Punjab v Deccan, IPL 2010, Dharamsala April 16, 2010

There's no stopping Deccan's Indian batsmen

Adam Gilchrist's failures have put a lot of pressure on the middle order, but the likes of T Suman and Rohit Sharma have stepped up with major contributions to keep Deccan alive

"Well the positive is that I'm not using up many deliveries," was Adam Gilchrist's reply to a question from a journalist about his extended run of poor form. The Deccan Chargers captain had already spoken after the last game of how he'd take a first-ball duck if his team won, and tonight his cheap dismissal left the visitors 13 for 1 chasing 175. Luckily for Gilchrist, his Indian players have shored up early losses as well as the middle order, easing the pressure on Andrew Symonds.

Gilchrist's failures have put a lot of pressure on the middle order, but T Suman and Rohit Sharma have acquitted themselves well, especially in the latter part of the tournament when Deccan have had to keep winning to stay alive. Suman made consecutive match-winning half-centuries while chasing, and Rohit has also made crucial contributions. Today was his most important innings of the season and it ensured Deccan lived to see another day.

Gilchrist's early exit, again skying the ball into the air, brought Suman to the middle in the second over and he was soon underway constructing another handy score. He took his time to settle, within the parameters of doing so in this format, and accelerated with a couple of lovely pick-up shots over the infield. Not slogs, proper shots. With Monish Mishra contributing 20, Deccan were never behind the asking rate and even when he fell in the seventh over the situation was in control. That allowed Rohit to play a well-paced game, mixing tempered aggression with useful Twenty20 shots.

Off the mark with a gorgeous back-foot caress, Rohit's innings featured trademark cuts through the arc square on the off side. Twice in recent times he's been out driving on the rise to mid-off and cutting to backward point, but tonight he ensured he kept the ball down. In between such shots, there were crisp clips and aerial flicks to ensure the run rate didn't escalate.

Rohit has been accused of being impetuous but tonight, he kept picking singles after hitting boundaries. A four and six off the first two balls of the 11th over had got Deccan the needed runs for the over, so Rohit followed up with a steered single. This happened in the next over as well, as Rohit pulled for four before easing a single down the ground. Ditto for the 13th over. His risk-free batting was the perfect recipe for Deccan's crucial win. Rohit didn't let himself get ahead of the game and that made a massive difference.

Symonds failed to spark and Mitchell Marsh, in his first innings, made 15 but the task was finished off by the main man. Rohit summed it up well after the match. "One of the batsmen had to stay till the end," he said. "The pitch was good, the ball was coming onto the bat well but from one end, where it was drier, the ball came on slower. It wasn't easy facing the fast bowlers but tonight it ended up good for us."

If Deccan win their final league match and qualify for the semi-finals, they will have a crop of bustling Indian batsmen to thank. Tonight's chase was made to look rather easy thanks to Rohit and Suman, and with Gilchrist signing off the post-match interview by vowing that one big innings was in the tank, Deccan are looking dangerous. Their final match is on the notoriously slow and low Delhi surface, so there will be no time like then for Gilchrist to strike and pay back his Indian players.

Jamie Alter is a senior sub-editor at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on April 18, 2010, 3:06 GMT

    @lcewarriors I agree with you mate.. LV Sivaramkrisnan hates DC. Whenever DC plays he wishes DC to lose, well, atleast thats what his comments point out. Dont like his commentary either when DC's not playing.

  • Dummy4 on April 18, 2010, 3:01 GMT

    @starsagitarian Ambati Rayidu is not in Deccan Chargers, he's in Mumbai Indians. Well I wish he was in DC as he is from Andhra. Love to see him next year in DC when all the teams get shuffled in the new auctions and hope for the best for today.

  • Baiju on April 17, 2010, 19:09 GMT

    this should be the ideal line up for DC: 1. A. Gilchrist 2. Monish Mishra 3. T. Suman 4. Ambatti Rayadu 5. Rohit Sharma 6. Andrew Symonds 7. Chaminda Vaas 8. Ryan Harris/Fidel Edwards 9. Harmeet Singh 10. Pragyan Ojha 11. RP. Singh

    i believe the talents of VVS laxman to play with the tailenders in the test matches should be and can be very well used here... ! this is important as he can work more with the tail and help it wag in case the head and the trunk of the batting fails... !! playing someone like Sumanth or a Venugopal Rao is of no use as they haven't shown the ability to play around with tail and stretch the totals to more heights... !! hence if a slot for a late middle order batsman is available, VVS should be the direct choice... !!

    as far as semifinals are concerned, playing bangalore in bangalore would be difficult... especially with steyn roaring around !! that is because i belive deccan are gonna win tomorrow and are surely moving on to the second spot ditching delhi !!

  • Dummy4 on April 17, 2010, 18:40 GMT

    Rohit Sharma is in great touch. but he can only play domestic cricket or IPL. He is a great IPL player, when it comes to national colors, he just not good enough. first of he needs to get this act together and be motivated to play. He is so sluggish and unexcited. If you want to play for your country you need excitement and passion. I think he lacks that, and needs a senior to just talk to him and get his passion. I dont doubt the mans talent, he's 1 of those that can be the next big thing for indian cricket. He just needs to live up to it. I think players who do well in the IPL need to show it in the domestic circut and then have the selectors look more into them. sometimes even bank on form, Robin Utapaa is in great touch, he has talent and he would been great for the t20 WC. Also, the BCCI needs to go out of its way to help IK Pathan his bowling back, that man is your perfect allrounder. When he was at his peak so was team indian. He is the best alrounder in the country n we need 1.

  • Ashish on April 17, 2010, 16:06 GMT

    The most frustrating part yesterday was laxmi shivarama krishna's commentary .. it was as if he was wishing the Deccan batsman to get out .. IDk if this is just me .. but that guys commentary is one of the most lopsided and biased in the business

  • vish on April 17, 2010, 13:09 GMT


  • P Subramani on April 17, 2010, 11:19 GMT

    Let me hasten to correct the wrong impression that 'esrujan' seems to have got from my post. I have followed the career of Rohit for a long time because I always felt he would be the next great from India. My impression remains much the same even now. It is just that he seems to lack the intensity and consistency for some reason which is what causes me some anguish. I suppose he needs a bit of talking to. He is earmarked for greatness no matter what many of his critics may say, unless he decides to short-change himself.

  • Nishad on April 17, 2010, 9:16 GMT

    Earlier when the Indian team was about to be selected I had posted a comment to pick Rohit Sharma. Many had spit venom against Rohit. But he is a class player. He is a little sluggish but he has the potential. He can pace the innings perfectly and has the big shots in his kitty as well. Is the perfect middle order player currently for India. He can be the No.4 in ODI's too. I even rate him better than Yuvraj in Tests.

    Hope that Rohit Sharma will live up to my rating.

  • Bhargava on April 17, 2010, 8:42 GMT

    FanCric, You are absolutely right. Whats the shocking punch in the face for Team India fans, is that there is a rare opportunity of WC-T20 happening within a few months of the last one... and lo and behold : IPL and the Indian Cricketers have completely forgotten what Gary Kirsten was lamenting about when the last WC ended ! And Dhoni and everybody else is blissfully supporting IPL yet again. Now, the worst part is, just to show to the world that IPL is not a short cut to the Indian team, the selectors and BCCI are coolly stating that IPL form is not enough for national selection.While this is very good policy for ODI and Test Selection, not picking NEW players who are in red hot form for International T20,ATLEAST when a WC is round the corner, shows that IPL is sheer waste for the Indian team...The selectors are being too egoistic sticking to the "30 probable list". So FanCric, your only solace is, just remember that there are a few more souls like you destined to bemoan Vigourless TI

  • Krishnakanth on April 17, 2010, 8:17 GMT

    It would be an icing on the cake if Rayudu comes into the DC team and with him we have Venu giving some useful runs. Monish, Venu, Rayudu, Rohit,Suman, Teja would do wonders to the team. And with them RP Singh and Ojha. All of the absolutely talented, but consistenly inconsistent.

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