Saturday, January 21, 2012

Steps followed once a Test series is Lost.

All the steps mentioned in this post happens in almost every second sport. Its quite prevalent in Indian cricket too. Maybe its the culture thing. It happened to us when we lost the away series in England (4-0). It is happening in Australia where we have lost and there's still a test match (and our pride) remaining. Now I am not here to character assassinate our cricket team. I am a dedicated fan and I know we will soon be in a transitional phase where the seniors will be replaced by promising youngsters. Although I hate the way our media is blaming the seniors for the loss. Yes, they should have performed better. But what was our captain doing? And how's our new coach responding? Lots of questions unanswered. But our media loves the usual time tested questions!! Anyways, cannot blame them either. They have a business to run. Their business needs more eyeballs, more eyeballs mean more rate for a 10 sec ad, more rate would mean more revenue - which is why they are in the market! So who should we blame now?

MS Dhoni and Michael Clarke - Maybe depicting the size of the hole Indian team finds themselves in
This post is intended to be a light-hearted post on what normally happens after we lose a test series.

Step #1 - Shock / Loss of words

This is the easiest part. As it is, we have lost on a global stage. Our loss was there for the world to see and decipher. And very few will actually be interested to hear what the losing captain has to say. There's nothing new to say anyways. Following are some of the words that any losing captain uses in his press conference: "Opposition played well", "It was a matter of one session", "We batted, bowled and fielded poorly", "There are some positives we can take out of this match" and mention one cricketer and start praising him and relate him to the future of Indian cricket. By the way, there were many who could have been part of the future - Dinesh Mongia, Hrishikesh Kanitkar, Ajit Agarkar, Parthiv Patel (especially after the 2003 World Cup), Piyush Chawla etc. Now they are part of the past and traces of present.

Step #2 - Blame Game

Now this is where, I believe, we are good at. Though our captain said he will take the blame, I don't think BCCI will punish him. ICC did the dirty work - they banned him from the fourth test for slow over-rate! We ended the match in less than 3 days!! Slow over-rate?? But now is the time we need to pin-point the reason(s) why we lost. Now, we cannot blame Sachin. He is a legend. And even though he didn't get his 100th 100 so far, he still has been consistent. Dravid cannot be blamed either. He is perhaps our most consistent batsman ever! That leaves 2 out of 11 players out of the blame game. We normally have 4-5 youngsters in our team. We don't blame them. We just drop them from the team. That leaves 4 players who can take the blame. For the past 1 year before the 2011 World Cup, Yuvraj took the blame on his shoulders and later became the man of the series in the World Cup. For the series against England, Harbhajan was forced to take the responsibility on his shoulders. He was surprisingly declared injured but played in the subsequent Champions League and led Mumbai Indians to their first ever trophy! Strange, isn't it?  With the Australian "Agneepath" series about to end, someone from Gambhir, Sehwag, Kohli, Dhoni and Laxman should take the blame. Gambhir showed some spark, Sehwag needs just one 200+ innings and his future is secured. Kohli is a youngster. Dhoni is the captain. So, that leaves one person. Ironically, he is the cricketer Australians fear. VVS Laxman! I honestly feel sorry for VVS. The guy had been overshadowed by Sachin, Dravid and Ganguly all throughout his career. He had to prove himself every now and then! Very Very Special became Very Very Scrutinized!
Step #3 - We will plan a home series and will defeat them, preferably by the same margin
That's the power of power!! That's our mentality. We did the same thing against England. We also call the talented young bunch of West Indies here, decimate them and feel proud of ourselves. We plan a series against Bangladesh, win the series and improve our overseas track-record! Having said all this, I am proud that we are ODI champions even though we won it in our own backyard!
Sarcasm aside, I seriously feel we need to prepare ourselves better for the transition. Removing all 4 seniors from the team at the same time will be suicidal. We need to find the right mix to replace the seniors. One positive we have is our bench strength - and all thanks to IPL and Ranji Trophy. Australia went through the same transition. From being champions they lost in the Q/F of the World Cup and are now 4th in Test championships. They now have a better team and will surely challenge India in 2015 World Cup!
Indian Cricket fans - It's time for "Baptism by Fire". Fasten your seat-belts. We are in for a rough ride!! And I am not talking about results, am talking about the transition.


  1. I am not some one who follow cricket. but read thru the entire post cos wen i am here, i am some how sure tht the time spnt wud not go waste :) u never fail me :P

  2. Great to know that I never fail you :D Thanks buddy :)

  3. Hey Binu, quite an analysis buddy -> yup, u're right on the part that the road to transition will not be easy and they will come up with some interesting circumstances....

    My heart goes out to VVS..poor guy really!

    Nice one, Binu :)

  4. i think about this blog that . Articals and blogger who creates this blog is genius i must create one like that . Good job man

  5. @Raj - Feel sad for VVS too!! Wish he scores a lot of runs in the last test match.. And retire gracefully and make BCCI feel they will be missing something special!!

  6. The same story is repeated again and again...It's a game and someone has to win and someone will loose. Don't know what's the %age of no results or tie we have in cricket. I know our team could have done better but leave it guys, there is too much cricket happening from many years.

  7. I do know nothing about cricket.., but it is interesting how much people can be interested:-)

    Hope you have a blessed week!

  8. @Saru - Its the same story overseas.. But we can hope for things to change. And it just might!! With proper planning, practice and transition.. There's hope (from a true Indian fan).

    @Tania - Cricket in India is like our second religion!! We Indians are crazy abt the game and are always critical when we lose..

  9. I know. People are such bad losers. One minute they sing praises and the next minute they keep abusing them!

  10. @Ashwini - that's what we call - being over-passionate!!

  11. The Oval has been a happy hunting ground for India, and this was the venue of India's first test victory in England in 1971. The pitch has aided spin in the past and India would have gone into the match hoping for a better result than in the first three games that England won on wickets aiding their fast bowlers.

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