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Team India Report Card: Dhawan scores a perfect 10

Last updated on: March 19, 2013 22:24 IST

Team India Report Card: Dhawan scores a perfect 10

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Team India did well to win the Mohali Test against Australia, despite a day being washed out. A progress report on the team.

The Indian star was unquestionably Shikhar Dhawan, who blazed his way to the fastest century by a debutant in Test cricket.

Murali Vijay too notched up his second successive hundred.

Ravindra Jadeja continued his consistent form with the ball. And the young Bhuvneshwar Kumar once again impressed.

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Image: Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja celebrate India's third win on the trot against the Aussies.
Photographs: BCCI
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Shikhar climbed a virgin peak

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Shikhar Dhawan (10/10)

The Delhi left-hander smashed 187 from 174 balls, hitting 33 fours and two sixes.

He shared a 289-run opening stand with Murali Vijay.

Easily India's best player of the match, seeing him in dramatic flow, it was difficult to imagine that Shikhar was playing his first Test, and that too after a difficult spell in the wilderness.

The Sunriser Hyderabad batsman's blazing knock annihilated Australia's morale. Michael Clarke's boys just couldn't recover from his pasting.

Can't wait to see Shikhar bat in the IPL.

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Image: What a debut for the Delhi left-hander!
Photographs: BCCI
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Murali's on a roll

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Murali Vijay (9/10)

Vijay scored his second successive century against the Aussies (153).

More important, the Chennai SuperKings star stayed at the wicket for 412 minutes to consolidate the Indian innings.

The Tamil Nadu batsman was just too good against the spinners.

Almost two years older than Dhawan, he could been seen counselling his partner throughout their amazing stand, making sure Shikhar didn't lose his focus.

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Photographs: BCCI
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Chintu had an unimpressive game

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Cheteshwar Pujara (5/10)

For once, 'Chintu' failed with the bat.

He was unlucky to be ruled out leg before to Peter Siddle though he got a clear inside edge in the first innings.

Asked to open the batting in the second since Shikhar was injured, he made 28 before being ruled out LBW again.

Dependable Chintu must be itching to get back to his scoring ways in the Ferozeshah Kotla Test.

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Image: The dependable Cheteshwar Pujara.
Photographs: BCCI
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Disappointing Sachin

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Sachin Tendulkar (4/10)

Sachin's inexplicable ultra-defensive approach messed up things for India after their blitzkrieg beginning.

He made 37 from 81 balls and missed the chance to play a big innings on a perfect batting wicket against an ordinary bowling attack.

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Image: Why did The Great Man get defensive?
Photographs: BCCI
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Patient Virat

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Virat Kohli (7/10)

Revealtion: Dasher Virat Kohli can be patient too!

The Royal Challengers Bangalore star made a patient 67 from 127 balls to ensure that India stayed on course after a middle-order collapse.

In the second outing, his 34 from 61 balls took India closer to the target.

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Image: Virat Kohli played some elegant shots.
Photographs: BCCI
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Bewildered Dhoni

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Mahendra Singh Dhoni (5/10)

The Indian skipper was not up to the mark in both innings. In the first, he was gone in 3 balls.

In the second, he seemed clueless about where the ball was, before recovering a bit of his mojo at the finish.

His wicket-keeping too was below par in the game.

What bothers us most were his tactics. Chasing a meagre 133 to win, Dhoni decided to play safe and would have settled for a draw before better sense prevailed.

Winning the series makes his captaincy secure, but coach Duncan Fletcher, whose extension of tenure Dhoni is said to have lobbied for, needs to have a continuing chat with the skipper.

We don't want to have egg on our faces in South Africa this winter.

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Image: Why did the skipper want a draw?
Photographs: BCCI
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The Utility Bowler

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Ravindra Jadeja (7/10)

Jadeja took important wickets in both innings. None more significant, of course, than Captain Clarke in the second.

When he had the injured Clarke caught at forward short leg, he had got the skipper's scalp five times in the series.

The Rajkot left-arm spinner took six wickets for 112 in the Test, three wickets apiece in either innings.

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Image: The Rajkot spinner took wickets at crucial times in the Mohali Test.
Photographs: BCCI
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Disappointing, again

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R Ashwin (5/10)

Ashwin certainly didn't live up to his top billing. The Aussie batsmen made the off-spinner toil for his wickets.

Skipper Dhoni's faith in his CSK mate was heartening, but after bowling 74 overs in the Test, Ashwin only had four wickets to show for it.

In the second innings, he bowled too short or wide and conceded too many boundaries.

Unless he is more consistent, Ashwin, we fear, may continue to disappoint.

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Image: Why can't the off-spinner be more consistent?
Photographs: BCCI
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Has Ojha lost his verve?

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Pragyan Ojha (5/10)

Ojha, who didn't get a look-in in Hyderabad, his home ground, came in for Harbhajan Singh on that bowler's home ground.

Like Ashwin, he disappointed, just taking four wickets.

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Image: What happened to the left-arm spinner's guile?

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Forgotten in the first, a star in the second

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Bhuvneshwar Kumar (8/10)

In the first innings, the skipper appeared to have forgotten Bhuvneshwar was in the side, giving him just nine overs to bowl.

Dhoni rectified his error in the second, and the young medium pacer paid back his captain's confidence, put India in charge, and sent Ed Cowan, David Warner and Steven Smith to the pavilion.

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Image: Bhuvanesh Kumar, the young UP medium pacer.
Photographs: BCCI
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Limited impact

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Ishant Sharma (4/10)

Once again, Ishant was ordinary.

After 50 Tests -- which only a handful of Indian fast bowlers have played -- the Delhi bowler has not lived up to his early hype.

Does Duncan have any ideas about who will lead India's attack on the bouncy South African pitches this year-end?


Image: Ishant Sharma's poor form must worry the team management.
Photographs: BCCI
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