Never to be forgotten: England tour of India
That sweet taste of victory was clearly seen on the face of Alistair Cook and his team. 28 years is a long wait. England is going to cherish this victory for a long time. It means a lot and we Indians know it. (Rahul Dravid and Team won a series on English soil after 23 years!) That was special then! This is special now! Meanwhile, back home, there is a plethora of mistakes. What went right for India? Nothing. What went wrong? Here is the list:
A Captain sails the ship. To the harbour or in to the storm; is a matter of choice.
Virender Sehwag: scores a ton in the first match and then, is not able to reach double digits. This is exactly how an opener should not play.
Gautam Gambhir: Blame him, complain against him. Play for self or play for team, winning is a distant dream.
Cheteshwar Pujara: A new kid on the block who started very well but was unfortunate. Wrong decisions marred his performance. Long way to go.
Sachin Tendulkar: For he knows what he has to do, he’ll let his actions speak.
Virat Kohli: He loses his form at the start of the series and gets it back in the end; literally the end.
MS Dhoni: Enough said. You did something that changed Team India’s good luck to better. Can you do anything that turns bad luck in to good luck?
Yuvraj Singh: I don’t get it. No one has performed well. But he is the only one sacked. And worst still, replaced by Jadeja. Probably that makes his sacking even more questionable. Yuvi may not be awesome, but Jadeja is not even an option.
All in all, the No. 6 remains empty since Ganguly left it.
R Ashwin: Started as a spinner, and now, he is in the team because of his batting skills. No complaints. If only he could win it!
Zaheer Khan is sacked, Umesh Yadav is injured. We are still searching for that one bowler who is our answer to Jimmy Anderson and Steven Finn. Ishant Sharma? Ya right.
Pragyan Ojha: The only saving grace of this series. But the pitch-b**** has done its witch in Nagpur. Maybe he needs to change some tactics.
Piyush Chawla: He is the RP Singh of this tour. From rags to riches; at least Chawla picked some wickets and has a puppy face.
Umpires have gone wrong. Pitches have been a let-down. But England have survived. And won. Keeping Motera aside, England looked better in every sense: batting, bowling, fielding, planning, determination and even good looks.
Make a spinning-pitch, Monty Panesar takes the glory in Mumbai. Make a neutral result-less pitch, James Anderson managed to break through. Spinner had to be a match-winner, Monty did it. Number 4 had to score runs, Kevin Pieterson did it. Captain had to shine, Alistair Cook did it. Openers were the key, Nick Compton found his form. Middle order had to sustain, Bell, Trott, Prior and Root did it. Repeating myself, but every player put his 100% efforts to make that dream come true. No Indian player was even half close to match the standards of these guys. Literally.
Nothing worked in favor for India. And it is our fault. While “in-form” players are hatching eggs on benches, we are continuing with the legacy of archives.
Why is it that we cannot take bold steps? How much it will affect to bring 6 to 8 changes in a Team? Surely not more than a loss; which by the way, we already have.
And if I missed it before, here is last praise for our coach Duncan Fletcher. Well done! You managed to help England win in India after 28 years.
With this, I end my Test series. Team England have won it, fair and square. We were no match to their hard-work and “thirst” to win. World may or may not end by 21st December, but the spirits of India’s Test Cricket lovers has surely been put into coma.
Worst still, this budding phase of the team looks stagnant. Players may be good in first class cricket, but that does not assure International level performance. So who is going to work on this issue?
Will we ever get those 2 fast bowlers who, with the help of Ashwin and Ojha, will rip apart “in-form” batting line-up of Australia in February?
Will our batsmen score Test Hundreds against that cracking pace attack of Australia?
4-0. And again. No revenge. Not even close.