July 24, 2014

India in England 2014

Rose Bowl and the smoking hole

Ian Tulk, the groundsman at Rose Bowl, the venue of the third Test, has seen a piece of forest land turn into England's most recent Test venue. And he has stories to tell. Sandeep Dwivedi, in the Indian Express, writes:

With Kevin Pietersen too having made the Rose Bowl his home once, you know Tulk will surely mention him. And he does. "KP was once facing Alan Mullally, who was repeatedly bowling big no balls," he says. KP, in an evidently sarcastic tone, asked the left-arm pacer to might as well take a few more steps ahead. Mullally agreed, the next ball was fired from 15 yards. "Not too high, parallel to the ground, the ball rocketed and hit that wall," he says showing a six-feet fence.

The doubts around the England camp have lingered after the defeat at Lord's. However, Paul Downton, the managing director of England cricket, has lent support to Alastair Cook's captaincy, which may have roots in the bad memories of a series Downton played in 26 years ago, when change brought chaos rather than clarity, writes Derek Pringle in the Telegraph.

Downton played the first three Tests of the series before being replaced behind the stumps by Jack Richards for the last two. But he would have seen, after an honourable draw in the first match and a loss in the second in which England were competitive, how quickly matters can spiral out of control when change is indiscriminate.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.