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What has happened to this Indian Cricket Team?

by achettup

Its been 4 hours since the close of play and I can't sleep. After just 6 of the allotted 24 playing days for this series, it looks like we've conceded it. I can't for the life of me comprehend the manner of this abject capitulation. Is this the same team that fought back every tour for the last four years to at least share honors if not win outright? That embodied the spirit of never giving up, determinedly standing their ground and never giving an inch and that has a world cup to show for it?

Dravid has been dismissed three times this series almost falling over his tentative front foot, Laxman doesn't look like he knows how to bat overseas anymore, Sehwag swishes like he always does but its more like 75% effort swish, Gambhir can't buy a run but keeps selling his wicket to the first low bid, the tail is cut away before its had a chance to wag, Sachin looks imperious and in the form of his life... in short its like the team of the 90s all over again, except a phase when Sachin gets the worst of luck.

The bowlers, poor guys - two of whom are not anywhere near 100% fit, are bowling their hearts out but the kinds of fields being set for them and the complete lack of support from the batsmen means they're drawing unnecessary flak. The last overseas tour we struggled to pass 300, this tour from three efforts we've managed to get past 200 once. While the opposition has managed to pass 300 twice (and looking like getting 600 at least in this match) and their tailenders have looked more comfortable than 3 of our top 6.

But its worse than that. This team doesn't look like it wants to play unless things are going their way. That seems to mean the bowlers get overcast conditions and reduce the opposition to less than a hundred for 6, or that they're playing in the comfort of their subcontinental stronghold. And boy do they win then. But the minute things start to go against them, like Harbhajan whose attitude seems to have infected the entire team, they go into a shell, get defensive, the shoulders droop and they just give up, surrender without a fight. Not to take anything away from their opponents who've bowled sharp and executed plans splendidly, but ultimately have been assisted by unfocussed, cluttered and often thoughtless batting.

A lot can and has been said about the players, but you've got to wonder what the hell the coach's role is. How can he sit back and watch defensive, mind-boggling field set day after day, squandering the advantage tour after tour, getting into to a good position, losing it, and then not giving a fuck about trying to get it back? Exactly what has Fletcher achieved with this Indian team? Has Gary's departure had such a negative impact? Have we just lost the hunger to compete after having accomplished the long cherished dream of winning the world cup again? More than one English player felt Fletcher's presence gave us a strong edge against their side, we have a lovely 0-4 result to show for his presence there, and we're staring at potentially 0-6, even 0-8 if things don't change soon, results from our recent overseas tests.

When Tim Bresnan said it, I thought he was just being the usual arrogant English muppet talking trash while benefiting from home advantage. I didn't believe. I couldn't, this team had often looked battered but then they batted and batted and forced their way back into a series. Now they don't appear remotely interested. The enthusiasm with which they bowled their part-timers for the sole purpose of exiting the field as early as possible today (an on-time finish, no extra half hour, when was the last time that happened?) seems to reflect their mood since departing for England. Perhaps Bresnan was quite right, if you don't want to play, go home. Saves us the worry of waking early/staying up late and then just being pissed the rest of the day for ruining our schedules hoping you'd at least try and make some small part of it worthwhile.


Golandaaz said...

I don't find this performance one bit surprising. It's like its a conspiracy of fools. I have felt betrayed by this team SRT included for various reasons since the WC, I think I have vented enough on my blog :-)

Karthik said...

You should read the book 'fooled by randomness'. What is actually good fortune or luck is often mistaken to be ability.I am beginning to believe it applies to the Indian team as well.

Rishabh said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rishabh said...

Where the fuck is the Share button? I really feel like crying looking at this Indian team. This team is playing worse than what even the first Indian team would have played in 1932. And yet they say, the mistakes done in England won't happen here.

There seems to be a lot of negativity in the dressing room, something which was a part of the Pakistani dressing room about 2-3 years ago.

Whatever good work India has done in Tests over the past 2 years has been undone by 2 abroad tours. At least show some fight...

Just pray for the team to bounce back in Perth like they did on the last tour in 2007-08.

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