England v India, 1st npower Test, Lord's, 4th day July 24, 2011

India wary of over-rate problem

  shares 22

India have made a conscious effort to speed up their over-rate to help the captain, MS Dhoni, avoid being banned for the next Test at Trent Bridge. Dhoni is currently sitting on two fines having previously been penalised against South Africa and West Indies leaving him one away from a suspension.

Although no official figures are yet available, as any over-rate penalties are only confirmed at the end of a Test, it is believed that India are significantly below the required 15 overs per hour that Test teams should be reaching. England aren't blameless - few sides reach the minimum requirement these days - but unlike Dhoni, Andrew Strauss doesn't currently have a record.

India's over-rate hasn't been helped by Dhoni himself deciding to bowl at various stages during the game, which meant changing equipment with Rahul Dravid, and Ishant Sharma admitted it was something the bowlers were being reminded of. "We did talk a lot about the over-rates," he said. "Dhoni just said take your time and carry on with your bowling but wherever we could cut a minute try and do that."

When Dhoni was recently fined following the Barbados Test against West Indies, India were found to be three overs behind their requirement at the end of the match so if the sums add up in the same way here Dhoni could be in trouble.

First and foremost, though, Dhoni will be concentrating on India trying to save this Test and escape Lord's still all-square in the series. Midway through the afternoon session it appeared his team could be without a key batsman as Gautam Gambhir left the field following a fierce blow at short leg from a Matt Prior sweep. However, x-rays revealed no break and he was back in the dressing room before play ended. "He is getting icing on his elbow and he will be fit to bat tomorrow," confirmed the team manager.

With Gambhir suffering an external blow he can bat at the fall of the next wicket if India opt to use him that way, but Sachin Tendulkar will have to wait until the time he was off the field has elapsed, or five wickets have fallen, after he missed the first two sessions to try and recover from a viral infection.

Tendulkar returned to Lord's and fielded after tea but if India don't lose five batsmen he'll need to wait until around 2pm on the final afternoon before he can come to the crease. It is likely to be his last chance to register a Test hundred at Lord's, but he'll be more concerned about helping his team secure a draw.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • anver777 on July 25, 2011, 9:29 GMT

    Over rates in recent matches had been a major issue to Dhoni for sometime now.... as a leader he need to correct it fast, otherwise he'll be in trouble & his absent can also hurt the Ind team specially as a captain .....

  • concerned_cricketer on July 25, 2011, 9:20 GMT

    It's important not to lose the first test which India often does on away tours. With the fab 3, even if one of them is a bit under the weather, we can reasonably hope to do that. If you remember Sachin's wicket in the first innings, he was in top form when he got out to a nice enough delivery from Broad. I think what will determine the outcome today will be how well England bowlers bowl more than how well the Indian batsmen bat. Broad didn't seem to be as effective yday as he was on day 3. But it may have been due to batting in the sun for a long time before he had to bowl. If India survive the first hour without any wickets, I would be willing to bet 100 pounds that the result will be a draw. And to me that is a win.

  • Shailendra_Malik on July 25, 2011, 9:08 GMT

    I can only see Dravid standing between a loss and draw. and seriously do we really believe resuming at 2 PM Sachin can still score a hundred here ???? A 38 year old guy with viral, only Indians can raise such expectations.

    As for now, Lax and RD are the best combo to bail us out from this rut and I believe Lax's 4th Innings heroics off late will get a boost by todays performance. It would be a memorable draw though if India pulls it off.

  • on July 25, 2011, 8:41 GMT

    India seems to be fighting it's wretched luck more than it seems to be fighting England right now, although no one should take anything away from the English. They have been excellent. Wish they played the same way when Australia was dominant. India could have done with another team irritating the Aussies!!!! :D But with the next test starting on Friday, India would do well to look at a balling combination of Sreesanth-Ishant-Praveen-Mishra-Harbhajan. And Dhoni needs to bowl to Raina more and more if he is destined to be Saurav's long awaited replacement at 6. Or else, they should look at a guy like Irfan Parthan. That would weaken the batting but we have the best batting line up in the world. The top six should be good enough. And Irfan is technically pretty good. We have seen that before.

  • Prakashshah on July 25, 2011, 8:30 GMT

    Hard Luck england we will not loose this match for sure.Cause the RLGSRD factor.

    Rahul, Laxman , Gautam, Sachin, Raina & Dhoni factor.hahahaha

    Also i have a funny feeling that Rahul and Laxman are on the verge to repeat the 2001 kolkata act.Be careful of that england.heheheh.

  • on July 25, 2011, 7:04 GMT

    If England fail to utilize this opportunity to beat a injured Indian side......... I think they are gonna find it tough going wen all the players are hundred %.........

  • on July 25, 2011, 6:14 GMT

    The Big Guns of India Batting Line up will save this test !! Tendulkar might miss on a hundred but he will settle for a draw with a 80 against his name !!

  • on July 25, 2011, 6:11 GMT

    How hard is it really? Get the ball, bowl the ball. Especially when a majority percentage are dot balls anyway.

  • Meety on July 25, 2011, 6:05 GMT

    Assuming India do have an over problem - I'm curious as to whether the ICC will inflict a ban on Dhoni!!!!!!

  • bcci-odi on July 25, 2011, 5:40 GMT

    sachin must bat it is the last chancxe for him to score the 100 century in lords

  • anver777 on July 25, 2011, 9:29 GMT

    Over rates in recent matches had been a major issue to Dhoni for sometime now.... as a leader he need to correct it fast, otherwise he'll be in trouble & his absent can also hurt the Ind team specially as a captain .....

  • concerned_cricketer on July 25, 2011, 9:20 GMT

    It's important not to lose the first test which India often does on away tours. With the fab 3, even if one of them is a bit under the weather, we can reasonably hope to do that. If you remember Sachin's wicket in the first innings, he was in top form when he got out to a nice enough delivery from Broad. I think what will determine the outcome today will be how well England bowlers bowl more than how well the Indian batsmen bat. Broad didn't seem to be as effective yday as he was on day 3. But it may have been due to batting in the sun for a long time before he had to bowl. If India survive the first hour without any wickets, I would be willing to bet 100 pounds that the result will be a draw. And to me that is a win.

  • Shailendra_Malik on July 25, 2011, 9:08 GMT

    I can only see Dravid standing between a loss and draw. and seriously do we really believe resuming at 2 PM Sachin can still score a hundred here ???? A 38 year old guy with viral, only Indians can raise such expectations.

    As for now, Lax and RD are the best combo to bail us out from this rut and I believe Lax's 4th Innings heroics off late will get a boost by todays performance. It would be a memorable draw though if India pulls it off.

  • on July 25, 2011, 8:41 GMT

    India seems to be fighting it's wretched luck more than it seems to be fighting England right now, although no one should take anything away from the English. They have been excellent. Wish they played the same way when Australia was dominant. India could have done with another team irritating the Aussies!!!! :D But with the next test starting on Friday, India would do well to look at a balling combination of Sreesanth-Ishant-Praveen-Mishra-Harbhajan. And Dhoni needs to bowl to Raina more and more if he is destined to be Saurav's long awaited replacement at 6. Or else, they should look at a guy like Irfan Parthan. That would weaken the batting but we have the best batting line up in the world. The top six should be good enough. And Irfan is technically pretty good. We have seen that before.

  • Prakashshah on July 25, 2011, 8:30 GMT

    Hard Luck england we will not loose this match for sure.Cause the RLGSRD factor.

    Rahul, Laxman , Gautam, Sachin, Raina & Dhoni factor.hahahaha

    Also i have a funny feeling that Rahul and Laxman are on the verge to repeat the 2001 kolkata act.Be careful of that england.heheheh.

  • on July 25, 2011, 7:04 GMT

    If England fail to utilize this opportunity to beat a injured Indian side......... I think they are gonna find it tough going wen all the players are hundred %.........

  • on July 25, 2011, 6:14 GMT

    The Big Guns of India Batting Line up will save this test !! Tendulkar might miss on a hundred but he will settle for a draw with a 80 against his name !!

  • on July 25, 2011, 6:11 GMT

    How hard is it really? Get the ball, bowl the ball. Especially when a majority percentage are dot balls anyway.

  • Meety on July 25, 2011, 6:05 GMT

    Assuming India do have an over problem - I'm curious as to whether the ICC will inflict a ban on Dhoni!!!!!!

  • bcci-odi on July 25, 2011, 5:40 GMT

    sachin must bat it is the last chancxe for him to score the 100 century in lords

  • Darshan239 on July 25, 2011, 5:39 GMT

    It is not clear why Dhoni did not opt to bowl Sachin in the first innings. But the graver mistake that he did in the second innings was making PK open the bowling with Bhaji post lunch. Ishant was bowling really well before lunch time and he should have rather continued as England was looking really vulnerable. By not doing so, the momentum was lost and England was back into the game.

  • indianzen on July 25, 2011, 5:34 GMT

    sachin can bowl, gambhir can bowl, mukund can bowl... over rates could have been bettered... If india wins this test or draw this comfortably, then I am sure to say, India deserves No1 in rankings...

  • cricketik on July 25, 2011, 5:20 GMT

    Will Heaven's fall down if Sachin does not get a Century at Lords. Gone are the days of Lords and MCG for that matter Wankhade or Chinnaswamy. Sachin will as well prove that One can score 100 international hundreds even without one at Lords. Rahul would be more satisfied to have a century at Chinnaswamy before he retires than teh one at Lords. He rightly said that there are so many other grounds where he did not score centuries.

  • on July 25, 2011, 5:20 GMT

    All depends on Laxman and Dravid ...... tough day ahead

  • vatsmanoj on July 25, 2011, 5:01 GMT

    if india loss this match this will only because of feilding and keeping of dhoni they let piterson go in first inng and let broad go in 2nd but hope india will batt well and do the justice to their fans

  • Jaijo on July 25, 2011, 4:36 GMT

    anyway it is good if dhoni doesnt get to play next match. He is not contributing either by bat or bowl or wicketkeeping.

  • on July 25, 2011, 4:04 GMT

    its all over for india new guys.lets think about the next test match..coz u will lost Dhoni for sure.then Gambhir,Zaheer,Sehwag...cnt say anithing yet about Sachin.coz he got fever....lets pry for them...

  • on July 25, 2011, 3:06 GMT

    good thing that nothing seroius has happened to gautam .....we need that fellow ..... come on team india ...bat like champions on the final day ...

  • on July 25, 2011, 2:37 GMT

    Really? India concerned about over rate? Then how come Dhoni wasted so much time by bringing on himself. He could have turned to Mukund's keg spin to increase the over rate. I am sure, he could not have done any worse than Dhioni.

  • NikhilNair on July 25, 2011, 1:55 GMT

    its going to be a tough 5th day... Good luck to india :)

  • Meety on July 24, 2011, 23:37 GMT

    Again England will feel some pressure to ensure a win here - as India should get stronger as the series wears on. Sharma looked like he has picked up a gear - but big question marks over Zaheer for the next test. If it is nil all after the next test, I'd be backing India to win the series. That being said I think England SHOULD be 2 nil up with 2 to play, Series finishing 2-1 England.

  • khiladisher on July 24, 2011, 22:22 GMT

    IT LOOKS TOUGH FOR INDIA WITHOUT SEHWAG-SACHIN-ZAHEER AND GAMBHIR,ADAVNTAGE ENGLAND-IF ENGLAND FAIL TO WIN FROM THIS POSITION-I EXPECT INDIA TO WIN THE SERIES 2-0

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  • khiladisher on July 24, 2011, 22:22 GMT

    IT LOOKS TOUGH FOR INDIA WITHOUT SEHWAG-SACHIN-ZAHEER AND GAMBHIR,ADAVNTAGE ENGLAND-IF ENGLAND FAIL TO WIN FROM THIS POSITION-I EXPECT INDIA TO WIN THE SERIES 2-0

  • Meety on July 24, 2011, 23:37 GMT

    Again England will feel some pressure to ensure a win here - as India should get stronger as the series wears on. Sharma looked like he has picked up a gear - but big question marks over Zaheer for the next test. If it is nil all after the next test, I'd be backing India to win the series. That being said I think England SHOULD be 2 nil up with 2 to play, Series finishing 2-1 England.

  • NikhilNair on July 25, 2011, 1:55 GMT

    its going to be a tough 5th day... Good luck to india :)

  • on July 25, 2011, 2:37 GMT

    Really? India concerned about over rate? Then how come Dhoni wasted so much time by bringing on himself. He could have turned to Mukund's keg spin to increase the over rate. I am sure, he could not have done any worse than Dhioni.

  • on July 25, 2011, 3:06 GMT

    good thing that nothing seroius has happened to gautam .....we need that fellow ..... come on team india ...bat like champions on the final day ...

  • on July 25, 2011, 4:04 GMT

    its all over for india new guys.lets think about the next test match..coz u will lost Dhoni for sure.then Gambhir,Zaheer,Sehwag...cnt say anithing yet about Sachin.coz he got fever....lets pry for them...

  • Jaijo on July 25, 2011, 4:36 GMT

    anyway it is good if dhoni doesnt get to play next match. He is not contributing either by bat or bowl or wicketkeeping.

  • vatsmanoj on July 25, 2011, 5:01 GMT

    if india loss this match this will only because of feilding and keeping of dhoni they let piterson go in first inng and let broad go in 2nd but hope india will batt well and do the justice to their fans

  • on July 25, 2011, 5:20 GMT

    All depends on Laxman and Dravid ...... tough day ahead

  • cricketik on July 25, 2011, 5:20 GMT

    Will Heaven's fall down if Sachin does not get a Century at Lords. Gone are the days of Lords and MCG for that matter Wankhade or Chinnaswamy. Sachin will as well prove that One can score 100 international hundreds even without one at Lords. Rahul would be more satisfied to have a century at Chinnaswamy before he retires than teh one at Lords. He rightly said that there are so many other grounds where he did not score centuries.