Archive for August, 2007

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Chess

August 15, 2007

I have won some nice, satisfying games in the past couple of weeks. I do expect to be putting up some of my better games with light annotations. In a previous attempt, I tried running my analysis in front of a computer to make sure there were no obvious blunders, but gave up with the amount of time it took. So, will try the easier approach.

I play games here, which is an online form of correspondence chess. Suits me well because I get to indulge my passion without making extra time for it in my schedule. Anyway, here is the game.

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India now on the verge of another overseas victory

August 11, 2007

My plan for the day was crystal clear. Sit down in front of the TV all day today and watch the third day of the Oval test match in its entirety, preferably without missing a single ball. And that’s exactly what I ended up doing.

It was a hard day’s work for both teams. Obviously, with India in the ascendancy before play started and England staring down the barrel, you knew the pressure was always going to tell on the English batsmen. But with the track still good for batting (and it still stays that way at the end of the day’s play) and England having some really good batsmen in their ranks, it could go both ways. It was frustrating to see India put Cook down twice (both at leg-slip, surprisingly enough!), with Karthik’s drop being an absolute shocker. And then Howell gave another how(el)ler to turn down a huge LBW shout against Cook. The umpiring quality in this series has been totally shocking and the pattern continued. It may all even out in the end but that doesn’t excuse the umpires when they make errors this obvious. What is equally irritating is the lack of new good umpires coming up to replace the existing ones…

Anyway, back to the cricket. Kumble finally got Cook against the run of play, when he was actually looking in pretty good nick. Another good piece of bowling saw him get rid of the English skipper in the last over before lunch. Pietersen and Collingwood played well in the second session, only to see KP play rashly to the first ball from Tendulkar, and back he went, right before tea. The last session again started out well for England with Collingwood and Bell playing well, but with the second new ball, the wickets fell (though I wouldn’t have given Colly out) and England finished the day at 326/9, 338 runs still in arrears.

All in all, it was a clinical performance from India on a good batting strip. Despite some wayward bowling, they kept England in check and constantly applied pressure. Dravid’s captaincy was pretty good, constantly changing the bowlers around and keeping the batsmen off-balance. Bringing Tendulkar on turned out to be a masterstroke, and so was the fielder at leg-slip for the medium pacer – only if Karthik hadn’t fluffed the sitter!

Looking forward to tomorrow, India will ofcourse hope to get the last English wicket as early as possible. If I were Dravid, I would put England in again. The bowlers might be tired, but England will also be facing the pressure and if we can bowl them out by tea on the final day, we could be in for a quick chase of the target. With rain possible for tomorrow afternoon, it would be good to get as long as possible to bowl at the English batsmen. Here’s hoping for a 2-0 series result…

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Coming soon…

August 4, 2007