England v India, 2nd npower Test, Trent Bridge, 4th day

Dhoni faces up to huge challenge

Nagraj Gollapudi at Trent Bridge

August 1, 2011

Comments: 135 | Text size: A | A

For the second successive Monday, England emerged the superior side. The more happy unit. The more confident team. India, the world's No. 1 Test side, were never able to entirely dominate on any of the nine playing days. In his three-year stint as Indian captain MS Dhoni has never lost two Tests in a row, nor have India lost a Test series. But now, Andrew Strauss's men are not only threatening to win the Pataudi Trophy, but also are marching towards the title of the best Test team in the world.

On evidence at Lord's and in these four days at Trent Bridge, Her Majesty's men might just be able to snatch the crown from India. As they have done over the past two years, England played like a domineering team. The depth in their batting, which Dhoni said he was envious about, plucked them out of a precarious position on the first day at Trent Bridge after they slipped to 124 for 8. The local boy Stuart Broad hit a steely half-century to guide England to a more respectable 221, 97 runs which "really mattered," according to Dhoni. On the second afternoon, Broad restricted India's lead to 67 with a fierce spell of seam bowling that included a hat-trick.

India needed quick wickets on the third day to keep alive the hope of levelling the series, but one by one, the England batsmen, toyed with the bowling. The Indian attack was down to three specialists as Harbhajan Singh bowled only 13.4 overs in the match due to a stomach muscle injury.

"I didn't have any tricks left," Dhoni said after the 319-run defeat. "I tried everything I had left. They bat quite deep, [James] Anderson is the only one who doesn't bat to some extent. They were eight down for 120 and were able to score 100 more runs (in the first innings). The bowlers tried what they could. We were not really successful and that happens in cricket."

Dhoni said he couldn't blame his bowling attack, especially the new-ball pair of Ishant Sharma and Praveen Kumar, who have now played five Tests since June 20. "Our bowlers were a bit tired. That was one of the reasons. Their batsmen played some big shots. Their mis-hits landed in between the fielders. The bowlers tried everything but nothing really went our way."

But the biggest concern for India is the failure of their esteemed batting order to construct big totals. In the last five Tests, India have crossed 300 only once, at Roseau in the third Test against West Indies. In England, their highest so far has been 288.

MS Dhoni cuts one away, England v India, 1st Test, Lord's, 3rd day, July 23, 2011
MS Dhoni's advice: "Have belief in yourself and the team, in what you do" © Getty Images

The most damning stat is the performance of the Indian lower order (last five batsmen) as compared to their English counterparts. The England lower order comprising Matt Prior, Tim Bresnan, Graeme Swann, Broad and Anderson faced 710 deliveries and lasted 1059 minutes over the two Tests, while the Indians could barely survive 356 balls spanning 487 minutes.

"It's important to put runs on the board and we are slightly lacking that. Right from the last series we played, we haven't scored consistently so that's also a bit of a concern," Dhoni said. "One of the big areas of concern is the lower-order; we haven't been able to see the second new ball through. Hopefully it will get better and we won't be exposed to the new ball."

Adding to India's batting problems was the fact the neither Suresh Raina nor Yuvraj Singh could respond convincingly to the short-ball strategy emplyed by the England fast bowlers. Both men had hit fighting half-centuries (Raina in the second innings at Lord's and Yuvraj in the first innings at Trent Bridge) but today they succumbed cheaply to short-pitched deliveries.

Dhoni, though, backed his batsmen and their technique against bouncers. "That's often said to us but there have been games when we've done well in Perth, Durban and Barbados. We will get caught out once in a while but most of the batsmen are used to the short-pitched stuff."

A lot was written about India's determination and their ability to bounce back after starting poorly in a series. Coming back from 2-0 down, could be the biggest test of Dhoni's captaincy. And for Duncan Fletcher, who is barely two months into the India coaching job. "We are very confident in the talent in the dressing room and we'll make the most of the next 10 days," Dhoni said. He will have some reinforcements for the third Test: Gautam Gambhir is certain to play, while Zaheer Khan and Virender Sehwag could also return.

Dhoni said India needed to remain mentally tough in the nine-day break before the Edgbaston Test. "When you play at the top level you face tough situations and this is one of those. And that is what you are supposed to do: have belief in yourself and the team, in what you do. We will definitely make it tough (for England)."

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by shuvro___du on (August 3, 2011, 12:22 GMT)

I don't think that India is good team to grant Test status. Look at their statics for last 7 innings, they scored only once over 300 runs. If you consider our last 5 innings, nothing... ! But our players have able to past 300 mark 3 times out of last 7 innings with 419 at Dhaka & 382 at Lords against English bowlers. Haven't we made it large ? Alas ! Whole world saying ICC should revoke Test status of Bangladesh. But I don't know why they can't see India.

Posted by symsun on (August 3, 2011, 12:00 GMT)

I would wish Dhoni loose the toss and win the next two matches. Its hard for the team, when their main players fitness is questionable. But we know that we can come back stronger. I still have faith in this team. Remember still we are champions, lets show how hard we can hit back. Come on India!

Posted by pudukkudikaryansujith on (August 3, 2011, 11:40 GMT)

@Kumar Menon, Well said. "IF MONEY IS LOST, NOTHING IS LOST. IF HONOUR IS LOST, SOMETHING IS LOST AND IF YOUR COURAGE IS LOST THEN EVERYTHING IS LOST". This Team seems to have Gained Money But have Lost both the "Honour of National Duty" and "Courage to overcome the odds". Being the highest paid bunch, they have to sweat out and not worry about anything else. Tendulkar is conscious about his "century of century". Which is taking a toll out of the teams batting depth. The opposition bowlers are being encouraged by this action. IT IS HIGH TIME HE PLAY FOR THE SAKE OF NATIONAL DUTY RATHER THAN HIS PERSONAL GLORY.

Posted by   on (August 3, 2011, 10:39 GMT)

Mind of an Indian fans can comprehend only one thing, that is they are the best team in the world and there is no way anyone can beat them fairly. For team India to loose there has to be a player injured or the they have been screwed over by poor umpiring decisions. 1. India not being able to play their best team is only their fault, because to earn money in IPL is the first priority of the whole team rather then making themselves available for the test squad, hence the big injury list. 2. All teams suffer at the hands of umpire decisions, after all their human. And to counter the LBW problems there was this technology being used by the ICC, i wonder who apposed its use in this series. As far as the next match is concern, India will be back to its full strength. I can see England again thrashing team Inda, however rather then the match itself, i am more excited to see the excuse the Indian fans now come up with.

Posted by symsun on (August 3, 2011, 10:30 GMT)

@Shanmughan: Speaking about Talent alone without proper planning, preparation and outcome is useless. We are talented and we are No.1 in tests, ODI World Champs but we loose to England & WI (who are the at the bottom of the table in all formats and who are inexperienced.. but they are not rich.. they play cricket with spirit).

Posted by   on (August 3, 2011, 9:47 GMT)

The main Culprit behind Indias heavy defeat is the B.C.C.I. Scheduling of cricket tours without any gap or time to recoup was the main reason behind Indias downfall.Formerly when a team visits England they land there in the last week of April and will play at least six first class matches before proceeding to the first test match on the first Thursday of june.This gives enough time to get well prepared.What to do now?Let us pray for more improved performance by our team in the remaining 2 test matches at least.

Posted by   on (August 3, 2011, 8:14 GMT)

Total LACK OF COMMITMENT' and "DISRESPECT TOWARDS NATIONAL HONOUR" on the part of Indian Cricketers. The Board is also a part of it. It is high time BCCI is entrusted to abled-former Cricketers....Bid BYE to Aristrocrats and Bureaucrats in BCCI.

Posted by KAIRAVA on (August 3, 2011, 8:03 GMT)

I had absolutely no knowledge that the England national team players need to play a minimum of 5 first class matches during every county season apart from appearing for the national team. This is really good & BCCI needs to imbibe similar rules for Indian cricketers during its domestic season. Pietersen is the biggest star of England national team yet he is required to play atleast 5 matches for his county team, whereas it has been ages since India's biggest star Tendulkar appeared for Mumbai Ranji team. I have never seen Harbhajan play for Punjab in the last 6-7 years while Yuvraj only plays sporadically for Punjab whenever he is dropped from the national team. No doubt it is a pathetic situation that has led Bhajji to forgot how to spin the ball in the longer formats of the game. What is BCCI doing ???

Posted by madans on (August 3, 2011, 7:38 GMT)

Dhoni , come up in the batting order at no.4 ,i would like to change the batting order , in the third test. 1) gautham/mukund 2) shewag 3) dravid 4) dhoni 5) sachin 6) laxman 7) saha(WK) 8) zaheer 9) praveen 10) Ishanth 11)mishra. If the case gautam and shewag are fit , i would like to go with mukund a head of raina and yuvraj . and mukund at number 3 . if regular openers opens the innings (shewag and Gaumbhir) .Mukund at no three and dravid at four and dhoni at normal. but dhoni we want a century from you , your one of the great captain indians have , after kapil(1983 world cup ), ganguly , so you must come up with a century in third century.

Posted by   on (August 3, 2011, 7:18 GMT)

stop blames to ms dhoni. he is best.. as you know... dhoni makes india is no. 1 team. this is a game.. dont worry we have chance 2 tests is pending.. so pls. wait...

Posted by DINESHCC on (August 3, 2011, 7:02 GMT)


Posted by srtm on (August 3, 2011, 6:48 GMT)

viru,gauti,zak's return will definitely raise our team.but still we have weakness inthe team.1.harbhajan scores more than dhoni 2.harbhajan should be rested b'coz he is playing cricket for long time ie affecting his performance 3.irfan pathan should be given chance in swinging conditions that will raise his confidence 4.dravid is dropping catches regularly 5.dhoni rarely takes a catch rarely off harbhajan's bowling 6.udrs is waste without lbw inclusion 7.shreesanth ,ishanth,vinay,dinda munaf has been selected for india in rotation selectors could notfind other seamers in 120 crore people

Posted by anurag4u10 on (August 3, 2011, 6:47 GMT)

@merrabharatmahaan i think u r dumb nd want to slam sachin at evry ocassion. tendulkar was nt allowd by mtch refree to bat until 12 30 pm of 5th day morning so neway he culdnt bat at no.3 since indias wkt fall on d 4th day evning itself. moreover laxman cherish to bat at no.3 so he was given d opprtunity , once availble. also regardin openin in odi nd tests bth r diffrnt games by approach, we dont see mukund or jaffer opening 4 odis. opening in tests is a specialist job. in odis we often see dhoni promotin himself up d order nd how many times hav u witnessed d same in tests

Posted by Thegreatgame on (August 3, 2011, 6:28 GMT)

Managing to stay no. 1 despite injuries has been MSD's biggest achievement so far which in itself is a big deal. I feel sorry for him since he is woefully out of form and at a time when no one else(save Dravid and Laxman) is putting up his hand. Nothing succeeds like success. MSD all our best wishes are with you. Prove all the doubting Thomases wrong.

Posted by   on (August 3, 2011, 6:00 GMT)

Man oh Man!! I can't believe how the England played so well. I have never seen this type of play before!!

Posted by BalaSenty on (August 3, 2011, 5:39 GMT)

Stop talking about England winning at home, India also claimed No. 1 by winning at home. India is worst than Bangladesh as Mr Boycott pointed out. Indian players have lot of money and hence they do not want to play for India.

Its better India lose next two tests, so that we need not watch cricket anymore. Drawing a series in abroad is meaningless, Let England win. Let us drop all senior players including Dhoni and have new players who would like to play for India and not for IPL or for posing for sponsors.

Sachin, Dhoni, Yuvaraj, Harnhajan, Gambir..... can go for advertisements. Let Rahul and Laxman be captain and vice captain, give a young team, of course no Mukund or Murali Vijay, at least they loose by fighting

Posted by DhiruK on (August 3, 2011, 4:50 GMT)

Dhoni should lose remaining two Tests, retire and get into acting!

Posted by Hindh on (August 3, 2011, 4:21 GMT)

Dont count DHONI out so easily.. What dhoni and India have won in last 5 years Eng have not won those in last 100 years i.e., 50 over WC, T20 WC and No 1 in test ranking. SO think before criticizing Dhoni. HE is a great captain.

Posted by KAIRAVA on (August 3, 2011, 3:29 GMT)

Raina & Yuvraj will never learn how to face short pitch deliveries in trying conditions. They have past a certain stage in their careers & it is impossible for both to modify their batting techniques.

Posted by Hindh on (August 3, 2011, 2:22 GMT)

What have england won other than beating an out of colour Aus in Aus and drawing in SA. They have failed every assignment in the sub continent. What I am saying is until they beat the teams in Sub continent they cannot claim to be NO 1 team by just winning in Home grounds.. England have raked up points by playing a lot of matches at home...

Posted by strategic_blunder on (August 3, 2011, 2:21 GMT)

To all the partisan lot, in essence both Dada and Dhoni are doing their job. It is a commentators job to comment (irrespective of their own ability in the said topic) and a captains job to explain a situation (to what they feel is MOST important, and please consider that they have to be nurturing and positive in their assessment).....There are two kind of champion teams in a sport, one is in which the sum of parts is greater than individuals (i.e. Aus). The other is in which certain individuals enforce thrust at critical stages (i.e. India). Unfortunately, when the enforcers are missing, this kind of team struggles. Also sadly, one cant groom individuals to be enforcer of a team, otherwise all the teams wouldve groomed Sehwags and Zaheers for their respective team.....Its no surprise that India has come to this no. 1 position post 2001, they had the Tendlya+Dravid+Ganguly+Lax since mid 90's but failed to be this assertive then. This clearly demonstrates the importance of enforcers.

Posted by Masud_BITK on (August 3, 2011, 0:21 GMT)

Guys and Girls, please support Indian team. I am not an Indian supporter nor England, I strongly believe that India will be bounced back soon. Please be aside with them and give them moral support. They are in a bit of trouble due to loss of 3 key players (Viru, Goutam and zaheer) and huge pressure on Teldulkar. Don't lose your hope, they are all capable of beating this England team.

Posted by Jaggadaaku on (August 2, 2011, 22:28 GMT)

Population over 1200000000 and more than 30 domestic level teams India have. But whenever they have series to play the current team fulfilled with same players get selected. Everybody knows Sreesanth's bowling is so bad and the behavior is worse, but gets selected whenever anyone bowler gets injured. Why don't they give a chance to someone else despite giving a statement "We don't have dominant bowlers." I am asking you a simple question " What would happen if you wouldn't performing well constantly at your work place? Your boss wouldn't just raise his hands saying we don't have experts or skilled people. But he would take strong action about it, and possibly would start firing bad people. Harbhajn rarely gets wickets but he also gets selected in every series. He took his last 10 wicket/match haul exact 3 years ago on July 31 2008. And since then he took 5 wicket/innings haul only 3 times, and played every match of every series. Anyone can bowl off-spin. We need leggy.

Posted by Shanmughan on (August 2, 2011, 21:07 GMT)

Stop blaming this team for just two losses...Yes we have been steam rolled by a far better prepared team..Yes..better prepared and not better talented..I still believe this team has it in it to beat the England team..For that we need to get a good start to the Innings..Sehwag may just provide us with that.Watch out for gambhir in the next match.He is gonna be back.The bowlers need to learn from the lengths Broad is bowling.He is making us drive at almost 4 deliveries in an over..No wonder why he is taking so many wickets..!!

Posted by guntur_ap_ind on (August 2, 2011, 20:13 GMT)

Dhoni is the best Indian captain ever and also one of the finest ever in the world with out a doubt. He seems to forget his job with the bat and gloves. When was his last innings in a test when India in trouble?

This is not the sign of a no:1 test team, I tell you what these guys are rich as anything and they have lot of things to think about other than cricket, I don't want to put details here do your research.Its like they have to play as they are being paid otherwise they don't even practice.

India truly lacks passion, as an Indian i am very sad to see the state of it.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 20:01 GMT)

I have a little story for the Indian team.I am an Indian residing in Italy since the last 30 years.In the 1980's one of my friend's father was the President of the football team of the city where i live and was part of the "Serie A" the Italian 1st division where all the best teams in Italy play (Paolo Rossi, hero of the 1982 WC in Spain played in this team before that WC). Anyway,the team was going through a lean patch at the time and it was important for them to regroup and get back to their winning ways.So after yet another disappointing loss,the players demoralised,on getting back to the dressing room were"greeted"with this message written on a big board by the President of the team:"IF MONEY IS LOST NOTHING IS LOST, IF HONOUR IS LOST A LOT IS LOST, BUT IF COURAGE IS LOST EVERYTHING IS LOST".When all seemed to be compromised,all doors closed,his courage would become hope for many.So Dhoni and team India gather your courage and go and win the "WAR" and square the series.FORZA INDIA.

Posted by emmwill on (August 2, 2011, 19:31 GMT)

Who says they could have done without the WI tour? That's ridiculous! If more of their established players, Like Sachin had gone there, they might have fared better on this current tour. They were well tested on the WI tour. Look at the players who are standing out now. They are the ones who did well in the WI. So what's your point?

Posted by VAS4 on (August 2, 2011, 19:15 GMT)

Yes, Dhoni, believe in your team and stay out for a while. Dont think that without you they cant manage. You are not doing any favours to your team or to yourself with your poorest form and basket full of excuses and lack of self confidence. No one can take anything out from English team as they performed like champions. After the first four, no one is reliable with the bat. The bowlers are not good enough even for the tail end English batsman. South Indian advantage is damaging Indian cricket. Appalling, pathetic performance from Dhoni, Harbhajan. Since the WI tour, something is wrong with the team. Favouritism and Unjustified preferences for Raina, Dhoni, Harbhajan is never going to do good for the team.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 19:07 GMT)

I agree totally with Pragsl. A few months ago it was a different Indian team-physically fit with a different body language fighting mentality in any difficult situation etc. The way the team played in the second innings of the 2nd test at TB was really unbelievable. India has played against the likes of Steyn and Morkel (supposed to be the best fast bowling attack in the world) in SA on bouncy pitches with success battling head on, matching the Australians too in Australia in recent times.So it's baffling that India went down like nine pins in a few hours and surrendered the test on the 4th day itself.It brought me memories of that famous test in WI when Lloyd told his bowlers to go for short pitched stuff.Now this team is really low on confidence and i don't think even Shewag's or Zaheer's return will change anything.Viru is coming back after a long break without any match practice and let's hope Zaheer doesn't break down again.Any problems in the dressing room?

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 19:04 GMT)

I am just trying to imagine few scenario a) England batting lineup without Cook and Strauss B) Broad is injured C) Peterson set to open with Bell D) Eng playing in different conditions ??? I dont think they (people who are against India) will be very happy ??

Posted by dean100 on (August 2, 2011, 19:01 GMT)

@hindh88. U mean how indias rise to number 1 coincided with just two series outside of the subcontinent since December 2007 (and that against a weak New Zealand oposition, well done!! India beat a lowly ranked team away from the sub con. and DREW series in SA) Between December 2007 till Jun 2011 India played only those 2 test series out of the subcontinent!!!!! @WPDDESILVA No it doesnt mean that at all, thats an extremely poor method to come to that conclusion @everyone against Dhoni. Seriously?!?!?! There are actual calls for his head? What is going on here? One bad series and a man whos achieved more than any other Indian captain or player, a wkt keeper who challenged and even bettered Sachins level of fame, the best man to lead the team with countless match saving performances is respected like this!?!? No wonder noone wants to play for India with whole heatedly. Come on guys, lets be realistic please

Posted by Andhravala on (August 2, 2011, 18:53 GMT)

Are these losses, due to the lack of the best coach (Kristen). India have won most of the matches during his tenure. Hope there is no insecurity within the players because of the coach or the selectors.

Posted by ChuckyDoll on (August 2, 2011, 18:44 GMT)

India let England off the hook 2 times in the 2nd test without their starters (Sehwag, Gambhir, Zaheer). I just have this feeling that something good is going to happen in the 3rd test, when the starters return. Broad is not going to repeat his batting heroics again in the 3rd test.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 18:19 GMT)

I think Indian team youngsters like raina,mukund,yuvraj dont know how to tire bowlers who r bowling short pitched deliveries like dravid or tendulkar does.So its time to nurture good players like pujara,rahane,rohit sharma,kholi who r technically good

Posted by zuber21886 on (August 2, 2011, 18:04 GMT)

its not Dhoni to be blamed, the real problem lies in the board, who doesn't look after their players, and management of the plans for further series, we don't know whats going on with the team and new coach, but i am sure the inclusion of this new coach have some effect in this defeat

Posted by SRT_GENIUS on (August 2, 2011, 17:56 GMT)

@WPDDESILVA: And I thought Indian fans were most irritating! LOL! :)

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 17:45 GMT)

I think the aggression that English lower order showed in the 2nd innings not only demoralized the attack but also setup the India batting line up with expectations that they could emulate a similar tone which was unrealistic. It also exposed Indian batting's weakness further in bouncy+seaming conditions

Posted by Molu14 on (August 2, 2011, 17:37 GMT)

@hindh88 r u suggesting that India is the number one test team even after what u have seen in the last two tests, and for that matter, even the West Indies? Being an avid Indian fan, I have observed that India only win in the subcontinent, so stop being so dismissive of the other team's performance.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 17:32 GMT)

I do not think in this series India will come back. Opening is weak and middle order too is weak for India. If Indian batting becomes weak then we cannot expect much from those slim pace bowlers much. Harbhajan singh is having bad form in bowling and his batting too is awful. I feel he must be rested for while and look for others spinners like Ashwin or Amit Mishra. It is time for look for changes and time has come for new look test team for India.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 17:31 GMT)

yes, Srilanka Scored 400 twice against england on 1st two test without the Contributions Mahela-Sanga...what happened to INDIA???? ITS SUMMER NOW...the Ball is less swinging than the Srilanka series

Posted by rlefti on (August 2, 2011, 17:19 GMT)

Hey hindh88 India reached the no.1 by winning just at home so why are you saying that about England at least they won in Australia which we never did.....

Posted by blondblackberry on (August 2, 2011, 17:15 GMT)

to nickcrater80 r whatever: come on man iam an indian i accept that india is not a best team but accept the fact england team is not the best.every team or every player hav a bad time so let's be sportive and accept the fact.also,it is ironical why a worst team win a world cup that too in their home and why u world champs lost poorly in quarters;with irish,with bangladesh.

Posted by itsthewayuplay on (August 2, 2011, 17:00 GMT)

@Anand Jakhotia. Of course Dhoni is going to support his batsmen. At work would to have your boss support in you in public and deal with issues in private. Another reason is team morale. Stand by your players to get the best out of them to turn things around. India should forget everything such as #1, forget winning/losing, short-pitched bowlng and concentrate on the basics such as (1)bowling in th right areas (2)identifying batsmens' weaknesses and exploiting it (3)not letting new batsmen take a single or three to get off strike (4)fitness and fielding and (5)application during batting - openers to off shine of ne ball so that stroke makers can come in and play their shorts, build partnerships. (6)let one batsman face a bowler if he's confortable with it so that means not taking singles. Focus on the basics of the process and let the results take care of themselves. Having a strong mindset and belief can overcome any hurdle. England have it at the moment whilst India don't.

Posted by Raj12345 on (August 2, 2011, 15:57 GMT)

This isi time to look at each and every player success in last 2 years except WC2011 which happened on rubber pitches. Some established players keep hiding their weakness. Tell me who is good in team except 3 bigs.

Posted by myusacric on (August 2, 2011, 15:57 GMT)

Ebery one is ??? Dhoni form and ability but what is our option in place of Dhoni. I think other WK are in same shoes of Dhoni. It will be Difficult for new WK Saha or Parthiv to start after gap of almost 4-5 years in test cricekt. We didin't develop other WK in test after Dhoni. Time have come to think for altenate and try out . Yes we will not get result straight away but we have to groome new WK

Dhoni was not able to Judge the swing of ball from 40 yard as WK than how can he judge when it was 20 years while batting. Dhoni inability as test WK, bastman expose in endlish condition

Posted by Pritt32 on (August 2, 2011, 15:51 GMT)

India is going through a torrid time after triumphing in the world cup. An average series in West Indies followed by a disastrous start to the England tour with back to back defeats. Dhoni is struggling with form and marshalling the troops well. Raina and Singh are not test quality players and should not be selected for the next match. The team need reshuffle the squad and inclusion of Gambhir, Sechwag and Khan will bolster the squad. The commitment and hunger to win is missing from the team. Dhoni's cannot make excuses. The team needs to settle a number of issues and get their heads down, otherwise time is running out and England will be crowned to be no 1. To be frank, they deserve it as their cricket is exciting and passionate. On the other hand, India's cricket is awful and too upsetting for fans to watch. I hope India can put these two test matches behind them and try to salvage something from the series. A rest will do them good, but they must redeem themselves.

Posted by khiladisher on (August 2, 2011, 15:20 GMT)

Dhoni has won everything that needs to be won the cricket field not because of his great captaincy skills-the #1 rank team in test cricket was only because of the great performances of the batting superstars-sehwag,laxman and sachin{only performing when there is no pressure involved in the game and the master swing bowler zaheer- 2008-2011 will always be hailed asthe greatest years in Indian cricket ,starting with winning the 20-20 world cup ,then being the #1 ranked team in test match cricket and then the biggest prize winning the 2011 world cup Now that all these summits have been conquered its no where to go but down-This is what separates indian cricket team with great and invincible west Indian and Australian teams of previous eras-the burning desire to stay at top-that feeling is sorely missed and with the retirements of champion players like sehwag-sachin -dravid-laxman and zaheer,the future is very bleak with just gambhir left.

Posted by ListenToMe on (August 2, 2011, 14:20 GMT)

I don't think that this is an overnight situation. India have been doing this for several tests but luckily getting escaped from losing. When was the last time India scored more than 350 in any innings? I think there batting is not as strong as expected. They are somehow managing to hide their weakness. But with these 2 tests everything came into light. Now it is time to analyze and find a solution. I blame India's batting nothing else for the loss. Raina and Yuvraj are not suitable for tests. Bring Pujara and Badrinath and give them more chances. We cannot wait till the 3 legends to retire for bringing them. Inlcude them now and give them more chances so that they can be the future wall and future sachin.

Posted by ToTellUTheTruth on (August 2, 2011, 14:20 GMT)

@Pragsl....may be that is the reason why these guys are so jaded? i.e. they must have spent all they had on the WC and having no break in between (due to IPL starting with days after WC), the non-stop grind had finally caught up with them? I daresay, any of these players can give IPL a skip, like they did for the WI tour. If BCCI was that smart, they would have rested all the WC players that are in the Test side a break of minimum 3 weeks (or no IPL at all), and then have them play in WI. At least they would have had some real match practice.

Oh well! We can but offer only excuses. It is upto the players to lift themselves up and put on a fight. We the poor fans, can only pray and hope that all the pieces fall into place for one last push.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 14:19 GMT)

everything is part & parcel of game it should be taken right spirt

Posted by LeicsCCC on (August 2, 2011, 14:07 GMT)

India look a team in turmoil, there is no chance of a recovery to save this series. Dhoni looks lost, his shot in the second innings screamed of someone who didnt want to be there. Harbhajan doesnt warrant a place in the team and nor does Raina or Yuvraj. The bowling attack looks toothless for long spells and I'm not convinced Zaheer will be fit enough to sort out the problems when he returns. Sehwag averages 39.50 in England and Gambhir 18.50, hardly world beaters. Compare that to England, Tremlett gets injured and in comes Bresnan, Trott gets injured and up steps Bell. I'm sorry India but England are rightly about to take the no.1 spot.

Posted by Mukkibansi on (August 2, 2011, 14:03 GMT)

India come on do it once again we are all with you indian cricket team is best compare with other team.

Posted by indianzen on (August 2, 2011, 12:35 GMT)

now the series cant be won, it can just be drawn and that too with great difficulty only, it can be drawn. So If no Zaheer-Sehwag-Gambir, is the team gone down? Atleast Carribean team were showing up good fight... come on guys... we were the warriors once upon a time, we can do it.. show some fighting spirit... Jai Ho... Jai Hindh

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 12:29 GMT)

As i hv said earlier, Indian team is in the twilight and the fall was written on the walls. Too much cricket/ IPL taking its toll. Its better to test a totaly young team for future aspects. As for seniors well they can play t20 in england and big bash, nd make some money. As i hv said earlier, Indian team is in the twilight and the fall was written on the walls. Too much cricket/ IPL taking its toll. Its better to test a totaly young team for future aspects. As for seniors well they can play t20 in england and big bash, nd make some money.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 12:02 GMT)

Never Mind. We will bounce back. Only thing we have to do is to build up our self belief which I think it is lagging post Kirsten.

Posted by arvindsurendran on (August 2, 2011, 12:00 GMT)

It was expected that the current Eng India series would be wonderful exhibition of test match. So far it has all been one way going in favour of England. Though India had their moments, they could not carry capitalise on those due to lack of depth. While we could put on a solid playing XI for the next test, but surviving on just the XI players would not keep us long in No1 spot. We are bound to fail one day, unless players like Mukund, Raina, Yuvraj, perform consistently.

Posted by Satyam_max on (August 2, 2011, 11:40 GMT)

Somehow it seems that they are missing Gary Kirsten and company . Having said that team should learn to move on . The defeats against England can be attributed to many factors , but major one will be the unavailability of resources like Sehwag and Zaheer . A Sehwga in form could have made all the difference to the series ....

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 11:26 GMT)

Dhoni needs to practise more on his batting, he is a great captain and needs to live up to his leadership status. Bhajjie needs a rest. Hope Zaheer and Sehwag return.. a series draw is still possible!!

Posted by samcooldude on (August 2, 2011, 11:22 GMT)

I think Dhoni should leave his captaincy from test match, enough of his captaincy now, he is overconfident and very much aggressive, test match is all about patience, you dont win a game by playing one good day cricket, you have to play 5 days brilliantly and of course have to take 20 wickets...........

He doesnt contribute anything in test matches overseas, as we dont have too much batsmen due to injuries he should contribute some runs, as compare to Matt Prior Dhoni is just counted as a tailander in the Indian team side..........

Posted by Bollo on (August 2, 2011, 10:59 GMT)

Please stop this `Team India` talk - it reminds me of arrogant American basketball teams.

@Perl57. `Utterly lucky`? Over 20 years and 6 World Cups, Australia won 4, and made the final of another - in the meantime racking up a 33(?) game unbeaten run in the process. They were simply dominant.

Yes, Australia conquered the world, as the West Indians did before them. India`s 18 month reign as nominal No.1 hardly compares...and they`ve hardly conquered the world in getting there. Spare me the talk of the `fall of an empire` please.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 10:48 GMT)

I am supporting MS.We didn't have Zak,Viru and Gauti in our side.and we lose the match because of Marais ErasmuS'S WRONG DECISIONS.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 10:35 GMT)

dhoni's wicket keeping was not a big issue until he kept performing with his bat, but now with his poor form continuing in test cricket his either of skills can be questioned by cricket pundits.

Posted by Sashank_sharma on (August 2, 2011, 10:26 GMT)

Dhoni should perform for increasing contributions in the lower order... He does quite well in one days... Dont know whats going wrong in tests.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 10:24 GMT)

batting line up very poor in test.... the future seems pathetic as none of the younsters are good against quality pace attack.... india are just producing limited over boys... Dinesh Karthik can play well against pace as well as spin... bring him back for time being..... let flecher develop kohli & Pujara well against pace with the assistance of dravid and laxman.... Raina & Yuvraj tries to score on every delivery....that is not good.... also, once pressure builds, indians forgot to score runs. Just nudge for singles so that scoreboard ticks...

Posted by bluebillion on (August 2, 2011, 10:19 GMT)

When Dhoni says he is confident that the team can bounce back, I hope he and the team belive in that. England were 62 for five and 104 for six at Lord's and 124 for eight at Trent Bridge - with Zaheer in the side, they would have been closed out in at least 2 of the 3 innings. Now with Viru and Gambhir back in the side, Rahul at number 3 and VVS at 5 to tackle the 2nd new ball, India will be a completely different batting unit. Zak and Mishra will also make a big difference to the team. All we need is one win and one draw ;-)

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 10:16 GMT)

when india's lower order is not contributing enough with the ball how you can expect something miraculous in batting from them.Dhoni needs to understand this and should stop blaming lower order for their performance.And we dont want performance in patches from few players to level this series we need to see performing everyone as a unit which india has been doing since couple of years. they didnt rely on one individual so why in this series.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 10:09 GMT)

Dhoni we all are great fan of your leadership skills but please contribute with your bat also and put some runs on board.

Posted by KiwiRocker- on (August 2, 2011, 10:04 GMT)

hindh88- Do some research before posting comments chum. I had also previously suggested you that. Indian team has clung to so called No.1 spot by only winning at home. England has thnrashed Australia in Australia..Has Indian done that? India lost in Pak, drew in SL, SA and Australia and getting thrashed in England...Indian team is not even in top four teams of world that are England, SA, Australia and SL...Indian simply does not have bowlers to take 10 wickets let alone 20...Indian batsmen are clueless against quality bowling...Even Pakistan without their top bowlers did far better against England last year..Just wait for 4-0 hammering!

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 9:56 GMT)

India dont look passionate to retain their numero uno status which they acquired only once in history ever.They still seem riding high on their world cup win.indian team looks very fragile as compared to their counterparts , they outclassed us in every aspects of game.Dhoni blamed busy schedule and injury of some of the crucial players for their dismal performance in the series so far which i quite disappointing , he has to be honest and accept that his players are lacking in the grit and determination. you cant expect a miracle to happen overnight with gambhir, zaheer and sehewag coming back into squad until each and every player is aware of his role and comes with his best in the upcoming ten days otherwise india is on the verge to loose their no 1 spot.

Posted by Pantherscc on (August 2, 2011, 9:53 GMT)

The same old Indian matra. Finding fault with the batting and supporting the below par bowling attach. Their cricket cannot improve if they dont change their mindset. Batting alone, no matter how world class cannot win you matches consistently. You need bowling to support your batting. And unfortunatley I dont see a single interntaional level bowler in the ranks except Zaheer Khan. One bowler cant keet you at No.1 ranking.

Posted by PTtheAxis on (August 2, 2011, 9:39 GMT)

dhoni has to go out of test side if india has to have any real resurgence. he is no one to advice anyone. he can't catch a ball behind the stumps.

Posted by kasyapm on (August 2, 2011, 9:34 GMT)

I hope Dhoni (and the team) believe in whatever he has said. "We will definitely make it tough (for England)" - Hope to see that.

Posted by Hindh on (August 2, 2011, 9:31 GMT)

It would be a joke to consider Eng to be the No 1 team without them winning any series in India since 1984.... Just by winning matches at home grounds Eng cannot be No 1, they have to win consistently win in the Sub continent to be considered anywhere near the best team.

Posted by WPDDESILVA on (August 2, 2011, 9:26 GMT)

Does this mean Sri Lanka are better than India? I think so.....Sl scored 400 twice in the first two tests.....and managed to draw as well.

Posted by sirvivfan on (August 2, 2011, 9:10 GMT)

Dhoni said "India need to remain mentally tough" Remain come on they hav enot been mentally tough for gods sake. This was evidenced by Dhoni agreeing to reinstate Bell when the pressure was put on by the England team management! I can imagine a a truly number 1 team and led by a tough leader would have agreed to that. Rememberr India did nothing wrong they played acccording to the rules and yet agreed under pressure to reinstate somebody who was given out! This does not happen in club sunday beer games! Abdication of willingness to compete and fight for your country! Riaz

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 8:58 GMT)

Lets hope for a revived India in the third test. Fiddling with the opening batting combo has not worked for the last five tests. Lets hope Gambhir and Sehwag work well as a unit. And Zaheer is peerless in the Indian side as far as strike bowling is concerned. Lets hope he is fit.

In retrospect, we could have done without the WI tour and played a couple of more practice matches in England instead.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 8:56 GMT)

dhoni for god-sake stop supporting ur batsman for the sake of it especially raina, yuvi & mukund. the fact is they r not test material. if thy wanna bcom one, they should play more of d four-day games. as for the wins at perth,barbados bla-blah, they were won by more technically sound batsman. the topic of short-delivery suspicion is localised 2 u, raina, yuvi. if u cant play it, just duck or leave it.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 8:51 GMT)

pls left out dhoni from Test match. He is good in t20 and ODI. Dhoni doesnt have the technique to play in this conditions,...Even HE DOESNT HAVE THE TECHNIQUE OF KEEPING IN THIS CONDITION BECAUSE the balls moves on the air before taking to the gloves.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 8:48 GMT)

brave words from dhoni at the end. point is why allow urselves in such situations in first place. when ur team holds d no: 1 test tag, u hav 2 b thorough in ur home-work. As for his own performance, its high time he perform as a wicket keeper batsman. u may b a good captain but justify ur place in first place. Overseas now-a days indain team ends at fifth player as far as bating is concernd.Rest only add up for numbers. pathetic.

Posted by Pragsl on (August 2, 2011, 8:47 GMT)

I think this indian teams body language does not look good. This was the same even in Westindies. But before that everything was fine, players were enjoying all the roles given to them. Even being in the 15 was good feeling for any player.

Now, it is looking different... even yuvraj, raina, abhinav, shreeshant, sachin are not looking happy. just look at their faces.....

Coach ?? Management ?? Tired ?? IPL ???

Lots of questions to think.....

a few months ago this was not the same indian team.... they were fighting for everything and in every situation

Posted by chakor11 on (August 2, 2011, 8:15 GMT)

Yes, This could be the biggest challenge Dhoni would have ever had. But nobody could ever doubt about the capabilties about Team India. Even the mighty Aussies have lost to Zimbabwe sometimes (Though that is not the case here, both team are almost similar or may be England better than India). This is the time when Team India should be sopported by fans not crticised. That was Team India, when they lost to SL in WC 96 and when they lost in Final in WC 03. That was Team India when they won the T20 WC 07 and when they won WC 11. I am an Indian, and the team lost yesterday was India, but it doesn't matter, it is just a game, it happens.... Even if India goes down to last in the rankings, it still will be Team India, my Team......Proud to be Indian and a big fan of Indian Team.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 8:03 GMT)

All Indian Cricketers play for the sake of playing but Dravid, Laxman and Kumble play for the nation. I'm sure none of you will deny it. one example... Anil Kumble bowled with broken jaw in west Indies but just look @ Harbhajan just disgusting....

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 7:58 GMT)

Its really interesting for me. Everyone is excusing the unavailability of Zaheer and Sehwag, I wonder how long will they stay fit in order to win for India. Fitness is the issue with each player among the planet then why are they persistently excusing for this. They should be very frank in accepting their mistake and lost. I think every batsmen apart from Dravid has player irresponsibly specially Dhoni, Mukund and Raina.

Posted by ravirrs on (August 2, 2011, 7:53 GMT)

It will be tougher for India to bounce back. Hoping for 2-2 result is not realistic. It will be a big bonus if they manager to win atleast 1 of the two test. England deserve to be No:1 , not only they battign has depth, but also the bowling has penetration. Time for India to give the Crown to the England.

Posted by Naresh28 on (August 2, 2011, 7:40 GMT)

India's bad feilding means that batsman and especially the bowlers are having to put extra effort. The bowling falls apart in most cases and only shines in patches. Our aging side needs replenshing as we lose the edge in the field. Although Laxman, Dravid, Tendulkar are still contributing and have done a tremendous job for India in the past, it is time to phase them out. Having said that the aging batsman sometimes gives us the edge when playing on home turf. Other pressures then start affecting these seniors.

Posted by sherin.jose on (August 2, 2011, 7:35 GMT)

It is time for him to check his own form and also the idea of opening with Dravid has been an epic fail. Should have got Yuvi to open the innings, currently Yuvi plays in the position where Sehwag started his test career. Time to promote him to the opening slot, so that he can get used to getting huge runs like Sehwag did and will also bosst up his confidence. Loving to see Yuvi up in the lineup in the absence of Sehwag or Gauti.

Posted by moko58 on (August 2, 2011, 7:26 GMT)

Dhoni has to show his old instinctive ways. Drastic conditions need drastic solutions. He needs to play with 5 bowlers, out of which 2 are spinners. He may have to let Bhajji and Mukund go. He should call for reinforcements from India.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 7:17 GMT)

Dhoni should follow dada's strategy that win the toss and bat first put 400 plus on the board.This is the strategy the then dominant australian side have used to follow everywhere irrespective of the conditions.India never had the reputation as good bowling unit.Their batsmen have bailed out them most of the times in difficult situations.So the onus is on dhoni to give the come back punch to the england side as the skipper of the worlds best batting line up.Hope he never let down india as captain.all the best dhoni and co.

Posted by sanjay37b on (August 2, 2011, 7:02 GMT)

Dhoni's captaincy is under scrutiny.The easy going attitude and lack of commitment by all players has caused India the series.It will be 3-0 for England if not 4-0.The batsman like Sachin opting for a limited over shot selection when on 45.Luckily he was dropped by Pieterson.Still he could manage only 56 runs.New team is on the cards and India should include players like Pujara,Kohli,Rohit Sharma as replacements to Sachin,Dravid and Laxman.Players from Tamil Nadu should not be given chance as they are super failures.India must test.try and train new fast bowlers of Kapil and Sreenath's calibre.Harbhajan singh should be shown the door for ever.Amit Mishra should be in from third

Posted by anexpat on (August 2, 2011, 7:02 GMT)

"Dhoni is envious of batting deph of England" Oh Mr dhoni! first look at your contribution. Do you think you should be in the team? Then tell me why are you sticking with Harbhaja? Further what is Saha doing in the team? Why Mukund an Muruli Vijay? Why not Parthiv as an opener and wicket keeper if you drop yourself. There are so many duds in the team. It is not a rocket science to figure out why Indai is being maulded by Enland.

Posted by gitapat on (August 2, 2011, 5:55 GMT)

Besides the return of Gambhir,Sehwag and Zaheer the team management must drop Dhoni and Harbhajan the two passengers in the Team and play Saha and Mishra instead to strengthen the Indian Team.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 5:53 GMT)

england will definately prepare a green pitch for edgbagaston test so it will be another tough challenge for indian batting line up . zak's absence has clearly been felt . dhoni need's to learn something from the matt prior's consistency with the bat . edgbagaston will be another huge test for india..... hope tis time they turn around things.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 5:53 GMT)

To say that Dhoni is facing a huge challenge is an understatement. India were humiliated here, as they were at Lord's. The only way to redeem themselves is somehow avoid 4-0, which seems like a very distinct possibility now. The best batting line up cannot conjure up 300 runs? Are you kidding me?

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 5:44 GMT)

Where is sachin tendulkar??? Indian cricket revolves around only him! 4 innings and only one 50 to show! among all the indian players, he skipped the west indies tour to spend time with his family in london, meaning he was used to the weather there. add to that the practise he had with monty panesa. where has all that gone mr.tendulkar?? why can't you show some application to stay on the crease and contribute something worthwhile?? the workhorse dravid is, gets criticised for not getting a big score in second innings even though he might have scored a century in the 1st! like gavaskar once said: "SACHIN IS THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM NO ONE WANTS TO TALK ABOUT".

Posted by perl57 on (August 2, 2011, 5:35 GMT)

Look every great team has a shade to hide. This may be the one. Fans!! Just relax and control your urge to bash for a day. Try to think, Oz who conquered the world before India did was utterly lucky in 99 WC, 2003 was a clinical performance. 2007 was also not without its drama in final. Oz lost one odd series whenever they came to India. Not normally but miserably. Their only great performances were 2001 and 2004. This Indian team gave us World#1 ranking in tests for 3 years, then a WC, and a T20 title, thats more than what we could have hoped for since the first round loss in 2007 world cup. Let the team lose, let it rebuild. Let it fall down again. We know these fellas may be playing for the money, but don't we all work for money? We do not even entertain anyone. These guys do. England for all the losses they had only in last two years, gave shoddy performances coupled with inspiring ones. Fact still remains, India are without THREE of their best men. 1/4the team. Judge yourself.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 5:33 GMT)

Hi All,

Indians have their potential to deliver the best in any form of cricket.But the TEST cricket is totally different.The game plan is very much inportant.We have won the good TOSS but we have PUT the England to BAT first.Kindly check the situation and face the ENGLAND attack with our TOP GUNS like Dravid,Lakshman,SACHIN.... If you feel BHAJI is having the health problem kindly offer chance to MISHRA,ASHWIN or CHAWLA.........

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 5:30 GMT)

The game just spilled away from hands. Indians were looking quite fierce for the first 2 days of game even though broad scored a furious fifty on day one and then bounced back with a hat trick on day2, but Indians had last laugh, were on day 1 they were down only one wicket and day 2 they have got cook out for cheap score, but the twist came in day 3 play, where every batsman came and scored at least a fifty. Moreover, again India was reduced to 3 bowlers in this match, as Harbhajan was not fit in innings 2 and he hardly got any thing to bowl in first innings. Now, India has to be set well and feel comfortable and have the defeat in their mind but not surpass the positiveness of remaining 2 games, as Sehwag, Gambhir and Zaheer are almost ready for the next match. This should make team look more comfortable and also have everyone bat at their respective positions which really helps in a team's performance... Hope they join team and team bounces back.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 5:19 GMT)

he is talking about three or four test centres with bounce in the pitch, please let him also tell how much, he himelf, raina and yuvraj scored there, he has just been riding on the batting of sehwag, laxman, SRT and Dravid just as ganguly before him, it was coming, was just a matter of time before he was exposed, dhoni is just a creation of Media hype, he is never good against quality bowling on responsive wickets, cant even get into double figures, surprising he gets elected into all time great elevens.

Posted by tick on (August 2, 2011, 5:18 GMT)

seeing these two tests...pakistan last year and srilanka this year have been far ahead from india...stuart board said on the end of 1st day of 4th test against pakistan that when they were 102-8 that this series is now pakistans to draw or lose...but eventually fixing scandal took away every thing...for india to win in headingly they need their fast bowlers to be what pakistanis did in england...never tired of bowling long spells...it all depends on indian bowling to help them draw sries..

Posted by jagsrah on (August 2, 2011, 4:59 GMT)

Dear Dhoni, sorry buddy not your fault..You have obviously not been exposed to this kind of bowling and pitches before, which was clear the way you got out..And its time you start making it clear to the BCCI that your bowlers will not play continuous cricket and prepare for tests..as such most of them get smacked in IPL..Else you may not like leading a losing side.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 4:44 GMT)

keeping apart for their winning Inidan players have to cover the distance by leaps and bounds if they even wish to give a tough run for the victory for england. And we hit the rock bottom I hope and will only have one way to go ....upwards.

Posted by coolio78 on (August 2, 2011, 4:43 GMT)

I have very strong belief in the Indian side and I am sure they are going to bounce back. I won't be surprised if they win the next 2 matches and draw the series... Chak De India!

Posted by KiwiRocker- on (August 2, 2011, 4:35 GMT)

Sehwag's return will boast India mentally than actually on the ground- Problem with Indian team is that Indian captain, fans and media are always trying to find an excuse for a loss. Reality is that India has been hammered by a superior English team. All this talk about Zaheer Khan and Sehwag's return makes no sense. Zaheer Khan is not W.Akram and Sehwag is not Sir Viv Richards. Zaheer is an above average bowler made to look good among India's other very average bowlers. Zaheer has a poor record against likes of SA, Pak and Australia. As far as Sehwag, he averages 30 odd in 4th innings of a test match. I can not recall him winning anything of note for India. World Cup on home grounds with special cricket balls and 65M grounds with beneficial DRS rulings is over and now reality check is catching up with India.Reality is that England is top team in world followed by SA and Australia. ICC rankings are flawed. One should also take a note of most over rated batsman Tendulya's contributions!

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 4:34 GMT)

Loved Dhoni's demeanor @ the end of the game ... still smiling .. no negativities/grudges against anyone ... he is indeed a true professional ... a true Aryan as defined in 'The Holy Geeta'

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 4:34 GMT)

All the best Dhoni. Go with 4 seamers. Drop Harbhajan & yuvraj singh.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 4:31 GMT)

I don't know whether the Indians are learning from the bowling lines of Anderson & Co. Most of their bowling against top Indian batsmen are fuller length deliveries going for lbw/bowled dismissals. Though India has them on mat @ 70/6 or something ... PK, Sreesanth & Ishant are not making them play enough deliveries. English batsmen are able to leave 3 deliveries easily per over & in remaining 3 they are getting a boundary ball due to inaccuracies ... Please please please take note of this India!

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 4:31 GMT)

All the best Dhoni & Team India!!!!We are with you. Come on get into your determined-fighting Mode. Show them what TEAM INDIA is.

Posted by AtticusFinch on (August 2, 2011, 4:30 GMT)

I've been hearing Dhoni repeatedly, ad nauseum, that the Indian Bowlers are "Tired". What is this excuse? These Cricketers are supposedly Top Athletes being paid Top Money to play Cricket. And its not like there are no breaks between tests or its not that they are playing everyday of the 5 days of the test. And they break down or get tired after one or two sessions of the first day. If these guys are tired, get some new faces who are not making so much money from Cricketing circuses and who will be "not tired" after 2 hours in a week.

Posted by c2ewego on (August 2, 2011, 4:29 GMT)

Media's remarks on Indian Team are not in good taste. Indian Team has played like champs for quite sometime and its only human if they failed once. Fed and Raffa also loose some but still champs in their own right.

Posted by Alexk400 on (August 2, 2011, 4:24 GMT)

Why blame fast bowlers when you keep ineffective Bhaji. He is good in indian condition. he is utterly useless in foreign pitches. Tell the truth. Accept the mistake and move on. Otherwise Dhoni and Fletcher & co keep repeating mistake and will go down 4-0 whether sehwag is there or not. You have to adjust what opposition throw at you. Yes we all know raina and yuvi can play short ball. But you are underestimation bresnan. I have seen him bowl incredible in world cup. He has knack of playing perfect killer ball for each batsman. His timing is perfect. I am 100000% sure raina will get out same way to bresnan. Anderson comes immediately for sachin and vvs. Bresnana will come when yuvi and raina bats. if sehwag play 2hr . Game will be in india's hand. if he gets out first ball then india goes down no matter what.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 4:00 GMT)

After the world cup...NO BODY is playing well..Dhoni for example is not backing up the wicket well. I think he is out of luck.. no statergy were tried by them against any of the batsmen. Sreesanth was not supported by any of his team mates. We are missing a good allrounder. Yuvaraj played the part of the allrounder when we won the worldcup. But now we are lacking a good bwling attack.Common India . Do it !

Posted by sircha on (August 2, 2011, 3:43 GMT)

If India can level the series from here, these guys will become legends. Best of luck, Dhoni.

Posted by Humdingers on (August 2, 2011, 3:22 GMT)

What a joke! Dhoni's advice: "Have belief in yourself and the team, in what you do". This coming from the "captain" who has not lead from the front! Inept batting, Dropped catches (when he has even bothered to try and go for the ball), unimaginative field strategies...etc. etc. Mark this day as the decline in Indian Test cricket. They may continue to do well in ODI's and perhaps 20-20 (although that is debatable). But can't see Indian Test cricket moving forward. Once the big three are gone, who can replace them? We will face the drought that WI and Aus are experiencing. I'm not all that convinced as yet of this English team. If they can win IN Sri Lanka and India - then they can be go from Good to Great. Until then, only the WI of the 80s and Steve Waugh's Aus team can hold that title.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 3:15 GMT)

I honestly hope for Team India's sake that Sehwag can get used to the English conditions ASAP. India does have the potential to beat this England side, and they can, but they've always been a step behind England, whether it's their infamous habit of 'not going for the kill' or the unexpected injuries, this is not the same side that snatched Australia's No. 1 status. Hopefully they can regroup, and draw this series. Despite the fact that , that looks highly unlikely at this point, who could've ever thought that Australia could've dropped down so quickly, or England improve so rapidly. England are clearly at their best in this series so far, and will continue to be. I just hope with the introduction of Sehwag, Zaheer,Gambhir back into the team,and the batting order going back to normal, India can bring out their best and truly clash with this England side. Then, we will have a great series on our hands.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 3:00 GMT)

Say what you will, it was a drubbing to say the least.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 2:54 GMT)

India will win next 2...go India Go.. SAchin will get his 100th century

Posted by ibbani on (August 2, 2011, 2:34 GMT)

I only hope MS keeps his words and the series goes 2-2 :(

Posted by wolf777 on (August 2, 2011, 2:33 GMT)

MSD, You need to have 5 bowlers with one of them being a fast/medium pace allrounder. For some inexplicable reasons, Indian selectors are ignoring Irfan Pathan who can easily fit the bill. Don't treat him as a front line bowler and then short change the bowling attack. He can bowl 12-15 overs a day and provide a valuable contribution to the other 3 fast/medium bowlers in places like England, SA and Australia. When playing in India he can easily fulfill the role of the third seamer with two spinners playing. Presence of Irfan Pathan as an allrounder will give you variation in your bowling and will keep your bowlers fresh. In situations like Broad-Swann partnership a new fresh bowling pair may come in handy. Tail enders are not used to these changes and will give away their wicket. On the batting front he is good enough to score more than few runs that are being contributed by the sixth batsman.

Posted by Sanj747 on (August 2, 2011, 2:31 GMT)

Caught out once in a while against short pitch bowling, Raina is caught iut all the time. His lack of technique together with Yuvraj is very clear. Where is Rohit Sharma begs the question. No bench strength at all from the Indian outfit. To say the IPL is unearthing new talent for test and 1st class cricket is a joke. The honeymoon was too long for India. Time to wake up and face the music.

Posted by 9ST9 on (August 2, 2011, 2:31 GMT)

in an age of mediocre cricketers india dominated the world scene, not because they were a great side but an average side with a bit of fortune, in foreign conditions and some exceptional individual performances, such as sreesanths bowling in SA and Ishanth Sharma's performances in Austraila. In home tests they completely dominated.

However the expectations are too high on them and now reality is showing. Dhoni alone cannot be blamed. Reality is India still have a long way to go and the BCCI and the supporters need to realize it, the players of course were aware of it all along.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 2:29 GMT)

The biggest villain of the whole debacle in the second test, in my opinion was the captain himself, getting out to irresponsible shots. Just on the basis of the one shot fishing outside the off stump and the no shot offered in the second innings, I would sack him from the team. Dhoni, the batsman has been on the wane for sometime now and I think he is losing the respect of his team.

Posted by piyo_thanda_jiyo_thanda on (August 2, 2011, 2:22 GMT)

Come on Dhoni bhaiya, keep the faith. We are with you. TEAM INDIA ROCKS ALWAYS!

Posted by tomar80 on (August 2, 2011, 2:13 GMT)

Dhoni said. "One of the big areas of concern is the lower-order batting..." does he believe upper order did alright? You dont win games on the strength of lower order batting. This was simply a failure of the famed batting lineup. I think bowlers did just fine except Harbanaj, given that bowling is not India's strength. Raina, Yuvraj, Dhoni, Mukund even Laxman they all looked miserable, absolutely terrified against bouncers, Yuvaraj didn't even want to bat, the umpire has to call him back! it was just sorry display. Poor fielding and questionable field placements did not help either.

Posted by nickcarter80 on (August 2, 2011, 2:12 GMT)

This is what I have said after the first test. "1 India is not the best team and they never have been. 2 Sachin Tendulkar is not a god. He is a just a good batsman who had the fitness to play for many years. 3. Dhoni is not the best captain; in fact he does not have the discipline to be even a great captain. Throughout the India team's tour of England these facts will be reiterated and proven. Let's wait and see as it happens." Indians fans now have to understand these realities and should not go on criticizing other teams. I see the comments put by most of the Indian fans are the most one sided comments in cricinfo. Please guys, the world has taught you a lesson. Keep in mind that India is not the only team in the world who plays cricket.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 1:49 GMT)

when you play in unknown conditions, and your luck also harsh on you, plus players lack the intent, this is what going to happen...lets wait and see what will happen when Gambhir-Sehwag pair rejoins to open innings and Zahir with the ball in 3rd test. i still sympathize Dhoni...

Posted by pepsii on (August 2, 2011, 1:20 GMT)

Now team to contentrate and try to draw the matches. Winning is not possible with this batting line up. We should not be "white washed (4-0)", so make sure to draw atleast one match.

Posted by Phaedrus on (August 2, 2011, 1:18 GMT)

Drop Bhajji, for Lord Ganesha's sake! And pick Amit mishra.

Posted by AvidCricFan on (August 2, 2011, 0:51 GMT)

Poor fielding, average bowling, and poor batting is the cause. Whatever Dhoni says, the younger players are not properly equiped to handle short stuff. Raina played short stuff like a deer caught in the headlight. The difference between WI and England is the quality of opposition. While India may be equipped to handle lessor quality teams, it will struggle against opposition like what England is now.

Posted by MeraBharatMahaan on (August 2, 2011, 0:18 GMT)

My question is when Dravid was batted one slot higher, it was natural everyone bats one slot higher in the batting order. Then, why didn't Sachin bat at number 3? Why was Laxma batted at 3? Why does Sachin always hide behind others? In one-days, he took a confrontational attitude to open the innings even breaking the successful pairing of sehwag and gambhir. But, why is is trying to hide behind in Tests? WHY? someone please explain me???

Posted by landl47 on (August 2, 2011, 0:17 GMT)

Dhoni needs to work on his own batting and wicket-keeping. Neither have been good in the series so far and his own struggles might be affecting his captaincy. However, at this point in the series, India's main difficulty is that England gets better as the games go on and India gets worse. England just seems fitter, tougher and better prepared than the Indian squad.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2011, 0:14 GMT)

Dhoni you are a fighter we know it you will come back with a Bang! If Virender Sehwag is 50% fit then go with him if he will be able to play 10 over he can destroy line and length of Anderson and Broad...... As you promote yourself in one day Cricket try the same in Test ....... you can do it we have beleif in you ..... you are best for us .

Posted by dilipm on (August 2, 2011, 0:06 GMT)

Notwithstanding the fact that some of India's key players like Sehwag,Gambhir and Zaheer were missing from the side India did not show much fight in either of the matches against a fully equipped English side!It was outbatted,outbowled and outfielded!With better application and more intensity the 2nd Test could have gone India's way. At 124 for 8, England was gasping for breath. Unimaginative,short bowling gave it the necessary oxygen to recover.At one stage India was 267 for 4 with Dravid & Yuvraj going strong.After Yuvraj's departure only 21 runs were added. If India could have scored 350 in that innings it would have put England under pressure. Opportunities were lost due to poor batting and bowling at crucial times. Overall Ishant,Praveen and Sreesanth did a good job but they needed support from someone like Harbhajan which did not come! Dhoni was a failure at a time when he could have taken initiative!The better team won!

Posted by Silloh on (August 2, 2011, 0:06 GMT)

Congrats to England ! Truly well deserved and professional performance by the entire team. Dhoni the Indian skipper needs to remain positive but honestly seems jaded and uninspiring in his leadership at the moment. Hopefully, the Indians will bounce back and it will not be a one way for the remaining tests. But, even with the return of the couple Indian players missing, I see no reason why England will not make a clean sweep and move to the # 1 position. India started slipping in the Caribbean and that fighting spirit unlike for England seem to be missing. What can the matter be ... suspect against pace ? What we do know, is that London bridge is certainly not falling.

Posted by SaravananIsTheBest on (August 2, 2011, 0:01 GMT)

Good news: Zak, Gauti & Sehwag lined up to join the playing XI. Time has come to see the best Indian XI who attained No.1 spot to secure it...

Posted by Nampally on (August 1, 2011, 23:45 GMT)

India was totally out played in every department of the game by England. India was #1 Test side because of its batting. Except for Dravid & to some extent Laxman, Indian batting looked #8. India's bowling is already #8. How can India bat in such a reckless manner and hope to beat England. Dhoni & Fletcher said before the test series started that playing in England has no problems since they already played in WI. This is the most naive statement of the century. England conditions are 100% different from those in WI. Firstly India needed at least 4 county matches before playing any tests.In future India should keep this in their schedule.Secondly India's opening Pair Sehwag & Gambhir, arguably the best in the World, were missing Without these 2 Indian middle order cannot function. Thirdly please retire Harbhajan. He is one wasted spot in the XI.Ashwin, Ojha, Mishra are all better spinners than Harbhajan.Zaheers injury was a big blow for India facing England at full strength @ home.

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