Match ends in a tame draw:
As expected and I wrote yesterday, the test ended as a draw. What a shame? I think India is the only country capable of letting go opportunities like these.
Luckily, I didnt see the complete England batting. I happened to catch the last 30 minutes when around 8 overs were left for the day. Five wickets to win the match. Rahul Dravid is bowling with Kumble and Sachin (yes, its Sachin). Why did Rahul Dravid didnt use his strike bowlers if he had any intention of winning the match? Something wrong with him throughout this test match. Unable to digest the way this match was handled by Rahul. I am losing all respect for Rahul Dravid as a Captain. I can imagine how may Indians would have felt the same way. Many elderly people who would have spent almost 5 full days watching this match would be fuming with anger and disgust.
The last 8 overs were played out by Bell, Prior and Sidebottom without any trouble. The bowling was wayward and I counted atleast 6 no-balls in the last 8 overs by Kumble and Sachin. After all this, Indians dont deserve to win!
The English crowd is thinking that this would be the last tour to England for Sachin, Dravid and Sourav. They gave standing ovation to Sachin two times in the last two matches. Ofcourse, he deserves it. But going by the present form, it is high time, we blood more youngsters into the team.
What did we gain from the English test series?
Karthick has come good in this tour. The same with Dhoni and Wasim Jaffer. Consistency seems to be a problem for Jaffer. Bowling is one area where we need to improve a lot. We still depend on Kumble to win matches. Poor guy is 37 and still taking the bulk of the load. I think a quality spinner (dont think of Harbhajan) is the need of the hour, a spinner who can flight a bit.
What is ahead?
Biggest test for the Indian team would be against Australia. The batting techniques of the greatest cricketers (!) would be really put to test in Australian conditions.
There are quite a few deserving candidates knocking the doors through their performance for India "A" at Kenya. S Badrinath, Captain of Tamil Nadu Ranji team is one guy who has really made good use of the opporutunity he got. He has scored two centuries in Kenya. He should definitely get a look in for the next tour. He is peaking now and lets not the selectors play the spoilsport.