Highs and Lows of 2nd Test


Highs

  • A great comeback for India after almost losing the test at Lord’s.
  • Zaheer Khan was a revelation. His 9 wickets in the game pretty much set up the win for India. In this match he joined a select list of left arm fast bowlers like Akram and Vaas who have taken 150 or more test wickets.
  • The bowling of Sidebottom. Although he did not get too many wickets, his duel with Tendulkar in the first innings was great to watch
  • The much vaunted Indian middle order finally came good. What was good to see were the partnerships (The Fab Four were all involved in 50+ runs partnerships). It was also good to see a fluid Ganguly and an extremely determined Tendulkar.
  • The first Indian opening century partnership in England since God knows when. They had wiped out three fourths of the England first innings score and eased the pressure on the Indian middle order 
  • The wickets of Pietersen and Prior. Those were two gems of deliveries from RP Singh.
  • Tremlett extracted good bounce from the wicket, didn’t concede too runs and took 3 wickets each in both innings for England. It would be a pity if he has to make room for Hoggard in the next match.
  • The batting of Vaughan. His rear guard action in the 2nd innings brought England back from the brink. If he had stayed another hour at the crease, England could very well have come on top in this test.

Lows

  • The bowling of Sreesanth for India. What has happened to this lad? After the first test in South Africa, everyone said that he was the next big thing in Indian cricket. The conditions in England were also said to suit him well. Prasad needs to put a lot of effort into sorting him out.
  • The bowling of Anderson for England. After an almost match winning performance at Lord’s his bowling was uninspiring and listless. He was supposed to be the lead bowler for their team, but let them down by taking 1 wicket and conceding over 150 runs in the process.
  • The umpiring has been pretty ordinary throughout the test. I understand that it is a difficult job and the close up slowmos, hawk eyes and hot spots that the TV viewers have access to are probably making them look worse than they really are. Still, I think both Howell and Taufel would rather forget this outing.
  • The behavior of Sreesanth. His aggression in the field is completely misplaced and it would be better if he spent all this energy more usefully(like in bowling :)). Shouldering the opposition captain! Seriously, what were you thinking, Sree? Imagine the uproar it would have caused in India if someone like Tremlett had done that to Dravid or the vice captain Tendulkar. This behavior is just not on.
  • The Jelly bean episode. Although it fired up Zaheer Khan and gave us something to talk about apart from cricket. the whole episode was a bit childish.

-Mahesh-

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