Its all IPL in Sharjah as election fever hits India!

Rajasthan royals


IPL season has kicked off and one week into the tournament there have been plenty of highlights to discuss. TIDU’s Gaurav Joshi reports from UAE about the top five discussion trends re cricket a sport we all love dearly.

glenn maxwell




1. GLENN MAXWELL The “Big” Show has entertained, spellbound and destructed all types of bowlers in just 120 balls he has faced thus far. Maxwell’s unconventional stroke play of reverse sweeps, left handed switch hits and ability to clear long boundaries has made him the most talked about man in India, that says something considering the federal elections are taking place in a country of over one billion people. 2. UAE ”“ CRICKTING NIRVANA Thanks to the federal elections in India the cricketing world is able to witness the real excitement and support for cricket in the UAE. Majority of the matches have been sold out across Sharjah, Dubai and Abu Dhabi with people flocking to these stadiums braving the summer heat of the desert.   The distant locality of the stadiums in Abu Dhabi and Dubai have not deterred the fans from staying away given no public transport is available to reach the stadiums. Well done BCCI for staging the tournament in UAE instead of South Africa. 3. UNDERDOGS STEPPING UP It is always great to have underdogs challenging the high profile teams. In the past couple of editions the Rajasthan Royals have become everyone’s favourite team because the team has not been filled with most iconic players but instead with blue collar cricketers. This year the Kings XI have added to that mix ensuring the dominance of the high profile teams such as Mumbai and Delhi could be over. It has given the competition a nice balance. 4. SIZE DOES MATTER It might be great viewing for the spectator at the ground but for a cricket lover it has been some consolidation with the boundary ropes expanded to the maximum.   The grounds at Abu Dhabi and Dubai have a huge surface area and it has been used wisely with each boundary rope at least 80 yards. In the past we have seem ropes less than 60 meters from the bat and the bowlers have no leeway. Stretching the ropes out has not only ensured the batsmen need to hit the ball cleanly to clear the ropes, it has also meant there are vacant gaps in the large outfields to run two’s and three’s.   5. NOTHING EVER CHANGES IN SHARJAH When cricket started in the Middle East over 20 years ago, Sharjah cricket stadium has been the nucleus by hosting over 200 ODI matches. Importantly nothing has changed over twenty years. The stands are exactly the same as is the open press box, the VIP seating, the curator and the pitch. The place remains a graveyard for bowlers and a heaven for batsmen. All the high scoring matches in the tournament thus far have been in Sharjah and expect the same over the next week before the tournament moves to India. For the English it is Lords, for the West Indians it’s Sabina Park, for Australians it’s the MCG but given the amount of cricket that has been played in Sharjah it is the equivalent of all these grounds, especially to the sub-continental teams.

Short URL: