Rajasthan's Fairy TaleI am not an avid follower of the Indian Domestic cricket or The Ranjis. But I cannot help notice that Rajasthan's Ranji team has performed exceeding well over the past two ranji seasons and have even made to the finals of the 2011 Ranji finals and if everything goes well they should trounce and make short work of Tamil Nadu and retain the Ranji Trophy . The scores read Rajasthan 621,Tamil Nadu 66/3 (25.0 overs) at stumps as I write this article . Mr Ranji would be happy to know that atleast one team is taking the game seriously.
I have seen some cricket pundits accuse Rajasthan of playing it safe in this years tournament finals by being too conservative and amass 621 at a snail's pace and crush the day lights out of the Tamil Nadu .
==>What's wrong with Rajasthan taking advantage of the first innings lead rule to their advantage and winning the match
==>It is not Rajasthan's fault that the ground at Chepauk aided neither spin nor pace.They won a contest with the ball fair and square against harayana in Rothak.Why let Tamil Nadu cricket association prepare a dead pitch?
==>Their game-plan is different based on different pitches and this shows their organisational capacity , their dedication to win each and every game.
==>They are hungry for victory in the final and they deserve to win the trophy this year too.
Let us not forget that Rajasthan is not standing at the top as a matter of luck.They literally had to claw their way up to the top.They never reached a final before 2010/2011 Ranji series after their run in the 60',70's.One may even argue that Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA) started showing their real might from the inaugural IPL in 2008 which they won with a motley bunch of youngsters under the able stewardship of the spin legend Shane warne.They have proved that it was not a fluke by translating themselves into a impeccable team in the first class cricket i.e.Ranji Trophy
It as not been a cake walk for Rajasthan team.They had to start from the bottom in 2009/2010 when they were in the plate league and they won only 1 out of the 5 matches in the league stages and occupied the bottom of Group A . For the uninitiated Ranji Trophy now has a plate leagues and super league / elite system where plate trophy is for the bottom rung teams and Elite is the for the much better playing team. Moving from the bottom of plate league in 2009/2010 to winning the 2010/2011 elite trophy and making it to the finals in 2011/2012 in the elite league is by no measure a small achievement . It is comparable to a human chiselling a tunnel through a mountain.
What did the Rajasthan team get it right?==>They played first class cricket/non limited overs cricket as it is supposed to be played.They did not rush things.They never lost their cool.
==>They planned well and rebuilt their team after they finished at the bottom of the plate league in 2009/2010
==>They brought in good players from other teams.
==>They take their game seriously
==>They play according to a plan.
==>They developed the cricket game in non urban areas too , which would obviously lead to unearthing fresh and untested talent which will not be possible with a limited talent pool. More about it here
Why is the National Team fairing poorly overseas?If a state team like Rajasthan with limited resources can plan well and execute the plan and play well why can't BCCI,the richest cricket body in the entire world whose coffers are loaded with unforetold wealth and treasures do a good job with the national team?
==>What is happening to the fresh talent that Ranji unearths each year ?
==>What is the national cricket academy doing ?
==>Why are we losing 7 overseas test matches on a trot ?
==>Didn't the current ,much hyped Indian team win last year's ODI World Cup(2011).
==>Why are we losing each overseas test by an innings?
==>Why can't we just draw a few of the games ?
==>Why are we the laughing stock last year in England and this year in Australia?
BCCI is rotten / corrupt / ineffective :-Well BCCI has done every thing wrong to begin with
==>The pitch used in this year's (2011-2012) final in Chepauk is horrible . It is really is the famed dust bowl.Why can't BCCI appoint some experts to oversee pitches before important games in domestic tournaments?
==>BCCI never managed the players injury properly . During the English tour of 2011 more than half of the Indian team was changed due to injuries . Dhoni also was quick to point out this fact.
==>BCCI never plans an overseas tournament well.We played only a single practise match before the infamous 4-0 drubbing against England in 2011
==>Indian team is also not playing according to a plan.
==>We are relying too much on old warhorses like Sachin , Dravid and Laxman rather than relying on young blood.Where are the centuries and double centuries from new comers in the last 7 or so tests?
==>We are still retaining Zonal based selection system instead of picking players for the team purely based on talent.
==>As Dada has pointed out here (Dhoni not interested in Test cricket: Ganguly),Dhoni seems to have lost interest in test cricket.Then why the hell does he not quit immediately ? There is no place for half hearted players in the team.
==>The head of BCCI is still not a former test player but a politician though India has a long history of playing cricket even from times before Independence.
==>Why do the selectors go Scott free and the blame is shouldered on by the players when the team performs poorly.
==>Why doesn't BCCI reveal what it is doing (BCCI rejects Ajay Maken's revised Sports Development Bill) with its enormous funds.Is it really using it for the betterment of cricket in India
Why the hell can't BCCI take a leaf out of Rajasthan's successful run in first class cricket?