A Quote for life!

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.
Specialization is for Insects

Robert A Heinlein
(American science-fiction writer,1907-1988)

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

A mock "test" series win - courtesy Rahul Dravid

The third and final test played between India and England in the nPower test series this year was held in the Brit Oval, in London from 9th till 13th August. India came in to the match having drawn the first and won the second of the three test matches to be played in the series; leading the series 1-0. India was looking forward to win a test series in England after 21 long years and needed a draw to realize the same, while England wanted to win the match to square the series. India won the toss and elected to bat on a flat wicket on a sunny day at the Oval. This is how the match went on:

Inning One: Dinesh Karthik and Wasim Jaffar gave India a good aggressive start. MS Dhoni (92), Karthik (91), Sachin Tendulkar (82), Rahul Dravid (55) and VVS Laxman (51) all scored a half century each, but were unable to convert these to a three digit figure. It was to be the man who was least expected to score the first century from the Indian camp on this tour, who went on to score an unbeaten 110 of 193 balls – Anil Kumble. Kumble achieved his maiden test hundred in the 118th test match that he played for his country, eclipsing the previous record held by Chaminda Vaas of Sri Lanka, who did the same in his 97th test match, a couple of years ago. A replay of the pervious test match was seen here when umpire Ian Howell raised his finger to send back Sourav Ganguly and Karthik to the pavilion in unfortunate ways. A big nick in case of Sourav and no connection in the later case could not prevent him to declare the two LBW and caught behind respectively. Astonishingly, umpire Steve Bucknor did not give a single verdict against India this time. India finished at a staggering total of 664 with 54 extra runs; thanks to 33 bye runs given away by England’s batsman who can keep, Matt Prior. The only smile in the host team came on James Anderson’s face (who finished with four wickets to his tally).

Inning Two: England started their inning in the last session of the second day. Zaheer Khan struck early getting Andrew Strauss caught at third man only for 6 runs. England was not able to put up long partnerships as wickets continued to fall on regular intervals. Ian Bell (63), Paul Collingwood (62) and Alistair Cook (61) tried to put up a viable total in the board, but could only put up 345 by the first hour of the fourth day. Thanks to 3 wickets haul each from Zaheer and Kumble and Ian Howell playing a cameo while giving Collingwood out on a delivery directed outside the leg stump. Kumble, in the process became the third highest wicket taker in test cricket, surpassing the Aussie Legend, Glenn McGrath. A 40 run last wicket partnership could only let England finish 319 runs behind India, having two full days left in the match. When everybody was thinking of having England follow on and attack them from the front, the person who’s thoughts mattered most thought otherwise – he opted to bat again in a cloudy day with the red cherry swinging tremendously both ways. Eyebrows were raised, but the run balance was enough to put those down again. India came down running to bat, to put up a total as fast as they can and start taking English wickets.

Third Inning: There was nothing absurd in the third inning. Everyone knew that with the ball swaying that much, batsmen are going to be tested – and that’s what has happened. India was 11 for 3 at a certain stage, even when the pace spearhead of the English bowling attack, Ryan Sidebottom was missing due to an injury. Sourav Ganguly (57) and VVS Laxman (46*) took India to a respectable 180 for 6. Dravid declared the inning, setting a target of 500 runs in 110 overs, in a 5th day pitch which was no worse than a one and a half day Wankhede (Mumbai) Pitch. The top notch of this inning was again Rahul Dravid who scored a sensational 12 of 96 balls when his team needed fast runs!

Fourth Inning: England never wanted to win the test match. They were certain that it could not be won at any cost. Surprisingly, the Indians were having the same in their minds too. Every stance of Rahul which he took in different stages of the game was directing towards the same thought – a series win was more important than a match win. Yes, it was; but not at the expense of squaring a match which was well within the arms reaches. the very facts that Dravid did not declare the inning just after Kumble completed the century; that Dravid did not ask England to follow on and that Dravid himself scored at a snail’s pace were enough to suggest that the Indian captain was in no mood to win the test match. Kumble tried and so did Zaheer, Sreeshanth, RP Singh and Tendulkar, but no one was successful in bringing down 10 wickets of the English cricket team. The 5th day and the test match ended with smiles in both the team members’ faces. England cricketers were laughing because they were let to draw a test match which they last in the very first day when top Indian batsmen continued sending the English bowlers all around the park with ease. Indians, lacking the killer instinct both in their game and leadership were also laughing since they have now broken a purple patch of 21 years and could win a series in England against the hosts. No one thought of making it 2 – 0 at any point in the game. The highlights of the last inning were a solid century by Kevin Peterson (101) and a quick fire 67 of 62 balls from Ian Bell. England finished the last day at 369 for 6; India falling short by 4 wickets and probably 20 more overs.

Whatever the results are – Anil and Zaheer (along with Anderson) got the Man of the Match and Man of the Series respectively while India wining the series 1 – 0, history will have one question at the end of the review. I have the same one here for you too: Why did India deny the victory in the third test here in the Brit Oval? Do YOU (or Rahul Dravid) have an answer?



Here is a Pictorial description of the match

Thanks to the people who published this

1 Thoughts on this post...:

expressions Saturday, August 25, 2007  

hello Mr Tan..
after reading this blog of ur's, i m in no doubt abt the fact tht u r die hard cricket fan. But, yes but, can't we read this facts and figures in a newzpaper...and after the inconsistency shown by our masters..i doubt except for few crazy one's no one's cares abt cricket these days.i having known u personally, hav more expectations from u.i don't want a commentator..in u..but want a responsible writer who writes responsibly abt topics..to wch common ppl can relate themself..and njoy reading tht.u r good in tht i know..how vld tht feel, if rajdeep sardesai hosts a cookery show or an mtv show...so....u got wot i mean..but i reterate..u r free to disagree for whtever i said...

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