Day 2 Edgbaston: Alastair cooks up Ton as India’s woes persist

Posted: August 12, 2011 by thecognitivenomad in Cricket, India in England 2011
Tags: ,

 Chandrasekhar Jayarama Krishnan

Head of Cricket, CouchExpert

12 August 2011

It will be hard to put a smile on the face of an Indian fan these days. The tour to England, thus far, has exposed flaws that would, to an ardent fan, make even the disastrous regime of the Indian National Congress seem pardonable – a sign that usually announces the arrival of very hard times to come.

As bowling strength dried up, and fielding slipped in to recession, a series provocative enough to the visitors appeared as scary to the Indian fan as the riots that have taken over the streets of England. In order to build credibility, henceforth, with an already skeptical public, a major reform in performance is what would have to be targeted. Sadly, the reform refers more to better cricket than anything else around.

Against an attack that seemed to lack both ownership and leadership, talks over the struggling forms of the English openers were put to rest as Strauss and Cook relished the red delicacies that were thrown their way. The opening surge shed light into the mythic power of the English unit’s rapid rise to the top, ever since the advent of the Ashes triumph down under.

Dhoni had acknowledged the prevailing skepticism by building accountability in to some of his causes for failure – injuries and workload. While the former was given a nod by some, the latter was rubbished. With Sreesanth struggling against southpaws, Praveen – intelligent and hardworking – but just not quick enough to trouble the batsmen, and Ishanth not consistent enough, Dhoni couldn’t but embody that popular Indian myth that with the lack of a departmental leader, the unit is virtually clueless.

Cook just needs three more hundreds to equal English record holder Wally Hammond's 22 hundreds in Test Cricket. © AFP

It simply wasn’t one of those days an Indian fan would want to remember: the bowling appeared to be fragile, and fielding slender – one really can’t do much but shrug when the man with a record catches in Test Cricket drops two sitters at slip.

While the Indians seemed to fluctuate between the conundrums of lack of ideas and butterfingers, the English batsmen cashed in to take an insurmountable lead with the back-in-form Cook notching up his 19th ton, three away from topping the centurions chart among English batsmen. It is hard to believe that he isn’t 27 yet.

It took a no ball from Mishra, revealed later through video replays, to get Strauss out sweeping to a delivery that he ideally wouldn’t have on another day. Bell, after being dropped by Dravid at first slip, fell to Praveen Kumar, who seemed the only Indian bowler capable of taking wickets.

That Kevin Pietersen blazed past his half-century at almost run-a-ball, and at times striking at a higher rate, pretty much summed up the Indian attack’s lack of aggression, and ideas, on a day that surely has been the nadir of the series so far. The Indian woes just seemed to add up, like Amit Mishra’s no balls in test cricket.

At present, the argument against the Indian bowling is obvious: the unit is as oblivious to the environment as the current Indian government is to scams and threats. The unit is deflating at the rate at which prices are inflating in their homeland. But at least with the current Indian cricketing setup, there is a little bit of hope that soon enough, the scenario will move the grey clouds away to witness a clear blue sky.

Hope is the only energy source to which the Indian fan can cling on to.

  1. Yesterday was hard work. There simply wasn’t anything penetrative from the bowlers and England cashed in. Bowlers are tired and England could shatter some batting records today.

  2. thecognitivenomad says:

    I’m sure Bopara’s eyes are gleaming at the minute.

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