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open thread: second test second coming...

by straight point

so we lost this match... any team that can lose six wickets for twelve runs with not much on the board will always be chasing leather...

the pitch had no demons and it was pure brilliance of steyn supported well by all bowlers that made it possible for sa... having said that... had our two centurions not lapsed in concentration after reaching individual milestones things could well have been interesting in the middle considering we came as close as 6 runs to wipe sa total... but such is life...

i expect india to come hard at sa in the next match... we are not no.1 for nothing and one match cannot make us bad suddenly... tho it has exposed certain chinks in our armor for sure...

badri showed that he has the temperament to fight it out in the middle and vijay showed his class in second innings but both failed to press the matter further... i am particularly disappointed by vijay tho... he will have to learn quickly that nice 30s and 40s are not going to help him much and if he wants to look for inspiration he should look no further than a certain akash chopra...

having said that... i don't want selectors to make them bakra for this defeat... but at the same time i expect them to use horses for courses policy for next match... as this being two test series so we have only one match to retain the no.1 spot with next test match is not coming in a while...

so my team for next test match will be...

sehwag, gambhir, vijay, sachin, badri, dhoni, irfan pathan, ramesh powar, zaheer, mishra, ojha/ishant

irfan pathan and powar making a second coming... while last spot is depending upon the look of the eden garden pitch...

i have deliberately not included laxman coz first he is coming straight after injury... second even if he is fit to bat... he wont be standing at slip... so call me mean if you want but laxman not standing at slip isnt something i will sacrifice a spot for...

on this note i leave an open thread to invite your opinions... lets set the ball rolling...


update:
it seems selectors were in even more hurry than me to put up a post... and they have already announced the squad for the next test... probably they too didn't want to waste the extra day's rest this match has provided them... so here it goes...

MS Dhoni (capt/wk), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Murali Vijay, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, S Badrinath, Harbhajan Singh, Amit Mishra, Zaheer Khan, Sreesanth, Ishant Sharma, Pragyan Ojha, Dinesh Kartik, Suresh Raina.

23 comments:

raj said...

Well, Powar was once a prospect but he hasnt done much recently, has he?
Irfan? Maybe, a left field choice.
I'd like to drop Badri because if you look at Dhoni's captaincy career, Badri seems to be a jinx for him :-)

straight point said...

raj...

he has score a century recently... bowled as good as he ever does... at least we will be spared the sight of off spinner bowling round the wicket for right hand bats... and will be blessed with classic off spin and all related induced dismissals an off spinner is supposed to...

irfan is in good form both with bat and ball but more importantly he provides the balance and an option to team management they desperately need... coz selecting four bowlers strategy works only when all four bowlers are in top form which is not the case at the moment... and we need 20 wickets in next match...

Mahek said...

No Zaheer Khan in your team, SP? :P

crownish said...

Greg Chappell must be ROTFLHAOing looking at his presentations about the rotation theory.

Trideep said...

SP,

No Zaheer?????

And somehow i don't think Romesh Pawar fits the bill. I feel a Mishra-Ojha combination would be good.

straight point said...

mahek, trideep...

my team had only ten players so that was obviously a typo which i have corrected... :)

pRAFs said...

Powar, now you're putting the theory of adding weight to the bowling a lot more literally!!

But yes, anyone else but durby..

'bout Vijay, yes it was a major brain fade to lose his wicket to Harris.

I mean, is this guy just going to bowl shit outside legs tump and still keep taking wickets?

Respect to Steyn man, RESPECT !!

us subcontinentals are not worth you Dale, just not worth

Homer said...

Powar is actually a pretty good call because of what he brings to the plate.. With Harbhajan losing bite, it is as good a time as any to get Powar in the mix.

And his bowling form has been pretty good all season long, so unlike last season where he was woefully out of touch, he can actually do some good things for India if picked.

And the time off may help Bhajji too.

Bhaskar Khaund said...

SP , yeah i guess we'll be turning Eden into a minefield now but ..... we can get the full strength batting line up back on , but if there's another steyn-type performance , its not going to make much difference.truth is you need quality BOWLERS , people who can restrict oppn. to 300-350 after having them down 6-2.Bowlers - not the hyped lumps of mediocrity that we have.sad but true. you can get away with it some of the time , maybe most of the time but never all of the time ! there's a point when you''ll be shown up.

Mahek said...

I think I like the sound of Powar being in the side. All things equal, always go for the guy who brings variety to the attack. So I would go for Mishra to turn the ball away from right-handers and Powar to turn it away from lefties, not that it's going to happen. From the squad picked for the second test I'd definitely pick Raina because right now the South Africans aren't having to adjust their lines. Hopefully Laxman will also be fit and someone will have the sense to hand him the number 3 spot.

Daredevils
Laxman
Tendulkar
Raina
Badrinath
Dhoni
Mishra
Zaheer
Sreesanth
Ojha

kny789 said...

Love some of the ideas put forward here, I've always thought Powar should be a serious consideration for the spin bowling option especially as he is a handy bat. He does one thing especially well that Bhajji seems to have forgotten about... he tosses the ball up!

Personally on the pace bowling side I want to see RP slowly make a comeback into the side. SLOWLY though, because otherwise he'll be shite. The combination of him and Zaheer in England was lethal, and he has a bit more pace to him then the others (when he tries). It bothers me that our bowlers can barely touch 85mph while Kallis crosses 90! My bowlers for the final test would be Khan, Sharma, Sreesanth, Mishra and Bhajji/Ojha, however realistically I know we won't play 5 bowlers so I expect Sharma gets the boot again.

On the batting front I mentioned in an earlier post that guys like Raina and Kohli must have felt hard done by Rohits selection, and it's good to see Raina finally given a shot. As much as I want to see Rohit do well I somehow have no sympathy for the idiot who injures himself playing football 15 minutes before the match.

My ideal team for the Match would have Badri dropped for Raina and see 5 bowlers picked, but I'm gonna assume now that provided Laxman doesn't regain form we'll have Raina and Sreesanth coming in for Saha and Sharma

Naked Cricket said...

Pathan is a must for the ODIs, T20s - tests come after that. Swap Sree and him, Sree plays tests, Irfan ODIs.

They gotta make a serious call on who plays what form. Bhajji will be for out-of-form-cricket.

When Powar got a few chances, he came into the side with a bowling allrounders tag, and he was judged by that. But wasn't that a long time ago?

Clearly, Bhajji/Mishra/Ojha aren't working - at least Bhajji with either bowler is not - and I buy that rotten old hunt in pairs cliche for spinners; what, i even think hunters hunt in pairs...and pairs hunt in..

And Powar is a pair all by himself - can we get beyond the Powar jokes and pick him. He gives air and loop like he was flying a paper plane.

Karthik said...

why didnt steyn take out bhajji yesterday with a beamer/bouncer aimed at his noggin? why? why?

straight point said...

prafs... as i said you go with four bowlers when you know all of them are in top form which is not the case... so bit more emhasis on bowling without compromising batting won't hurt us at all... :)

straight point said...

exactly homer... he has been on road since eternity... where and how he will get time to rectify the flaws which have become obvious... so i think he deserve a break to ponder upon the future course...

straight point said...

exactly we need bowlers who can take 20 saffa wickets bhaskar... but first ten wickets when we lose the toss for about 300...

going with four bowlers and thinking we will win toss is a gamble that can backfire again so they must attack which is only option left to us as there is just one match to go...

straight point said...

i would not disturb batting order as much mahek... more than the flaw of batting order it was case of consistent good bowling... and now since our guys have had some measure of his bowling and know what to expect in middle... you wont wanna change all that for the sake of it...

straight point said...

thats some tough words kny... :)

our immediate goal is to win next match and like all strong team does we should go hard on sa and attacking... as i have said earlier i just don't see us getting them 10 cheap wickets if we lose toss... we must bolster out bowling and for than even if we have to scarify bit on batting or even a potential defeat so be it...

straight point said...

nc... the way he was fielding in ranji finals would make even yuvraj stand up and notice... i don't know why we first brad a guy in wrong category and then even judge them by that yardstick...

its pity that tho we have talent in our ranks but we don't have eyes to see it... and what's more we get paid 40 lakhs to close our eyes too!!

kny789 said...

Some call them tough words but to me it's just a bit of common sense. To be the number one team in the world you have to be able to take 20 wickets on a track like the Nagpur one and the sad fact of the matter is that Khan, Sharma, Bhajji, and Mishra are incapable of doing that. Until we develop a true allrounder (we have a bowling allrounder in Khan)) we're going to have to accept that we need a third pacer. Consider SA playing with Morkel, Parnell, Steyn and Kallis. England would never be caught dead without 3 frontline fast bowlers + handy Collingwood option. Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Australia, Windies... look at any of them and they will always have at least 3 players capable of good pace in the team, and if they only have 2 then they are always backed up by a handy medium pacer.

Maybe someone would argue that in Indian conditions you only need 2 pace bowlers, and maybe thats true, but you still need 5 bowlers. If not then the 5th should be of the caliber of Kallis, not Sehwag. I'm really curious now as to what the selectors do for the 2nd test, but I expect theyll stick with the safe option and end up letting us down.

straight point said...

kny... when i said tough words that does not mean i dint agree with you... and for that precisely i included irfan to give team options without compromising much on batting...

powar selection would have shown to all and sundry what flaws bhajji has incorporated in his bowling all this while bowling darts...

i would have thought that our five wise man will think through selection but they were in such hurry to name team that they deemed it fit to select in fourth day itself... :)

Aditya said...

My Team

Sehwag
Gambhir
Laxman
Sachin
Vijay
raina
Dhoni
Mishra
Zaheer
Sreesanth
Ojha

Most likely in reality Badri and Bhajji will play instead of Raina and Mishra

Raina is a left hander and Harris will be unsettled in his negative line.

with ojha we can employ the same strategy of the South African against them.

we did see how Zaheer smote Harris when he came round the wicket!

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