Posts Tagged ‘India in England 2011’

Srikrishnan Chandrasekharan

Indian team will be very much pleased with their performance over the last 3 weeks against England in the ODIs. Even though the series score tell us that England beat India 3-0, the psychological feeling of players reveal that the team India played much better cricket than England. The Indian team was fooled by ICC / ECB / BCCI in awarding the shorter format cricket through D/L method as 50 Overs One Day international Tournament. England captain won the toss for five consecutive games reveals that there is fair amount of good time / luck surrounds him and his team.

ICC cheated fans across the globe by completing a 50 over ODI series without a single match completing the quota of 50 overs by both the sides. This is ridiculous act by ICC and shame on them on not utilizing the basic technology available to them in framing the fixtures of the series. When there was a clear indication of weather issues before start of the ODI series ICC either would have called off ODI series or changed to a format of 35 over new International format for the 5 games scheduled for the tour. One should not measure the performance of Indian bowlers during this series as none of the match played the quota of 50 overs.

A series that will be remembered as much for the rains as anything else.

Injuries to several key players during the tour, the Indian team shown exemplary performance on their batting and improved show in the bowling with the resources at their disposal. The weakness of England bowlers was exposed during so called the ODI series. Except Swann, every other English bowler failed to make any impact against this young and inexperienced Indian lineup. Indian bowlers tried their best but it was really hard for them to bowl in English conditions where the match format changed after every rain interruption. India would have ended up with a more respectable series scoreline if any of the match been played the quota of 50 overs on both sides.

Parthiv making a comeback, Rahane on other hand making his debut, Rahul inclusion to the side after to ODI format and these 3 players formed the most critical batting position and made a reasonable contribution to the team in the series. On the other hand, Dhoni and Raina, short of runs in Tests, came back strongly and played some wonderful cricket. Jadeja played some good cricket when the team needed. India made a commendable total against tough bowling attack in English soil [274 (50) – 1st ODI, 187 (23) – 2nd ODI, 234 (50) – 3rd ODI, 280 (50) – 4th ODI, 304 (50) -5th ODI]. Once the top players are fit and make a comeback to the side, team India might easily score 300 to 350 against this English attack on Indian soil.

The team management and BCCI should look at the positives from the tour and build the stronger team for the future. The focus of BCCI should be picking right talent and framing a team that can play for next 5 to 8 years. Also BCCI should not make any hasty decision on players / captain / coach of the team based on one or two series failures. India needs to have backup players and use them effectively in the case of injuries to their main players. They need to be given fair chance to play in every series by resting the main players.

The team management should keep focus on these players and enhance their skills both in Test and shorter variants (Kohli, Raina, Rahane, Rohit, Manoj Tiwary, Jadeja, Ashwin, Praveen, Munaf, Varun, Parthiv, Ishant, RP Singh). In the recent series Indian pace bowling lacked line, length, mixing of deliveries and pace. Former fast bowlers should come forward and guide the young bowlers to scale up to the next level. Also, the batsmen should stay at the crease for longer duration and convert their scores in to bigger ones.

The truth of life was revealed during this series. The team which is World No. 1 on Test International and World Champion on ODI’s failed to win a single match on the tour with their class players who helped the team to win plenty of series for India at home and abroad. Before start of the series, fans, reporters and former players across the globe predicted that India will beat England on their home soil comprehensively. The reality is different of course and may there be enough steps taken to get the team back on track. And quickly.


Goutham Chakravarthi

It is hard to judge the quality of the English one-day batting given the appalling standard of Indian bowling. None of their front line bowlers had a clue in a shortened game, flat tract, with the night chilly winds and near freezing temperature. There was no swing on offer for Praveen Kumar and Kieswetter and Cook took the Indian bowling apart – walking inside the line and tucking it over fine leg, or giving themselves room to smash it over the off-side. Given what was on offer, England romped home chasing a stiff target with plenty to spare. They were close to 60 without loss after 5 overs and close to 100 after 9 overs. The game was over!

India’s reluctance from moving from their preferred combination of 7 batsmen and 4 bowlers is hurting them more with none of the part-time bowlers good enough to bowl more than a couple of overs unless the conditions favour them. India’s best hope with this combination is to chase.

Bell feasts on Raina's part time offies

Dhoni’s reliance on the skill of Ashwin is coming to a nought in these conditions with the wickets greasy and not providing enough bite for the Chennai spinner with the new ball. Kieswetter went after him straight away and tonked him for 16 in his first over and with it Dhoni seemed short of bowlers and ideas as all bowlers and combinations he tried didn’t work. Perhaps, it is time he played Jadeja in the side at seven for it gives him some tight overs from the left-armer in the  middle overs and he is a fair tonker of the cricket ball down the order.

The sameness of the Indian bowling in their seam department in terms of pace (or the lack of it) is making it easy for batsmen to line them up on good wickets. There is little chance this bowling side will bowl decent batting sides out on good wickets. It may not hurt them to give the leg-spinner and Varun Aaron a go in the remaining matches as they tend to be wicket taking options.

There is no such problem in the batting. Parthiv Patel looked poised for another big score as he went after the English bowlers who can’t seem to shed their love for short-pitched bowling. Parthiv cut and pulled with great relish. For second time in successive games, Anderson got him on the drive. Perhaps there is a lesson in it for Bresnan and Broad.

Ajinkya Rahane is doing his reputation no harm. There are enough talks going on back home that he should be the reserve Test opener going forward with Cheteshwar Pujara being the first choice no.6 batsman. He has looked at ease playing swing, pace and spin and again showed why he is rated so highly in the Indian domestic scene. He has made the most of his opportunity at the top of the order. In this form, it will be difficult to leave him out even in a full strength Indian side. It has been quite an impressive start.

Suresh Raina has to be among the most impactful limited overs players. To do what he does and with such consistency at the end of the batting innings takes for great confidence and skill. His cover drive for six off Bresnan is testament to his skills of ball striking and improvising abilities. There is little doubting his reputation or his future in this format.

It is a case of issues for both teams. England’s victories will for the moment hide their light batting with their middle order not being tested as India continues to find it difficult to get their batsmen out. England’s bowling lacked planning and imagination it showed in the Tests.

Truth is to say that Indian batsmen would fancy their own attack and England’s bowling attack would definitely test their own top order. Two teams working out a combination for the moment and the future might still churn out a tight series. Only if India pick enough bowlers to pose a challenge.

Goutham Chakravarthi

England have moved on from the world cup with a new captain and are investing in a new set of ODI specialists in the hope to build for the next world cup in 4 years’ time. India, on the other hand, would put their world cup winning team on the park if they had the option. Injuries have forced them to try out some youngsters. It cannot be bad from that stand point.

Manoj Tiwary can be an explosive player on his day.

Expectedly, Tendulkar is advised rest and India are another two men down. It is a call up for Tiwary who made the whole of India stand up and take notice of him in a Ranji final in Mumbai against Mumbai few years ago. He took on Zaheer at his peak and had the better of him and a lot was expected out of this youngster. He was ahead in the pecking order that constituted names like Raina, Rohit Sharma and Badrinath back then. Virat Kohli hadn’t yet taken India to the U-19 world cup win. He was the next big thing. He had lost his way a bit and had even become a movie producer once. Times change, and with consistent runs in the domestic competition last year, he landed a spot in the Emerging Players’ Tournament in Australia. He made his debut there and Brett Lee knocked him back several years with the two card trick – bouncer followed by a searing Yorker. He has taken a good 3-and-half years to get back from that set back.

A confident Tiwary is a sight to behold. He has tremendous range of strokes and is a dominating batsman. He rolls his sleeves up and goes after the bowling. He likes center stage and wants success. He wants to be the aggressor and can be a bully when on top. He will walk down to quicks, move inside the line and hit over the leg-side and will go after the spinners with sweeps and will also step out and hit over the top. In short, he is the ideal limited overs player who can control the middle overs with his tempo. If he gets into the team and settles in, he can be quite a sight in full flow. He will be tested by bumpers by the English bowlers of course.

It might not be a bad thing for India if they give Varun Aaron a game at some stage. There is not much of an unknown factor with the Indian seamers. While the top-order is still coming to grips with Praveen Kumar’s swing with the new ball, there is little left once the ball is old. No Zaheer Khan either to reverse the old ball. It puts too much pressure on Ashwin to control the middle overs if there is nothing in the wicket for the seamers. The extra pace of Varun is hope for a captain to force for a play in the middle overs. He tends to be expensive when it is not his day, but he can also be a handful when he gets it right for a couple of overs. Those might be the match-turning overs. Dhoni might punt on him especially with Vinay Kumar not proving to be effective in the two games he has played so far.

It is still a land of unknowns for both teams. Both teams are trying out combinations for two separate reasons. It might be the unknowns across both teams that might still give us some close contests. India needs all the help it can get from its youngsters to win their first game against England this tour. Let’s hope Tiwary and Aaron make it to the team for the 2nd ODI.

Phraser Bullets: Did they say that?

Posted: September 4, 2011 by thecognitivenomad in Fiction
Tags: , ,

Chandrasekhar Jayarama Krishnan

Wick(et)Freaks – The CouchExpert

September, 2011


“Why is it that only when India are in a winning position, it rains here in England.”

Gavaskar’s idiosyncrasies resurface as the rain gods come in to play in Durham.

“Even Sunny-bhai couldn’t prevent Rainy-bhai from intervening during a good day for the Indians.”

Ravi “Tracer-Bullet” Shastri throws another grenade into the first ODI result.

“The Englishmen are jealous of the Indian slow-movers. What right does Nasser Hussain have in calling some of the Indian fielders’ donkeys? He could’ve called them a tortoise. Or he could’ve called them a snail. Or he could’ve called them the Mumbai traffic. Or he could’ve called them Inzys …”

Ravi “Tracer-Bullet” Shastri, once again, demonstrates his know-how on the slow moving objects of the world.

“Nasser complemented the Indians! He referred to them has Don Qui(xote)s – after the renowned Spainsh folklore legend Don Quixote.”

An ECB official with Spanish roots backs Nasser Hussain’s comments.

“I was watching the game in the hotel with Rob Key and he said Nasser did nothing wrong. He just referred to them as ‘Darn-Keys’, ‘cuz Rob was one of the slowest movers on the field. What is wrong with that?”

Swanny tweets as soon as the pundits start taking a swipe at Nasser.

“I think after 96 tests, and 196 visits to the Zoo, I am entitled to express my opinions on air. That is why Sky Sports and Animal Planet (whose contractual agreements with Nasser cannot be disclosed) are paying me to voice my opinion during this series. I think I’ve earned the rights to do so.”

Nasser explains why he had the rights to say what he ended up saying.

“At 50 years of age, could get past those bouncers at the gates of Lancashire CC, even after they man-handled me. What is 23 year old Rohit going on about?”

David “Bumble” Lloyd isn’t too impressed with Rohit Sharma walking off after a bouncer sent him back retired hurt.

“Bumble was a great player, no hard feelings of course! Maybe I was scared, I’m sure I’ll meet him over a beer and resolve this.”

The party animal within Rohit Sharma uses the Bumble jibe to his advantage to drown a few pints as he clearly forgets why Bumble quit test cricket.

“@ImRo45 When and where are you meeting Bumble?”

Injured Indian World Cup star Yuvraj Singh quickly tweets after hearing Rohit’s comments.

“@yuvsingh09 hahahahahahahahahahaha!”

Kevin Pietersen, in turn, reacts to Yuvraj’s comments on Twitter.

“My dad reckons Dravid applied sun tan lotion on his bat instead, and it was cloudy in Durham.”

A former England captain’s son tweets after the Dravid dismissal.

“Michael Vaughan, once again, proves that he is an idiot. This time, he makes his son tweet on behalf of him.”

Saurav Ganguly war of words with Vaughan resume.

“I agree with Saurav. Vaughan is an idiot. He once told in public that my dad was hard to control as a player.”

The mystery kid, now revealed to be Flintoff Jr, agrees with Saurav’s comments, at least partially.

 Goutham Chakravarthi

 18 August 2011

India scored over 500 runs in the first-innings at the Oval in their last two Tests here. Anil Kumble scored a Test hundred last time around! This time, however, Indian batting, has been a collective failure. In four Tests in 2007, not one top-order batsman got to a hundred though all but Dravid got close to it on multiple occasions. They were strong as a unit. This time, barring Dravid, hardly any one else seems capable of wielding the willow.

Still, it is hard to give up on this batting side. It is a far cry from the last time India were subjected to losing three Tests in a row – in Australia back in 1999-00. That was a team never expected to win and here is a team, which after three successive defeats, each progressively bigger than the previous one, there is still hope of a turn around. Only just.

Will the smiles return?

The break between the second Test and the third was expected to give them time to clear their thoughts as individuals and as a unit. Instead, they were handed a mauling by an impressive England unit with no apparent chinks. As the prospect of a whitewash looms large, India, with its perceivably wafer-thin bowling attack and a batting side equally thin on confidence, will need a remarkable turn around to stop England.

They are a team of impressive individuals made of the right stuff. Things that have defined them over the last decade – resilience, doggedness, scrap – have gone missing. Big runs have eluded their batsmen. In fact, they have been deprived of any runs at all. It has left the players and the fans stumped.

English bowlers have shown enormous precision in carrying out their plans. Their quick-bowling reserves seem to run deeper than the mental scars they have inflicted on Indian batsmen. Their lengths have been fuller, none more so than Broad, and they have managed to move the ball late both ways to make life suffocating for the Indians.

It is in this cauldron of relentless pressure that India’s batsmen have been found wanting. Rahul Dravid has been the lone exception. He has shown exceptional skill in handling the conditions and bowling. Tendulkar and Laxman have not been allowed to get away. The younger batsmen have been found out and must be wondering if they are good enough at this level.

It will take enormous discipline, grit and patience to wear such a potent bowling side. You would have expected this Indian batting side to do just that for they are good at it. For starters, they would, for a change want the openers to grind and battle conditions. Sehwag has had his success overseas giving this first session to the bowlers. He can make for lost time better than most. Gambhir needs a score. That both are coming back from injuries hasn’t helped India’s cause.

Tendulkar’s last average series came against a rampant Ajanta Mendis in Sri Lanka back in 2008. He looked unsure there like he has often done here. When he has been positive, like in the first innings at Lord’s, second innings at Trent Bridge and Edgbaston, he has hardly looked troubled. India will hope for a big innings from him and from another pillar of strength, Laxman, as it looks to pick up the pieces and put them back together.

Expect Kohli, R.P. Singh and Pragyan Ojha to be given a look in. Ojha is a tidy bowler with potential. He should exploit any spin and bounce available and R.P. Singh is a steady swing bowler who might trouble the English openers. India will sweat on the fitness of Praveen Kumar and will hope that he is available. Ishant has blown hot and cold. May be, the bounce at the Oval will be to his liking.

India needs big runs from the batsmen for its bowlers to pose a challenge to a rampant English top-order. It will be interesting to see their approach to this Test. One would think that holds the key to their success.