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ICC World Cup 2011: Is chasing the right choice?

652   //    11 Mar 2011, 20:04 IST
Fans wave the Indian flag during a match again... 

The woes with  the bowling attack has led to critics lending suggestions as to how the men in blue can overcome their travails.  There is, however, no need to make a mountain of a molehill.

There is less to be concerned about than other teams like South Africa, England,Pakistan or Sri Lanka. Australia and the West Indies are notable , even surprising,  exceptions. Maybe playing to your strengths even in alien conditions has its merits.  India have not exhibited their best but have continued their winning ways. It has not been great watching but the team has been effective in churning out results.  At the end of the day, it’s about getting the job done. Winning ugly is still winning.

The worries in the bowling and fielding departments will persist until the boys pull up their socks and effect a (minor) turnaround.  What has really got my goat is the suggestion that India should chase instead of batting first—defying simple cricketing logic.

To my dismay, Michael Holding has joined the chorus claiming that India will be better served batting second.  Let’s look at whether statistics support this clarion call.

Over the past two years  when India have played at home, they have batted first in seven games and chased 12 times.

They have won 13 and lost 6, with one no-result.  They are 5/7 in matches batting first.  They are 8/12 in matches batting last.  These figures do not include the World Cup warm-up games or the first four games in this tournament.

The losses batting first have come against Sri Lanka and Australia—one each.

The losses batting second are against Australia and South Africa, three and one respectively.

Draw your own conclusions.

Have a great day.


Quote of the day:
There are lots of ways of being miserable, but there’s only one way of being comfortable, and that is to stop running round after happiness. If you make up your mind not to be happy there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have a fairly good time. – Edith Wharton

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Hi! I'm Linus Fernandes. You can also find my sports articles at Follow me on Twitter at @mktimeforsports.
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