India in Australia 2011-12 January 10, 2012

Zaheer Khan finally makes it to Perth

It is third time lucky for Zaheer Khan, who prepares for his first Test in Perth, after breaking down early during India's two previous tours of Australia
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A bright spot on India's tour of gloom has been that Zaheer Khan has made it to Perth. That on his third tour to Australia, Zaheer is making it to the third Test. Australia are an opposition Zaheer has cherished but it is not a country he has accumulated air miles in.

Tours to Australia have been a particular low point for him. On his first tour here, in 2003-04, Zaheer came down with a mysterious injury - hamstring first and discovered to be a nerve twitch later. The injury troubled him for the best part of the next two years. In 2007-08, he came here as a much more promising prospect, but lasted just one Test.

Zaheer is mature enough to see the lighter side of things. "I have finally passed the Sydney hurdle," he said. "This is the first time I am coming to Perth. Really excited about it, really looking forward to it. There has been a lot of talk about how the wicket is going to play in such and such manner. So really excited about the whole talk and the vibe going around."

More than coming to a fast bowler's paradise, Zaheer is happy at making it so deep into a series in Australia. For all the help Perth is known to afford fast bowlers, Zaheer hardly ever relies on express pace. "Honestly for me what is important is hitting the right areas and getting the rhythm going," Zaheer said. "Doesn't matter what kind of pitch it is, the distance between the wickets is going to remain 22 yards."

Zaheer has taken 10 wickets at 25.20 so far in the series. There, though, ends cause for celebration. He is part of a side trailing 2-0. He is part of a side that conceded 622 runs for one wicket after having the opposition down at 3 for 37. He was asked to rate the bowling unit so far.

"Melbourne was fantastic," Zaheer said. "We always put the team under pressure as a bowling unit. Everyone chipped in. Everyone bowled in good areas. Sydney, I felt the wicket on the first day and the second day there was a big difference. No excuses, but everyone could see that as the match progressed the wicket kind of eased off. That nip and movement in the pitch was not exactly the same as the first day. Considering all that, we have put in a good effort as a bowling unit. Going forward we are confident as a bowling unit of taking 20 wickets."

Zaheer has for long been India's bowling captain, and analysed his younger colleagues. "Ishant Sharma has played on this ground before," Zaheer said. "He came into reckoning from this ground. I am sure he has got fond memories of this ground. It is definitely going to be useful to get that rhythm back, get among the wickets, which is very important. I feel he is bowing well. It's just a matter of time."

Zaheer said the team can continue to allow Umesh Yadav some freedom and room to make mistakes. "[It is] just a beginning for him in the international arena," Zaheer said. "The way he is bowling I am very happy; the way he is taking the responsibility. I think that freedom is important for him. At this age, especially four-five Test matches in, you are allowed to make mistakes. What is important is how you are approaching the game. What attitude you bring to the ground. I am very happy with his attitude. He is a wicket-taker, so that is what his job will be going forward."

Zaheer did admit that they needed to finish things off better. "As a bowling unit we have been doing the right things," he said. "It all depends on the conditions as well, but in helpful conditions I still believe this Australian line-up can be put under pressure. We have been kind of getting them under pressure, and then just letting go of the momentum a little bit. There are a few areas we need to focus on. I am sure in the coming matches we will be able to rectify that."

The pitch at the WACA is likely to provide them assistance. Three days before the match, it looked lush green. It might have been left so to guard against the sun, which has been quite harsh in the lead-up to the game. Even if they shave it off further, the ground staff are expecting about 20% more carry than it had when India last played here, and won. The same assistance, though, will be available to Australian bowlers too, and they have had India under the pump so far in the series.

Zaheer said the team was in a good space in the lead-up to the match. "We are very focussed and quietly confident," he said. "This is not the first time we have been put in such a situation. In the past we have come out of these situations. That confidence is definitely there in the team. It's showing in the practice. There is a good vibe. There is that focus around in the dressing room, which is a positive sign."

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY Harry_Kool on | January 12, 2012, 12:07 GMT

    @wadaplaya. OK, I think I confused you. When I mentioned strike rate, I meant it as a percentage of winning, i.e. 4 tests out of 5 with 3 man of match awards between them. That is the strike rate I was referring to and hence why I mentioned the wins & MOMs. I would also advise against making sweeping statements after one breakdown. If there was a history, fair point, but for both of them, this is the first. In the past, guys like Lillee, Thommo, Kasper, Hughes etc would go through a woile series with injuries then have an off season operation. But these guys didn't play high impact games such as T20 which accelerate & highlight injuries. These guys are just starting their careers & are looking the real thing, plus a host of other options available, Copeland has shown he has potential to bowl well on sub continental pitches, and their are plenty of other options. No, bowling isn't our immediate problem, batting & keeping is.

  • POSTED BY wadaplaya on | January 12, 2012, 5:26 GMT

    @ harry_kool I'm not saying Zak is the fittest bloke going around. The point I was trying to make was, at such a young age, Cummins and Pattinson should be available for each and every test.Top bowlers don't break down very often. If these two can't handle the workload in bowler friendly conditions, what are they going to do when they come to the sub continent. I would like to see how long the two pretty boys last bowling on flat tracks under hot and humid conditions. Talking about their strike rates is like talking about the averages of Indian batsmen who have only played in the sub continent. It's all well and good when the conditions favour you.

  • POSTED BY anupamraj114 on | January 12, 2012, 3:19 GMT

    @aidanfx....so u r saying that aus cant play slow bowlers.....its true mate we have a sloow bowler who can swing a new ball....nd aussie top order licking the soil against him.....nd what abt warner.....hahahaha....he is not even suited to 50 ovr cricket forget tests.....nd when did aus won a series outside their home.....came to india 2 times nd were thrasssed 2-0....y only india is critisized for being strong at home.....wht abt aus??.....nd if u say they won a test in sa.....then my friend indians nd srilanka also did the same......

  • POSTED BY anupamraj114 on | January 12, 2012, 3:12 GMT

    @harry_kool.....bro pattinson broke after 4 tests nd cummins after 1....ur thoughts plzz....nd they have no rights to be compared to a bowler who has taken more than 250 tests nd odis wickets.....

  • POSTED BY donda on | January 12, 2012, 2:37 GMT

    Oh i understand , in order for Zaheer to play at WACA he had to not bowl well in sydney so that he can play at WACA finally.

    What a joke. Australia were 600 for 5 and Zaheer did not put effort to take wickets to just play WACA test. So sad to see the mentality of indian bowlers.

    Why don't they just play IPL and stay happy forever.

    Zaheer would have taken australian visa a year ago visited WACA and live happily there after , why to under perform and play at WACA . Sad.

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 12, 2012, 1:15 GMT

    @ wadapla - Sydney for the most part was a relatively flat wicket which should have benefited them but they were outclassed.

  • POSTED BY Harry_Kool on | January 12, 2012, 0:32 GMT

    @wadaplaya . Surely you are joking about Zak vs. Cummins & Pattinson given Zak's history of breaking down? He hasn't finished 2 earlier tours down here, and when you trundle in like a pensioner rolling your arm at 120 kph vs. sprinting in at 145+, there is a huge difference in effort. Oh, I think Patto's & Cummin's strike rate is a little higher, 4 winning tests out of 5 with 3 MOMs between them. With all due respect, I'll take those 2 over Zak. Pretty sure I know who all the batsmen would rather face too.

  • POSTED BY wadaplaya on | January 11, 2012, 20:03 GMT

    @ AidanFx not worried at all. Maybe you should be worried. Zak is well into his 30s and he is still fit to play the rest of the series. Peter Cummins at 18 and Pattinson at 20, seem to last only 2 test matches before they get injured. What's up? Your young guns too fragile in the fitness dept mate?

    Also remember, the Indian bowlers got the better of the aussie top order in Melbourne...Everybody knows the pitch had a huge role to play in the Aussie success at Sydney(even ponting scored a century mate!)...Looking forward to Perth. Since the pitch at the WACA holds up pretty well, bowlers from both sides will have equal opportunities regardless of the toss...Lets see how well the Aussie top order does in the coming week!

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 11, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    The aussies need to be on their guard from Zac's spinners - possibly the best slow bowler in India

  • POSTED BY sluxman on | January 11, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    @jkaussie - the wierd comments that a lot of press and players started making when Sachin did not get the 100 that he deserved in atleast 3 of the 4 innings he played could only point out to "jealousy". The crowds of course come to enjoy watching cricket and Sachin has always been a huge favorite and a fantastic performer in Australia. But the comments spoil the entire sporting atmosphere. As to Indian players not ruing losses inspite of individual performance, let me tell you that Sachin wept once when he scored a ton but saw India lose by a mere 10-15 runs. Cricket is a team game as much for an Indian player as for an Australian player. Why then, people ask, with so many runs scored by the Indian batsmen, the team does not win? The problem with India is their bowling. There is no Indian bowler in the last 30 years with a bowling average less than 30 runs per wicket!

  • POSTED BY Harry_Kool on | January 12, 2012, 12:07 GMT

    @wadaplaya. OK, I think I confused you. When I mentioned strike rate, I meant it as a percentage of winning, i.e. 4 tests out of 5 with 3 man of match awards between them. That is the strike rate I was referring to and hence why I mentioned the wins & MOMs. I would also advise against making sweeping statements after one breakdown. If there was a history, fair point, but for both of them, this is the first. In the past, guys like Lillee, Thommo, Kasper, Hughes etc would go through a woile series with injuries then have an off season operation. But these guys didn't play high impact games such as T20 which accelerate & highlight injuries. These guys are just starting their careers & are looking the real thing, plus a host of other options available, Copeland has shown he has potential to bowl well on sub continental pitches, and their are plenty of other options. No, bowling isn't our immediate problem, batting & keeping is.

  • POSTED BY wadaplaya on | January 12, 2012, 5:26 GMT

    @ harry_kool I'm not saying Zak is the fittest bloke going around. The point I was trying to make was, at such a young age, Cummins and Pattinson should be available for each and every test.Top bowlers don't break down very often. If these two can't handle the workload in bowler friendly conditions, what are they going to do when they come to the sub continent. I would like to see how long the two pretty boys last bowling on flat tracks under hot and humid conditions. Talking about their strike rates is like talking about the averages of Indian batsmen who have only played in the sub continent. It's all well and good when the conditions favour you.

  • POSTED BY anupamraj114 on | January 12, 2012, 3:19 GMT

    @aidanfx....so u r saying that aus cant play slow bowlers.....its true mate we have a sloow bowler who can swing a new ball....nd aussie top order licking the soil against him.....nd what abt warner.....hahahaha....he is not even suited to 50 ovr cricket forget tests.....nd when did aus won a series outside their home.....came to india 2 times nd were thrasssed 2-0....y only india is critisized for being strong at home.....wht abt aus??.....nd if u say they won a test in sa.....then my friend indians nd srilanka also did the same......

  • POSTED BY anupamraj114 on | January 12, 2012, 3:12 GMT

    @harry_kool.....bro pattinson broke after 4 tests nd cummins after 1....ur thoughts plzz....nd they have no rights to be compared to a bowler who has taken more than 250 tests nd odis wickets.....

  • POSTED BY donda on | January 12, 2012, 2:37 GMT

    Oh i understand , in order for Zaheer to play at WACA he had to not bowl well in sydney so that he can play at WACA finally.

    What a joke. Australia were 600 for 5 and Zaheer did not put effort to take wickets to just play WACA test. So sad to see the mentality of indian bowlers.

    Why don't they just play IPL and stay happy forever.

    Zaheer would have taken australian visa a year ago visited WACA and live happily there after , why to under perform and play at WACA . Sad.

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 12, 2012, 1:15 GMT

    @ wadapla - Sydney for the most part was a relatively flat wicket which should have benefited them but they were outclassed.

  • POSTED BY Harry_Kool on | January 12, 2012, 0:32 GMT

    @wadaplaya . Surely you are joking about Zak vs. Cummins & Pattinson given Zak's history of breaking down? He hasn't finished 2 earlier tours down here, and when you trundle in like a pensioner rolling your arm at 120 kph vs. sprinting in at 145+, there is a huge difference in effort. Oh, I think Patto's & Cummin's strike rate is a little higher, 4 winning tests out of 5 with 3 MOMs between them. With all due respect, I'll take those 2 over Zak. Pretty sure I know who all the batsmen would rather face too.

  • POSTED BY wadaplaya on | January 11, 2012, 20:03 GMT

    @ AidanFx not worried at all. Maybe you should be worried. Zak is well into his 30s and he is still fit to play the rest of the series. Peter Cummins at 18 and Pattinson at 20, seem to last only 2 test matches before they get injured. What's up? Your young guns too fragile in the fitness dept mate?

    Also remember, the Indian bowlers got the better of the aussie top order in Melbourne...Everybody knows the pitch had a huge role to play in the Aussie success at Sydney(even ponting scored a century mate!)...Looking forward to Perth. Since the pitch at the WACA holds up pretty well, bowlers from both sides will have equal opportunities regardless of the toss...Lets see how well the Aussie top order does in the coming week!

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 11, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    The aussies need to be on their guard from Zac's spinners - possibly the best slow bowler in India

  • POSTED BY sluxman on | January 11, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    @jkaussie - the wierd comments that a lot of press and players started making when Sachin did not get the 100 that he deserved in atleast 3 of the 4 innings he played could only point out to "jealousy". The crowds of course come to enjoy watching cricket and Sachin has always been a huge favorite and a fantastic performer in Australia. But the comments spoil the entire sporting atmosphere. As to Indian players not ruing losses inspite of individual performance, let me tell you that Sachin wept once when he scored a ton but saw India lose by a mere 10-15 runs. Cricket is a team game as much for an Indian player as for an Australian player. Why then, people ask, with so many runs scored by the Indian batsmen, the team does not win? The problem with India is their bowling. There is no Indian bowler in the last 30 years with a bowling average less than 30 runs per wicket!

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 11, 2012, 12:32 GMT

    @ wadaplaya dont worry friend - Sachin will get his 100 millionth billionth hundred - India are scheduled to play the next couple yrs on their turf - pushing their muscles against Bangladesh.

  • POSTED BY spinkingKK on | January 11, 2012, 12:17 GMT

    @jkaussie. I appreciate your comments and how Australians love Sachin and Laxman. However, I don't agree with you that the Indian players rate their personal achievements above the team interest. They consider it as very well understood and doesn't warrant a mention everytime they score a century. In fact, Tendulkar does mention it time to time that his century is unsatisfactory if the team didn't win. Your comments were probably true for the sentiments shown by many Indian fans and the media hype. Many of them unknowingly wanted to see Sachin's 100th 100 more than an Indian win. If Sachin wanted to get his 100th 100, he could have got it easily by playing in some of the meaningless ODI's he opted to sit out. Indian players play cricket in the similar spirit as the aussies. Only thing is they don't go and make statements to reiterate what is obvious, just to create mental disintegration in the opposition camp.

  • POSTED BY spinkingKK on | January 11, 2012, 12:05 GMT

    India can win this match if they beleive in their abilities and don't get upset about what happened with their batting. It was only what appeared to be. In Melbourne, they were 3/200 odd runs and from there they were all out for not so many. That was the kind of pitch that was. I beleive it was the Indian bowling which failed in that match. Because, they couldn't get the tail enders out. In sydney, Dhoni made a big blunder in batting first. That was the time when there was some spice in the pitch. Afterwards, it was a flat pitch. But, when you are faced with 500 runs deficit in second innings, the pressure gets you. Please don't drop Laxman. He will do really well in Perth. I think India should play one of the mediocre backup fast bowlers in this match, instead of Ashwin. Ashwin hasn't done anything wrong. But, India need one more pace bowler to give some break to the main 3. So, maybe Vinay Kumar can come in. Only thing is, we will miss Ashwin's batting. Rohit can replace Kohli.

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 11, 2012, 11:57 GMT

    @ jkaussie and to build on your point - when Australia chased down the target over 300 something plus - Clarke said immediately post match it felt like he just scored a double century.

  • POSTED BY itsthewayuplay on | January 11, 2012, 11:55 GMT

    @jkaussie The last time that India had bowlers who consistently bowled in tandem, complimented each other or in partnership was Srinath and Prasad. They were also thinking bowlers. Yadav is young and inexperienced and is hopefully just starting his international career. Zaheer had been out for quite a while with injuries and bowled about 22 overs prior to this tour. Ishant career has been stop- start affair since it began due to injuries. As to why they don't bowl in partnership I believe a pace bowler is learning his trade until about 26/27 when he has a much better understanding of his skills and how to use them in different conditions and what his body is capable of. It's possible that Sharma and Yadav are getting carried away on these fast bouncy pitches and when they see the keeper take the ball with his fingers pointing upwards and forget about the advantage of bowling a fuller length.

  • POSTED BY wadaplaya on | January 11, 2012, 11:46 GMT

    @ AidanFX Such comments were heard before the 2008 Perth test too. I remember Aussie fans saying Tait will give India nightmares. By the end of the test, Tait has gone into depression!

    Look mate, Aussies have been far from exceptional. In the first test the "tail" saved you guys. In the second test 13 wickets on day 1 was followed by days where the track was flatter than highway roads.

    Yes, Australia have been better than India so far but there is no room to be cocky going into the 3rd test. As Australia themselves and even SA have found out in the past, giving India a green track can backfire big time!

  • POSTED BY jkaussie on | January 11, 2012, 11:29 GMT

    @sluxman - I don't know where you get "jealous Aussies" from. The admiration for Sachin here has been evidenced by the standing ovations and roar that goes up whenever he comes out to bat! I'm a cricket nut and before the Melb test all of my mates were saying that they couldn't wait to see him bat and maybe get his 100th 100! As for Michael Clarke's comments - what he says is not insulting it highlights the perceived differences in attitude towards personal acheivements v team ones. People here have called Clarke stupid for saying the 150 v Sth A was meaningless to him, well he's right! In the context of the final result he was shattered and the ton couldn't change that - Is that same attitude expressed by the Indian players? You tell me.

  • POSTED BY jkaussie on | January 11, 2012, 11:12 GMT

    I watched 3 days live at the MCG and most of the Sydney test and I must admit I felt like Zaheer wasn't pulling his weight. Some of his efforts in the field and some of his spells were really lacklustre but then he'd bounce back and take multiples of wickets in a short time. Ishant too has been unlucky, until I saw him live I didn't know just how quick he is - he matched Patto and Sidds on the radar and his rhythym looked really good. Yadav really impresses me - energy to the crease, fast arm and an ability to swing it and he created enough chances whilst going for a few runs. So this Indian pace attack has the goods but they seem to not be able to produce it together i.e. in a bowling partnership. Why is this do you reckon?

  • POSTED BY anver777 on | January 11, 2012, 10:15 GMT

    Aus will surely dominate this match & also the 4th test...........sorry my dear Ind fans, i predicted 4/0 whitewash before the series & i will not change my comments.......it is 4/0...4/0...4/0...4/0.....!!!!...!!!!

  • POSTED BY on | January 11, 2012, 10:00 GMT

    go in with 5 bowlers attack from the word go try your luck nothing to loose now as the series cannot be won now , do not believe your batsman they are out of form very soon out of the team , this will be reality

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 11, 2012, 9:56 GMT

    Just a minor observation - The Indian cricket team aside from being unskilled and lazy but even more so mentally weak, even cowardly.

  • POSTED BY wadaplaya on | January 11, 2012, 9:31 GMT

    I just don't understand why people are rooting for the axe to be dropped on Laxman. Virat Kohli has been an absolute disappointment so far in this series. If you don't perform, you don't play. Simple as that.

    We are only half way into the series. This is not the time to worry about the future of Indian cricket. The focus should be on the present. The focus should be on winning the Perth test. I hate to hear comments like - "it's okay to lose with a young team" - No! It's never okay to lose. Take the field with your best eleven or don't bother turning up at all!

  • POSTED BY AABIRSABEEL on | January 11, 2012, 8:42 GMT

    Dear BCCI ,Pls allow Indian yung player to play BIGBASH and english county so that they can get good experience in sporting pitch and bouncy pitch outside the country. Then it wil become a big asset, especialy for Kohli,Rohit,Rehane,Pujara,Pathan bro,UMESH,AARON,OJHA,ASWIN,SAPNAL SINGH,NECHIM,ABDULLA,ETC

  • POSTED BY on | January 11, 2012, 8:24 GMT

    Zaheer and ashwin will score a hundred, sehwag and kohli will take 15 wickets among themselves and india will win by an innings......just wait and watch if you dont believe me.....!

  • POSTED BY usernames on | January 11, 2012, 8:14 GMT

    @TheHawksEye -- Then no bowler in Australia, England, etc (with the exception of SA) should be considered a legend because they took wickets only in their conditions, green tracks full of wickets, isn't it?

    Sachin is a legend. I don't know why people have to find a way to discredit him but go ahead, watch some videos on Youtube and come back. He *is* a legend and does not need your (or anyone else's) certificate.

  • POSTED BY on | January 11, 2012, 7:55 GMT

    India will win in Perth Test & Zaheer will do well, Indian have to bring Rohit in place of Virat Bcoz I thing senior players are playing their last tour so let Laxman play in 11, We r weak in bowling department Irfan should have been there, I dont know still what type of test they need from Irfan, Keeping in mind an alrounder & Swing Bowler Irfan, They have picked new talent. Why the seniors cant understand that all the batsmen are senior and still they are playing and losing the games. untill & unless srikant is there I think Irfan cant get the chance.

  • POSTED BY rabmatews on | January 11, 2012, 7:48 GMT

    after all i can say 2 all d supporters of team india dat..plz hold ur nervs and b with team india....i know some thing z seriously wrong n d dressing room...bt i believe they will overcome the situation as a unit...and it z not the 1st time india facing dis type of situation...they r struggling der both on/off d field...oz public z d nightmare for them..abusing n footpath..they have 2 think twice while coming out of hotel...so if we will not support den who else??i know if india wins at perth u will d same person to post in a possitive attitude..in support of team india..so why not b4...so gud luck team india!!!happy birthday 2 "THE WALL".

  • POSTED BY iamthesasi on | January 11, 2012, 7:43 GMT

    this time its differnet story clarke and co. we were searching for some sort of inspiration and we got one . thanks to australian media this time........... fight back starts from here on starting from 13th so beware and prepare well AUSSIES!!!!!!!!

  • POSTED BY nachami on | January 11, 2012, 6:30 GMT

    I read lot of news as to who should captain and that there is a rift in the team. Sewag / Gambir are NOT EVEN ABLE TO WIN IPL FOR THEIR FRANCHISE WHO PAY SO MUCH OF MONEY. THEY DON'T HAVE THE RESPONSIBILITY THAT THEY MAKE THEIR FRANCHISE TO PAY THROUGH THEIR NOSE BUT NOT RETURNING ANYTHING TO THEM. Both of them look like dead people on the field without any intelligence or shrewdness on their face. It is funny that they want to captain India!! God only save us..

  • POSTED BY Rajkumar111 on | January 11, 2012, 6:22 GMT

    If India are to play international cricket, they have to be exposed to all kinds of pitches. If their famed batting line up fails abroad due to bouncy pitches compared to the dirt and slow tracks back home, where they excel, something has to be done right away or else stay at home. The people governing the game in India as well as the players should insist on preparation of hard and bouncy pitches with grass tops, at hill stations and places where the air is thin. Let them shift all major tournaments to these areas instead of enjoying their dirt pitches and exposing their weaknesses abroad. I am sure this is possible and let us do it for the sake of cricket and if they want to be an international side.Let all those who agree with me, write more about this and spread the word, for God's sake, it's high time.

  • POSTED BY itisme on | January 11, 2012, 6:12 GMT

    Sehwag does not fit as an opener in bouncy wickets. he should move down. i would like to see him dropped altogether, but that is not possibel, given the stubornness of BCCI and the selectors, so let him move down the order. Dravid should open as he is the only capable batsman in this indian line-up. the batting order should be like this: Dravid, gambhir, rohit, tendlukar, sehwag, kohli, DHONI (I feel he should not be in the team at all, uterly useless, but my wish is not going to be granted), Ashwin, Zahir, Sharma, Yadav. This is the ONLY way india can salvage some prestige, otherwise with sehwag at the top, we are goin to be bamboozled out.

  • POSTED BY SpadeaSpade on | January 11, 2012, 6:03 GMT

    Some of the Indian Cricketers can be found on the Yellow Brick road Dhoni has no Brian Kohli has no courage Sehwag has no heart Hopefully in Perth they can correct that and make a good game of it

  • POSTED BY on | January 11, 2012, 5:19 GMT

    @krish4747 buddy i wud hav also played ojha but instead of ashwin as perth is the fastest pitch in world nd we need fast bowlers like yadav who can bowl really fast.........

  • POSTED BY landl47 on | January 11, 2012, 5:04 GMT

    If the wind blows (and it usually does in Perth) Zaheer might get just the kind of conditions he likes. Of course, the conditions would suit Hilf as well. Last Summer Johnson and Harris, for the only time for either of them in the series, bowled well and it was a low-scoring game. The same thing might happen here. It should be interesting.

  • POSTED BY zsantz on | January 11, 2012, 4:43 GMT

    Open the batting with Gambhir and dravid, Rohit at one down, Sachin,VVS, Sehwag, Dhoni

    Open the bowling with Zaheer and Yadav, First change is praveen kumar and Spinner is Ashwin.

    The above sqaud in the given sequence can perform well compared to what happened in first 2 matches. Opening with Sehwag in Tests at Australia is like playing with 10 players. No need of Ishant since he has no variations. Praveen is awesome swing bowler. He has picked up his pace too offlate. Best wishes.

  • POSTED BY on | January 11, 2012, 4:40 GMT

    I adore dhoni but sorry to say he does not belong to tests outside asia....whridhiman should keep,I know it is not possible but it should happen,Irfan should have been there and so should have been rahul sharma,Rohit should play in place of Laxman

  • POSTED BY on | January 11, 2012, 4:35 GMT

    {India will win in PERTH and zaheer will do his best ever in test cricket !!! Veeru will score a ton...

  • POSTED BY gothetaniwha on | January 11, 2012, 3:48 GMT

    Can,t understand Indian supporters living in past regarding Dravid ,Tendukar, VVS ,its what what do now and in the future which count .

  • POSTED BY krish75vijay on | January 11, 2012, 3:11 GMT

    We talk a lot of statistics and wins. First of all when Australia has come down from rank one to present ranking and also when they lost to Newzeland this summer the selection committee and the players did not ask for drastic changes. Pointing who had a misserable time with bat is persisted. We cannot win all the matches and form will change. All teams suffer when they vist foreign soil. can any one point a team that has done well in the present time both at home and away. Ony Australia and West Indians have done in the past. However we must include youngsters gradually. I prefer to Play Rahane, Rohit and oja in the place of Lakshman,koli and Yadav.

  • POSTED BY RandyOZ on | January 11, 2012, 2:46 GMT

    Surely India have to bring Sharma in? The bowlers are doing ok I would leave them for now, assuming Praveen is out for the whole series?

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 11, 2012, 1:36 GMT

    Those attacking Clarke for his statements forget he recently scored a fighting 150 on seeming pitch and in the end lost a match they should have won. He wasnt concerned with Tendulka or making a ref to him. Maybe your just jealous because your captain doesnt seem to care whether his team wins, draws and loses. You dont have a captain who will take a risk to win a game - essentially Dhoni relies on the bowling line up to gel to win a game. Dhoni will never make anything close to a sporting declatation, not in his nature. And I still maintain Induan bowlers have been ordinary - they are making it up as they go along.

  • POSTED BY bottlemani27 on | January 11, 2012, 0:51 GMT

    This is going to be another one sided affair .. They should drop a senior player to give a chance to youngsters like Rohit Sharma ...doesn't matter even if they lose with a young team.. they will get exposed , and they have nothing to lose but everything to gain..

  • POSTED BY on | January 11, 2012, 0:39 GMT

    @Mk Zaman lol, it is dravid who never faced tough attacks, Sachin faced all best bowlers in 90's, even ganguly outbatted dravid from 1996-2001. why do Dravid fans ignore his poor record in 4th innings, Tendulkar still had a few innings even at adelaide 2003 , he got some runs on last day with vvs and of course dravid did.

  • POSTED BY Gary_the_Pom on | January 11, 2012, 0:28 GMT

    You have to love the Indian supporters. I remember reading how great they were and how well they were doing even though they lost 4-0 to England. Now they are losing to 2-0 to Australia on their way to losing 4-0. They still think they have a great team, im not quite sure how that matches reality.

  • POSTED BY on | January 11, 2012, 0:05 GMT

    ''dravid and zaheer will bring the victory for india, Dravid is the best batsman india has ever produced, sachin played more than 20 years to make those centuries. think about gavaskars centuries bowlers he faced lille thompson,snow,imran, hadlee. holding,roberts,marshall,garner many more, sachin never faced that kind of bowlers.if india keeps dravid few more years he will break the sachins test record.''...?!

    Hmm.. comparing different eras of cricket is absolutely ridiculous. Even then I think Sachin faced arguably better bowlers and to name a few.. Glenn McGrath, Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Chaminda Vaas, Curtly Ambrose, Courtney Walsh, Shaun Pollock, Allan Donald, Dale Steyn, Brett Lee, Shane Warne, Muttiah Muralitharan and Daniel Vettori.

    Sachin was India's best batsman in 1992 tour of australia, and still the best batsmen in the team on this tour of 2012! (averages speak for itself, yup sachin averages more than dravid, both home and away).

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 23:57 GMT

    @VenkiThiyag "To me praveen kumar is...", "I would recommend to play Vinay..", "I am ok with bringing in Rohit...", "I would prefer for dravid.."

    Who are you, again? And how did you miss the Indian coach selection trails? May be the undetected spelling mistake on your resume that cost you the job I guess..

  • POSTED BY Meety on | January 10, 2012, 23:40 GMT

    @ElvisKing - well actually, Clarke iszero in comparison to SRT. Pup already is an infinately better captain than Sachin ever was. ALSO Pup has a triple century, Sachin does not, AND his HS is about 33% better than Sachin's 248 against Bangladesh. Sachin all up is > Pup, no need to get so worked up, perhaps you shouldn't have such a suspicious mind & have a little less aggravation! LOL! @Dipak Patel - "...You cannot play long innings if you 3 down, can you?.." well judgiSydney I reckon you can get 329 when coming in at 3/37 - your point??????? If Sachin had such troubles, move up to #3 (something he has NEVER done in Tests!!!!! == == == BTW - I think Zaheer is overlooking the fact that IF the pitch changed so much why couldn't India bat out at least Day 4 & set Oz up some sort of total???????? @Nampally - FYI - tough cheddar no DRS = no whinging! Oz copped more of the rough decisions in this series. Any non-bias observer knows this (unless of course you are Kohli who is NEVER out!).

  • POSTED BY Kosti on | January 10, 2012, 23:27 GMT

    Dhoni is extremely conservative captain and lack innovations..He would never drop Laxman for Rohit. This should be my batting order for Perth test match. (1) Dravid (2) Ashwin (3)Tendulkar (4) Laxman (5) Gambhir (6) Sehwag (7) Rohit 8) Dhoni 9)Ishant 10)Zaheer 11)Umesh. There is no point of exposing Sehwag and Gambhir at the top, both of them looks very uncomfortable against new balls and fresh bowlers. Once the ball gets older, spinners come on and bowlers are tired, Gambhir and Sehwag could prove very effective. I would never bring them at the opening slot. Ashwin, Dravid and Tendulkar would provide solidity at the top. Believe or not, Ashwin would handle new ball better than what gambhir and sehwag did at MCG and SCG.

  • POSTED BY Alexk400 on | January 10, 2012, 23:26 GMT

    After world cup , Dhoni and gambhir do not listen to anyone. Reason for 6-0 loss is the EGO of dhoni and gambhir both won the world cup with their batting when sachin and sehwag failed. For me dhoni is still great leader but he lost it mainly because his batting in TEST not upto mark combined with poor use of bowlers with conservative leadership. He is not listening to sehwag , sachin or dravid or vvs. He is on his own.

    I say time to dump dhoni. Not sure sehwag is any better but there is no one else. May be gambhir if he can bat in overseas.

    I also think time to move sehwag to middle order.

  • POSTED BY SmartStrategy on | January 10, 2012, 22:48 GMT

    I would request BCCI to reconsider getting a more pro-active coach. We need to have someone who is young (in his 40s), and fit enough to be able to rally the team, build confidence and can work together with the team during rigorous practice sessions. Duncan Fletcher may be a great coach, but perhaps too old and lazy at the moment and not very suitable for Indian team. For the team selection, I don't blame the selectors. I still think this is the best team and can still pull out a 2-2 draw in this series. Dhoni needs to be more aggressive and team mates should support him. When the momentum is in favor, seal it and when the going is tough, try different things tactically. Just being defensive won't help in Australia.

  • POSTED BY VenkiThiyag on | January 10, 2012, 22:29 GMT

    Its high time the captain, coach should look outside the box. Anyway here is the key analytics on the players when seeing from outside. Ishant Sharma - An angle bowler; As far as fast bowlers there are 3 variants (In-Swing; Out-Swing; Stump-to-Stump). Ishant is neither of those 3. He is an angle bowler. He just bowls to the batsman at an angle of 80 degree. That's it. Add up a pace of 135-145kmph. There is absolutely no variation. To me praveen kumar is the in-swing or out-swing bowler. Pathan - Very slow; can do cross-seam; To me the next closest who can do seam is vinay kumar; Or bring in Nehra who can do outswing as well as cross-seam (atleast next overseas) As this is not feasible I would recommend to play Vinay Kumar in the current team instead of Ishant Sharma. I am ok with bringing in Rohit Sharma for Dravid or Laxman. I would prefer for dravid as he take s a long time to score. Just a simple match, if u face 150 balls, getting out is 70%, so score the max and not waste the ball

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 22:11 GMT

    @ the hawks eye Actually West Indies is not the #8 test team. that title goes to New Zealand who Australia got beaten by @ Hobart in ur own backyard. Australians should not get too cocky.

    Yes you guys found a few bowlers but 1- ur batting line up is not all that as 47 vs South Africa, 130 odd vs #8 New Zealand & 30 odd for 3 @ Sydney clearly shows. 2- The bowling conditions wont always suit your pace attack. your pacers are good but right now even South Africa & Bangladesh have better spinners than you. The Pitches in Asia & the West Indies might bring Australia back down to earth sooner than they think, maybe ever lower like post 2010/11 Ashes) It is not very far fetched that You may even lose the Sir Frank Worrell Trophy next year If WICB makes some sensible decisions like ending their feud with Gayle & selecting a captain that can actually catch a cricket ball. But Luckily for Australia more than likely that's not going to happen.

  • POSTED BY Iyer on | January 10, 2012, 21:29 GMT

    The team for perth test should be: Gambhir Rahane Dravid (wicketkeeper) Sachin Sehwag (3 down) Rohit Kohli Zaheer Ishant Yadav Vinay

    If Dravid refuses to wicketkeep, then play another keeper.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 21:02 GMT

    dravid and zaheer will bring the victory for india, Dravid is the best batsman india has ever produced, sachin played more than 20 years to make those centuries. think about gavaskars centuries bowlers he faced lille thompson,snow,imran, hadlee. holding,roberts,marshall,garner many more, sachin never faced that kind of bowlers.if india keeps dravid few more years he will break the sachins test record.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 20:19 GMT

    Zaheer has the ability to help India by taking at least 4-5 wickets then Ashwin, Ishant, and Umesh can clear the rest out.

  • POSTED BY MothiMB on | January 10, 2012, 20:14 GMT

    Bench VVS and let Rohit and Virat play. Perth is where the turnaround - not just for this series but for Indian Test cricket as a whole - should happen.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 20:10 GMT

    Kohli needs to work on temperament, but he is the man for the future. I'd suggest giving Laxman two more tests and letting him walk away after that, runs or no runs. (Sharma or Yuvraj can come in only when that spot is vacated.) Tendulkar is doing fine. (The 100 is not important.) My greatest concern is Sehwag. When he loses the plot at the start, it is extremely damaging for the team. During the successful period, prior to the WC2011, Sehwag was very consistently providing big starts. He appears too anxious these days. Get over your mid-life crisis and get back to work! Zak, Umesh and Ishant are ideal - they can hustle 20 wickets with Ashwin. Aussies won't be scoring 300s all the time. So India, go in unchanged, you're good enough as you are. You lost because of lack of application (horrible shot selection, defensive captaincy, letting them off the hook at 37/3), not because the team combination was not right.

  • POSTED BY pan_S on | January 10, 2012, 20:07 GMT

    BCCI needs to produce some lively pitches at home if they want india to perform better abroad.. so stop blaming these indian batsman-- this will repeat again no matter who's the new batsman is whether it is pujara, rohit or someone else.. Rahul and laxman used to be best amongs indian playing abroad playing fast bowlers but for some reason they are failing this time and i am sure they will come back strong.. SO STOP BLAMING INDIAN BATSMAN AND BLAME BCCI FOR NOT BEING ABLE TO PRODUCE ANY BOUNCY/PACY PITCHES EVEN IF THEY HAVE MILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN HAND.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 19:25 GMT

    Lets have vinay as 4th bowler as he swings the ball with decent pace. Replace Kohli with ashwin as he proved that he can score 30+ runs... Its dissapointing to see that we have picked up a good batsmen(ashwin) than a bowler.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 19:20 GMT

    indian squad shud be : sehwag, dravid, laxman, tendulkar, dhoni, kohli, sharma, ashwin, khan, sharma and yadav

  • POSTED BY nav84 on | January 10, 2012, 18:56 GMT

    there is nothing more stupid than michael clarke saying a 100 or any great effort in a losing cause is a waste. if that is what he thinks then he should not bring his team to india ever. cos no matter what they do, they will lose here as they can neither bat nor bowl on india's double paced turning tracks. so better he does nt waste his and indians' time by coming here and making any effort to win as it is going to get wasted. he should simply accept defeat and save his efforts for guaranteed victories on single paced green australian pitches.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 18:36 GMT

    ...India have won Perth test before, let's see how they go about it this time. They badly need to click as a batting unit. SRT is just a great batsman, how many batsmen can boast of matching his skill outside their shores??? It just proves he is the master and people should appreciate he enormous pressure he is being made to bear. Goodluck on the 100th ton...

  • POSTED BY Fourworldcups on | January 10, 2012, 18:32 GMT

    I hope the 3rd Test is fiery, and most of all, competitive. But I don't have much confidence in that. Bottom line is, at the SCG the scorecard was : India 20/ 591, Aus 4/659. 4 wickets vs 20. If Australia wanted they could have batted to 1000. Basically, anything the Indian attack can do, the Aus one can do better, especially at Perth. While I expect Zaheer and Yadav to be mildly dangerous, Siddle, Harris, Starc and Hilf are going to simply destroy the Indian batting. If India bat first, it will be over by day 3.

  • POSTED BY AshishParbatani on | January 10, 2012, 18:25 GMT

    @Johnson: The team for the perth test should be

    Sehwag, Gambhir, Dravid, Tendulkar, Laxman, Rohit Sharma, Dhoni, Vinay Kumar, Zaheer khan, Ishant Sharma, Yadav/Ojha.

    There is no need of spin in perth if India want to play spin then they should pick ojha because he is better bowler than ashwin. You have to flight the ball in test cricket and ashwin has created no problem what so ever for australian batsmen because he balls flat. What I would have love to see in the squad is Harbhajan Singh or Rahul Sharma very good young spinner.

  • POSTED BY AshishParbatani on | January 10, 2012, 18:18 GMT

    I think Vinay Kumar should definitely play in place of Ashwin (he is useless in australia), he (Vinay Kumar) bowls on off stump channel with decent pace around 140 km and can create problems specially to right hand batsmen and to me he could be the one who can knock Clarkes wicket.

  • POSTED BY Neiltom on | January 10, 2012, 18:14 GMT

    Let's not deny the fact that the Indian team is considered to have the best and strong batting line up in the World and not the bowling. There have been more wins given by this than the bowlers. Having said that, unfortunately, it is that same batting line up that is more prune to fail some times. I guess this is just one instance where they just didn't do their job well and try to put up a decent score to out pressure on the opponent. Need to understand that no team can win every match or tournament and they need to learn from the shortcoming or failures. The team that lost with England is half different than the team that is playing with Aussies now, so there is no point to argue that the Indian team did not learn from the debacle in England. It is also the indian media that makes a hype when the Indian team fails....When will people learn to support during failures and stop bullying their own team? All the Best India, go out and win big in Perth so critics can shut their mouth.

  • POSTED BY LuvThyGame on | January 10, 2012, 18:06 GMT

    ifran pathan in the squad would have been so much more useful at perth, instead of ashwin... he has been ineffective on melbourne/sydney, cant seem him produce the goods in perth.. i have a feeling vinay kumar will get a game but he looks like a useless average bowler to me.. and will deteriorate the struggling batting line-up further.. so back to ashwin.. :( ..

  • POSTED BY TAKATVAR on | January 10, 2012, 17:44 GMT

    Indians need to get rid of UNDUE FAVOURITISM on lines of caste , creed , region ,sex, blah blah....

    I call for 'Open Mechanism' for entry to team India and 'Open Process'' for how long any player can stay as part of team based only on performance.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 17:44 GMT

    England series, Dhoni commented that, Team India is consisted, if they loose, they will continue doing. if they win, they only win. So in this series, it is loosing trail. So 4-0

  • POSTED BY Rahulbose on | January 10, 2012, 17:43 GMT

    Oh please! spare us the baloney about team attitude. Indian team's attitude was much too evident in the Sydney test. As for Zaheer all you need to do is watch the footage of him batting in either test. Time was when he played to stick around and even saved a game for India with Bhaji. Now he couldn't be bothered by the team's bad position and tried to swipe at each ball.

  • POSTED BY Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on | January 10, 2012, 17:32 GMT

    So, one positive for Dhoni on this tour is Zaheer succeeding (to get into the third test). Wow! what a positive!

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 17:00 GMT

    Perth Test - Indian Squad- 1. V.Sehwag 2. G. Gambir 3. R.Dravid 4. S. Tendulkar 5. VVS Laxman 6.Rohit Sharma 7. Ms Dhoni. 8. R.Ashwin 9. Zaheer Khan. 10.U.Yadav 11. A.Mithun/ Vinay Kumar

  • POSTED BY Chirs-Cry on | January 10, 2012, 16:54 GMT

    Who told this guy that he is a fast bowler ? "Doesn't matter what kind of pitch it is, the distance between the wickets is going to remain 22 yards." - The same pitch where M. Clarke ripped apart Indian bowling with a magnificent 329* ? Where india could not take 10 wickets compared to Aussies (took 20 wickets) ? Where 10dulkar Flopped ? Its always the same length, but the surface are different usually. India can't play away from home. Sachin Flop-Dulkar flops, even when he scores a 100. Hopefully Australia will continue the SCG rampage. An word of caution for Indians - Tickets are much cheaper nowadays than they will be a month later.

  • POSTED BY Precioustar84 on | January 10, 2012, 16:51 GMT

    @Kashi0127 - "You never stop looking for some positives even the gloomiest era of Indian Cricket" - Some people still keep that faith but are ridiculed for it so its kind of sad. I find it refreshing to see that people support the team during its bad days and not only on its good days. Nothing wrong with keeping faith and hope alive for your favorite team.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 16:41 GMT

    zaheer will do this again for india.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 16:36 GMT

    Dears Indians, Its good to see that you are showing some fate in your team.... as far a the match is concerned i dont think India stands a chance... As sachin will never make that 100 because he knows that the day he makes that record, he is out of the team for the rest of the batsmen they can never score runs on a pitch which supports bowling........... sorry zaheer u cant alone win inda a match...!!!!

  • POSTED BY BarmyIan on | January 10, 2012, 16:28 GMT

    Time to drop Tendulkar and Dravid and build for the future

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 16:20 GMT

    It would good to have India go down so some of the heavyweights can be dropped....only person I know of having gone before his time was Gavaskar...rest of the Indian Giants went out screaming and crying including now pontificating Kapil who messed up with a very fit and inform Srinath...

  • POSTED BY test_match_lover on | January 10, 2012, 16:17 GMT

    @sluxman : can u name a match which any team batted 2 1/2 days and saved the test...be realistic....nobody would be complaining if clarke got 400 and declared.... It was just good PR.nothing else.....As to sachin's average.....80 in a losing effort is just a waste..He always pays brilliantly till 70-80 and then bogs down....Daddy hundreds are the need of the day and quicker India gets on ...the better.....

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 16:04 GMT

    @TheHawksEye I totally agree with every single word of yours. Indact, it was a slap on every Indian's face, who think that accumulating heaps of runs on flat dead track makes LEGENDS, no - they only make selfish, self-conceited individuals.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 15:56 GMT

    Bhagwan nay chahah to Indians will go down 4-0 down under and they are fully capable of achieving this laurel, I have 100% confident in this Indian team.

  • POSTED BY Nampally on | January 10, 2012, 15:50 GMT

    @AidanFX; FYI, there were number of decisions that went against India in the second innings of the Aussies in the MCG Test match.Hawkeye showed Hussey was LBW twice & caught behind once in his innings of 89 & Ponting was LBW once at 15 in his innings of 70. These 2 saved Aussies in the second innings which won the match for the Aussies. In Melbourne India bowled well enough to win. Due to batting collapse from 210 for 2 to being out under 300, India lost. It is a matter of which India shows up at Perth. If Real India shows up, the Aussies will lose. That is my prediction despite all the doom & gloom in the Indian camp & celebrations in the Aussie camp. This team is too good to lose to an average Aussie team.

  • POSTED BY GONESREE on | January 10, 2012, 15:46 GMT

    Zaheer is too good bowler for Aussie conditions. It is very unfortunate that he just came from recovery.. I felt Ishanth is not bowling to his potential.. Just compare the same Ishanth that he bowled to Ponting during his previous visit to Aussie.. we have not seen atleast couple of deliveries to that caliber... To win Aussie you need to be very strict on line/length.. most importantly Game Plan and stick to it...!!! Team India lacks passion and energy on the ground..!!! Good luck for next test.. India need to prove it.

  • POSTED BY kenishah on | January 10, 2012, 15:35 GMT

    it dosent matter if india get whitewashed cos they will still be the same in my eyes. i see india preparing for the future n ther not very concernd now cos they kno people gona retire n they need a future team

  • POSTED BY MINHAJAHMEDKHAN on | January 10, 2012, 15:25 GMT

    I HAVE BEEN READING ALL ARTICLES OF ZAHEER KHAN,HE IS MORE INTERESTED IN SAVING HIS OWN FACE,HIS PERFORMANCE IS JUST ORDINARY,SYDNEY TEST HE GOT THREE WICKETS IN FLUKE & AFTER THAT HE BOWLED FOR 2 DAYS WITHOUT A WICKET,IF HE IS A BOWLER FOR WHOM NIETHER WICKET,CONDITIONS OR OPPOSITION MATTERS,THEN WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM FOR 2 DAYS WHEN CLARK/PONTING & HUSSY TOYED EVERY ONE,HE CAME HEAVYLY ON HADDIN,PONTING,GO CARTING ISSUE,PRAISING ISHANT/UMESH & ASHWIN SHOWS THAT HE IS FINDING EXCUSES.HE PRAISED EVERY FAST BOWLER OTHER THAN IRFAN PATHAN,SHOWS HIS GAME PLAN TO KEEP IRFAN AWAY IN CORDINATION WITH KS & MSD.HE IS TOO MUCH SCARED OF IRFAN THAT IF IRFAN COMES BACK IN INDIA TEAM HE WILL NOT BE THERE,COZ IRFAN IS AT PAR A BOWLER TO ZAHEER - MUCH BETTER FIELDER AND BATSMAN ALSO,ZAHEER TRY YOUR BEST TO KEEP IRFAN AWAY ONE DAY HE WILL BE IN INDIAN TEAM & YOU WILL NOT HAVE COURAGE TO CLAP ON HIS SUCCESS,IF ALLAH IS THERE,IRFAN WILL COME BACK IN INDIAN SIDE FOR SURE,,,,,AND THEN YOU WILL BE DUMPED

  • POSTED BY r1zzy on | January 10, 2012, 15:13 GMT

    @ satish619chandar..."If Sachin wanted that 100 in a hurry, he could have"...oh yeah people he is waiting for the right time...forget the fact that his team needs him to make runs, he wants to do it when he wants. Wake up and stop burying your head in the sand....there is no doubt that Sachin is one of the greatest batsmens to have played the game of cricket but he is NOT perfect. There is no point to Sachin making a 100 and his team go on to lose again.

  • POSTED BY Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on | January 10, 2012, 15:11 GMT

    @TheHawksEye, possess a Hawk's eye? Didn't know that Hawks cry.

  • POSTED BY Harry_Kool on | January 10, 2012, 15:09 GMT

    I saw Zak in the field on day 3 and he looked an old man moving to field balls. Hope he gets some rest, the others were just out of the zone, back to back tests & getting hammered tends to take away keeness.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 15:04 GMT

    I coudn't agree more with Jatin Sutaria. Clearly, India's best chance, even if it is a slim one, lies on a greentop, that enables our pacers to keep us in the game!!!

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 14:58 GMT

    I think Indians are focusing only on Tendulkers 99 by forgetting what they need to do to win the Test by pressurizing the Master Batsman. Let him to play his normal game. who knows that can lead both indians succes along with his 100*100.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    Now the main aim of India is to forget the past results and look forward for the battle dafter tomorrow.The matter that worries most indians are that though Tendulkar Dravid sewag, lakshman are 300runs + material and rich in experience why they cannot convert 30 to 3000 plus.they should wake up and hope they prove their worth. As regards bowling is concerned except for zaheer we caanot expect too much from other bowlers.

  • POSTED BY Nampally on | January 10, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    @billy_bilal: What Dravid said is absolutely true. The Aussies are not as good as the Indian Team is making them to be. Nor are the Indian team as bad as the Aussies are making them to look. So it is best Dravid keeps this in mind and comes out with a big score to prove his point as to how good or bad he is as a batsman. India sure is better than what they are looking right now. But in the end the results matter. If your actions do not match your words, then they are useless. My advise to Dravid & the Indian team is to put your money where your mouth is.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    Here it is to, TheHawksEye. Michael Clarke became hero by declaring early but he also knew this Indian batting line up can bat long. IF only Sachin had longer partnership like Clarke with Gambhir or Laxman, he could have something different. You cannot play long innings if you 3 down, can you? Ponting and Hussey combined scored almost 300 runs on the other side with Clarke. To hope any kind of support from Dhoni or new star with hole in the bat - Kohli is useless. Let's see what happens in Perth. I am sure you will be around when this game is over.

    Nothing against Clarke but he even can come close to Ponting, it's worth it. Let Sachin alone.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 14:35 GMT

    I am not going to stay awake again for 4 nights in Belgium to watch another natural disaster in Perth.

  • POSTED BY akasavani on | January 10, 2012, 14:34 GMT

    So after the mauling they got in Sydney, he is still saying "We are very focussed and quietly confident". We do this every time. Go into matches with our head in the clouds.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 14:31 GMT

    India will most likely lose their 3rd test based on their previous dire performances. It is better to allow the youngsters to play as they have more agility, endurance, stamina and also team spirit. Not to mention the fact that they will be hungry for both wickets and runs.

    India must seed better fast pitches at home, forget all these flat track spinner suited creases. A wise decision to risk playing the youngsters and perhaps expecting a loss rather than losing matches with the indian veterans. Something for BCCI to consider and actually act upon.

  • POSTED BY Cricket.Nellore on | January 10, 2012, 14:19 GMT

    How would india win with fearsome batsmen and average bowlers. Ishant, Umesh, aaron, sreeshanth, etc are average rated bowlers. Zaheer is just above average. Does they potential to pick up wickets in quick sessions? No, Not at all. India must go with better trainings to produce genuine fast bowlers.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 14:14 GMT

    I think Australia is making a mistake in preparing a green and fast track for the Indians. I agree with Haddin and the best way to frighten us out is to make us field as long as possible. We dis-integrate faster than most, in fact probably all. We have seen this in Sydney and the moment there is some assistance to the bowlers - Melbourne, chances of Aussies holding out as long as they did in Sydney while batting are slim. This improves our chances. Supposing toss goes our way, Melbourne would be repeated and it would be Aussies batting last.

    Though all in all I still feel Aussies will win this irrespective of toss though loosing Pattison is a big loss. Indians if they win rather than celebrate should introspect.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 14:12 GMT

    Zaheer Khan will he be able to do a mesh of batting line up of Aussies. Lets wait and watch We cant go and play there in Australia so better be silent and watch The loser heroes

  • POSTED BY satish619chandar on | January 10, 2012, 14:08 GMT

    @TheHawksEye : If Sachin wanted that 100 in a hurry, he could have ;played Wi in home or could easily achieved it against a even mediocre team in subcontinent that lost all the five ODI matches against rookies.. It is in the minds of ppl like u who prays for him to fail..

  • POSTED BY ajith.kartha on | January 10, 2012, 14:01 GMT

    I wonder why there is this feeling that Indian pitches are flat and dead. There has been results- nearly in all three with WI, against NZ and Australia lost 2-0 in the two test series last time. 5 results out of 8 is not bad, but some fans might have a problem, as it was always India who won! Pathetic arguement to say only green bouncy pitches are good.

  • POSTED BY ElvisKing on | January 10, 2012, 14:01 GMT

    @ TheHawksEye....Clarke can make any statement he likes. He is zero in comparison to Sachin's achievements, let him play for 22 years and than score runs like Sachin is still doing. Getting Sachin's wicket has become a Yard stick for Fast bowlers proficiency, that speaks volumes about Sachin's capability. Winning the Test is always a team effort , so Clarke's statement will not belittle Sachin's centuries. In Australia the Australian players,Hussey and co., have been making statements that they are scared of Sachin scoring on any given day in the on going Test Matches, have you heard any Indian player or any Indian or Australian Media talking about Clarke's wicket ? That shows Sachin is in Top Class by himself !

  • POSTED BY Kaze on | January 10, 2012, 14:00 GMT

    India will get hammered here 3-0 and on to Adelaide for the whitewash ...

  • POSTED BY indianpunter on | January 10, 2012, 13:48 GMT

    I watched the Indian team in the nets today and they look like they are going thru the motions. There is simply no intent or drive. I was there 4 years ago, when the hurt and dented pride was evident ( from Sydneygate 2008) and that was transformed into an excellent performance on the field. Expect nothing. 3-0 down, going to Adelaide.

  • POSTED BY billy_bilal on | January 10, 2012, 13:42 GMT

    Rahul Dravid once said, you are never as good or as bad as people think that you are. It is certainly true for india. They were not as good as people thought before the start of the series and they are not as bad as people think them to be now.

  • POSTED BY Siva-The-Human on | January 10, 2012, 13:36 GMT

    @TheHawkseye Sachin did not always said that the aim is to lead the scoring record. How then it slapped in the face of the Sachin.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 13:32 GMT

    u told first that the pitch doesnt matter, its all the same length. next u r tellin that sydney pitch has changed from day one to day two? did u mean that the distance has changed? you people miserably failed to take 10 wickets of aussies, but aussy did take 20 wicket of yours... sorry zaak...

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 13:22 GMT

    R.I.P Indian test team. Go on KTCL (Killing Test Cricket League), there is only 1 IPL and that is the Indian PEOPLE's League

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 13:10 GMT

    i m sure team india will make come back in this test.all the best indians. love v.

  • POSTED BY NS_23 on | January 10, 2012, 12:59 GMT

    The Aussies should let India play with 12 men. That's the only way in which India can win a match overseas.

  • POSTED BY ahmedjawwad4u on | January 10, 2012, 12:50 GMT

    Zaheer's fitness is a great sign. And being fit for the first time in a third test test shows that he has improved his fitness levels. This is pivotal for India's success. I hope it brings good results

  • POSTED BY espncricinfofan on | January 10, 2012, 12:48 GMT

    Dravid retire Gracefully!!! Only Sachin has the ability to play till 45

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 12:47 GMT

    basic question is, can this "strong" indian batting line cross 200 runs mark at WACA?

  • POSTED BY AnishSomani on | January 10, 2012, 12:45 GMT

    As Micheal Hussey said don't look for 4-0 yet,India can bounce back

  • POSTED BY 200ondebut on | January 10, 2012, 12:44 GMT

    I'm pleased for cricket that Zaheer has maintained his fitness - but I think India will struggle once again at Perth because of the nature of the wicket.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 12:34 GMT

    zaheer needs support from the other bowlers and mainly ffrom the FIELDERS,who drop more or less imp. catches. were dhoni dropped ponting in 20's behind the stumps,eventhough the umpire called it a legbye and the hotspot showed the nick

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 12:31 GMT

    I bet India will surely be WHITEWASHED 4-0 to Zimbabwe if they play a series of 4 tests or even ODIs in Zimbabwe if they keep going like this. So called World Champions plz wakeup and stop making records of flat pitches, and this Money Lusted IPL is also harming a great India side of all times. I am a Pakistani but I like Indian Team as the cricket in Subcontinent is mother of all games. By making such pictches in your home grounds you are not harming any one else but ruining your own players. they say "a dog is a lion at home"

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 12:30 GMT

    i think that it is the ryt tym to introduce vinay kumar into the bowling attack becoz he is just a perfect bowler and it is mostly suited for perth conditions umesh was fanstastic but now indian team cant afford to take experiments with umesh. vinay kumar can be handy bowler for team he can swing bowl at a gud pace too

  • POSTED BY sluxman on | January 10, 2012, 12:28 GMT

    I think all of us (particularly the jealous Aussies) with the exception of Sachin are obssessed with Sachin's 100th 100. Because scoring a 100 is something special to us while Sachin has done it 99 times and has probably got bored by now. As to Clarke's comments on winning being more important than scoring 100, why did he wait to score 300+ before declaring? What if Indians had batted the rest of the match and drawn the test? The fact is that Aussies (including Ian Chappel and co-commentators) still can't digest their Don's comment that Sachin plays like him. Come on guys don't forget that Sachin is averaging 55 this series, the series when many want the "old" hand to go. Of course with this bowling attack even if Sachin scores 200 in all tests India is not going to win.

  • POSTED BY AidanFX on | January 10, 2012, 12:26 GMT

    India were lucky to bowl aus out for 330 odd given the decisions went their way - the bowling 2nd inns was good but could have been better - overall they have been ordinary.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 12:20 GMT

    I hope India turn around things atleast in this test so we can see how Australia performs under pressure.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 12:08 GMT

    by the first look of the pitch i don't think India stands a chance a to win this one......the only question is is it going to be a 5 day match or will it end in 3 days...........

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 12:07 GMT

    Zaheer needs combination partner either in the form of Ashish Nehra / Irfan Pathan. In the pitches of Australian grounds, Ashish Nehra and Irfan Pathan are good suited bowlers but they could'nt include into the squad for that india have already cost of earlier two test matches, i don't think india will recover from this current scenario.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 11:59 GMT

    I strongly feel, India will bounce back in Perth. Also India is depending too much on Zaheer who is getting older day by day. Ishant should find his rythm and start deliver what is expected out of him. Lets all forget sachin's 100 which will not happen in this test series.

  • POSTED BY HawksEyeFocused on | January 10, 2012, 11:57 GMT

    As I said in my previous messages that this tour will be a total disaster for the Indian team and they should cancel this tour and play a 5 match test series against a number 8 side West Indies again on extremely dead and flat tracks where Sachin might have a chance of getting 100 or Sehwag can get another World Record. This indian team became a laughing stock in UK very recently and now they have become a laughing stock in Australia and another slap of reality was that not even a single indian getting 100 in Sydney whereas indian media was fooling the brainwashed indians how indian batsmen will score centuries in this series and win in Australia for the first time.

  • POSTED BY HawksEyeFocused on | January 10, 2012, 11:56 GMT

    Michael Clarke made an excellent statement after declaring once he reached 329, saying that your 100s are useless if your team is not winning and what a slap was that on Sachin's face ???

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 11:54 GMT

    please make come back team indiaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 11:49 GMT

    In the best interest of Team India, I, suggest Virat to be replaced by Sharma, and Ishant to be replaced by Oja, why not we go with one extra spin bowler.

  • POSTED BY Sporty-critic on | January 10, 2012, 11:41 GMT

    All along, India have always relied upon Spinners even in fast tracks.

    Unfortunately, Zaheer is alone in the bowling department where no one has given him good company to take 20 wickets in reasonable time. And even he is prone to injuries. As long as India is going to make our own pitches suiting the Kumbles and Harbhajans, we are not going to improve overseas.

    When are we going to wake up and come out with good fast tracks in India and produce some world class fast bowlers ? Youngsters are ready to give it everything, are those responsible listening at all ?

  • POSTED BY shasi21 on | January 10, 2012, 11:20 GMT

    After Zaheer? For Ishant this will be his last series.... (Selectors please take him out of the team. He doen't know how to bowl :(.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 11:17 GMT

    Yea... Now Rip Them On 3rd&4Th Test.........

  • POSTED BY jonesy2 on | January 10, 2012, 11:10 GMT

    i reckon the bowling wont be inda's problem, if australia bowl to the level they have done on this waca pitch with mitchell starc then game over. what ever you do india dont bowl bouncers and short balls.

  • POSTED BY sa.bo on | January 10, 2012, 11:10 GMT

    "Doesn't matter what kind of pitch it is, the distance between the wickets is going to remain 22 yards." come on man.. that is not the right thing to say at first! n later u say the Sydney wicket was different during the first and the second day, wen you went out to bowl! Pitches do matter for a bowler n a batsmen! why aren't the indian batting legends performing.. so do the spinner.. n ofcourse you pacers too!!

  • POSTED BY vak1997 on | January 10, 2012, 11:06 GMT

    ZAK needs to step out. if he can take quick wickets at regular intervals, the bowlers on the other end can put some pressure on the batsmen..

  • POSTED BY Kashi0127 on | January 10, 2012, 11:01 GMT

    You never stop looking for some poitives even the gloomiest era of Indian Cricket do you? Zaheer reaching Perth is a positive !!! Its like the Inidian sports TV channels - whenver India wins, they keep repeating the highlights, details lights and everything for weeks and when they loase, they dig up some old match to show where Sachin (oh, it has to be Sachnin) hitting a century

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 10:50 GMT

    will this be another lose ?

  • POSTED BY whyowhy on | January 10, 2012, 10:39 GMT

    Made it to Perth, but his body is still in Sydney or that is the feeling we get when he is fielding - Definitely the worst fielder in this Indian unit and it seems like torture for him to just bend down and pick up the ball, Let's hope he makes it through Perth without a breakdown.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 10:30 GMT

    I THINK ZAHEER KHAN IS THE CULPIRT THIS TIME BECAUSE OF HIS FITNESS DHONI CANT SAY THAT BECAUSE OF FITNESS PROBLEMS WE ARE LOOSING,,,,,,,,,,LOLS JUST KIDDING, SORRY BUT INDIA IS GOING DEEP DOWN UNDER, ZAHEER U HAVE TO COME UP WITH A SPECIAL SPELL OTHER WISE IT LL BE HELL 4-0 HUMILIATION

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 10:18 GMT

    Good to hear this news,,, come on zak

  • POSTED BY Cricket.Nellore on | January 10, 2012, 10:09 GMT

    Presence is nothing. Make some difference. Atleast quick 5 for.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 9:59 GMT

    Khan is no doubt currently the best fast bowler for India.

  • POSTED BY Samdanh on | January 10, 2012, 9:52 GMT

    I tend to rate the bowling of either sides on even terms. In the Perth Test match, I reckon that the team that bats better through the match, will win.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 9:51 GMT

    India running out of excuses ... The full squad wasn't available in England where we lost 0-4 but now we're having our best 11 playing and have no place to hide should we lose :-(

  • POSTED BY Cpt.Meanster on | January 10, 2012, 9:47 GMT

    Good going ZAK !!! it's a pity that there aren't many others in the bowling department to support your effort. We need 3 more Zaheers in the team to make India a potent bowling unit. I hope he can finish the series without breaking down. It's evident he's worked very hard with his fitness regime. God ! I wish he was this fit during the England tour. I hope he gets a bag full of wickets at Perth. The Indian team needs to know that Zaheer cannot do the hard yards every time. Ishant and Umesh Yadav need to step up to the plate and become accounted. Sadly the reserve quicks aren't anywhere as good so a replacement is out of the question. I just hope all this pressure doesn't wear him down once again. Good luck Zak !!

  • POSTED BY KarachiKid on | January 10, 2012, 9:45 GMT

    Without Zaheer and, to slightly lesser extent, Sehwag, India would never have reached number 1 spot in test rankings. Maybe even world cup. So India should really see to it that Zaheer is not over exposed by playing him in meaningly bi-lateral ODI's and T20's.

  • POSTED BY Matt. on | January 10, 2012, 9:35 GMT

    some serious denial going on here!

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  • POSTED BY Matt. on | January 10, 2012, 9:35 GMT

    some serious denial going on here!

  • POSTED BY KarachiKid on | January 10, 2012, 9:45 GMT

    Without Zaheer and, to slightly lesser extent, Sehwag, India would never have reached number 1 spot in test rankings. Maybe even world cup. So India should really see to it that Zaheer is not over exposed by playing him in meaningly bi-lateral ODI's and T20's.

  • POSTED BY Cpt.Meanster on | January 10, 2012, 9:47 GMT

    Good going ZAK !!! it's a pity that there aren't many others in the bowling department to support your effort. We need 3 more Zaheers in the team to make India a potent bowling unit. I hope he can finish the series without breaking down. It's evident he's worked very hard with his fitness regime. God ! I wish he was this fit during the England tour. I hope he gets a bag full of wickets at Perth. The Indian team needs to know that Zaheer cannot do the hard yards every time. Ishant and Umesh Yadav need to step up to the plate and become accounted. Sadly the reserve quicks aren't anywhere as good so a replacement is out of the question. I just hope all this pressure doesn't wear him down once again. Good luck Zak !!

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 9:51 GMT

    India running out of excuses ... The full squad wasn't available in England where we lost 0-4 but now we're having our best 11 playing and have no place to hide should we lose :-(

  • POSTED BY Samdanh on | January 10, 2012, 9:52 GMT

    I tend to rate the bowling of either sides on even terms. In the Perth Test match, I reckon that the team that bats better through the match, will win.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 9:59 GMT

    Khan is no doubt currently the best fast bowler for India.

  • POSTED BY Cricket.Nellore on | January 10, 2012, 10:09 GMT

    Presence is nothing. Make some difference. Atleast quick 5 for.

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 10:18 GMT

    Good to hear this news,,, come on zak

  • POSTED BY on | January 10, 2012, 10:30 GMT

    I THINK ZAHEER KHAN IS THE CULPIRT THIS TIME BECAUSE OF HIS FITNESS DHONI CANT SAY THAT BECAUSE OF FITNESS PROBLEMS WE ARE LOOSING,,,,,,,,,,LOLS JUST KIDDING, SORRY BUT INDIA IS GOING DEEP DOWN UNDER, ZAHEER U HAVE TO COME UP WITH A SPECIAL SPELL OTHER WISE IT LL BE HELL 4-0 HUMILIATION

  • POSTED BY whyowhy on | January 10, 2012, 10:39 GMT

    Made it to Perth, but his body is still in Sydney or that is the feeling we get when he is fielding - Definitely the worst fielder in this Indian unit and it seems like torture for him to just bend down and pick up the ball, Let's hope he makes it through Perth without a breakdown.