• In the Test arena, India have absolutely no reason to fear anyone, not even world champions Australia against whom they have won as many as five Tests in the new millennium. There is very little point then in trying to make home pitches suit Team India. A few such attempts towards designer pitches have also bombed.

    In the last three Tests on Indian soil - all drawn - 4,577 runs have been scored while 81 wickets have fallen. From the statistics alone it is clear that the playing surface is something Indian cricket is getting very wrong. The demand for results in this day and age is almost as strident as it is for entertaining cricket in all forms of the game.

    It s possible to produce irresistible cricket as Virender Sehwag did in his innings of 319 on the flattest deck at Chepauk. Even then, the clamour for a result could be seen in the eloquent silence in which most of the rest of the Test match was viewed by what is avowedly the most sporting crowd in the country, which applauds every

    Read More »from Will Motera break the spell of high-scoring draws?
  • From what we see and hear of Ahmedabad, we believe the track will offer a more equal contest between bat and ball than Chennai did. However, of the last four Tests at the Motera stadium, only one has apparently ended in a result. The curator has said that he expects the track to take some turn in the last two days and help the quicker bowlers initially, which is good news for us. The Indian camp will expectedly rely more on spin, especially now that RP Singh and Ishant Sharma both seem to be battling injuries. Of the spinners, Anil Kumble also apparently has a groin strain, which will leave Harbhajan with most of the workload, which I am sure he won't mind given that he has a 10-wicket haul here.

    But it's the batting line-ups that hold more interest, I guess, with Sachin Tendulkar sitting out and Mohammed Kaif taking his place. When I say taking his place, of course, I don't mean literally, because no one can really replace Sachin, but it will be interesting to see how Virender Sehwag

    Read More »from We have some plans in place for Sehwag
  • The Chennai Test, played on a pitch that remained a batting beauty
    till the final ball, was never going to produce a result. I would
    prefer to concentrate on the batting displays of two stalwarts who in
    their own different ways have served the cause of Indian cricket nobly.

    The
    sizeable crowd at Chepauk was lucky to see Virender Sehwag and Rahul
    Dravid perform at their best. I can never stop marvelling at Sehwag.
    People tell me that I had a rapport with the crowd as my batting used
    to entertain them. But I can only doff my hat to Sehwag. He is the
    crowd-puller supreme, an engaging personality who uses his bat like a
    scimitar. To see Sehwag bat is a revelation for he gets away with the
    most brazen of strokes.

    Sehwag's approach continues to defy the
    science on which batting is based. But to be averaging over 50 with his
    buccaneering style, to hit two triple centuries in Tests joining the
    ranks of Don Bradman and Brian Lara and to hit big hundreds, is simply
    amazing. How on earth is a

    Read More »from Viru, Dravid stood out

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