Indian cricket and 2017: Men-in-Blue shatter records, Mithali Raj and Co. revolutionize women's game

2017 was quite a significant year for the Indian cricket. It started with the wicketkeeper-batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni handing over the ODI and T20 captaincy baton to Virat Kohli.

Published: 26th December 2017 09:04 PM  |   Last Updated: 28th December 2017 01:26 AM   |  A+A-

Indian pacer Jaydev Unadkat celebrates with his teammates the wicket of Sri Lanka's Kusal Perera during the third T20 at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Sunday. | PTI

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2017 was quite a significant year for the Indian cricket. It started with the wicketkeeper-batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni handing over the ODI and T20 captaincy baton to Virat Kohli. The change hardly affected Team India’s preparation for World Cup 2019, as they won six back-to-back ODI series. However, they failed to win the ICC Champions Trophy.

On the other hand, the Indian women's cricket team, led by Mithali Raj, took a fairytale journey from their last year's bottom rank in 50-overs cricket. After winning the World Cup qualifier tournament in Sri Lanka in February, the 'Women-In-Blue' showed tremendous display of grit and skill in the marquee tournament in England, as they beat sides like England, Australia, New Zealand.

However, Mithali's dreams of winning her maiden world cup remained a dream, as England survived the nail-biter in Lord's. 

Here is the brief look on how the Indian cricket shaped itself in 2017.

Men’s Cricket:

January:

‘Captain Kohli Era’ started in ODIs and T20s too for Team India, as they registered 2-1 wins in ODI and T20 series against England. In ODIs, Kedar Jadhav was the highest run-getter (232 runs). English all-rounder Chris Woakes got the maximum wickets (five).

Image Courtesy: BCCI

Suresh Raina was the highest run-scorer in T20s (104 runs), while Yuzvendra Chahal was the highest wicket-taker (Eight dismissals). Yuvraj Singh made his India comeback again after World T20 2016. He also scored his highest ODI score (150) in the second ODI at Cuttack.

February:

Bangladesh had their maiden Test outing in India. In the only Test match played in Hyderabad, India batted first and put a mammoth 687/6. Skipper Kohli registered his fourth Test double-ton (204 off 246 balls). The visitors could manage only totals of 388 and 250 in both innings, as India won the match by 208 runs.

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’s 127 off 262 balls in the first innings was the debut ton for any Bangladeshi captain in India, ever since their entry in Test format at 2000. 

March:

Australia toured India from February 23-March 29 for four Test matches. After losing the first Test match in Pune for 333 runs, the home side came back to win the series 2-1.

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topped the batting chart with 499 runs; while Ravindra Jadeja led India’s bowling charge with 25 scalps. The Pune victory was Aussies first Test win in India after the 2-1 series win in 2004-05. Ranchi and Dharamshala became the latest Test venues in Asia. Chinaman Kuldeep Yadav made his international debut in the fourth Test. He bagged four wickets in the first Innings. 

June: 

India participated in the Champions Trophy 2017 at the United Kingdom. After starting their campaign with a 124-run win against archrivals Pakistan, Kohli and Co. were stunned by Sri Lanka in the next game by seven wickets (The islanders successfully chased 322 runs, their joint-successful ODI run-chase and the highest by any team in the tournament’s history).

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Despite making into the final after victories against South Africa and Bangladesh, India was humbled by Pakistan for 180 runs. Shikhar Dhawan (338 runs), Rohit Sharma (304 runs) and Kohli (258 runs) topped the batting chart, while Bhuvaneshwar Kumar (7 scalps) was India’s most successful bowler. Yuvraj Singh played his 300th ODI in the semi-final against Bangladesh 15th June. In the same game, Captain Kohli became the fastest batsman to reach 8,000 ODI runs.

July:

India toured West Indies from June 23-July 9 for five ODIs and a T20. They won the ODIs by 3-1 and lost the solitary T20 by nine wickets.

 

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was the highest run-scorer in ODIs (336 runs), while Kuldeep was the most successful bowler with eight scalps. Veteran Tamil Nadu batsman Dinesh Karthik also returned to Team India after two years. 

August:

From July 26 to September 6, India toured Sri Lanka for three Test matches, five ODIs and a T20. They won all the matches and made it 9-0 against the hosts. While Dhawan (358 runs) and Ashwin (17 wickets) outshined the islanders in Test matches, Kohli (330 runs) and Jasprit Bumrah (15 wickets) were the destroyers in ODIs.

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All-rounder Hardik Pandya made his Test debut for India. He scored 178 runs and claimed four wickets. His highest was 108 in the third Test at Pallekele. Mumbai pacer Shardul Thakur too played his first international game in the fourth ODI at Colombo.

September:

Aussies returned in India for five ODIs and three T20s. Kohli and Co. registered a dominating 4-1 win in ODIs.

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topped the batting charts with 296 runs. Nathan Coulter-Nile was the most successful bowler with ten wickets.

The T20 series was tied in 1-1. Aussie all-rounder Moises Henriques (70 runs) was the highest run-scorer, While Jason Behrendorff (four wickets) topped the bowling charts. Ashton Agar made his ODI comeback for Australia after two years, while pacer Jason Behrendorff made his international T20 debut. Tasmanian wicketkeeper Tim Paine came back in the international cricket six years after.

October:

New Zealand Toured India from October 17 to November 7 for three ODIs and three T20s. Both the series ended on an identical 2-1 note for the home side. Skipper Kohli (263 runs) and Bumrah (six wickets) led the batting and bowling charts.

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In T20s, Kiwi all-rounder Colin Munro (123 runs) and Trent Boult (six wickets) dominated the Indians. Kerala’s Thiruvananthapuram hosted its first ever T20 on 7th November. Mumbai batsman Shreyas Iyer and Hyderabad pacer Mohammed Siraj debuted during the T20s. Kohli became the number one ODI batsman, registering career-high 889 rating points. He also crossed 5000 international runs as captain in just 93 innings and became the first ODI skipper to score six centuries in a year.

December:

Sri Lanka paid a return visit in the subcontinent from November 11-December 24 for three Tests, three ODIs and three T20s. Apart from drawing two Tests and winning the first ODI, the visitors didn't pose too many challenges for the home side.

AP File Photo of Rohit Sharma.

While Virat Kohli dominated (610 runs) in white, Rohit Sharma, lead Team India for the first time in ODIs and T20s. He dismantled the Islanders with the bat, by registering his third ODI double-ton and became the joint-fastest T20 centurion in this month.

Women’s Cricket:

Indian Women’s Team started their ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 campaign by beating the host England for 35 runs on 24th June. They won their next three matches against West Indies, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. After defeats against South Africa and Australia, Mithali Raj and Co. came back through a 186-run victory against New Zealand.  

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After beating 2013 Champions Australia in semis, India took on England in the final at Lord’s on July 23, where they lost by nine runs. Mithali Raj (409 runs) was the tournament’s second highest scorer. Deepti Sharma (12 wickets), Poonam Yadav (11 wickets) and Jhulan Goswami (10 wickets) led Women-In-Blue’s charge with the ball.

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Skipper Mithali who created plethora of records became the first batter to score seven successive fifties in Women's ODIs in the first group game. Against Aussies on 12th July, she breached the 6000-run mark and became the leading scorer in Women’s ODIs. The 186-run win against Kiwis on July 15 was Women-In-Blue’s biggest World Cup win. In the same game, Rajeshwari Gayakwad claimed 15-5, the best bowling figures by an Indian in the Women’s World Cup. In semis against Aussies on 20th July, Harmanpreet Kaur made 171 off 115, the highest score by a batswoman in a World Cup knockout game. It was also the highest individual score for an Indian in Women's World Cup.

U-19 Cricket

The Under-19 boys made history in England, where they won the two Youth Tests, along with five Youth ODIs, played from July 23 to August 16. They also won the previous ODI series (January30-February 8) against the same opposition at home by 3-1.

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However, the Rahul Dravid-coached side received disappointments in the U-19 Asia Cup at Malaysia in November, where they suffered losses from Nepal, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.

IPL 2017:

Mumbai Indians defeated Rising Pune Supergiants by one run in the final of the IPL 10 on 21st May. It was Mumbai’s third crown.

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Hyderabad skipper David Warner won the Orange Cap for being the tournament’s highest scorer (641 runs). His teammate Bhuvaneshwar Kumar got the Purple Cap for claiming 26 wickets. England all-rounder Ben Stokes, who featured for Pune, became the tournament’s Most Valuable Player (Man of the Series), while Gujarat Lions’ Basil Thampi won the Emerging Player of the Tournament.

Domestic Cricket:

Gujarat won the 83rd edition of the Ranji Trophy, played from October 6, 2016 to January 14, 2017. They beat Mumbai by five wickets in the final at Indore. The tournament saw few firsts, as apart from Gujarat’s first title win, Chhattisgarh became the 28th team in this premier domestic competition.

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Also Pink ball made its debut. Maharashtra’s Swapnil Gugale and Ankit Bawne set a record 594-run partnership against Delhi. Gujarat opener Priyank Panchal (1310 runs) topped the batting charts, while Jharkhand spinner Shahbaz Nadeem was the highest wicket-taker with 56 scalps.

Other domestic tournament results:

India Red won the Duleep Trophy 2017-18. It was the second edition of the day/night, Pink Ball tournament.

Tamil Nadu won the premier domestic ODI tournaments, Deodhar Trophy and Vijay Hazare Trophy.

Rest of India beat 2016-17 Ranji Champion Gujarat in the Irani Cup at Mumbai in January.

East Zone won the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy, by beating West Zone in Mumbai’s Wankhede on 18th February.

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