Most fans seem to not really regard two Test series as series. Quite rightly I’d think. While they may leave people wanting more (although I think the Aussie fans had seen enough) they do answer some questions.
Do people watch Test cricket in India?
Yes, when it is played at a major city like Bangalore. No, when it is played at the far smaller city like Mohali. This seems quite simple, play Tests where the people are. Or put radio microphones on every crowd member and then fade them up when something is happening at the smaller grounds.
Is Ricky Ponting finished?
No. India was the one place he had never conquered as a batsman, and three 70s is not a conquest, but it shows that he is in some sort of form. He threw in a customary run out but didn’t get dismissed by Harbhajan Singh once, and Singh has dismissed him more times than anyone else. This would have annoyed Singh greatly. As much as losing would have annoyed Ponting.
Aren’t all Tests in India boring draws?
Seems like a no. The last six Tests India has hosted have been result Tests. Both of the Tests in this series finished perfectly on the 5th day. There have been times when the pitches look like they might never yield a wicket, but when they do there does seem to be a lot of them. I apologise now to those who want to complain about dead pitches from the sub-continent. Six of the last eight Tests in Sri Lanka have been results as well. Although, you can still complain about lack of bounce, if you’d like.
Does Australia have the batting line up to win the Ashes?
No, but they may have the batsman to do it. A batting line up of Katich, (insert form opener here), Watson, Clarke, Ponting, Paine and Smith could really be a powerful unit. At the moment, when Katich and Watson go out, they seem to wobble or just collapse. Hussey has averaged 34 for 3 years (34 tests), and no one but me seems to care. North made a hundred in this two match series, and still averaged 35. His overall average is about the same. Yet this hundred has “saved” him. No, it is just the continuation of the boys club that is the Australian top-order. The Hotel California of batting line-ups, unless you are a 21-year-old who was averaging 52.44.
Who do India drop to fit in Pujara and Vijay?
Laxman and Dravid. Of course you don’t, well, you don’t anywhere outside of a friendly satirical environment. Pujara couldn’t have looked more the part at Test level. His batting was sharp, attacking and composed. He looked like India’s best fielder. Even his running between the wickets was on the money. Vijay also looked good, scoring a century with ease in the first innings of the second Test and not for the first time prying your eyes away from a legendary figure at the other end.
Will Tendulkar ever stop scoring runs?
No. Clearly he is not from this earth. Call him what you want, God, Alien, or soft-wristed robot, but the form that he is in at the moment seems kind of unnatural.
Jrod blogs at cricketwithballs.com