Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Fourth Innings guaranteed

Well, at the end of the 2nd day of the 2nd test match at Kolkata, India in addition to surpassing the score of 296 runs put up on the board by the Proteas also lost 5 wickets and is bound to lose the 6th, with Amith Mishra sent in a suicide bomber which is termed a nightwatchman in test cricketing terms. As expected, the 10th Parnell and wicket partnership of the South African innings didn't last for long despite a series of non promising hits to the fence by the South African tail-endersMorkel. The inevitable for South Africa could only be delayed by an additional 30 runs.

The situation in the second innings of the test match was hardly different from the first innings of the Proteas'. Like the South Africans, it was a two men show in Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag, both of whom had three figure scores in the earlier test at Nagpur. So, at the end of day 2 of the test match, there were three batsmen from both the sides put together, who notched up centuries in both the tests. It was yet another flop show from Murali Vijay and Gautam Gambhir which is needless to be highlighted. Nevermind that India still holds the upper hand in the match.

With someone like Zaheer Khan, who if not anything big can take the wicket of Graeme Smith and Harbhajan Singh whose powerss was evident in the first innings and more so in 2004 when he scrapped 7 South African wickets to take an 8 wicket victory, can snatch the game from the Proteas in case of a tie breaker. The only hopes for team India at the moment would be V V S Laxman and Mahendra Singh Dhoni, the former who could remind himself of the epic knock of 281 like Harbhajan Singh can remind himself about the hattrick he took in that game against Australia.

All these can be dreamt about at the moment only if Dhoni can support Laxman from the other end. And if Dhoni tries to do what he was doing in the first test, then, all that he can achieve is to escape from the blame game and nothing more. It is fascinating to hear that the loss at Nagpur against South Africa was Dhoni's first loss as a captain. Now, hope so that the Kolkata test would not be the first test series loss as a captain for Dhoni. So, one has to wait for another three days to see if the luck factor that Dhoni has been carrying with him after he took over as the captain can combine with the efforts of Harbhajan & Laxman.

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