1.2 billion cricket crazy Indian's who im sure are still euphoric in the wake of this World Cup win that was not only a great gift for them.Though also a red letter day for the fine Nation of India and a compelling joyous memory for the fine city of Mumbai,after its great tragedy in 08. Sadly in an event like this there can be only one winner.So a Team that so bedazzled us throughout the Tournament in Sri Lanka were on the losing end.Just beaten by a better Team on the day. Here is my take on the Final
Moments That Mattered-Sri Lankan Innings:
Heads....Tails....Well Bat...No You Won't!-Toss Again!
Lol... bit of theatre before the game with M.S.Dhoni thinking he won the toss and automatically exalting he'd bat.Though his Sri Lankan counterpart in Kumar Sangakkars claimed he indeed called correctly in the first toss.So it was a re toss. Sri Lanka win and bat
Zaheer Khan's Initial Spell.
After the mauling he received in his previous World Cup Final in 03.There must have been sweat on Zaheer's brow as he ran into to commence this World Cup.Though like night is to day was his start to this World Cup.He didn't concede one run in his first 3 overs and strangled the life out of one of Sri Lanka's key strengths in their openers.Which duly upset Sri Lanka's crucial early momentum and captured Upul Tharanga's wicket.
This was out of this World for the most part especially in the first 20 odd overs.Where so many dives that stopped boundaries and desperation by all was crucial. In truth it probably was the difference of an extra 30 runs to Sri Lanka
Yuvraj Singh Getting Kumar Sangakkara
To me this was akin to Kapil Dev catching Viv Richards in the 1983 World Cup when he was looking deadly dangerous. Sangakkara was moving up in momentum and had hummed his way to 48 with little duress.Indeed looking for much more and in truth had big century written all over him and with it a huge Sri Lankan total.Though enter the man with the golden arm in this Tournament for India in Yuvraj Singh.And he claims Sangakkara caught behind. Crucial is the sincerest sense!
Hope We Had The Video On Record For Mahela Jayawardene's Genius
This innings was a masterpiece and must go down as one of the best seen in a World Cup Final... For after Sangakkara was dismissed the questionable Sri Lankan middle order was exposed and duly the weight of the World fell on Mahela.His artistry and pacing of the innings was truly the stuff of a master.Then his assault at the end in the Power Play overs where his innovation was true brilliance. Well again hope you had it recorded for prosperity
Finally A Power Play was utilised!
The Sri Lankan's looked like they'd be lucky to get to 240.Though on the back of Mahela's brilliance and then some late order hitting by Kulasekera and Thisara they got to 274.This pair of hitters crucially contributed 54 off just 39 deliveries Getting Sri Lanka to an imposing total
Part 2-India's Innings-Moments That Mattered
Lasith Malinga Initial Spell
The dreadlocked cult hero was truly stellar.In his first over getting Sehwag plumb LBW and then a few overs later getting Sachin caught behind.After the Sachin dismissal silenced the crowd.Most thought the Sri Lankan ribbons were going to be attached to the World Cup in victory
The Use Of Lasith Malinga
Of course there are plans that are adhered to the letter about the use of bowlers.Though I thought in regards to Malinga and how he was bowling.That if he had of been kept on with how he was bowling and indeed knocked over a few more Indian's.The result would have definitely gone in Sri Lanka's favour. Though this is pure speculation for the way Gambhir and Kohli played they might have seen him off.Plus in regards to Malinga,there are always questions about his knees,so a longish spell might not have been an option
The Impotence of The Other Sri Lankan Seamers
Both Nuwan Kulasekera and Thisara Perera were treated with disdain by the Indians.Going for 119 between them off 17 overs-OUCH!
The Sri Lankan Spinners Neutralised
The Sri Lanka spinners were indeed neat and tidy.Though crucially in this Final they only claimed one wicket between them.That of Virat Kohli to a freak of a caught and bowled by Tillikaratne Dilshan.The duo of off spinners in Randiv and Murali were economical,but not as effective as they were needed to be.For Sri Lanka to win.
Redemption #1-Gautam Gambhir
Im the hugest fan of Gambhir as a player based on his exploits in Tests and because I rarely watch Odi's.Though here in the World Cup he has let down my lofty reading of him.Especially in the crucial Semi against Pakistan where he virtually sacrificed his wicket with a brain fade. Though here after Sachin fell and all Indian's thought the worst.He was the one that steadied the ship and duly chartered his Team to victory He was the rock that the chase was built around and his innings was truly top shelf
In this World Cup Dhoni although adored by all has been rubbish in all regards.... Though after the Final are we going to remember him for anything,but for his exploits in the Final? After Kohli went down he showed his leadership by demoting Yuvraj down the order and walking in at 5.All dues to you M.S.Dhoni! Then he not only walked in,but he played one of the most compelling innings seen in World Cup history. Belting 91 off 79 deliveries and sealing India victory. Greatness is seen when the stakes are at it's highest and the pressure at its most intense and for this fact.M.S.Dhoni sealed his greatness in the games history.....
Post Match Meaning #1-Sachin Tendulkar
Though their were many hearts that broke when Sachin was dismissed with the true Indian fans bemoaning his meaning to the Team.Then the zelots cursing that he won't score his 100'th hundred. This aside you can't deny the greatness of Tendulkar and his meaning to the game.... He is not only the holder of individual records that more likely than not will never be beaten,but from a purist sense.He is one of the proudest participants in this fine games history.Always staunchly upholding its traditions and ethics. For that he will always be lauded by purist like I Though it was compelling how sincere his team mates were in their embraces of him after the match.For they know his meaning to them and to India. Thus were so happy to cap his brilliant career with Team glory that he so deserved For to a man as proud as Sachin,individuals honours mean nothing.Its the Team honours he so craves and was duly given today
Post Match Meaning #2-Muttiah Muralidaran
Sadly as bigger an icon as Tendulkar is to India and the game.Muttiah Muralidaran replicates this meaning to Sri Lanka and the game. It was sad to see him go out a loser,though he will always be seen as one of the greatest winners in the game. Holder of the Test Wickets record that will probably never be challenged and the highlight of his career being the 1996 World Cup win
Post Match Meaning #3-Yuvraj Singh
Yuvraj winning the player of the World Cup was very fitting considering his great performance throughout the Tournament