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The first final of the tri (or bi?) series is over. India overwhelmed by Australia with 7 wickets and nearly 10 overs to spare. Pity there're no bonus points in finals, we could have got one! An abysmal batting display (the 3rd in 3 consecutive games now!) meant that India were never quite in the hunt after losing 4 wickets within the first 15 and 6 within the first 25 overs! Perhaps, as the experts have opined, this has been a tour far too long. The BCCI deserves a rap for accepting a schedule of this nature. 12 one-day games when the third team was clearly never going to make the finals is ridiculous. Perhaps in these tournaments (unless it is a World Cup or the ICC Champions Trophy), once it has been determined who progresses to the next round, there should be no more matches. That'll prevent a whole bunch of meaningless "contents".
I had a look at the performances by the Indian batsmen in losing games against Australia, starting from the 2003 World Cup, including today's no-show.
The opening partnerships were: 22, 4, 0, 103, 8, 103, 1, 20, 6
The approximate score after 15 overs was: 45/4, 80/3, 70/2, 90/0, 55/2, 85/0, 80/2, 60/4, 52/4
* approximate score since I couldn't find the exact 15 over score sometimes.
It does indicate at a poor performance from the top order where on 7 occasions (out of 9 innings), the team lost the 1st wicket with < 25 on the board. On 5 out of those 7 occasions, the 15 over score was < 75 (which is 5 runs/over). On 3 out of those 5 occasions, 4 wickets had gone in the first 15 overs! That isn't exactly good top order batting, is it? So much so four our much vaunted batting lineup, eh? Come on India, you dont want to go away from Australia with the tails between your legs. Fight, the series is not yet over. Go back to the motivation shown in the Test series!
The Washington Post editorial says that while the Bush administration has rightly accepted Musharraf as an ally, it must accept the reality that Pakistan's actions threaten U.S. and global security more than al Qaeda or Saddam Hussein ever did.
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