I have been following all sorts of sports since as long as I can remember, sports involve victories and losses, there are two opponents and both want to win and no one wants to lose, but one must lose… over years we have seen teams being edged over, beaten or at times embarassed…
But the Champion teams are the ones who show their resolve after a setback… the way they will react after this loss will in a lot of ways tell us what the team is made up of…
This is Dhoni’s first Test Match loss as captain and people who understand the game will also understand that all good things come to a halt. The fact of the matter remains that Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman are the biggest pillars on which this Indian lineup has been standing. Yuvraj has still not filled Ganguly’s spot perfectly… and than suddenly when the two champions are out a team that has not played a test match for 10 years without one of those two does become vulnerable.
Losing the toss did not help as Kallis and Amla piled on the agony… Once they scored over 550 there was only one team that could lose and with India already having their batting order in shambles thanks to Laxman injury and add to that the Rohit slip up all was pinning on Gambhir, Sehwag, Sachin and Dhoni… to be fair Badrinath and Vijay both showed that they belong and perhaps with time they will perform… !
Steyn and Morkel bowled well wicket to wicket where as I always felt Zaheer and Ishant opted to go outside the off stump.. In India bowled and lbw are more dangerous than slip catches with mostly the ball not carrying… quite strange that Steyn and Morkel figured that out and not Zaheer and Ishant who play in India.. !!!!
However coming to spin, lets be frank… Harbhajan has not been at his best for quite a few years and with no Kumble India might actually do well to change tactics… If you have followed Indian cricket closely we are doing actually better on seaming tracks rather than on spinning tracks. Our strength actually lies in giving our seamers something rather than spinners.
In the first innings the ball was turning, Mishra beat Kallis and Amla many many times, but the consistency was severly lacking after beating them he would pull one ball short and they would punish him and hence Mishra couldnt create any pressure. Leg spin is a difficult art to perfect and it needs time to be nurtured. However the fact of the matter is time is running out for India as this is a two test series and we have to win in Eden.
I have no doubt in my mind that at Eden we will perform better, Nagpur was as low as it can get, its time for Dhoni and his man to do some soul searching and they need to rally and put up a much better show… How I wish Rahul would call Krishnamachari Srikanth and just tell him, “I will play at Calcutta.!!” India’s number 1 ranking is at stake and Rahul has put in a lot for us to reach there… suddenly you feel the loss of Kumble and Ganguly too dont you ???
India need some inspiration… where is it coming from ??? Perhaps winning the toss will help at Eden… Folks the sterner test is ahead… stand by your team… its not time to castigate them… its time to support them… !