What a difference a week makes. In the first Test, Australia looked in charge most of the time, in the second they look like they've lost their way and more. Of the Indian batsmen, only Dravid and Laxman have yet to cash in against a distinctly poor bowling line-up. (Troy Cooley must be working over-time behind the scenes.) Amongst the Indian bowlers, only Zaheer hasn't bowled to his abilities. Aside from Hussey, it looks like none of the Aussie batsmen have looked at ease.
duckingbeamers says he may come to regret these words on Aussie confidence:
But, as I said in the lower post, this Australia is not the one it used to be. Sheer
confidence might just not be enough any more. To sweep Harbhajan after
facing only 2 balls? For Katich to stand back and swipe, with just 10
minutes to go to tea? And what on earth was Hussey thinking, pulling on
a pitch like this?
The most salient moment for me, though, came when Sharma bowled
Ponting. It wasn’t the delivery itself — though that was something
special — but it was the look of recognition on Ponting’s face. He just
stood there, raised his bat in humble defeat, and then looked back to
see the off-stump lying flat on the ground. I can’t tell you how good
this feels: it’s like a new order arranging itself in the cricket
world; a power that realizes that it may just have met its match.
Ponting watched the ball all the way through; unlike the others, he was
as careful as careful is — and yet, he was tumbled over.
Miss Fields is certainly in a bit of a worry:
Matthew Hayden, time to go.
Ricky Ponting... you're next.
I don't like having to bestow this cruelty upon my boys but we need to think of the bigger picture here.
1. Australia + cricket ≠ losing.
2. The Ashes.
Amit Mishra has yet to strike hard in the second innings, but Soulberry has a mature and measured take on the inevitable selection discussion for the next test:
And why carry Kumble? Or why push him into retirement on the basis of
one performance? Why not have a valid system in place which is slightly
more objective and consistent than the subjective? Either you have
found a perfect replacement or you haven't yet. If you have there
should be no questions about it...no accomodation. If you haven't, then
there it is needless to stoke contriversy by calling for accomodation!
Amit Mishra was hired as a replacement and must accept it that his time
may come when the occupant retires. Or, one should have a protocol
where there is a clean retirement plan for our stalwarts which is
objective and well understood and is not manipulated at whim.
Finally, there's no one at the Mohali ground itself. Here's IS Bindra's story about TV and ratings:
However, he insisted that it did not mean people were no longer
interested in Tests. “The IPL has generated more interest among the
people towards the game. Even the TRP ratings for the current Test
match are high which shows more people are watching the game on TV.
People were shifting their priority towards F1 and other sports, but
IPL has stopped that,” he said.