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A two-match series for India
by Krish Srikkanth
Jul 27, 2007
Article courtesy: Krishcricket.com

Rain did India a huge favour at Lords; Team India can forget the Test and look at it as a two-match series from now. It helps to have a poor memory in cricket. The ability to forget the past and move on is not easy but if you look at some of the sides that did well over a period of time have always come back from a bad game correcting the mistakes quickly.

It is for all to see the shortcomings in this Indian side. The batting is not clicking as a cohesive unit. It is imperative that all the top-order does well together. Every batsman in the side boasts of an average that would put some of the other top-orders to shame. The total aggregate of the Indian middle order is close to 30,000 Test runs but the team has achieved little of note recently in test cricket.

Getting runs when it matters is very important. The bowlers did a fantastic job both in South Africa and here in the first Test but the batsmen have let the team down. There were lots of similarities to the defeat in South Africa and the near debacle in the first Test in London.

Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid mean so much to this side that when they fail it brings the morale of the side crashing down. Both were done in by self doubts that have crept in to their batting courtesy: age. It is not beyond them to tackle this English attack that at best can be good and not any where near what it was made to look like.

Stephen Harrmison, Andrew Flintoff and Mathew Hoggard are all missing from the list yet India have found the going tough. Only a strong infuse of positive energy can help India claw back. They should start believing that they can beat this England side. That belief was missing at Lords.

The bowling looks good and all it needs is a good start to get things flowing. The batting looks strong but the success of Sachin and Dravid is important. Personally I would like to see Yuvraj Singh inducted to the XI but with Sourav Ganguly having made some runs it is going to be difficult to drop him. But given Yuvraj’s form and keeping in mind the tougher assignments ahead it is important for the think tank to find a slot for the Punjab left hander. Reports from the venue indicates Yuvraj might get to play after all, owing to injury to Sourav.

The runs on the board is the key for both sides, past history indicates the importance of a good first innings score. It is crucial to get the nose in front in a tight game as it happened with the 97-run lead the hosts managed. It gives the momentum to play your natural game and not get sucked in with pressure.

The game plan Dravid adopted in the first Test was good, the batsmen let the side down and some of the decisions did not help but in the end India was lucky to get out of jail as the skipper had said. It is good for the side to approach the second Test with the score line still even. It promises to be a good contest provided the Indian side has poor memory.

More Views by Krish Srikkanth
  Strength of mind carries England home
  Fielding lets Team India down
  Team India: Stay positive and series is yours
  A two-match series for India
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