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open thread: what india could have done differently...

by straight point

nothing much... except use their bats more... rather than allowing the ball to pass through like a car whizzes past on a toll free highway...

its very easy to cajole yourself with the argument that india were not playing full strength... coz just two tests back a relatively unheard of deshi attack bowled india to a 250ish score on a placid track... when we played with our best batting line up...

its been a long time since i saw this much relentless high quality seam bowling with unflappable intensity on indian pitches from a visiting team... so lets give credit where its due... sa bowled brilliantly... dale steyn in particular...

theoretically india can still save this test match... but practically it will be a monumental task and the batsmen at the crease and the ones to follow will have to bat out of their skins on a weary pitch... where the threat is not only from the new ball but from the reverse swing of the old ball as well...

the stage is set for fringe players like vijay and badri to stake an irresistible claim otherwise i am afraid they will have to pay the price of the defeat...

whatever happens in this match... i think selectors should bring irfan pathan in place of saha... he seems to be in good form and bringing him in the mix when his confidence is high will give team india much needed balance for the second test match... without compromising on the batting

on this note i leave this open thread to share rants... thoughts... about how india should go for the rest of this test match and beyond...

24 comments:

Late Inswing said...

SP - Rightly said. No point kidding oneself talking about "If RD and VVS were around."

Dale Steyn would have ended up with the 7 for anyway. Such was his form today.

What India could have done is play with a little more freedom in the second knock. I recall seeing Vijay on 22 of 21 and India at 50 in 10 overs but they ended the day with 66 out of 23? True they are saving a test match, and I did not see the last 13 overs, but Napier, Adelaide and Kolkata were not saved/won by abstaining from runs. Do what RD and VVS would have done here i.e. play their normal game.

straight point said...

tho i agree with you LI but i won't blame them much... harris bowling from the rough and the light was deteriorating...

i would also not discount the possibility if sachin would have asked vijay to shut shop and play for the end of day...

harry said...

after tea, it was deja vu time.... ahemdabad test april 2008......india all out 76....chief wrecker dale steyn....... 5/23 and 3/91....lost by innnings and 90 runs.
okay my rant of the day..... the jatman getting out in the second innings to such an atrocious shot (i know had it come off i would have been a scintillating four)when the team is following on.we need more responsible batting from him.whats this attitude ...."if the ball is there to hit,i will hit it even if i am on 99" and the team has given him licence to do just that.cut to multan .....viru on 296........ i remember tellin my mother," maa ab isko ek ek run le kar 300 karna chahiye".....the ball soars so does my heart...... six!!! amazing..... i am speechless.cut to sydney viru on 195........hits .......ball soars so does my heart.....caugt @ deep midwicket/midon. i am crushed.
not long back in some post match interview rahul said one always plays situations in test matches and changes the game according to the situation...or words to this effect.ITS HIGH TIME SOMEONE TOLD HIM THAT.

straight point said...

harry... just curious... did you by any chance saw his first innings batting today...?

harry said...

@ SP.subtract 109 from 233 and we have 124 and also saw him getting out to a lazy shot.dont get me wrong buddy, he just doesnt do justice to his potential.he can do much.....much more.

sushil rajmane said...

I think there's a great chance for M Vijay and Badrinath tommorow, who knows, these might be the new Dravids and Laxmans in the making...
the rest of the story for tomorrow looks glommy..

Gorogoro said...

Not much, really. You'd have needed a team of Sachins to stop Steyn today. And I won't even commit to that.

Trideep said...

Tendulkar got to play a Hashim Amla innings. And someone needs to play the Kallis. Still there is doubt!

Anonymous said...

worst thing is that it's sachin out there with Vijay....

I would have rather Dravid out there and Sachin injured...he always shuts shop in such situations and throws away his wicket after 2-3 sessions of boredom..

Mahek said...

It would be great if he did bat two whole sessions. Anyway, day 3 was great viewing if you were the kind who enjoyed a contest. Whatever the result, I hope we don't roll over because it will give the naysayers another reason to doubt the next batch of batsmen.

Homer said...

Given that there are two more days left in this contest, why is everyone in the finger pointing mode already?

If 6/12 had been 6/120, the Proteas would be batting now..

You have to doff you hat at Steyn for that spell after tea, take it on the chin and ensure that it does not happen again in the second innings.

180 overs left, 259 behind, 8 wickets in hand. India is not out of the contest yet.

Cheers,

Prabu said...

Homer,

Glad to know that someone else is also as crazy as I am :-). Here's to intersting possibilities!

Aditya said...

Here hoping for another miracle like Kolkata !

Sachin can play an innings of a lifetime ( a double century if not more)
If we even save this Match we will definitely save the series

Let's hope for a dustbowl in Kolkata where we play 3 spinners and we see India dominating like we did in the good old 90's and win by an innings and some!


and our team needs a left hander to replace Shah in the next match to counter the in-swing ( reverse) and Paul Harris's negative line..we have 10 freaking right handers now!
i would draft in Nayar,pathan or Raina but I am sure Laxman will be back or they will get Rohit Sharma back in!

Homer said...

Prabu,

Long live the crazies :)

Cheers,

Homer said...

Aditya,

We dont need Sachin to score a double nor do we need miracles. The two things we need is to bat time and score runs.

Out of the remaining 180 overs, we need to bat atleast 100 overs at a minimum, if not more. And we need to score at a rate of 3.5 in that period. What that will do is that SA will get desperate - because they will run out of time and because they wont be able to stem the run flow. The longer we bat and the more we score, the more demoralizing it will be for the proteas. And faced with the prospect of a tricky 4th innings chase on a fifth day wicket and with morale plummeting, anything can happen.

Canwe screw this up again - Sure.
Can Steyn do a 7 fer again? Sure. But will we do a 6/12 a second time around.. Wont happen.

Can we win it from here - I believe we can.

Cheers,

Kumar Narasimha said...

Homer,

With 77 overs remaining today (103/3), we have 167 overs left in the test.Even assuming we bat for another 100 overs, and score another 350 runs, that would still be a target of 120 odd runs to score off 65 overs for SA.

Lets pray for rain or a Sachin double + Badri ton.Both seem to be in the realm of miracles.

This series and the No.1 ranking is as good as gone because of the 6/12 after tea yesterday.

And the 6/12 happened because of the selectors keeping an unfit VVS in the squad.Raina/Kohli/Che should've been in the squad in place of VVS.Bhajji and Ishant not able to support Zaheer well is another reason.But we knew that our bowling is weak.

Prabu said...

Kumar Narasimha,

You jinxed it mannnn!

Kumar Narasimha said...

Prabu,

The percentages are so against us in this test.All because of the 6/12 yesterday.This is what happens in a 2-test series. One collapse and you are out.

Yes, if we can win at Eden, we will retain the No.1 ranking.But do you guys think our bowling attack can take 20 SAF wickets, after losing the toss?

straight point said...

But do you guys think our bowling attack can take 20 SAF wickets, after losing the toss?

that is billion dollar question kumar...

right now bhajji's confidence is so low that he has resorted to bowling round the wicket to right handers... ishant is discovering the blues of second season if you know what i mean and in this scenario to expect zaheer and rookie to do all the work is expecting too much... specially after losing the toss as you said...

that is why i proposed irfan pathan's name coz he will provide the much needed balance to team india at this moment... going with four specialist bowler is only done when all of your bowlers are in top form which is not the case right now...

but in way its good that our youngsters all facing the strenuous test possible... and they will know exactly where they stand and what to work upon and also the fact that what makes players like dravid, laxman, sachin to do it consistently for a decade that no youngster can break in the middle order for that long...

Homer said...

Kumar Narsimha,

The 6/12 torpedoed our chances, but we are still in the contest.And until the contest is over, it is premature to take stock.

Cheers,

Homer said...

SP,

VVS Laxman - http://stats.cricinfo.com/ci/engine/player/30750.html?class=1;template=results;type=batting;view=innings

Rahul Dravid - http://stats.cricinfo.com/ci/engine/player/28114.html?class=1;template=results;type=batting;view=innings

Look at the time and the number of innings each took to score their first hundred in test cricket. And the gap between thier first and second 100s.

We lost nearly 16 years in finding the next Gavaskar and 5 years after that to find a stable opening pair. Only because every single candidate paled in comparison. RD and VVS and SRT and AK and SCG all attained thier greatness over a period of time and because they were playing almost consistently over that time period. I will give our kids a lot more rope to hang themselves than most other commentators are willing to. If they fail, so be it.. But atleast it wont be because of a lack of effort.

Cheers,

straight point said...

homer... on contrary when i said i am happy that they are facing the strenuous test and that now they will know exactly what it takes to be consistent i mean exactly what you have said... it was not as if i was taking stock of things...

its too early to be judgmental about any of our youngster be it batsman or bowler...

how i wish we do not hide behind the comforts of these greats and keep faith in our youngsters to come good... i am all for the same eleven in next match but with irfan replacing saha... again not as if i have anything against him but for balance...

also call it mean but if laxman is coming and not fielding at slip coz of injury... i will call it a compromise straight away...

Kumar Narasimha said...

Homer,

I agree the match is not lost yet.

But, as one can see, to even think of safety, India still needs to bat another 100 overs (50 today and 50 tomorrow).

I am trying to be optimistic, and dream about India ending day 4 at 350/4 or 350/5.It sounds crazy, Homer, it really does :)

Aditya said...

@Homer
the stats you posted tell a story
back when dravid,laxman and even sehwag made their debuts we were happy with our batsmen scoring hundreds rather than winning matches away from home..all those matches were invariably lost and we would see a Sachin century and feel happy about it..and when a new player scored a century that would satisfy our appetite.
Now the desire to win has increased and we have become a better test side away from home and have been winning recently away..after they stopped producing the dustbowls of the 90's it has been easy for bowlers from other countries to get wickets ( fast bowlers)..now the case is all too different!