India in Australia 2011-12 January 27, 2012

Stop the madness

Ben Hilfenhaus’ body is built for a purpose, and you can’t imagine that purpose was ever running, diving and throwing all in one motion.

Ben Hilfenhaus’ body is built for a purpose, and you can’t imagine that purpose was ever running, diving and throwing all in one motion.

Hilfenhaus doesn’t have the body shape of an athletic fielder. He’s not a huge man, but he’s got a solid trunk on him, more tree than ballet dancer. There aren’t many moving parts. It just all seems to be made to propel the ball at a fair rate and swing it away.

That’s why it was odd that a Hilfenaus run, dive and throw was the final sign that India have just not been up to it this summer. The whole thinking behind the incident told you everything you needed to know about Team India.

A nightwatchman came in for a No. 7 in a dead-rubber Test that was already lost only for the proper batsman to try and farm the strike and be run out by a few centimetres when the opposition fast bowler threw the stumps down as India’s star batsman didn’t quite dive to full effect.

There isn’t a part of this run-out that doesn’t show India just hasn’t been with it this series. They are every bit the middle-aged guy with a comb over and party shirt dancing on his own in the corner of a crowded nightclub.

The idea that Wriddhiman Saha, who had handled himself very well in the first innings during a tough period, would need a nightwatchman is absurd. But let’s say that he wanted one.

Why was Virat Kohli trying to get on strike so bad, it wasn’t as if India needed that single, any chance of winning the game had disappeared long ago? Surely it wasn’t so that Ishant Sharma didn’t have to face Nathan Lyon, known tail-end destroyer that he is.

Even Virat’s dive was not fully stretched out, it was a technical error in the middle of a bunch of basic cricket smarts errors. Perhaps he was tired. Mentally and physically.

And why didn’t Sharma say no, any single there was unnecessarily risky, and he must have known his job was to face the bowling, not stand at the non-strikers end.

Also, why is Ashwin India’s spokesman, they have a media manager already, so why is Ashwin sent out every time India have a bad day when the average age of the side is 110-years old. Surely one of the experienced players should come out, Tendulkar hasn’t come out once, and VVS only once.

And while we’re talking about it, why was Australia p***ing about with stupid batting and not just slogging to set a total. They had five wickets in hand. Just have a go.

Can you even believe they batted on for 11 minutes after lunch? I mean why does it really matter if they are 500 runs in front or 478, or 283,095 runs in front, it wasn’t like India were going to go for one total, or feel psychologically obstructed by another.

This is all ridiculous. If I were Virender Sehwag, I would have probably requested the extra 30 minutes be tacked on to the day’s play, because what is the point of a fifth day in this Test.

My main fear at the moment is that CA and the BCCI will conspire to add another Test to this series and ESPNcricinfo will request that I cover that Test.

Just end this. Now. Please. Come on. I’ve done my time. This is pointless. Help me.

I don’t care about Ponting’s comeback, Clarke’s good PR, Virat’s finger, Dhoni’s suspension, Sehwag’s natural game, Siddle’s wrist position or even Sachin’s pointless statistical milestone, I just want this all to stop. Even you Big Bash, you can p*** off too. Please end Australian summer. I don’t care if I’m abducted by rough-loving aliens, just get me out of here. It’s enough already.

Eight is more than enough for me.

Jarrod Kimber is 50% of the Two Chucks, and the mind responsible for cricketwithballs.com

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