England v India, 2nd npower Test, Trent Bridge, 3rd day

Dhoni's gesture turns boos to cheers

Plays of the Day from the third day of the second Test between England and India at Trent Bridge

Andrew McGlashan at Trent Bridge

July 31, 2011

Comments: 83 | Text size: A | A

Much to the surprise of everyone at the ground, Ian Bell emerged from the pavilion after tea, England v India, 2nd npower Test, Trent Bridge, 3rd day, July 31, 2011
The crowd's boos turned to cheers when Ian Bell emerged from the pavilion after tea © Getty Images
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Gloves are off moment of the day
This isn't a reference to the heated exchanges in the commentary boxes following Michael Vaughan's tweeting but rather to when Kevin Pietersen tried to change his gloves in the first session. He tried to signal the dressing at the end of the over but he struggled to grab anyone's attention. The umpire then told him it was taking too long and the next over had to start. Pietersen wasn't impressed and it wasn't until the end of the next over that the 12th man came scurrying down the steps.

Struggling spinner of the day
Harbhajan Singh is having a tough time. He wasn't even the first spinner used in the second innings, although Yuvraj Singh coming on to bowl probably had more to do with Pietersen being at the crease. However, when Harbhajan did get the ball he again struggled and leaked 47 runs in his nine overs before leaving the field with what appeared to be a side strain. The only wicket to fall to spin went to Yuvraj.

Milestone of the day
Ian Bell's innings will be written about for many reasons, but away from all the controversy it showed how far he has come as a Test batsman. In his previous 33 innings at No. 3 he had made an unfulfilled 1006 runs at 31.44 with 10 half centuries. Here he had a chance to define a match and did so with a majestic display as his first hundred at first drop came from 129 balls on a pitch that was meant to be tough to score on. There was barely a false stroke, except for a slightly wild pull when he was 98, and three figures came with a neat clip to fine leg.

Gesture of the day
On the stroke of tea Bell became one of the central characters in a major controversy when he failed to realise the ball hadn't been called dead and was run out. The Indians appealed and after a lengthy inspection of the evidence the TV umpire gave Bell out, much to the disbelief of England. It looked for all the world as though the match would be overshadowed. As the players reappeared after the interval the home supporters disappointingly booed MS Dhoni, but suddenly it turned to cheers when they saw Bell walking down the steps. Dhoni had reversed his decision and had immediately become a hero. At the afternoon drinks break the PA asked the crowd to show their appreciation and they gave a standing ovation to the India captain.

Slip and slide of the day
Whatever the merits of these two teams in their batting and bowling there is no doubt that India's ground fielding (not the catching) lags well behind England. There are not many good movers in this line up and there were some poor efforts in the outfield. Sreesanth was twice the culprit as he failed to prevent a Bell drive reaching the rope at cover then later he made another mess of a stop at deep square-leg. India, though, seem fairly used to shrugging their shoulders at such moments although Duncan Fletcher might not feel quite the same.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by aracer on (August 1, 2011, 9:19 GMT)

@LordOfCric "India biggest problem is bowling. They can't run through tailenders" - their problem is more that England only have one tailender in this team, with the world's 6th best all-rounder coming in at 10!

Posted by aracer on (August 1, 2011, 9:18 GMT)

The intriguing point is that Dhoni has come out of this far better than if he hadn't appealed in the first place, or had withdrawn his appeal at the time when asked by the umpires. It's good to see the spirit of cricket is still alive and well - had India gone on to narrowly win the game, the win would always have been a little tainted (I'm hoping England win by rather more than 20 runs to avoid the inevitable questions).

Posted by   on (August 1, 2011, 9:13 GMT)

@ Hamesh, according to Rahul Dravid on interview, the conversation about a potential appeal withdrawal was already taking place in the Indian dressing room. Yes, Bell was out, and he was stupid, but the controversy would've overshadowed what has been a fantastic Test match. And bringing Sidebottom into the frame is completely pointless, because that matter is irrelevant; he isn't playing in this match, and the event didn't happen against India, giving them no reason for 'revenge'. Also, the Spirit Of Cricket initiative hadn't been launched back then.

Giving Bell out would've been pointless anyway, given the position India are in.

Posted by   on (August 1, 2011, 8:17 GMT)

It's all about the individuality for which Dhoni gets full marks. A pyramid of negative criticisms averted wickedly by MSD.

Strauss would have done the same too. And that's the individuality thingy that i was talking about.

This is Good for the cricket and the relationship between the two boards. Respect!

Posted by Tom_Bowler on (August 1, 2011, 7:35 GMT)

Well done to Dhoni and the Indian team for calling Bell back, I wouldn't have done so, I doubt Strauss would either. The run out itself was a bit of sharp practice but entirely within the rules and, as India were sagging, entirely understandable. The cynic in me wonders if Dhoni calculated that exposing his team to an enraged England attack in front of a fired up crowd was not a price worth paying for the wicket of Bell but that is something we'll never know. India did a fine thing yesterday and deserve all the plaudits. They are however going to lose this Test by a wide margin.

Posted by raunakwakode81185 on (August 1, 2011, 7:27 GMT)

WELL WELL WELL!! Its seems that Dhoni has now become Hero Of Sportsmanship Spirit for the EPIC Decision for lets say 30,000 people present in the Stadium or all British team supporters. BUT what about the Angry, Hurted and Disappointed 100,00,00,00,000 INDIAN people if INDIAN CRICKET TEAM lose the series because of this so called IN THE SPIRIT decision.

Posted by cenitin on (August 1, 2011, 7:15 GMT)

@Revington...first of all don't comapre this incident to Murali's one as Bell was attempting for 4 th run and if you don't think so go and check that video muist be avialable on you tube..@ Demon bowler and 5Wombats ..... that's why I think that this gesture of team India is not good because you people (eng) don't deserve this. First let me know why your captain and coach went to Indian team in the tea break if this decision won't be important...When India team took the decision of recaling the Bell no body know how much more runs Bell is going to be added not even Bell himself. Give the credit wherever it is due. But you don't understand that there is something called spirit of game. I am sure you only heard about it but because of Indian team now you can see that also as a part of this decision.

Posted by   on (August 1, 2011, 6:14 GMT)

India is definitely #1, no question about that. Yeah, only when they play @home

Posted by Ravi_blr on (August 1, 2011, 6:09 GMT)

I BETdefinitely we are going to lose this series 3-0 and also the number1 ranking. Only Rahul Dravid has played in this series. India Badly need Sehwag and Zaheer.

Posted by   on (August 1, 2011, 5:12 GMT)

well well!!!! m apalled by our batsmen showing !!!! no gumption it seems as if i m watching old indian team which went overseas only to come back losing matches and come back happily!!!!!

Posted by   on (August 1, 2011, 5:12 GMT)

they are going to lose anyway so Dhoni did to save some face.Can't believe why India is number one revi

Posted by RD270 on (August 1, 2011, 5:10 GMT)

Well I am a hard-core test match follower and have the following observations:

Bell made certain assumptions and was rightly given out. When there is a conflict between spirit and law, the law should stand as it is less grey.

Bhajji was clearly not out, was he recalled by Strauss upon seeing the inside edge on the big screen no. Now is that not cheating? Where was the spirit of the game then?

For some strange reason almost all batsmen (Viru Sehwag may be the only exception) treat the overs before any break negatively and treat them differently to other overs and seem in a rush to get off the field. This is insulting to the paying pubic.

Cricketers forget that at the end of the day they are entertainers and they must respect the paying public.

The Bell incident highlights this perfectly. For this very reason he should not have been recalled

Posted by Dr.Hasan on (August 1, 2011, 4:55 GMT)

Nice call by Dhoni. Showed excellent spirit. But I think India suffered due to absence of DRS for LBW decisions. 375 and above already looks like a mountain to climb.

Posted by   on (August 1, 2011, 4:48 GMT)

I think india should regroup and reasses their strategy against england.As by watching the game today it is observed that they are treating india like their oldest rivals.I felt very sad by watching the crowds behaviour on screen booing india.Are they thinking us like aussies whom they hate to play with.Having said that the england team have shown their killer instinct today as shown in the recent ashes which they won 3-1. But as an indian fan i hope indian team will erase this from their minds n show their commitment for the coutry.Hope they'll save the test and show their aggression in the next two matches.

Posted by K.A.K on (August 1, 2011, 4:38 GMT)

Awesome gesture by Dhoni and the Indian team! Congratulations on raising the bar!

Posted by spiritwithin on (August 1, 2011, 3:56 GMT)

@Nerk,Steve Waugh's invincibles did'nt won in india but still his team under his captaincy was hailed as no.1,at present no team is invincible at all the venues so ur logic is flawed when u say that india has to win in SA & Aus to prove their no.1 ranking,well in that case even England has to prove themselves coz this English team also has to win in SA,india,SL,its not an era of single team dominance,so whoever is at no.1 u have to accept the reality...

Posted by fearless69 on (August 1, 2011, 3:40 GMT)

Why do India always have to show sportsmenship? Why other teams can't?? Indian players never criticize opposition team / players but others do.. // Pravin Kumar was fined 20% of match fees when argued with the umpire BUT WHAT ABOUT SWANN?? Swann kicked da stumps on 2nd day of this test but his actions were tolerated?? What the hell.. Are they jealous of Indian players for playing IPL & earning big money?? Are they jealous coz india are ranking no.1 for so long & England team never reached to no.1 spot?? Law must be same for both swann n pravin kumar.. I remember Harbhajan singh was fined when he couldn't stop da ball at boundary line n kicked da advertising board.. That was out of boundary lines.. Disgusting.. I lost respect for england players, their cricket standards are low, look at michael vaughan commenting on laxman "was he using vaseline on bat!" What RUBBISH comment..

Posted by ushakiran on (August 1, 2011, 3:40 GMT)

this is how dhoni becoming hero...how I N S A N E....he is nothing can do with bat......HOW LUCKY HE IS....HERO IN CRICKET WITHOUT PLAYING...WAHHH WAHHH

Posted by krazzyking on (August 1, 2011, 2:33 GMT)

India played poorly... on the second day...no excuses... MSd should have hung in there for a while longer... unfortunately that cant be changed anymore... try to salvage the situation.. with two mroe days...it is nearly impossible to look to save the test... look for a win... worst that can happen is you will lose in honor

Posted by BigDataIsAHoax on (August 1, 2011, 2:05 GMT)

Dhoni for Chief Minister of Karnataka. Yeddy gone. Right time for you MSD!! Go grab it!! Btw, thsi test ain't over. 2 more tests to go. England is not yet #1. They won't be. Even if they do, they ll get hammered when they come to India.

Posted by IndianaJones79 on (August 1, 2011, 0:50 GMT)

people dont understand that it is bowlers who win matches..if you need to chase 400+ in last innings, it is difficult for even great batting lineup...Even great aussies and WIs did not chase that much..whenever that happened they end up loosing..it was their bowlers who did not allow their opposition to score runs..It's definitely indian bowler's fault who let opposition score these many runs in both tests...people who even didnt pick up bat in their lives and who want to disgrace great batting line up says differently

Posted by IndianaJones79 on (August 1, 2011, 0:49 GMT)

people dont understand that it is bowlers who win matches..if you need to chase 400+ in last innings, it is difficult for even great batting lineup...Even great aussies and WIs did not chase that much..whenever that happened they end up loosing..it was their bowlers who did not allow their opposition to score runs..It's definitely indian bowler's fault who let opposition score these many runs in both tests...people who even didnt pick up bat in their lives and who want to disgrace great batting line up says differently

Posted by Rezaul on (August 1, 2011, 0:20 GMT)

Above all these chaos, the truth is that Bell was OUT by pure cricketing laws. Though Dhoni called back Bell and withdraw his appeal for the sake of spirit I have reasonable doubt whether Strauss would have done the same for any other team. Look at the English commentators now they all praising Dhoni and labeling it as spirit of cricket. But if it were on their shoes (England's appeal) then these same commentators would have scream session after session that the out was according to the cricket law so Strauss doesnt need to call back the batsman and withdraw the appeal. We saw that when England toured NZL, Strauss did not call back Guptil (I think). And Stewart's intentional Run Out of Brain Lara was shameful. But every case English commentators screamed for the sake of cricket laws not spirit of game.

Posted by jr1972 on (August 1, 2011, 0:01 GMT)

@5wombats, totally agree, batsmen get runs, bowlers take wickets. @gdbduy, I think you will find that McCullum was castigated over that incident and not Murali. Brendan McCullum's actions were a disgrace and unfortunately he went on to make an idiot of himself again not long after that episode. Well done Dhoni, great piece of sportsmanship. Yes there may have been other factors in this decision but all in all cricket looks better because of decisions such as these.

Posted by Nerk on (July 31, 2011, 23:59 GMT)

@Kunal V shah. And I'll ask India to prove their mettle and win in Australia and South Africa, to show that they are No.1.

Posted by 5wombats on (July 31, 2011, 23:27 GMT)

@demon_bowler - dead right. Dhoni has done the right thing. Say what - it won't even cost 20 runs either, because if Bell didn't get them - someone else would have. @Alexk400; It's NOT about Harbhajan!!! It's about the batsmen who are entrusted to get the runs. Only the brilliant gentlemanly Dravid has delivered for India so far with the bat.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 23:05 GMT)

is absolutely appalled by what I saw at the test match today and both England and India are to blame. Firstly Bell was rightly given out after thinking he was above the umpires assuming it was a 4 and he could just walk off for tea. India decided to withdraw the appeal after Strauss and Flower came to beg to reverse the decision and so Dhoni went according to "the spirit of the game"! But does the spirit come above the rules of the game and does 1 player having a strop mean the rules shouldn't be followed, especially when they are in such a strong position. The replays also show Morgan keeping his bat within the crease and Bell hesitate when running towards him and stutters, suggesting he had realised his mistake and then after a brief pause walking calmly of, thus trying to cover up his mistake by fooling the umpires and is that not against the spirit of the game? And where was England's spirit when they toured New Zealand in 2007 when Sidebottom knocked over Elliot who couldn't make

Posted by zico123 on (July 31, 2011, 22:51 GMT)

putting England in Dhoni's shoes, they would not have recalled an opposition batsman, just as they didn't do earlier against NZ in an ODI match, GREAT statesmanship Dhoni and India.

Posted by Trioboy on (July 31, 2011, 22:18 GMT)

Indians are slow starters, they are still warming up I guess. :p Two more warm up games and they ll be all good to go..

Posted by Raki99 on (July 31, 2011, 22:10 GMT)

This game and series is truly over, the diffrence is clearly between the numbers 7-11 batsman, India just folds, even dhoni's place in the test team should be questioned no doubt he is a great one day and 20-20 player but i think he has lost his technique when playing in test matches and making some use full contribution. Also it is time to look for some younger spinner becasue we all know what is up with harbhajen. The problem with indian team is they have to play like professional and i dont think the are playing in the right mould right now atleast in this series.

Posted by PranjalShah on (July 31, 2011, 22:08 GMT)

@ns1000...if dhoni wouldnt have allowed Bell to come back, you will say it was not in the spirit of the game. India dont play with the spirit and blah blah blah. Now you say its politics. Dont you think begging for Bell was not in the spirit of the game in the first place? And to your another post..I think just 3-4 months back India won the world cup. India have beaten almost all the teams travelling or home in test series. I am not saying they have been winning convincingly but havent lost badly either. And it was ECB and CA who were major contributors of the ICC rankings rules and regulations. So you cant blame India for that either.

Posted by Hurricane08 on (July 31, 2011, 22:04 GMT)

India's defeatist body language post tea showed that they really don't deserve to be the number 1 side in test cricket. Comparing with Ricky Ponting's Australia when they were #1, this was a huge contrast. Very rarely did you see that team feeling down in the field. Maybe it was the reinstatement of Bell, but barring Praveen Kumar no one seemed excited and eager to grab wickets. A number one team believes in themselves and displays an unending thirst to win - that was sadly lacking today.

Posted by IndianaJones79 on (July 31, 2011, 22:00 GMT)

@ns1000...did you even hold bat in your life..or you are just another biased fan...india is in this position because of their bowlers not batsman..remember england got beating from india for last 10 years or so(both away and home)...this time india is loosing from england for first time..you started becoming disrespectful..?about Tendulkar...He is major contributor for india in last 3 years...if he is not in good form...pls dont dismiss him..learn to respect great

Posted by Rezaul on (July 31, 2011, 21:49 GMT)

England is playing brilliantly without any doubt. However, I would say Dhoni put an example by allowing Bell to bat again after he was run out which was purely based on cricketing rules. I have reasonable doubt whether Strauss would have done that!! I remember one occasion when Brian Lara was batting very confidently and thrashing English bowlers all corners of the ground. Once, Lara played a normal defensive stroke and ball came back to the keeper Alec Stewart via the fielder. Lara was just stroking the ground with his bat and fixing some of the uneven turf. Stewart waited for Lara to step out of his crease while he was padding the turf. As soon as Lara's boot crossed the line Stewart took the bails off and appealed for run out. Eventually umpires declared Lara Run Out. That was clearly against the spirit of the game. And the then English captain Stewart did that intentionally.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 21:41 GMT)

Its very clear, that without the presence of VIRU & ZAK it wont be that easy to win a test match in the English soil with the kind of form English players are in... They just defended their Ashes Title in Australia, which is almost a daydream coming true.. Their batters and bowlers are playing to their potential..except their openers... No matter what happens, India shud fight like a No. 1 team.. Sachin, Laxman and Dhoni shud make their presence count, they need to score big Dravid is playing superbly on the other hand.. Sree, Ishant & Praveen are doing their best.. Harbhajan dont deserve to be in the team @ the moment.. He is completely lost in such an important tour.. Pujara is also badly missed .. He wud have been a better option ahead of Yuvi/ Raina.. Even though they are scoring runs, they cudn't convert them into big hundreds !!! Apart from all my views.. I wish our Indian Team Gud Luck for the rest of the tournament and may god keep our players fit and healthy ;)

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 21:36 GMT)

@gdbduy, Murali is from sub-continent player after all. ENG & AUS never believe nor follow it, but they expect it from opponents.. we got to live with it....

Posted by Tom_Bowler on (July 31, 2011, 21:36 GMT)

Bell was daft not to play to the Umpires call. India were entirely within their rights to run him out. Dhoni withdrawing the appeal was a massively decent thing to do. Those are the facts but I also suspect MSD made a calculated decision, this is a very fine England team and if they had come out with a sense of injustice, whether or not it was merited, I suspect India would have reaped the whirlwind. Nonetheless a noble thing was done by the Indian team and it should be acknowledged.

Posted by AjaySridharan on (July 31, 2011, 21:34 GMT)

It baffles me that India reconciled to having to fight for a draw half way through day 3! I can understand not having your best players for the match, but that's no excuse for not showing a willingness to win. That's an insult to the paying public and the biggest disrespect to the spirit of sportsmanship. India better get used to not having their best available...Sachin, Dravid and Laxman will be gone soon, and so too will Zaheer given his poor fitness. Three times in this game alone India had the chance to grind the opposition into the ground and let every one of those slip away in a disappointing fashion. Having them at 124/8 and letting the tail get to 221; collapsing from 267/4 to 288 all out; and not pushing more aggressively when three quick wickets fell with the lead only at 256. The pitch is flattening out and didn't Dhoni not fancy getting 350 runs on this track with two full days of batting to go?! The India captain's body language was utterly dismal.

Posted by gothetaniwha on (July 31, 2011, 21:26 GMT)

Dhoni dumb ! dumb ! and dumber - the spirit of the game , every player should know the rules , when Sanga needed 1 run off the last ball of over to score his 100 Muri decide to run down and congrats him after the run and was run out Mc Cullum didn,t recall him the - ball was still in play .

Posted by phoenixsteve on (July 31, 2011, 21:26 GMT)

There are some unbelievable comments here and I can only conclude that they are attempts at sarcastic humour - as they are so far from the truth! This continuing obsession with the number 1 spot is bacoming hilarious! India are a poor side and struggles in at least 2 of the 3 required disciplines. If you ask yourself which of the Indian players (please dont call them 'stars') would make the England team it becomes a hard question? The only obvious candidate would be Dravid (on current form) and that would be a tough choice when we already have Cook and Trott in the side? We certainly dont want their fielding inabilities...... The only question will be whether India can score 300+ in the eventual run chase? Somehow I doubt it.... COME ON ENGLAND!!!

Posted by jackiethepen on (July 31, 2011, 21:23 GMT)

The integrity of Dravid was so impressive when interviewed about the Bell recall. He said that after the incident no-one in the Indian dressing room felt right about it and they were unhappy about Ian Bell being given out. Even before Strauss and Flower came to discuss the matter, they were already deciding to withdraw their appeal. Can you imagine batsman with the status of Dravid, Tendukar and Laxman wanting to get a batsman out like that? To those cricket captains like Vaughan who claims he would have given Bell out etc. I would ask would they have stumped Tendulkar in that manner in a Test match in India before an Indian audience. Can you imagine the furore among Indians if that had happened? The right decision was made in the spirit of the game and Dhoni is to be congratulated and so are the senior players of the side. Bell would also have been pleased to return - not only to get more runs - but because of his genuine admiration for the Indian batsmen he has expressed so often.

Posted by bumsonseats on (July 31, 2011, 21:15 GMT)

weather for tomorrow at nottingham. cloudy and overcast in the afternoon. maybe losing the toss was ok in the end. dpk

Posted by Domzo on (July 31, 2011, 20:58 GMT)

@Trueman's Ghost - Collingwood really never did recover from the New Zealand incident.I think that was kind of the end of him as captain really. @ ns1000 - Actually Strauss HAS called back a batsman when he failed to change direction to avoid a bowler's follow through and ran into him in the past - Angelo Matthews in the Champion's Trophy in 2009. Once again it was the batsman's fault, Onions certainly wasn't obstructing him, he was legitimately following through. This is slightly more of an "off field" incident, but it's similar and to say "Strauss wouldn't have done it" is quite simply disingenuous because we don't know, but he has in the past. Dhoni should, however, be congratulated for his sportsmanship - he would have been quite within his rights to stick by the original decision, it would have really soured the series though. A bit like bodyline all those years ago - which as I understand it was not against the laws of the game at the time.

Posted by LePom on (July 31, 2011, 20:55 GMT)

As an England supporter, I can't blame the Indian bowlers for running Bell out under the circumstances, even though it was not exactly sporting. What Dhoni did was the very best (and noble) course of action, and he deserves full credit for that (and I would say the rest of the team for backing him). I am sure that his action has lifted the amount of respect that he is regarded with world wide, and I am sure that at some stage in the future the action will be repaid in kind to India's benefit- and I will be glad to see that happen.

Posted by shilsen on (July 31, 2011, 20:52 GMT)

Based on India's efforts to bat out time on previous occasions, where they've failed often enough (with some exceptions), the quality of the English bowling attack, and the seeming unreliability of the Indian XI for this match (except for Dravid), I'm definitely expecting India to lose at this point.

I'm hoping that I'm wrong, that Tendulkar finally delivers in this series, that Laxman does another of his 4th innings masterclasses, that Dravid can muster the concentration for another epic (which, considering that he's been on the field for everything except the Sreesanth-Ishant batting partnership and is having to open, is probably too much to ask even of him). But I'm not holding my breath.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 20:49 GMT)

Good Spirit *Hi5's to Dhoni*

Posted by OzWally on (July 31, 2011, 20:45 GMT)

@ns1000 - Not sure where you're going there with the #1 comment. Was that for India or against? Seems to me a true #1 can win anywhere and imposes their will on other teams. India's fielding (& body language) today was horrendous and they really seem to have lost the plot after having the best of the conditions. And I'd tap the breaks on Sehwag being your saviour. Whereas he is a monster in India (& the rest of the sub-continent), he is very ordinary away from home cooking. Over the past 4 tours away from the sub-continent he is averaging 31.38. While at home - last 6 tours in India 64.37.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 20:38 GMT)

This happened to me in league cricket in Brisbane yesterday! The ball was dead after a backfoot defensive. The keeper then moved me out of the crease to pick up the ball, and then took the bails off and appealed. No decision reversal here! X-(

Posted by Daniel_Smith on (July 31, 2011, 20:34 GMT)

Rahul Dravid summed the situation up perfectly. He said it didn't feel right and if the positions had been different, say Sachin Tendulkar being given out the same way, then they would have felt hard done to. However, no matter what the result Dhoni and his team-mates can hold their heads high. They are honourable gentlemen. What goes around, comes around. India will find this act of sportsmanship will be re-paid. Hopefully this series will continue to be hard-fought, but sporting. Come on India, and come on England. Keep producing quality cricket.

Posted by sreesam on (July 31, 2011, 20:30 GMT)

I am 100% sure if it was either Pointing or Strauss in place of Dhoni, the batsman would NOT be coming out to bat after tea!!

Posted by Iyer on (July 31, 2011, 20:23 GMT)

This is not a stand up comedy performance to care about crowd's boos and cheers. This is bloodbath. Nation's pride is at stake. Does Dhoni understand this? Cricket is passionate and religion to India's 1.2 billion population. He cannot underestimate people's dreams. Why would he recall a decision when no indian player is guilty of misconduct? This is just like numerous stumpings and run outs of our idnian batsmen in the past due to carelessness. Here bell was very careless and infact he was smart to not try to return to the crease knowing he would be short, and dramatized it as if he was walking for tea. Bell should be punished for misconduct and showing resentment to umpire's decision. He yelled at the 4th umpire.

Posted by Iyer on (July 31, 2011, 20:20 GMT)

Can we impeach Dhoni for this treacherous recall? Is there any provision in the law of India to impeach cricket captain for wrong decisions?

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 20:17 GMT)

I am all for sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct on the field, but when players do stupid things, they should feel the consequence. Bell was out. Period. Doni did his team a large injustice for the sake of pleasing an English side that would NEVER have offered the same.

Posted by ani146 on (July 31, 2011, 20:09 GMT)

It was a good gesture from Dhoni. It was funny though that the English captain and coach actually went to the Indian dressing room to make such a request!!!!! Isn't this showing dis-respect over the umpire's decision??? And I would love to know the match referees comments on Bell's reaction to umpire's decision. I don't think the umpire's did anything wrong and wasn't Bell's reaction "against the spirit of the game"?? I am sure if this was from a sub-continent player, they would be fined... Would love to see the scenario here....

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 20:09 GMT)

Gestures costs Team India a test and allow them to win a "Trophy called Spirit of the Game" and Dhoni will over the moon as he loves Trophy, what a Joke. :-(

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 20:05 GMT)

MS did the right thing. It is about time that cricket returned to a sport, not a war that needs to be won at all costs. Whether Strauss would have recalled Sachin or not has nothing to do with it. Sachin would not have put himself in that position anyway. I think that Bell did not seem appologetic or even gratefull that MS had reinstated him--- that was the shame of it all, not quite the spirit.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 20:03 GMT)

Gesture let the Team India to slides to No. 3 in Test Ranking... :-)

If the same could have happened with Team Indian Player then do The Astrauss Overturned their decision and do the Audience whom I thought in wonderful and well behaved in the entire world should have booed same way as they did today to Team Indian when they back in field after Tea, So Mr. Dhoni gesture can't allow you to Win a test match but do allow a day attention in some of the columns. -)

Posted by nlambda on (July 31, 2011, 20:00 GMT)

Dhoni did the popular thing and that is fine but he need not have. It was *wrong* of Bell to take off without checking that the ball had indeed gone for 4. He should have returned and ground his bat and never did. It was certainly not the right action and someone playing at this level should know better. Bell should be grateful that he got a rather undeserving chance given his negligence.

Posted by ankukam on (July 31, 2011, 19:58 GMT)

More than sportsmanship I feel Dhoni did this solely to avoid the bad press. They are already under flak for not performing, not being fit and a bunch of other things. All things being said, it still did show some character from Dhoni when seen in light of previous similar incidents.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 19:53 GMT)

Well Bell was going for tea before umpires signalled as tea. Do we exect players to walk off the field before break is signalled? If shoe was on the other foot, we would have seen a different story. ECB appealed to BCCI!!!!! How much criticism BCCI had from ECb and media in Uk for not agreeing to full DRS. It looks like we clap with one hand. India may lose the test but rules are rule and game should be played as per RULE.

Posted by shrastogi on (July 31, 2011, 19:51 GMT)

The day belonged to England who have put India out of winning equation. India was again one bowler short. Both Ishant and Pravin have played 5 tests in past one month and ten days. They definitely need rest. But no excuses - England batted well and negated India's effort in first innings. Lets hope for Sachin Tendulkar's big hundred now. Thats the only way to save some pride in this test.

Posted by ns1000 on (July 31, 2011, 19:50 GMT)

How did India get to be #1? They have the biggest cricket (advertisement) following in the world. Surprised with that query, seriously.

Posted by ns1000 on (July 31, 2011, 19:46 GMT)

Dhoni's gesture to bring Bell back was simply politics. He should run for an office after he retires. Here are the reasons India is in the position that it finds itself in - Sahcin, Dhoni and Mukund a complete failure in the first innings. England's tail is much longer and stronger than India's tail - if they still have one. Ishant went back to short deliveries after an amazing spell last night. Duncan Fletcher instead of Gary Kirsten at the helms. Let's see if the beloved Sachin can apply himself and for once play for his country instead of the many records he so admires....

Posted by ns1000 on (July 31, 2011, 19:37 GMT)

As Dhoni is thinking right now, what is all the big fuss all about? We did the right thing, unlike Ponting and Strauss, and we will draw this match and the next two with Sehwag and Zaheer back in the mix. Calm down folks and don't let me get more grey beard along the way. We are number one, and we will stay number one for some time to come. Do you even know how I think or what I think? 'nough said.

Posted by Truemans_Ghost on (July 31, 2011, 19:35 GMT)

Well done Dhoni. The Collingwood/Sidebottom run out incident will be mentioned, I suspec,t a lot over this. Although he upheld the appeal he said afterwards he regretted doing it and was almost relived when they lost. Dhoni did well to avoid putting himself in that situation.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 19:34 GMT)

All the other bowlers except Zaheer are quite inexperienced. They have the talent to make us of a helpful pitch like the first day of the match. However, when the push comes to the shove, they lack the thinking ability of Zak to come up with crucial wickets. Never mind, that will come with times.

For now, I am just disappointed at the lack of determination shown by them on the field. The body language was horrid. Compare that to an Aussie team led by Steve Waugh who would be striving to fight back when down in the trenches. With India, you get the feeling that the trenches do down deeper as the game progresses.

That is something Dhoni and the coach has to address immediately. You have to make use of the psychological side of the game when you are at the top.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 19:33 GMT)

DeepFreezed: I do wonder people who invented the game are never world cup champion in 50 over format and even in the test match and for the first time they might be no 1 test team but for how long we will see....and if you think England deserve no 01 position we will see when England come to India and than we will ask prove your self first that you deserve to be no 01 team in world.......

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 19:30 GMT)

Very poor performance on day 3 by India except for the few overs with the second new ball. They will pay with their #1 ranking at least until they win one of the next two tests for this one is done.

Posted by LordOfCric on (July 31, 2011, 19:28 GMT)

Nothing is wrong with what Indian team did to Ian Bell? I am not an Indian or Supporter of Indian team, But i can assure that india can easily save this match if they bat cautiously and carefully. India biggest problem is bowling. They can't run through tailenders that what irrating me the most.....

Posted by voma on (July 31, 2011, 19:27 GMT)

Because India are not at full strength , its difficult to judge exactly how good England are . But without doubt this is turning into a brilliant series , stuart broad is playing the cricket of his life . Hes turning into a pure bowling allrounder , ie a flintoff . Well in this series anyway heh heh .

Posted by pitch_it_up on (July 31, 2011, 19:22 GMT)

The spirit of the game is a bit quirky to understand. Is it within the spirit of the game for Ian Bell to walk off (or rather jog-off) without waiting for the umpire's decision or wait for the opponent fielder's to complete their fielding efforts. Isn't that disrespecting the opponents? He didn't check with umpire....a mere raising of his arm towards either of the umpire's would have been fine. Doing neither this nor waiting for the umpire's decision isn't in the right spirit either. Didn't we all criticize Muralitharan for doing the same in a game against NZ some time back in NZ. Murali, without waiting for the NZ fielder's to complete their fielding, ran towards his fellow team-mate (can't recollect who it was) to congratulate him on completing his century. Murali was given out. It was then unanimously agreed that Murali did not respect the rules of the game. So, why is it then Ian Bell's run-out being held against India??!!

Posted by shamic on (July 31, 2011, 19:20 GMT)

it's good to see the Gentleman's game still exsist......Thank you Dhoni.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 19:19 GMT)

No matter the result, Dhoni's gesture was a very honourable one. I may root for England against india, but not blindly. What Dhoni did, regardless of whether it was after a plead by Strauss and co, it takes a man to do in a situation where your bowlers are struggling. I think that is an act possibly deserving the spirit of cricket award. There have been similar examples in the past, such as when Vettori recalled Collingwood despite the controversy the sides were involved in not long prior.

Posted by Deepfreezed on (July 31, 2011, 19:02 GMT)

How did India get to be No. 1 team? Another defeat looms. Wonder what the excuse is going to be this time? I bet Dhoni will blame the pitch somehow. Indian bowling is a sorry sight.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 18:59 GMT)

Outstanding Gesture by Dhoni..... Has earned his respect and admiration. Did a very honorable thing!!

Posted by Alexk400 on (July 31, 2011, 18:56 GMT)

Problem is india have too many loopholes in fielding. He can't patch up. Biggest blunder was going with bhaji when everyone know pitch is good for fast bowling. if india lose this test , then it false squarely on dhoni and duncan fletcher for selecting bhaji over munaf patel.

if india try to draw the game they will lose. if india score run briskly england will start to play defensively and it will aloow easy single and run out the clock. India can not lose any wicket tomorrow.

Posted by indian1980 on (July 31, 2011, 18:51 GMT)

I think made a mistake, letting Bell bat again. He was out and that was it. Sachin once in your 20 years of cricket try to save this test for your country.

Posted by indian_rockers_2015_champs on (July 31, 2011, 18:40 GMT)

only rain can save us now!!!!!!!

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 18:30 GMT)

India had let the advantage on this test match slip , they themselves are ti be blamed they should have been batting today as well and put lead of 300+ but lead of 60+ is not good of enough for this english side who have very decent batting order and great fitness as compared to our boys oh well looks like this one they have to to save and bat like champions .

Posted by arhamali on (July 31, 2011, 18:29 GMT)

dhoni is really a hero and now the time he iz becoming the graetest captain in the history ov cricket

Posted by demon_bowler on (July 31, 2011, 18:26 GMT)

I'll say it again -- MS Dhoni is a real mensch. Three cheers for him and for the entire Indian team. That was a fine sporting gesture that will long be remembered by all who follow the game. It cost India 20 or so runs, but it honoured the Spirit of Cricket, and elevated Dhoni and his team in the eyes of all cricket followers.

Posted by Revington on (July 31, 2011, 18:26 GMT)

The only reason India and MS Dhoni called Bell back was he knew the controversy it would cause if he did not call bell back. On the whole it was an entirely unsportsmanlike gesture to run bell out and appeal knowing full well that he was going back to the shed for tea. Remings me of an incident when Brendon mccullum ran out murli when sangakarra was single handedly taking on the New zealand bowlers and murli was walking up to him to congradulate him on his hundred. the press mccullum got after that was appropriate. This incident was equally disgraceful.

Posted by   on (July 31, 2011, 18:13 GMT)

If England go on to win this match then you can be sure that Dhoni will be torn apart by atleast a section of the Indian media for letting Bell play on

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Andrew McGlashanClose
Andrew McGlashan Assistant Editor Andrew arrived at ESPNcricinfo via Manchester and Cape Town, after finding the assistant editor at a weak moment as he watched England's batting collapse in the Newlands Test. Andrew began his cricket writing as a freelance covering Lancashire during 2004 when they were relegated in the County Championship. In fact, they were top of the table when he began reporting on them but things went dramatically downhill. He likes to let people know that he is a supporter of county cricket, a fact his colleagues will testify to and bemoan in equal quantities.
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