Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

India not Lords of Cricket

India lost the Lord’s Test by 196 runs on 25/7/2011. It was 2000th Test and 100th Test between England and India. Before the Test India ranked No. 1 and England No. 3. It was the first Test of a four Tests series.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni had won the toss and should have elected to bat. Electing to field was a mistake. Many years ago Mohammed Azharuddin had won the toss and had elected to bat. In that Test Graham Gooch scored 333 runs in the first Innings and 123 runs in the second Innings and became the first person to score a triple century and single century in the same Test and that was a new world record. Before that there were some who had scored a double century and single century in the same Test. Sunil Gavaskar, Greg Chappell and Lawrence Rowe were among them.

Some things went wrong for India. After getting two wickets Zaheer Khan was out of the field. On the second day Dhoni bowled eight overs. Rahul Dravid kept wickets. In the first over the field umpire had ruled Kevin Pietersen out. Kevin Pietersen made use of UDRS and commentators said he was out and third umpire ruled him not out. He went on to make 202 not out. Kapil Dev criticized Dhoni for bowling. If there had been no UDRS the result would have been different. Dhoni could have got more wickets. Once in Pakistan Dhoni had bowled one over. His long hair was liked by Pervez Musharraf. That time Rahul Dravid was the captain.

England declared 474/8. India were all out for 286. That was 188 runs lead for England.

Sachin Tendulkar got fever. Gautam Gambhir was hit on the elbow.

On the fourth day Ishant Sharma had taken three quick wickets had before lunch and England were 62/5. After lunch Dhoni did not ask him to bowl and England consolidated. When Ishant Sharma was brought back and he took a wicket it was 107/6. After that no wicket fell and England declared 269/6. To win India had to make 458 runs or play for a draw. It was 80/1 at the end of the day.

On the fifth day the options before India were draw or defeat. India were all out for 261.

India failed to take 20 wickets in this Test. It took 14 wickets. To win a Test a team must be able to take 20 wickets. Zaheer Khan had rest after IPL. On the first day of the first Test he was out of action.

This is not a humiliating defeat. In 1974 India had done worst. In the second Test India were all out for 42 and lost the Test by an Innings and 265 runs. In the third Test England lost two wickets and won the Test by an Innings and 78 runs.

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