Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Selection only partly responsible for India's loss

Well the moment India lost their first test match to South Africa, the first person to whom all the fingers pointed towards happens to be the selection committee, followed by the captain and in some cases the coach. I don't think that anyone reading this post needs to be reminded specially that cricket is a team sport unlike badminton and table tennis. It was of course not a good selection when someone like Saha, Badrinath and Abhimanyu the included in the squad. If the scorecard of the match is given a close look at, Badrinath and Saha did play upto expectations and Abhimanyu was not included in the playing XI.

Not much was expected from Saha and Badrinath but, they did live upto expectations when Badrinath scored 56 in the first innings that included a 40 run partnership along with Sehwag in the first innings. Later on in the second innings, Saha had his say when he scored 36 runs and stood for 150 balls or 30 overs and almost 2 hours at the crease. All these despite not guaranteed a place in the coming test. Even Murali Vijay was pretty decent with the bat when he scored 32 runs in the second innings. Most of the damage was first done by the bowlers when they let the South African bowlers cut loose.

It is justified the way the Indian bowlers despite playing in the home conditions could allow the South African batsmen not only to pile up 556 runs on the board but also allow a 300+ run partnership between Hashim Amla and Jacques Kallis. If there were no Laxman & Dravid in the squad, there were Sachin, Sehwag, Dhoni and Gambhir who could have solved the issue related to batting. Of course, Sehwag and Tendulkar came up with hundreds in the 1st and the 2nd innings respectively. But, Dhoni and Gambhir were absolute failures with the bat in the Nagpur test.

In the bowling department, if not for Zaheer Khan's first spell in the first innings, even he was not upto the mark and so were the other bowlers viz Harbhajan, Ishanth Sharma and Amit Mishra. The bowling department indeed requires some or a lot of refinement. For, someone like Sehwag had to bowl as a full time bowler and that too in a test match under the conditions where the South African batsmen were in full bloom. Luckily Sehwag got a wicket which is a different issue altogether. No matter what the first test squad had to say but, the inclusion of someone like Raina and Sreesanth would be just another blunder for, the former is a new comer to tests and the latter battles injuries most of the time.

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