Saturday, March 27, 2010


Rajasthan Royals have just beaten the defending champions Deccan Chargers comfortably to throw open the league table completely. Yusuf Pathan blasted 8 sixes in his Man-of-the-Match performance, but for me, it still does not erase a question mark over him because of his inconsistency, especially when he plays for India. If anything, this innings highlights it even more.

But that's enough of IPL. Amidst all the frenzy, most Indian cricket lovers seem to have forgotten that New Zealand and Australia are currently battling in a Test series in New Zealand (who are trailing 0-1, expectedly!).

Later today, when Daniel Vettori tosses the coin at his home ground (Seddon Park, Hamilton), he will be playing his 100th Test (99th for NZ and 1 six-day Test for World XI in the ill-fated Super Series in 2005). In the process, he will become just the second Kiwi to achieve this landmark after his captaincy predecessor, Stephen Fleming.

When Sachin Tendulkar reached 200 against South Africa at Gwalior in 24th February 2010, Ravi Shastri called him 'Superman from India' on air during commentary. If I am asked who is the first cricketer who comes to my mind when I hear someone say 'Superman', my answer will be Daniel Vettori.

Daniel Luca Vettori made his Test debut as a slow left arm spinner in February 1997. Today, 13 years later, 31 years of age, on the eve of his 100th Test, he has been the captain, coach, selector, strike bowler, most consistent batsman and one of the most inspirational Kiwi cricketer ever. It wouldn't be surprising if he runs for the Prime Ministership next!

On a more serious note, Daniel Vettori has done almost everything he could have for cricket in New Zealand... and he's just 31. He can easily play for 5 more years. And 5 years means that I have a wish for him...

Just like I want to see Sachin Tendulkar win the 2011 World Cup for India at home, I would also like to see Daniel Vettori lead his team to their maiden World Cup win in 2015 when Australia and New Zealand are going to jointly host the spectacle. New Zealand have for long been a competitive limited-over outfit without getting enough silverware to show for it. Not only are they due for a big win, Daniel Vettori also deserves such an honour.

I know that I am thinking too far ahead right now. That World Cup is half a decade away. Some might even be wondering if One Day cricket will survive till then. But that will not stop me! I will continue hoping for worthy reward for a champion cricketer... a true Superman!

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