January 10, 2008

India in Australia, 2007-08

It's not all about winning

Ricky Ponting completes a run as Anil Kumble looks on, Australia v India, 2nd Test, Sydney, 1st day, January 2, 2008
 © AFP
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Rohit Brijnath, writing in the BBC, feels that conduct is just as important as winning.

It is interesting that despite losing two successive Tests, the Indian cricket captain is still respected, and after winning 16 Tests in a row, there are calls in his own country for the Australian captain to be sacked.

A lesson is to be found here: how a team plays sport is important, but so is how it conducts itself. India's XI can barely field a ball competently, yet have become worthy of support simply because in the midst of madness they performed with dignity in Sydney.

No one ran, as Ponting is wont to, to remonstrate with the umpire when Australian batsmen were not given out when clearly they were; no one created a scene when Indian batsmen were given out when clearly they weren't. When Kumble spoke about "spirit", he spoke with the authority of a man who demanded it from his team.

The Telegraph's Michael Henderson says India's financial preeminence in the game needs to be recognised while discussing the present crisis.

In the Indian Express, Harsha Bhogle calls for a stop to on-field chatter.

Ashok Ganguly is an editorial assistant at Cricinfo

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