Thursday, September 6, 2012

Can India do the Treble?

Despite losing 8 overseas tests India finds itself in a reasonably healthy state of affairs, champions of both the ICC World Cup and ICC U-19 World Cup. They are only the 2nd team after Australia who have achieved it 3 times to be World Cup winners with both the senior and junior side at the same time. Australia did it in 1988, 2002 and 2010 with the juniors and 1987, 1999, 2007 with their main side. India has of course done it in 2011 with the main side and now 2012 with their junior counterparts.
There were many similarities between the two world cup glories for the men in blue. Both times they failed to win their group going into the quarter finals, not winning the first game of the tournament fielding second. Both times they beat Pakistan in a knock out game. Both times they won the final chasing by a margin of 6 wickets in a chase that most sides had struggled to cope with during the tournament. Both times the captains were MOM in the final with an unbeaten score of above 90. Both sides won the WC by hitting a boundary as they sealed the title in style. 2nd April 2011 and 26th August 2012 were memorable days for Indian cricket.
India is also the place of financial riches in the world game, owning the biggest domestic money-making Twenty20 league in the world through the Indian Premier League and Champions League. It’s fair to say they are not the most liked with their stance on DRS and their obsession towards Twenty20s as Tony Greig would not be afraid to tell you, but you have to give credit to them in both the world cup and youth world cup as they thoroughly deserved the title on both occasions. If they can win the treble here by regaining their World T20 title after 5 years that will be something unique. The Indian fan base do not sound the most confident, unlike the 2011 World Cup where they were hot favourites for many and rightly so, but after 2 below-par tournaments in 2009, 2010, surely they cannot be entirely ruled out in 2012.

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