge for me to prove you guys wrong, and I did that well today."

It was his day and yet Yuvraj said Dhoni should have been Man of the Match. Had Dhoni been given the award, he would have said the same thing about Yuvraj.

Sidharth Monga is a staff writer at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Bingaaa on November 1, 2009, 22:26 GMT

    Aussies gonna strike back n win this series 5-2...And if india wud have been missing as much players as aus r i dont think india wud have been able to compete as aus r..Aussies r gonna hit india hard n the 4th odi!!! Cmon Aussie!!!!!!!!

  • pradeep_tjp on November 1, 2009, 15:42 GMT

    i dont know what the hell is arvin is talkin. in 2007 world cup everyone faileed sachin and dhoni got 0 against srilanka and we lost the cup. all blame is goin to dravid. he fought for shewag and irfan and didnt get them. he won odi series against south africa which was india's first in foriegn soil won series against eng and wi. so dont always blame dravid. he is the most selfless cricketer ever to play for india. sachin is a great player but also the worst captain india had. if he is enjoyin the game and wants to play more people accept it. but when it comes to kumble,ganguly and dravid this is not the case. if sachin fails in 5 to 9 matches he is supported by bcci but for dravid 5 bad matches in 2007 he was removed from odi. this is the way others are treated

  • Farce-Follower on November 1, 2009, 15:40 GMT

    @Arvin: We are talking Cricket here (perhaps you were alluding to some other game). Dravid plays for the other team to win??? Dude, you are talking about the guy who earned us our greatest victories and never took the easy way out. Dravid offers to open in Tests and play # 4 in ODIs and not the other way around (unlike some legends). Not for him the easy fields and shine off the ball. Amen.

  • Victorian-Roo on November 1, 2009, 15:37 GMT

    Haha...another sucker called JackJak! Listen bro, I think you've started watching cricket from 2009 i guess . India toured WI in 2006. They beat 'em there. They toured England in 2007, they beat 'em as well which your so-called Champion side couldn't do it in 2 chances. We toured Kiwi-Land, beat 'em as well. I'll agree to the known fact that in the past India has struggled a lot on foreign pitches. But this team is different. They have been unfortunate on occasions but no excuses, they need 2 pull up their socks & move on. As for the Aussies, they beat teams like Kiwis, English in the champs trophy, BIG DEAL. Pakistan nearly strangled them. If ur saying dat their half side ain't there. Then what abt the CB series in 2008. You guys had all your top players then. So what went wrong? Aussies were beaten in their own backyard. Ur saying the quality of pitches here are horrible. FYI, the Aussies have always been a bunch of suckers against spin bowling & will continue to be so. So suck it up

  • Nata on November 1, 2009, 14:41 GMT

    Sachin is an over-rated player???? KiwiRocker you seems to be a kiddo watching cricket. Grow up man!!!

  • arvin on November 1, 2009, 13:53 GMT

    kiwirocker overrated sachin really rocked kiwis during lindia's last visit to nz... guess you are still being haunted by that... and dravid was not only in team but captain 2007 and all knows what happened to india then... it is only foreign coaches/captains or players particulary from nz/aus who want dravid in india's 1-day team coz they know he will mostly play for them to win...

  • JackJak on November 1, 2009, 13:49 GMT

    If India had batted first then India would have struggled too.. the australians had to bowl with a wet soap so it wasnt a game to really talk about. If India had bowled second we would have been thrashed. When one cant grip the ball how can the win be termed creditable. Of course its not india's fault that there is dew but one should look at these kind of games from a fuller perspective and lets not say Oh India did this and that. Also half their players are not there..No brett lee. no payne. no haddin no clark no bracken. So stop the hype. Look at what India wins when it comes to Big Tournaments...Absolutely 0. Australia are miles ahead. india is good only in these kind of sick grounds where the ball bounces knee height.

  • Mahendra_Ishant_Pathan on November 1, 2009, 13:43 GMT

    Mr.KiwiRocker....i dont think it's 4th string austrilain team.....with the likes of ricky ponting, mike hussey, shane watson, mitchell johnson, nathan ahurtiz...how can u call any team...4th string.......

  • Mahendra_Ishant_Pathan on November 1, 2009, 13:38 GMT

    I would like to comment upon what Mr.POPCORN has to say......I dont think umpiring is be below par. Not atleast when we compare to what happens when teams visit to australia......Yes, i agree to fact that there should be atleast one neutral umpire.... Firstly, I completely agree with ricky ponting decision. It was dead straight. Even hawkeye showed that ball would have hit middle stump. Same with cameron white. Technology showed that ball actually clipped bat before hitting that pad. Coming to YUVI decision...it's bad decision....which usually happens in any game....But i believe that aussies should have given one good practice session before the game

  • blackerthanyourhate on November 1, 2009, 13:34 GMT

    Aussies are in for a huge challenge ahead,and it seems every match would be even more tougher for them..Ponting instead of being a muppet and over emphasizing on his so called complains,should focus more on the game.The kitchen is hot here,if aussies can stand the heat, they should stay out of the kitchen

  • Bingaaa on November 1, 2009, 22:26 GMT

    Aussies gonna strike back n win this series 5-2...And if india wud have been missing as much players as aus r i dont think india wud have been able to compete as aus r..Aussies r gonna hit india hard n the 4th odi!!! Cmon Aussie!!!!!!!!

  • pradeep_tjp on November 1, 2009, 15:42 GMT

    i dont know what the hell is arvin is talkin. in 2007 world cup everyone faileed sachin and dhoni got 0 against srilanka and we lost the cup. all blame is goin to dravid. he fought for shewag and irfan and didnt get them. he won odi series against south africa which was india's first in foriegn soil won series against eng and wi. so dont always blame dravid. he is the most selfless cricketer ever to play for india. sachin is a great player but also the worst captain india had. if he is enjoyin the game and wants to play more people accept it. but when it comes to kumble,ganguly and dravid this is not the case. if sachin fails in 5 to 9 matches he is supported by bcci but for dravid 5 bad matches in 2007 he was removed from odi. this is the way others are treated

  • Farce-Follower on November 1, 2009, 15:40 GMT

    @Arvin: We are talking Cricket here (perhaps you were alluding to some other game). Dravid plays for the other team to win??? Dude, you are talking about the guy who earned us our greatest victories and never took the easy way out. Dravid offers to open in Tests and play # 4 in ODIs and not the other way around (unlike some legends). Not for him the easy fields and shine off the ball. Amen.

  • Victorian-Roo on November 1, 2009, 15:37 GMT

    Haha...another sucker called JackJak! Listen bro, I think you've started watching cricket from 2009 i guess . India toured WI in 2006. They beat 'em there. They toured England in 2007, they beat 'em as well which your so-called Champion side couldn't do it in 2 chances. We toured Kiwi-Land, beat 'em as well. I'll agree to the known fact that in the past India has struggled a lot on foreign pitches. But this team is different. They have been unfortunate on occasions but no excuses, they need 2 pull up their socks & move on. As for the Aussies, they beat teams like Kiwis, English in the champs trophy, BIG DEAL. Pakistan nearly strangled them. If ur saying dat their half side ain't there. Then what abt the CB series in 2008. You guys had all your top players then. So what went wrong? Aussies were beaten in their own backyard. Ur saying the quality of pitches here are horrible. FYI, the Aussies have always been a bunch of suckers against spin bowling & will continue to be so. So suck it up

  • Nata on November 1, 2009, 14:41 GMT

    Sachin is an over-rated player???? KiwiRocker you seems to be a kiddo watching cricket. Grow up man!!!

  • arvin on November 1, 2009, 13:53 GMT

    kiwirocker overrated sachin really rocked kiwis during lindia's last visit to nz... guess you are still being haunted by that... and dravid was not only in team but captain 2007 and all knows what happened to india then... it is only foreign coaches/captains or players particulary from nz/aus who want dravid in india's 1-day team coz they know he will mostly play for them to win...

  • JackJak on November 1, 2009, 13:49 GMT

    If India had batted first then India would have struggled too.. the australians had to bowl with a wet soap so it wasnt a game to really talk about. If India had bowled second we would have been thrashed. When one cant grip the ball how can the win be termed creditable. Of course its not india's fault that there is dew but one should look at these kind of games from a fuller perspective and lets not say Oh India did this and that. Also half their players are not there..No brett lee. no payne. no haddin no clark no bracken. So stop the hype. Look at what India wins when it comes to Big Tournaments...Absolutely 0. Australia are miles ahead. india is good only in these kind of sick grounds where the ball bounces knee height.

  • Mahendra_Ishant_Pathan on November 1, 2009, 13:43 GMT

    Mr.KiwiRocker....i dont think it's 4th string austrilain team.....with the likes of ricky ponting, mike hussey, shane watson, mitchell johnson, nathan ahurtiz...how can u call any team...4th string.......

  • Mahendra_Ishant_Pathan on November 1, 2009, 13:38 GMT

    I would like to comment upon what Mr.POPCORN has to say......I dont think umpiring is be below par. Not atleast when we compare to what happens when teams visit to australia......Yes, i agree to fact that there should be atleast one neutral umpire.... Firstly, I completely agree with ricky ponting decision. It was dead straight. Even hawkeye showed that ball would have hit middle stump. Same with cameron white. Technology showed that ball actually clipped bat before hitting that pad. Coming to YUVI decision...it's bad decision....which usually happens in any game....But i believe that aussies should have given one good practice session before the game

  • blackerthanyourhate on November 1, 2009, 13:34 GMT

    Aussies are in for a huge challenge ahead,and it seems every match would be even more tougher for them..Ponting instead of being a muppet and over emphasizing on his so called complains,should focus more on the game.The kitchen is hot here,if aussies can stand the heat, they should stay out of the kitchen

  • zak123kaif on November 1, 2009, 13:28 GMT

    For sure their partnership is made in heaven.when these two are togethwer at crease we(indian fans) know that there is no score that is unachievable and india will win it from any situation.their partnership reminds me of the great opening pair of sachin-ganguly.hope they will combine to produce more runs and victories for india.

  • Sachinism-LM on November 1, 2009, 13:02 GMT

    Its been another fabulous knock frm Dhoni-Yuvi combo. May be yuvi was nt tat successful in OZ, but still he played 2 gud knocks in the last 3 matches. Not 1ly this series both have played exceptionally well for more than 2 yrs now. The reason that india lost in the main evnts lik CT, WC recently is tat thy lost many KEY players during those series lik viru, yuvi n zak.. So when India was forced to make changes.. And btw, how many teams did Aus beat in the CT? Struggled against a weak WI side, and the match v Ind was wash out and v Pak was a close one. And as one of the member said they beat Eng and NZ in the last 2 matches, how far is those team rated now?

  • Ilin on November 1, 2009, 12:56 GMT

    Australia is scared of india,as its only india who never surrenders before aussies in last 10 years and alo beat them umpteen times,even in kangroos home grounds.ponting never wo a single test in india.he captained 9tests against india and won only 2,lost 4.steve waugh too was a failure against india as captain. that shows the indian dominance over aussies.......as they equipped with best bowlers in their team at all that time.

  • vikram.vairavan on November 1, 2009, 12:50 GMT

    hey popcorn dude !! get your stats right !!

    Ponting was out lbw much before lbw to ravindra jadeja which hit in line and was hitting middle but was not given and the he was out again which was given.White was unfortunate but he was given out by sahiba not the new umpire and there also the snico meter indicated something but still it should have been not out !!

    icc umpiring panel issues notices on umpiring and they now ask umpires to give batsmen out even though they are forward if they are certain the ball is hitting. remember world best umpire simon taufel giving dhoni out in the champions trophy match against pakistan where he was two times as forward as ponting was in this case. yuvraj was out before 20 runs before thats it ! ponting was also out 25 runs before .For your info 3 balls were used while india was batting ,how many more do you want ! a ball an over your bowlers were not able to adjust to the condition acept that. reply if you have a point else dont bother.

  • timus6778 on November 1, 2009, 11:54 GMT

    it is a good piece of work by Sid Monga...keep up the good work.. dhoni and yuvi, in recent times have added a spark to the limited overs Indian side..which was never seen before.dravid is a great player...but dhoni has,too,been more than impressive..2 odi player of the year ..that speaks for mahi..its just one way in indian cricket..maahi ve.

  • PrameshP on November 1, 2009, 10:23 GMT

    Dhoni n Yubraj did very well to won this match for India. But they are not good enough temproment away from home..

  • Victorian-Roo on November 1, 2009, 10:18 GMT

    People are complaining about the nature of the pitches....what do they want? Aussie kind of pitches??? Learn to play spin bowling and then come over here. In England & New Zealand, the ball swings, in Australia, there's bounce, in SA it seams and in the sub-continent, it spins. When the pitch has bounce and pace...its a wonderful pitch but when it spins....the quality of the wicket becomes poor. Hah, laughable! Spin has always been Australia's weakness. They shouldn't expect pitches like Australia when they come to India. When we play in Perth....will it be right on our behalf to expect spinning tracks?? On all the comments posted here, there's only one point to which i would agree and that is...India needs to win matches abroad more often than not and most importantly ICC championships. Till then, their credentials will seriously be doubted.

  • SUNDOS on November 1, 2009, 10:08 GMT

    Insightfully written.In the euphoria of a victory ,that too against Australia,India's strength has been highlighted.Now,its time Dhoni turns ruthless for the rest of the series.He will need his :"power players" to step up to the plate.Also,one feared for the behaviour of this side,but watching Dhoni not reacting to collisons while running re inforce one's belief,that abilities and talent aside,Indian cricket is in good hands.Well done Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

  • Victorian-Roo on November 1, 2009, 9:55 GMT

    KiwiRocker....don't know whether ur an Aussie or Kiwi, doesn't make a difference though. 4th string Aussie side???? If these guys can win Australia the champions trophy...they are No.1. When they lose....they become 4th or 5th string team. I seriously doubt you knowledge about the game. I guess u r one of those sick media guys. yeah right! Agreed....there were some serious goof-ups by the umpires and the ICC should really step up & do something about it rather than just gaping around. If you're saying that the Aussie side would've been the main side had McGrath, Warne, Gilly, Hayden been there. Then this Indian Team is a 3rd string side as well without Zaheer, Ganguly, Dravid, Laxman. India beat the Aussies comprehensively, down under, last year in ODIs with a fairly young side with 60% of players with only 30-40 ODIs of International Exp. At that time...the Aussie team boasted of players like Gilly, Hayden, Ricky, Johnson, Bracken etc. So wake up, stop cribbing and get ur facts right

  • East_West on November 1, 2009, 9:36 GMT

    KIWI ROCKER: 4th string Australia? Wow! Aren't you jealous that India is still a place to play cricket and yours NOT!! Your comment on umpires of Indian origin versus Pakistan tells where you are from! No wonder your team is playing in UAE and we are sure that you are NOT from KIWI! As for Sachin overrated? Dude! This guy is a legend and I don't think your country will EVER have anyone close to Sachin's stature and skills! I might be one of those asking him to retire gracefully so that India can groom young guns BUT any day I will pay every dime to watch him even after he retires!! Your hatred of Indian team is taking over your conscience!

  • bigdash on November 1, 2009, 9:25 GMT

    @ogu999....dude except australia no other team has won the last 4edition of icc events(WC and CT)..so every country is struggling to win those events not just india...and dont forget india is presently doing well in an away test series as well..b it in england australia NZ etc...so ur flat tarck bullies does'nt hold ground..'''even a major 4 nation tournament played on lively tracks then not only is the partnership no longer made iin heaven'''...what about india's CB series win??even though it was a 3nation tournament but it was in australia in lively pitches involving australia...look at SA they r also struggling in ICC events..in flat tracks for both the teams its da same pitch(batsman friendly track for both sides) so if india win on these pitches appreciate them rather than denigrating them..these r the condition on which indian players grows up so they r bound 2 b better in indian conditions unlike australia or SA who basically grows up in fast pitches and thus struggle in india.

  • East_West on November 1, 2009, 9:09 GMT

    Good writings Sid Monga! This was an awesome win! I think we played really well and Aussies had a tough time to score sans Ricky and Hussey! But what an innings from MSD and Yuvi! It has been a while since we saw a calm and composed partnership! Curbing the desire for big shots and playing according to the plan! Impressive indeed!! As for someone saying FLAT TRACK! Reaally??? If we are good on FLAT TRACK, then obviously every TOM, D and Harrey would have played on this pitch too BUT Aussies, the world's best team just couldn't that too with INDIAN pace! Need I say more! at least Ricky was gracious enough to accept the defeat! Based on the way it acted during the CT league, this pitch was a real testament for the patience, and only few had it in Australia!

  • aadh_king on November 1, 2009, 8:44 GMT

    Dear Sidharth Monga(staff writer at Cricinfo),

    What do you want to say by this horrible quote?

    "His classy hitting met 'Dhoni's awkwardness' perfectly"

    Do you think yiu can pen anything... So sad. How can you comment like that about Indian Captain's batting style, so you would comment the same about Viru on your next article (like viur's awkwardness) as well?

    Seems that you dont like to praise Dhoni's majestic performance as a whole anywhere...! Please note that you are not a common public, you are a responsible reporter of Cricinfo.

  • Mid-off on November 1, 2009, 8:12 GMT

    Is kiwirocker for real??? Sachin Tendulkar over-rated??? Which planet are you from???

  • Mid-off on November 1, 2009, 7:48 GMT

    Blah blah blah - everyione blabbing on as usual! Take one match at a time, individual condtions determine individual results.It is pointless to analyse performances relative to other situations. Recognise success and big innings, and partnerships, as they occur. If India had batted first you cannot say Australia would have won, it would have depended on how much they scored and how many Australia did. There is no way to predict what would or would not have happened. Just enjoy what happens on the day and recognise good performances as they occur, stop trying to over-analyse and criticise - its just not constructive!

  • vivekimmortal on November 1, 2009, 7:41 GMT

    I still don't understand why people have to curse Dhoni and Yuvi all the time, even when they perform. It's true that Dhoni didn't perform well in the world cup but mostly he has performed. We should look at the other players like the Raina's and the bowlers rather than blaming Dhoni and yuvi all the time. They are doing thier part very well and quite consistently too.

    Coming on to Australia, I would agree that this is the weakest ODI line-up of Australia I've ever seen and one doesn't get scared seeing this kind of line-up so that has made the series a bit less interesting than it usually was.

    I'll further add, not playing Marsh was a huge mistake from the Australian's.

  • KiwiRocker- on November 1, 2009, 7:18 GMT

    Same old story! India will probably easily win series against a 4th string Australian side thanks to poor Indian umpires. I mean there is a reason because of which none of Indian umpires is on elite panel while India's rival Pakistan has got two. India media has already started to beat drums about Dhoni and Yuvraj. They are obviously a very talented pair but my question is what of any significant they have won in recent years? India will again become an over hyped, over rated team and they will start talking about next world cup. What will happen in World cup will be same usual. I still believe Rahul Dravid should be in the team if India wants to win. Yuvraj has won one final in England in his 10 odd year career and Dhoni? Its also time that India drops their most over rated batsman Tendulkar.

  • vissu295 on November 1, 2009, 6:59 GMT

    As usual, people find ways to criticize players. What's flat about the delhi pitch? It was challenging for the players. That' how it should be! 150 run partnerships don't happen everyday, certainly not on delhi kind of pitches. Relax and learn to appreciate good things while they come or else you never will. And why only some Indian players are called FTBs? Ponting and Hayden are prime examples of HTBs in that case. Any reason why people think Indian pitches are flat? Do they include sydney,adelaide,johannesberg,christchurch in that list where 300 is the par score and the ball comes on the bat nicely with good bounce.

  • popcorn on November 1, 2009, 6:51 GMT

    It is disgraceful that ICC does not have the money to fly in a neutral umpire in place of Mark Benson, and for the third time running, they have set a dangerous precedent of having two novice local umpires. the result is there for everyone to see - Ponrting was not out - declared lbw - he was a long way forward - is the umpire a scirntist who predicted it would hit the stumps? And Cameron White did not touch the ball with his bat - yet was given out caught behind.Yuvraj was out lbw but was not given out.And how stupid can the umpires be - not allowing the ball change when there was so much dew-shows clearly partisan, partial, unfair umpires. These four incidents gave India the unfair advantage - ICC, BCCI and the umpires should hang their heads in shame. Playing with a third string side, Australia ran India close - so India can gloat all they want.

  • ogu999 on November 1, 2009, 6:14 GMT

    Yes MSN you are right they are doing the job but not when it matters.Dhoni is someone who is winning us games but not the big games. His contributions in the World Cup 2007 were 0, 0, 7 or 0,7,0 (you pick your order). Yuvraj has been pretty consistent too but when will he translate his supposed talent at the big stage or even the tests? They did prove a point to prove a point by winning T20 world cup back in 2007, but it was only the inaugural cup and many teams were yet to get a hang of the new format. No I haven't forgotten Yuvraj's assault on England and Australia in that tournament and I give him credit there. Yes indeed we all want them to do well at the next world cup (like reach the 2nd round for chrissakes!) and translate the supposed talent at the test level. Just as you said: Away from home and I repeat away from home only!

  • DAN22 on November 1, 2009, 6:00 GMT

    When India loses in matches without Yuvi, Sehwag and Zaheer we dont accept excuses. Where is the bench strength we ask...Australia can field 2 teams in the world cup and both would be in the finals...we all said...One Abhijeet quipped during the second ODI when Siddle had taken Sachin's wicket...That if Australia rest Ponting, Hussey and Siddle (with Lee and Hopes injured) then we would be equals. I would have loved to see his face. We are happy to give excuses for opponent losses...If India loses then of course we are money-chasing mercenaries or the match was fixed.

    Australia was lucky during the Champions Trophy...Their match with India was washed off and then they beat England and NWZ (How are these teams ranked btw)

  • Nipun on November 1, 2009, 5:32 GMT

    Dhoni's slow now?Since 2007,I reckon he averages 60+,with a strike-rate of about 88!Yes,now he's more of a nudger,but in the 2nd ODI he showed he can still bring out those swashbuckling sixes when he wants to.Yuvraj is the most effortless & graceful six-hitter I have ever seen!

  • nk_11 on November 1, 2009, 4:40 GMT

    Simply put dhoni is by far the best ODI batsman in world cricket today. I think his exceptional batting talent is often eclipsed by his equally wonderful captaincy. But what a player man. In future i think he will almost touch the iconic status of indian cricketing gods if he hasn't already. I think he is already there. I believe he is destined to become one of the biggest players of Indian cricketing history. And yuvi does complement him very well and together they are a thorn in the flesh for all their nemesis teams. Like Jai and Veeru.

  • coolguy85 on November 1, 2009, 4:38 GMT

    yes ogu is right. Where were these partnerships in major tournaments. To lose 3 major tournaments that too in the 1st round itself is very bad. These partnerships as pointed out only comes in small cups such as this but in major tournaments we miserably fail and ppl still talk about dhoni and yuvi as great players. Let the guys perform in next world cup at least and make it to the 2nd round

  • Karpan on November 1, 2009, 4:29 GMT

    Let us be careful not to read too much from this victory. Agreed that the situation was managed and the match salvaged well. But also remember that Australia was battling with a depleted side and i wonder what would have been the result if their full potential was available. I think we need to credit Oz for thei fight.

  • KrishSrikanth on November 1, 2009, 4:23 GMT

    Srilanka has strangled India many times over and over on similar pitches. A partnership on these sluggish wickets even against a full strength Aussie side isn't worth celebrating.

  • drsyedzia on November 1, 2009, 4:22 GMT

    What I would like to say here is that Ponting made the wrong decision batting first. Had he batted second he would have won the match. I think that the dew beat Ponting rather than India's team. The ball was slipping out of the hands of the spinners in the end and there were a lot of full tosses and wides coming out and the ball was not turning in the end as well. So Yuvraj should still not think that he has answered his critics by playing against spinners who had a ball soaked in water. If he continues to play well against spinners under ideal cricketing conditions then he would be regarded as a good player of spin. I still think quality spin is his weakness.

  • truthspeaker on November 1, 2009, 4:01 GMT

    Siddarth Mongia falls into the usual trap of building up the Indian team for a home win on a flat lifeless track, that can blunt even the like sof Lindwall and Miller - Yuvraj's lack of technique was repeatedly exposed in Auatralia, where genuine players like Sachin, Sehwag and Gambhir and Dhoni alone succeeded

    Yuvraj, Raina, Rohit, Yusuf, Irfan are failures repeatedly in Australia and South Africa - sorry, these players are flat track bullies - I will not sing India's praise unless India wins the world cup types - home wins matter little to nothing

  • msnsrinivas on November 1, 2009, 3:56 GMT

    Well if they are making the pitches benign, flat, juice less and what have you...there still has to be someone to do the job and these guys are doing it. Dhoni is someone who's winning us games at the moment and the Yuvraj has been pretty consistent too. Big tournaments yes, they have a point to prove but in a way they did that once already by winning T20 world cup back in 2007. Can anyone forget Yuvraj's assault on England and Australia in that tournament? Next world cup is an opportunity and we will get to see how they take it. But personally, I would like them to do well in the test matches, especially away from home.

  • JohnSM on November 1, 2009, 3:53 GMT

    Yesterday's track was flat, yes, terrible in fact, it wasn't deserving of a cricket match, but if you look at it, the Australian bowlers did manage to extract some bounce and pace off it,, true their wicketkeeper had a horrible time but the pitch in itself stood up and didnt affect their bowlers as much as it did the Indian bowlers early on...

    Sadly for them, the dew came in and ruined them. Hauritz who was beginning to look dangerous looked lost with the ball afterward. They sorely missed Brett Lee who can stun any opposition by sheer pace , with bounce or without ! And dont forget, this isn't the same Indian team that Dravid captained,, this team actually has a captain who can lead the side very well. And he leads by example. The Indians are always formidable at home, and Australia's excessive reliance on Michael Hussey and Ponting isn't going to take them anywhere. They need to nurture Marsh.

    Finally MSD and Yuvi, brilliant, flat track or not, big tourney or not, these guys win!

  • Quazar on November 1, 2009, 3:47 GMT

    Given the nature of the track and the game situation, this was an excellent partnership. At 53/3, and scoring being so difficult, I actually thought Australia would bag this game. But Yuvraj and Dhoni paced the chase perfectly. And showed just why they are the No. 2 and No. 1 ranked ODI players at present. I must say very well played to Australia too. Siddle and Johnson were superb with the new ball, and Bollinger was terrific too. (Actually, Australia's fast bowling stock seems to have quite a surplus at present - they have 6 guys, including Nannes, who can bowl consistently over 90mph!) A good tough match to see.

  • dp.01 on November 1, 2009, 0:12 GMT

    mahi & yuvvi are the perfect combination to drive match to the victory, india won so many matches with their finish. its amazing how the chemistry work betwen them two. of course, yuvvi is more experienced and greatest timer of the ball but way mahi has been batting in odi lately, he is the perfect exmaple to learn from. his avg is 50+ and he has been #1 ODI batsman for almost 2.5 yrs now. it will be interesting to see who steals the show from here in remaining matches..usually, my money is on yuvvi but way mahi has been performing i put it on him..

    also, when is lil master hitting 17000 - is he holding it for mumbaiaa

    somehow i felt today's game was the final game of world cup 2011

  • rajdon82 on October 31, 2009, 22:51 GMT

    As correctly pointed out, most of the great partnerships, like d'silva/Ranatunga, Steve Waugh/Bevan, and now Dhoni/Yuvraj, involve the right hand-left hand combination. This reminds me of another successful duo of Sachin/Ganguly at the top of the batting order. This does imply that the R-L combination does have some effect on long partnerships. Even the recent Gambhir/Sehwag combination has been successful in all the forms. It is surprising why we don't retain the same pair in ODI's also.

  • ogu999 on October 31, 2009, 22:21 GMT

    Yeah sure the partnership is made in heaven, but only when the pitches are benign, flat, juice less and what have you...the partnership is also effective when the stage is small such as TVS cup, Kitply cup etc., but move over to the major stage such as Champions Trophy, World Cup or even a major 4 nation tournament played on lively tracks then not only is the partnership no longer made iin heaven, but highly ineffective. Flat track bullies this present Indian team is made of with the exception of Sachin, Sehwag and to an extent Gambhir.

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  • ogu999 on October 31, 2009, 22:21 GMT

    Yeah sure the partnership is made in heaven, but only when the pitches are benign, flat, juice less and what have you...the partnership is also effective when the stage is small such as TVS cup, Kitply cup etc., but move over to the major stage such as Champions Trophy, World Cup or even a major 4 nation tournament played on lively tracks then not only is the partnership no longer made iin heaven, but highly ineffective. Flat track bullies this present Indian team is made of with the exception of Sachin, Sehwag and to an extent Gambhir.

  • rajdon82 on October 31, 2009, 22:51 GMT

    As correctly pointed out, most of the great partnerships, like d'silva/Ranatunga, Steve Waugh/Bevan, and now Dhoni/Yuvraj, involve the right hand-left hand combination. This reminds me of another successful duo of Sachin/Ganguly at the top of the batting order. This does imply that the R-L combination does have some effect on long partnerships. Even the recent Gambhir/Sehwag combination has been successful in all the forms. It is surprising why we don't retain the same pair in ODI's also.

  • dp.01 on November 1, 2009, 0:12 GMT

    mahi & yuvvi are the perfect combination to drive match to the victory, india won so many matches with their finish. its amazing how the chemistry work betwen them two. of course, yuvvi is more experienced and greatest timer of the ball but way mahi has been batting in odi lately, he is the perfect exmaple to learn from. his avg is 50+ and he has been #1 ODI batsman for almost 2.5 yrs now. it will be interesting to see who steals the show from here in remaining matches..usually, my money is on yuvvi but way mahi has been performing i put it on him..

    also, when is lil master hitting 17000 - is he holding it for mumbaiaa

    somehow i felt today's game was the final game of world cup 2011

  • Quazar on November 1, 2009, 3:47 GMT

    Given the nature of the track and the game situation, this was an excellent partnership. At 53/3, and scoring being so difficult, I actually thought Australia would bag this game. But Yuvraj and Dhoni paced the chase perfectly. And showed just why they are the No. 2 and No. 1 ranked ODI players at present. I must say very well played to Australia too. Siddle and Johnson were superb with the new ball, and Bollinger was terrific too. (Actually, Australia's fast bowling stock seems to have quite a surplus at present - they have 6 guys, including Nannes, who can bowl consistently over 90mph!) A good tough match to see.

  • JohnSM on November 1, 2009, 3:53 GMT

    Yesterday's track was flat, yes, terrible in fact, it wasn't deserving of a cricket match, but if you look at it, the Australian bowlers did manage to extract some bounce and pace off it,, true their wicketkeeper had a horrible time but the pitch in itself stood up and didnt affect their bowlers as much as it did the Indian bowlers early on...

    Sadly for them, the dew came in and ruined them. Hauritz who was beginning to look dangerous looked lost with the ball afterward. They sorely missed Brett Lee who can stun any opposition by sheer pace , with bounce or without ! And dont forget, this isn't the same Indian team that Dravid captained,, this team actually has a captain who can lead the side very well. And he leads by example. The Indians are always formidable at home, and Australia's excessive reliance on Michael Hussey and Ponting isn't going to take them anywhere. They need to nurture Marsh.

    Finally MSD and Yuvi, brilliant, flat track or not, big tourney or not, these guys win!

  • msnsrinivas on November 1, 2009, 3:56 GMT

    Well if they are making the pitches benign, flat, juice less and what have you...there still has to be someone to do the job and these guys are doing it. Dhoni is someone who's winning us games at the moment and the Yuvraj has been pretty consistent too. Big tournaments yes, they have a point to prove but in a way they did that once already by winning T20 world cup back in 2007. Can anyone forget Yuvraj's assault on England and Australia in that tournament? Next world cup is an opportunity and we will get to see how they take it. But personally, I would like them to do well in the test matches, especially away from home.

  • truthspeaker on November 1, 2009, 4:01 GMT

    Siddarth Mongia falls into the usual trap of building up the Indian team for a home win on a flat lifeless track, that can blunt even the like sof Lindwall and Miller - Yuvraj's lack of technique was repeatedly exposed in Auatralia, where genuine players like Sachin, Sehwag and Gambhir and Dhoni alone succeeded

    Yuvraj, Raina, Rohit, Yusuf, Irfan are failures repeatedly in Australia and South Africa - sorry, these players are flat track bullies - I will not sing India's praise unless India wins the world cup types - home wins matter little to nothing

  • drsyedzia on November 1, 2009, 4:22 GMT

    What I would like to say here is that Ponting made the wrong decision batting first. Had he batted second he would have won the match. I think that the dew beat Ponting rather than India's team. The ball was slipping out of the hands of the spinners in the end and there were a lot of full tosses and wides coming out and the ball was not turning in the end as well. So Yuvraj should still not think that he has answered his critics by playing against spinners who had a ball soaked in water. If he continues to play well against spinners under ideal cricketing conditions then he would be regarded as a good player of spin. I still think quality spin is his weakness.

  • KrishSrikanth on November 1, 2009, 4:23 GMT

    Srilanka has strangled India many times over and over on similar pitches. A partnership on these sluggish wickets even against a full strength Aussie side isn't worth celebrating.

  • Karpan on November 1, 2009, 4:29 GMT

    Let us be careful not to read too much from this victory. Agreed that the situation was managed and the match salvaged well. But also remember that Australia was battling with a depleted side and i wonder what would have been the result if their full potential was available. I think we need to credit Oz for thei fight.