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New teams, the same old warhorses

Having done numerous stints as a cricket expert on television channels, Murali Kartik is as good with his one-liners as he is with his arm balls. Amol Karhadkar reports.

cricket Updated: Apr 13, 2011 00:13 IST
Amol Karhadkar

Having done numerous stints as a cricket expert on television channels, Murali Kartik is as good with his one-liners as he is with his arm balls.

The Pune Warriors veteran was spot on when termed his team's Wednesday outing against the other newcomers in the IPL --- Kochi Tuskers --- as a contest of newcomers “but with the same old warhorses”.

As many as 20 players, who featured in the debut game of both teams have played at least one IPL game before IPL4.

Naturally, as the Warriors take on the Tuskers at the DY Patil Stadium on Wednesday, old rivalries will be renewed in new garb.

Rivalries renewed
Not so long ago, some of those rivalries were for national pride. The likes of Yuvraj Singh and Jesse Ryder — an integral part of the Warriors bunch — fought hard against the Lankan veterans such as Mahela Jayawardene and Muttiah Muralitharan — now Tuskers — in the World Cup.

And, howsoever hard Jayawardene tries to shrug it, the memories of the April 2 final, when his superb century failed to stop Yuvraj and Co's march to the World Cup title, will come back to haunt him.

“It's not a revenge match. That was India versus Sri Lanka. This is a different thing,” the Kochi skipper said on Tuesday.
“I don't have such animosity with players. Off the field, we are good friends. On the field, we are competitive. The final was a good match and we have to move on.”

Seniors take rest
Most of the old warhorses preferred to take time off from cricket on the eve of the important clash.

While the Tuskers preferred to stay in the hotel rather than travel 40km through Mumbai traffic for a practice session, three key Warriors — skipper Yuvraj Singh and openers Graeme Smith and Ryder — skipped the evening practice session.

Wednesday evening will tell who benefited the most from a day's rest.