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Nuwan Ranasinghe

Roar Rookie

Joined August 2018

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Nuwan is an upcoming sports writer who has written for several online publications. He started with The Substitute in 2012, afterwards he wrote for The Sporting Journal in 2013. In June 2012, Nuwan began his YouTube channel named Off The Mark, producing videos that shared a comical and witty perspective on cricket. Nuwan interviewed high profile international cricketers, his most notable guest being Sri Lankan legend Kumar Sangakkara in January 2013. Nuwan joined RealSport in 2017, a new fan-based website that covered range of different sports. Nuwan conducted podcasts and skype interviews with RealSport’s editors, giving his insight and analysis on cricket. Nuwan joined The Roar in August 2018 to further his sports writing ambitions. His goal is to become a respected television or radio cricket commentator in the future. Through accumulating further experience and opportunities Nuwan is hopeful that he can make it into the commentary box one day.

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Hi Trevine as someone who has close ties with the Sri Lankan cricket team I honestly think they will have a better chance than most of us are willing to give them credit for. They may struggle to win yes but if look at the current rankings Australia is 5th and Sri Lanka is 6th. It shows that there really may not be a huge gulf between the sides as the scoreline may suggest.

Sri Lanka always manage to surprise and dumbfound Australia when they come here and I think this series will be no different. In white ball cricket if you look at recent results within the last decade Sri Lanka has done remarkably well on Australian shores and have had the wood over them in a couple of games. The bowling is definitely a weak link without Rangana Herath but these Sri Lankan boys can definitely bat if the apply themselves, as the 1st Test will show.

Sri Lanka face an uphill task

Thank you marees yes my parents are of Sri Lankan heritage.

The real reasons India won

I was wondering when I would be hearing from you Paul. Let me begin my rebuttal to your comments.

First of all, I am not looking at this through ‘Indian-tinted glasses.’ To set the record straight, I am an Australian whose parents are migrants from a little island nation called Sri Lanka. Some even refer to this country as Ceylon depending on which generation you were born in. My name is a very common Sri Lankan name, if you would like to do a Google search on it.

Also, if you bothered to read my article carefully, I was doing my best to support Australia and even praised Tim Paine for winning in Perth. I gave positive comments on Australia’s bowling attack and even said they had the ability to win the series if Tim Paine displayed better leadership. I even clearly said that I had hoped that Tim Paine would press on the advantage in Melbourne but he didn’t. India deserve to be praised for the way played. They played better cricket overall, and blunted Australia in all areas of their game.

Kohli’s captaincy was not ‘average’ or ‘woeful’. Why? Because he actually WON THE BLOODY SERIES!!! It’s a shame I had to be Mr. Obvious to point that out to you. A great captain learns from his mistakes after a loss so he can be successful next time. After Perth, India made better changes to their team, whilst Australia stayed with the same team. Paine may have shown ‘adventure’ with his field placements but he was practically clueless on what to do with Starc when the latter was spraying the ball everywhere. Tim Paine is not a tactically astute captain and Ponting will probably highlight this to you better than I can.

India certainly did nullify Lyon’s spin and I described this in some detail in my article, given that I am knowledgeable on the art of off-spin bowling. Refer to Trent Copeland and Aakash Chopra’s analysis on the touch screen for an expert insight on the technical changes India made with their batting to tame the Lyon.

Yes Pujara and Kohli didn’t make runs in India’s second innings in Melbourne, but if you look at the context of that match India were miles ahead and so the mindset those two played in was slightly more carelessly compared to their other innings. They can simply be disregarded. Australia didn’t fare too well either in both innings so I’m not sure what your point is here. Even if Pujara and Kohli didn’t play India’s batting would have still been superior to Australia’s. Why? Because of the quality of domestic cricket India plays at home.

Unlike most Australian cricket fans, I actually took the time out to research first-class and domestic cricket in India and some of the stats their blokes have are unbelievable. Mayank Agarawal and Hanuma Vihari average over 50 and have triple tons to their name. Teenage prodigy Prithvi Shaw averages almost 60 with the bat in Indian domestic cricket. When was the last time we saw an Aussie domestic batsman achieve the same feat? This again proves the gulf in batting skill level between India and Australia. India’s batting bench strength is powerful and given that MS Dhoni is coming back for the one-dayers it just goes to show how much depth they have.

Lastly, in regards to your opinion about where I got the idea that Australia were ‘going through the motions’ in reference to Tim Paine’s babysitting sledge towards Pant, it’s pretty obvious to most that someone would only make such a sledge if they have nothing better to say, or if they are losing badly. It’s the sledge of a defeated player. Tim Paine even admitted this in the press conference. When Channel 7 asked him why he jokingly asked Pant to babysit his kids Paine simply replied that he wanted to have a bit of a laugh and inject a bit of positivity because Australia were so far behind in that game. The intention of the sledge was purely to add a bit of fun to an otherwise hopeless situation for Australia. Think about it logically. By Tim Paine asking Pant if he could put babysit his kids, what was he hoping to achieve? Was Pant really going to get distracted by that and be put off his game? The bloke was approaching a hundred for heaven’s sakes! It’s not a typical nasty sledge aimed at insulting or degrading a player. Tim Paine would be a fool for making that kind of sledge. Why? Because Australia were getting hammered in that game! And so all Tim Paine can do in that situation is provide a bit of banter.

I am just as Australian as you are mate and given how thoroughly I have rebutted you I think it’s fair to say I know a bit more about Aussie cricket than you have assumed. I fair dinkum know what a great sledge is, I even have a book with some of the best sledges from players all around the world. In fact, my last article was based on some of the best sledges from Asian cricket teams, I am happy to link this article to you too.

Next time please think twice before you comment and make assumptions on other writers’ knowledge of the game. I like to see myself as a fan of cricket as a whole, not just the Australian team only. Cheers.

The real reasons India won

Not having Warner or Smith was certainly a big blow for the Aussies, but I really think we shouldn’t downplay how monumental India’s historic victory is. They are the No. 1 Test team for a reason.

The real reasons India won

Again blaming the pitch isn’t a great reason to justify Australia’s loss. Australia lost this series because they played poor cricket as a whole, and didn’t learn from their Adelaide loss and Perth win. I wouldn’t say the pitches were ‘Indian’ by any stretch. Bumrah, Shami and Sharma were managing to get the ball to swing and seam in a very Australian way compared to the home team’s bowlers, who would have practically grown up on these pitches.

The real reasons India won

I find that blaming the pitch is a very tired old argument which a lot of Australian fans use when their team is copping a beating from a better team. Had this panned out the other way around, would you still be blaming the pitch? India batted Australia out of the game because the home team was just too impatient with their bowling and couldn’t think of any clever strategies to knock over the Indians.

Prior to this series, Pujara was struggling in South Africa and England. Surely the Aussies could have looked at some footage of his dismissals in those series and think of a way to get him out? When I was watching the games on TV Ricky Ponting even gave a clear blueprint on how to knock over Pujara cheaply when he was commentating. Australia had the firepower and ability but poor leadership from their captain

The real reasons India won

Two guys don’t make the whole team. There’s another 9 blokes who need to contribute as well!

The real reasons India won

Yes, very chaotic article wasn’t it? Don Freo certainly provided a more balanced argument whilst still supporting the Aussies which was good of him. I think as Australians we sometimes struggle to accept a thumping in cricket when it happens to us. We take a while to come to terms with it, and like to downplay the other team’s success before finally letting it sink in. Another example I can think of was the 1996 World Cup final, when Sri Lanka announced their arrival as big boys of the cricket world. It took a while for many Aussies to accept that loss considering that the Sri Lankans were seen as minnows back then.

The real reasons India won

great pick up there, but I think what you’re forgetting is that Pujara only did this to balls pitched outside the line of off stump, therefore he couldn’t be given out LBW because of the doubt. Trent Copeland and Aakash Chopra explained this nicely on the touch screen TV during the channel 7 coverage of the Test series.

The real reasons India won

Valid point there mate, but they still won in Perth. Why couldn’t they press home the advantage in Melbourne? India was also copping their own media storm too, with reports of infighting between Ishant Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja. Kohli was also copping a lot of rubbish for his sledging too. I think in regards to this series, it was quite equal on both sides, but one team clearly just wanted that trophy more than the other. I feel as though Australia let themselves get distracted by all the media furore compared to India, and this again helped them to win.

The real reasons India won

Hey mate, thanks for the feedback. Hmm I’m kind of 50/50 with you here.

Regardless of whether the quicks put pressure on the Indian top order or not Nathan Lyon still has a job to do to get those key wickets. Australia clearly had a plan to use Lyon on Kohli, why couldn’t they think of one for the rest of the batting order?

I definitely agree he did quite well considering the how strong this Indian batting line up is. But from the results it’s quite obvious that India’s taming of the Lyon in Melbourne and Sydney paid off in helping them win.

The real reasons India won

Cricket’s best subcontinental sledges

Hey mate thanks! Glad you like it. Absolutely, given the amount of negativity we’ve seen in Aussie cricket of late, I thought 2019 ought to start off with a bit of banter from other cricketers around the world. Cheers!

Cricket’s best subcontinental sledges

Thats true Tapeshwar. Varun Aaron and Umesh Yadav were very strong guys capable of hitting 140+ but they were wild and erratic and lost confidence quickly if they got for boundaries. This current Indian bowling attack is not like that at all which is great.

India prove they are not Kohli-centric

Yeah easily their best crop Harvey. Each bowler offers something different too which provides great variety in their attack as well. There were moments when Australia looked like getting away but India’s bowlers just kept sticking to their plans and bowled great disciplined lines and lengths the whole time.

India prove they are not Kohli-centric

Gotta respectfully disagree with you on this one mate. I really don’t think you were watching this game. Did India crumble? No they did not. You won’t believe this but they actually won! Crazy right? Who would have thought.

Did the conditions suit either team? No. But its obvious that India tamed this Adelaide pitch better than Australia, and they deserve that praise because they’re the ones playing away. India had 3 individual 50+ scores compared to Australia’s 2, with one of them being a ton, so this again tells a story.

Did Ashwin need to score a ton in India’s first dig just to prove to blokes like you that he’s capable of batting? No he doesn’t. He played the ideal anchor support role for Pujara to allow him to bat freely. Thats what a number 9 bat ought to. Especially given India’s dire situation in their first innings.

I really think you’re downplaying this India victory at Adelaide way too much mate. This is a HUGE win for India and they deserve to be praised highly for their efforts. They have proved to the haters and doubters that they can win in Australia and they have done it handsomely.

Yes they lost in England and SA but they are still the Number 1 ranked team for a reason. I’m excited to see where this series go now because this is the first time in a long time that any Asian team is giving the Aussies a run for their money in the Test arena in their own backyard. Bring on the second Test!

India prove they are not Kohli-centric

Hahaha how is it creepy? Why are we not allowed to praise the opposition when they perform well?

India prove they are not Kohli-centric

Nope, I was definitely watching the 1st Test match between Australia and India at the Adelaide Oval like you mate. It wasn’t just one player that stood out Paul, have you checked the scorecard? Pujara was the clear stand out yes, but don’t forget Rahane’s contribution too. Even Ravi Ashwin hung around to support Pujara for nearly 80 balls in the first innings. It was a collective team effort by India, that’s quite obvious. Both teams struggled to bowl out each other, not just one.

‘hyperinflated’ averages? Have you checked Rohit Sharma’s or Ajinkya Rahane’s Test batting averages mate? Sharma averages 38 and Rahane averages 41. I really wonder what game you were watching Paul.

India can’t improve? Are you kidding me? Barring the last 4 wickets, did you see the way their rectified their first innings batting mistakes? India can improve just as well as and as quickly as Australia. There are reports that left-arm all arounder Ravindra Jadeja may replace Rohit Sharma for the second Test, meaning India will have a second specialist spin option, which is going to cause further headaches for Australia. Jadeja is also a useful lower order batsman as well. Teenage prodigy Prithvi Shaw might open the batting for India in the second test as well, which is going to strengthen the visitors run scoring stocks immensely. If I was Kohli, I would be extremely confident knowing I have the psychological advantage going into the second test as well as heaps of able players keen to put their best foot forward for the visitors.

Lastly Paul, this Indian team are not ‘my guys’ because I am not Indian!

India prove they are not Kohli-centric

Dakish yes you are right I have noticed Pujara can be a bit slow in the field compared to his team mates but he has the qualities of being a solid Test match batsman like dravid. I brought up those three examples of his past performances to highlight this, that he is no stranger to playing defensively when the need arises.

Is Cheteshwar Pujara the new Rahul Dravid?

Which game are you watching?

This Adelaide Test hangs on a knife-edge

Yeah definitely Kopa! I think he is getting there slowly given those past performances, but yeah dravid would certainly be proud of where he is at currently. Only upwards from here.

Is Cheteshwar Pujara the new Rahul Dravid?

Interesting rebuttal there Paul! Yeah he has a while to go, but I think what I am trying to get at here is he has a lot of inner qualities and characteristics that make him ideal for Test match cricket, much like Rahul Dravid himself and we saw that in India’s first innings. I just found those statistical comparisons quite fascinating as well.

South Africa was a struggle for Pujara that is true, but he still has a good few years ahead of him to improve on that record. Perhaps after his gritty hundred on day one in Adelaide it will give him the motivation and belief to realise he can prosper in away series.

Kohli certainly seems to have a lot of faith in Pujara it seems – the bloke bats above Kohli at first drop and he is a behemoth in Indian domestic cricket – averages over 50 and has over 55 first-class hundreds to his name, so he is definitely no slouch.

Its a shame more readers aren’t commenting on this article because I reckon it would create quite a good discussion. More Aussie cricket fans should try to become invested in other nations’ cricketing affairs to gain a more broader and open-minded view on what is happening in this sport around the world.

Is Cheteshwar Pujara the new Rahul Dravid?

Definitely one of the more potent Indian teams to arrive on Aussie shores in recent years. Will be interesting to see how they fare though. They may appear strong on paper but I think Australia’s bowling attack is just a touch better and will obviously be more acquainted with home conditions. Having said that, India’s batting is just supreme at the moment. Kohli is unstoppable. Indian batting vs Aussie bowling will be the main contest this summer.

India will field four-man pace attack in Australia Tests

In all honesty I reckon Sri Lanka will have a tougher campaign in this Asia Cup. The Afghans definitely have the talent and skill to cause an upset, especially with experienced campaigners like Mohammad Nabi and Rashid Khan who have made successful appearances in the Big Bash and other major T20 competitions around the world. Also don’t rule out their wicketkeeper Mohammad Shahzad; he has a strike rate of over 130 in international T20s and there’s no doubt he’ll go hard in this comp. Of course ODIs require more longevity at the crease and this will most likely be where the Afghans’ could falter in this comp. Regardless, they’ve got enough ability to cause at least a scare.

Bangladesh are not the Bangladesh of old. In recent times they’ve shown they can step it up to the Sri Lankans and they even won a Test match against them in Sri Lanka – something that even the Australians find hard to do. So for me I feel as though Sri Lanka definitely have the difficult road ahead going into this Asia Cup campaign.

Despite India and Pakistan facing each other off, the inclusion of Hong Kong in Group A means that should these powerhouses suffer a loss to each other in the group stages their path into the semis is almost guaranteed as it would be assumed they will defeat them quite comfortably.

Sri Lanka in search of riches in Dubai

Great feedback as always thanks Paul! yes I’ve always wondered why finger spinners fare so poorly in Australia, is it due to the pitch or weather conditions, or is it a mental thing? Murali was definitely quite poor in Australia you are spot on there.

Yes I’ve been watching Moeen Ali become more potent with his offies. Despite his recent success in the 4th Test against India I would not put him in the same league as the other specialist finger spinners. His current record overall doesn’t make for great reading. He is somewhere between a second specialist spinner and a part-timer. He can definitely bowl, but he can also be expensive when the pitch isn’t doing favours for him.

Haha extending this article on the role of finger spinners in ODIs and T20s would have stretched this out into a thesis. I decided to just focus on the basics and fundamentals for now. Thanks again.

What makes a great offie?