Like all great ideas this blog topic for this blog post dropped right into my head as I was showering today morning a little dejected after checking up the scores for the Ind-Aus test match going on in Melbourne. While the prospects didn’t look too bright I pondered over a number of burning questions that have been plaguing Indian cricket since time immemorial. And that’s when I figured out that I didn’t need to look no further but into my own days of playing cricket in the crowded by lanes of India while growing up in Delhi. Indian cricket has long been looking to answer two questions which apparently are holding us back from stepping up to the next level and challenge Australia on a consistent basis. these are the lack of a genuine all rounder in the team since the days of Kapil Dev and the seeming inability of our batsmen to be bad runners between the wickets referring to look for boundaries as opposed to stealthily stolen singles while building their innings. Now if all of you who have played cricket in India would mind conjuring up a quick flashback I am sure it would bring up memories of playing up 6, 8 or 10 over a side games with 6-8 people of each teams in small grounds, narrow roads or small compounds etc. The time for playing was limited to a few hours depending on when the scorching sun would relent in summers and when light would permit in the winters. Most of these contests were run filled entertainers barring a genuine quickie or extremely gifted spinner on either of the teams. As the number of people was always too many the batting spots were always at a premium with almost everyone wanting to bat first and also higher up the order lest they miss out their chance. Batting was always about the big lofted shots as they fetched quick rewards in these compressed one dayers so big hitters were always liked by their captains and pushed up the batting order. Also taking singles was never an option by choice as it meant loss of strike which you then wouldn’t know when you would get. So singles were preferred only on the last balls of the over and this has always been the Indian mindset to batting. Also ever team had defined bowlers as in India everyone seemed to be a great batsman in their own right. So while the bowlers were fixed they never got early batting spots in order to be fair to everyone playing the game. this in effect led to all the bowlers never really getting a chance to develop their batting as they never got a chance to bat early on due to the sheer number of people playing in a single game thus leading to underdeveloped all rounders in India.
I think these this mentality has someway or the other has seeped through and it is in part due to this population of 1 billion that we are not able to produce a team 11 world beaters from this population of 1 billion :)