For cricket fans, it has been disappointing that the IPL had to be rescheduled this year, and also that the Hyderabad cricket team was unable to make it to the finals of the Ranji Trophy. The good news is that the finals of the Ranji Trophy, between Mumbai and Uttar Pradesh, are being held at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium from 12th to 15th January, featuring the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Wasim Jaffer, Rohit Sharma, Mohd Kaif, Suresh Raina, Zaheer Khan, Ajit Agarkar, Piyush Chawla, Praveen Kumar and R P Singh.
Mumbai, the strongest of all teams in the Ranji Trophy competition, has demolished several teams on its way to the finals. The team comprises of several international names, including Sachin Tendulkar, Wasim Jaffer, Rohit Sharma, Zaheer Khan, Ajit Agarkar and R R Powar. It has beaten Rajasthan, Gujarat, Hyderabad, Orissa, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh by huge margins. All its batsmen and bowlers are in good form and confidence, and the team has won a record 36 Ranji Trophies, the highest by any team in the history of the competition.
In contrast, Uttar Pradesh has won the competion only once in 2005-06, and was the runner-up last year. Led by the discarded Indian batsman Mohd Kaif, the team is high on confidence after knocking out a strong Tamil Nadu out of the competition in the last encounter, by managing a very slender lead of just 2 runs. The team had lost heavily to Tamil Nadu in the group stages. Filled with youngsters such as Suresh Raina, Praveen Kumar, Piyush Chawla and Shivakant Shukla, it is expected to give Mumbai some tough competition.
Entry is free. Please contact the Hyderabad Cricket Association at 2790-5676 for further details.