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Tuesday, February 3, 2015

A N Ghosh Trophy on coir-matting wickets, Bengal's progress to regress in cricket.

Sourav introduces changes -- The Telegraph reported on Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Here is my rebuttal to explain why those changes are changes no doubt but of 'no use', mostly.

CHANGE 1: Sourav proposed a host of fresh ideas at a meeting for the upcoming AN Ghosh Trophy, an inter-club tournament, with the intention making the playing conditions more challenging for the players, which would shape them to be better cricketers.

The most striking of his innovative plans is using 'coir-matting wickets' for the matches. The basic idea behind it is that coir-matting will ensure more bounce off the wicket and hence, the batsmen will get used to playing rising deliveries before the Ranji Trophy begins.

MY REBUTTAL: 'Coir-matting wickets' provide any bowler with undue advantages by offering an uneven bounce; lateral movements off the pitch; and vicious turn. Thus, even a mediocre bowler starts to believe he has it in him what it takes to perform at the next level but finds himself all at sea on turf wickets, on which, his mediocrity gets exposed. Plus, to win 4-day Ranji Trophy matches, 20 wickets of an opponent team need to be taken, and for that, quality bowlers got to be developed, which could never be produced by letting them make merry on 'coir-matting wickets'.

To understand what I mean, please look at the 'coir' used in a cricket mat:

CHANGE 2: It will help the matches begin at 9.30 am instead of 10 am, as the factor of the pitch being soft in the early hours during the winter season can be ruled out.

MY REBUTTAL: Moisture or dew or water particles on 'coir-matting wickets', expected at 9.30 am in Kolkata, make the wicket heavier, therefore it becomes as dangerous as a turf wicket. In fact, it helps a cricket ball zip through after pitching, keeping abysmally low often, again providing undue advantages to bowlers.

CHANGE 3: To ensure that the bowlers conform to a better line, Sourav has also suggested that if in an over two deliveries are bowled outside the leg stump, a penalty of one run will be awarded to the batting side.

MY REBUTTAL: This is ridiculous! For such a rule doesn't help a bowler to experiment with his in-swings; off-cutters; googlies; and off-breaks. More so, when there is already a penalty rule for wide-balls.

CHANGE 4: The former India captain has also said that there has to be a slip fielder all through the innings, irrespective of who the bowler is.

MY REBUTTAL: Bogus! Because, in a match situation in Ranji Trophy, Bengal can't impose such a clause on its opponent teams.

CHANGE 5: Vision 2020 is Sourav’s brainchild, a project to bring up talented cricketers through proper coaching. It has also been decided that the Vision 2020 XI will not have more than three Ranji Trophy cricketers, thereby ensuring that the young players get more chances.

MY REBUTTAL: Why should Vision 2020 XI have even three Ranji Trophy cricketers, as other eight clubs anyway have Ranji Cricketers?

CHANGE 6: The duration of the AN Ghosh Trophy matches has been changed from two days to three. There will be two innings per side; while the first innings will be of 95 overs, the second will be of 45.

MY SUPPORT: That's the only welcome change! However, over divisions for each innings should ideally have been 90 for 1st innings and 50 for 2nd innings. Because, ODs are 50-50 games, so in way, 50 overs second innings could also help players get an additional match practice for ODs.

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