Beyond the Blues


The city v small-town cricketer
The city v small-town cricketer

A few years ago, when I was still playing for Delhi, I saw a young Delhi batsman struggling against short-pitched deliveries in the nets

Long way to go for Under-19 stars
Long way to go for Under-19 stars

August 26, 2012 was a momentous day for Indian cricket - their Under-19 team had lifted the World Cup in Australia, beating the hosts in the final

Ranji venues asking for improvement
Ranji venues asking for improvement

Goa-Mumbai-Jammu looked slightly better on paper than our last arduous travel route starting from Guwahati via Kolkata and Mumbai to reach Goa

Cricket's quirky rules that defy logic
Cricket's quirky rules that defy logic

When GB Shaw said "the golden rule is that there are no golden rules", it made for marvellous lyrics

Fast bowlers turning extinct in India
Fast bowlers turning extinct in India

So, what's in fashion this cricket season?

Ranji points system needs an overhaul
Ranji points system needs an overhaul

The first round of the Ranji Trophy this season kicked off amid much fanfare

For the love of the game
For the love of the game

Memories of the majestic Armani Hotel in Dubai zip past my mind

What's wrong with commercialising cricket?
What's wrong with commercialising cricket?

A journalist from a local news channel in Punjab recently questioned me about the growing commercialisation of Indian cricket

A tepid start minus the stars
A tepid start minus the stars

In many ways this is a unique first-class season in India

The cricketer's endless quest for honour
The cricketer's endless quest for honour

George Bernard Shaw once famously remarked that when he was young, he realised that nine out of ten things he did were failures

Does being prolific in domestic cricket matter?
Does being prolific in domestic cricket matter?

Is thriving in domestic cricket, scoring tons, and excelling in the longer format any good, after all

Is preparing sporting tracks so difficult?
Is preparing sporting tracks so difficult?

"When you play in the semi-finals of a premier tournament like the Ranji Trophy, you want it to be played on a much better surface, not one that makes it a lottery"

Implement Ranji format for the shorter versions
Implement Ranji format for the shorter versions

The BCCI did well for Indian domestic cricket when they decided to scrap the redundant Ranji format of teams from a particular zone playing among themselves, before the top two could proceed to the knockouts

The Duleep Trophy needs a revamp
The Duleep Trophy needs a revamp

Fresh from the Ranji games and straight in to the Duleep Trophy, one can't help but marvel at the latter's standard and the quality of cricket on display

Domestic cricket needs the Kookaburra
Domestic cricket needs the Kookaburra

It isn't just the level of competition being several notches up that separates Duleep Trophy games from regular domestic cricket

Central's resources trump East's resolve
Central's resources trump East's resolve

We, Central Zone, had the resources

Local players made the difference
Local players made the difference

While the feeling is yet to sink in completely, the big question has already popped up

Why Rajasthan got past Tamil Nadu
Why Rajasthan got past Tamil Nadu

Was it Rajasthan's deep desire to win the semi-final against Tamil Nadu that turned the tables, or was it the latter's lack of caution that cost them the game

Third day's the charm
Third day's the charm

The third day, in my opinion, is usually the most important day of a four- or five-day game

The anonymous world of net bowlers
The anonymous world of net bowlers

It's always the guy from outside, who's smart enough to understand that bowling in the nets is only tiring and not rewarding, who makes the cut