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Can't bat, can't bowl, can't field

August 22, 2007

I watched the last 12 overs of the England innings, and the first 15 overs of the Indian innings-not enough evidence to make any sort of call on the first of the seven ODIs (actually, there are things that showed up even in 27 overs of the possible 100, but let's leave that lie). So here is a cull from the media:

The Cricinfo bulletin homes in on two aspects (okay, that is without counting the individual performances): the decision to bowl first, which did not provide the looked-for advantages, and the early run out, which provided the breakthrough and set Anderson and company up nicely.

Siddhartha Vaidyanathan in his analysis is more pointed:

India were lethargic on the field and static with the bat. Not only did they lack a fifth bowler but also missed the twelfth, thirteenth and fourteenth fielder. It might have helped if they had 70 overs to bat. A runner for every batsmen would have come in handy. At the start of the second innings a group of streakers set the West Stand alight; soon it was India's batsmen standing exposed....

India's turgid approach carried over to their batting as well. Sourav Ganguly, as if in a trance, turned blind for a non-existent second only to become the first international batsman to be run-out by Panesar. Another classic case of "Once in a blue moon, never again". Rahul Dravid lofted a ball over mid-on and watched Dhoni watch the ball rather than think of running. What should have been at least three was just one. The comical run-outs involving Ajit Agarkar and Piyush Chawla summed up India's day perfectly.

And while on Cricinfo, you might also want to check this out, with special reference to the dot balls versus runs equations for the teams, and for individual players: my favorite yardstick to judge the pattern of play.

Image: The England team celebrates Sourav Ganguly's dismissal.

  • Also see: Kevin Pietersen: SA's loss, England's gain
  • India in the United Kingdom 2007

    Photographs: Getty Images | Text: Prem Panicker

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