|Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai
|India v Sri Lanka
|SR Tendulkar, MS Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, V Sehwag, V Kohli, Z Khan, M Muralitharan
|ICC World Cup 2010/11
Right from the start of the 2011 edition of the World Cup india was one of the favourites but it is remarkable how well coach Gary Kirsten crafted Dhoni and his men to give them that extra mile and ensure triumph's match by match.
On the batting front the master blaster Sachin Tendulkar compiled runs in important matches and Yuvraj was phenomenal with his wristy batting and wonderful knocks and his bowling enabled India thrash any opponent with ease. Virender Sehwag and Virat Kohli were instrumental in getting partnerships going with other batsmen.
In bowling, Zaheer Khan was sizzling with his bagful of wickets and maiden overs in the Finals which got India through. Not to forget contributions by Harbhajan Singh, Munaf Patel and Ashwin all revolved around him and gelled as a team.
In this Grand finale India lost quick wickets of Sehwag and Sachin but Gautam Gambhir steadied the ship and held centre stage and was light on his feet playing some scintillating strokes. He was joined by skipper Dhoni who took a gamble by promoting himself up the order ahead of Yuvraj Singh and showed he is a cool captain playing a decisive knock as he punched Murali through the covers and then drove the champion bowler. The skipper with his wonderful sense of timing had a long partnership with Gambhir which took the game away from the Sri Lankans.
It was a emotional secret which Dhoni revealed that "it was the team's dream to win the World Cup for Sachin Tendulkar and proud we have done it for him, the Indian team and the Nation." Dhoni said Sachin Tendulkar was made by God just to play cricket, "When God made Tendulkar he made him just to play cricket."
It was an emotional moment for the great Sachin Tendulkar who was in tears and could not control his emotions and said he could not have asked better than this from his team.
Young Virat Kohli who manfully carried 'the little master' on a victory lap and also follows Sachin's footsteps said it was his first World Cup and it is a tribute to a great sportsman of cricket and a memorable gift to Sachin Tendulkar as it is not a burden to the team because "Sachin Tendulkar" had carried the burden of the Nation for 21 years and it was the time that we carry this legend.
This victory should go into record books and needs a thumbs up for Chairman of Selectors Krishnamachari Srikkanth who has the distinction as a player, selector and administrator who was in the glorious team of 1983 which lifted The World Cup.
(Article: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author only.
Copyright © 2011 D. Giridhar)