India v England, 3rd Test, Kolkata, 3rd day December 7, 2012

India's year of denial

India have spent 2012 making excuses for their poor Test performances. It is about time they told themselves some home truths

"We have seen in the last three Tests matches and even in England, there was a lot of grass and that helped their seamers. Once these people come to India we should not be hesitant in making turners, and that's where we would get to know whether they are mentally strong, and [what happens to] the kind of chit chat do they do when we go overseas and they talk about our techniques."
- Gautam Gambhir, January 22, 2012, Perth

Two days after India had lost by an innings inside three days at the WACA ground.

"We also won 2-0 in India."
- Virender Sehwag, January 28, 2012, Adelaide

Third day of the Adelaide Test, when a second whitewash in two away series was imminent.

"Why not [turning pitches]? We were given flattest of tracks during practice matches in England and Australia, and then suddenly presented with a green-top during the Tests. During practice matches, we would face those 120kmph bowlers …If they wanted to be fair to us, they could have provided us with same kind of tracks for practice matches, like what were used in Tests. Especially, when they knew that visiting teams get very less time to practice. Now they would be playing on turning tracks and definitely would know where they stand."
- Virat Kohli, October 27, 2012

Justifying the tactic of not letting England face any spin in the tour games before the start of the Test series, in the process imagining "green tops" in Australia and England

"We also need to consider that immediately after that series when England came to India, we beat them 5-0, which cannot be forgotten."
- Sachin Tendulkar, November 8, 2012

Before the start of this Test series, drawing comfort from an ODI series win last year

"One has to recognise the advantage of home conditions, and this applies across the board. So I don't think we should run down our players by saying we did not do well abroad. Other teams don't do well when they come to India. In England, except Rahul, the batting did not click. But in both England and Australia, we had super-fast pitches."
- N Srinivasan, December 4, 2012

Asking people to not say "we did not do well abroad"

"So what if we have lost a home Test? Not as if we have never won at home… It's not that we have lost the series."
- Gautam Gambhir, November 29, 2012

After the defeat in Mumbai when everything - pitch, toss, first-innings runs - was in their favour

"If you look at the records at this ground, India have played really well. The way the wicket is playing, I am confident our guys will do really well."
- Pragyan Ojha, today, Eden Gardens

After India have conceded a 193-run lead by end of day three with four wickets still in England's hand

Also today, Joe Dawes, India's bowling coach, told - well, who else - the BCCI in an interview that Zaheer Khan is one of the best six bowlers in the world, that Indian bowling is headed in the right direction, that he has begun the process of achieving the aim of developing a group of seven to eight fast bowlers who can be called upon any time. You can accuse the BCCI of many things, but it doesn't lack humour, as is evident through the timing of this piece.

One of these days, India will admit they have become an ordinary side. That currently they are arguably the worst bowling unit in the world, bar Bangladesh. That they are the worst fielding side in the world without any argument, which they kept on proving on the third day as Ishant Sharma dropped his third simple return catch in the fourth match he is playing this year. That the whitewashes in England and Australia didn't happen on doctored green tops. That a proud home record alone doesn't ensure future Test wins. That the ideal response to overseas batting failures is to work on techniques, and not to seek comfort in statistics at home. That no side won an away series with that kind of attitude.

When India admit that, they will start improving as a Test side. Until then, they can hope for a miracle to the tune of Kolkata 2000-01.

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • JazzKull on December 10, 2012, 12:47 GMT

    Tendulkar is the biggest liability.He has prolonged his career for 2-3 years at least ensuring dat we will never get to experiment with d no. 4 slot.say Sehwag coming down d order .Also Dhoni can't bat in Test cricket, that is apparent, so why pick him ?????He is even worse that a non-laying Davis Cup captain ! And his statement that I wont abandon d team as if he was doing us a big favour ! He has been party to Indi's most disgraceful period in Test Cricket ever .4-0, 4-0 and now 2-1 at home.. How can an average person like me see this blatant vested intersest of the BCCI and d public can't .Perhaps they r too buy worshipping their so called "GOD", another ridiculous habit our public has fallen into .But the fact of the matter is Dravid, Kumble and Laxman have been better servants of Indian cricket than he has been(only talking about contemporaries).No-one is even close to India's greatest batsman ever- GAVASKAR, or for that matter even Vishwanath, Kapil Dev rank much much higher!!!!!

  • on December 9, 2012, 8:48 GMT

    I'm so happy to see England wining........... Keep it up guys...

  • Flying_Turtle on December 9, 2012, 8:35 GMT

    Dont change India, stay the same. Laughing stock of world cricket you are and will be for a while yet.

  • Sinhaya on December 9, 2012, 8:19 GMT

    Good analysis indeed. These Indians are only interested in getting quick bucks through IPL. Country comes before IPL. High time IPL is shortened to no more than 4 weeks.

  • Nadush on December 9, 2012, 7:54 GMT

    "That currently they are arguably the worst bowling unit in the world, bar Bangladesh." That's funny. I thought it was a serious article.

  • kabe_ag7 on December 9, 2012, 7:31 GMT

    The current lot speaks with their mouths and not performances. I don't remember anybody indulging in faux bravado during the times of Ganguly and Kumble. Neither did they keep reminding of their past achievements. There is a distinct lack of steel.

  • on December 9, 2012, 7:03 GMT

    I think this article is quite harsh...India is yet a developing side and they fought for the match with all they had. They are a very good one day side as well. What my suggestion is they should pass a transition period...should more emphasize on shorter version of the game and I do believe they will develop. And calling them as the worst bowling side bar Bangladesh is not also fair...even as a upcoming cricketing power they grabbed 3 wickets of the might English team...give the kids some credit

  • on December 9, 2012, 6:59 GMT

    End of Sachin's era and Dhoni's era as test captain. Now team needs to be rebuilt for future Test matches. A solid opener like Rahane with an aggressive openor like Murali vijay is required. I do not see Kohli , Yuvraj, Raina or Rohit playing test cricket as do not seem to have the temperment for test cricket. We have to look out for Ambati Rayadu,Manoj tiwary and few other u-19 cricketers and groom them. Zaheer's also looks like not being the same, india now has to look out for faster bowlers with athleticism and fielding abilitiy from u-19 level. Wasim akram stating Indian quickes not bending their back on flat tracks says volumes about the fitness of indian speedsters. Bring some legendary sesst indian fast bowling coach and a spin coach like murlidharan else we are going to lose all games played in india as well

  • spiritwithin on December 9, 2012, 6:55 GMT

    @Paul Rone-Clarke,dont equate BCCI's money with cricket infrastructure,the grass root level seldom gets the kind of facilities which players gets in Aus & Eng,in domestic cricket the Ranji Teams barely has a professional physio and medics team etc,its only when the players gets selected in indian team that they gets good facilities with the indian team..also more number does'nt means quality bcoz quantity wont give u quality,so india may have more number of players but almost all r of same quality,so does'nt matter how many teams u make all will give u same results

  • sony_sr on December 9, 2012, 6:53 GMT

    Only one positive I can see in these loses is at least now we will make the inevitable changes (hoping so). Zaheer, ishant, harbhajan, ghambir and yuvraj shoul dbe dropped and they should be replaced with pankaj singh, shami ahmed, ravindra jadeja, abhinav mukund or jivanjot singh and manoj thiwary.

    sachin needs to be in team for atleast around 1 more year before this young team gets their feet firm in international cricket.

    many would argue that dhoni should also go. but I can't see any other guy who is good enough to replace dhoni as a captain. saha may be a better keeper, by dropping dhoni, we will lose a captain for whom there is no replacement as of now. also I think dhoni will perform better as a captain if we give him an young team.

    and teh main thing is we need to be patient, anyways its better to loss with a younger team than oldies.

  • JazzKull on December 10, 2012, 12:47 GMT

    Tendulkar is the biggest liability.He has prolonged his career for 2-3 years at least ensuring dat we will never get to experiment with d no. 4 slot.say Sehwag coming down d order .Also Dhoni can't bat in Test cricket, that is apparent, so why pick him ?????He is even worse that a non-laying Davis Cup captain ! And his statement that I wont abandon d team as if he was doing us a big favour ! He has been party to Indi's most disgraceful period in Test Cricket ever .4-0, 4-0 and now 2-1 at home.. How can an average person like me see this blatant vested intersest of the BCCI and d public can't .Perhaps they r too buy worshipping their so called "GOD", another ridiculous habit our public has fallen into .But the fact of the matter is Dravid, Kumble and Laxman have been better servants of Indian cricket than he has been(only talking about contemporaries).No-one is even close to India's greatest batsman ever- GAVASKAR, or for that matter even Vishwanath, Kapil Dev rank much much higher!!!!!

  • on December 9, 2012, 8:48 GMT

    I'm so happy to see England wining........... Keep it up guys...

  • Flying_Turtle on December 9, 2012, 8:35 GMT

    Dont change India, stay the same. Laughing stock of world cricket you are and will be for a while yet.

  • Sinhaya on December 9, 2012, 8:19 GMT

    Good analysis indeed. These Indians are only interested in getting quick bucks through IPL. Country comes before IPL. High time IPL is shortened to no more than 4 weeks.

  • Nadush on December 9, 2012, 7:54 GMT

    "That currently they are arguably the worst bowling unit in the world, bar Bangladesh." That's funny. I thought it was a serious article.

  • kabe_ag7 on December 9, 2012, 7:31 GMT

    The current lot speaks with their mouths and not performances. I don't remember anybody indulging in faux bravado during the times of Ganguly and Kumble. Neither did they keep reminding of their past achievements. There is a distinct lack of steel.

  • on December 9, 2012, 7:03 GMT

    I think this article is quite harsh...India is yet a developing side and they fought for the match with all they had. They are a very good one day side as well. What my suggestion is they should pass a transition period...should more emphasize on shorter version of the game and I do believe they will develop. And calling them as the worst bowling side bar Bangladesh is not also fair...even as a upcoming cricketing power they grabbed 3 wickets of the might English team...give the kids some credit

  • on December 9, 2012, 6:59 GMT

    End of Sachin's era and Dhoni's era as test captain. Now team needs to be rebuilt for future Test matches. A solid opener like Rahane with an aggressive openor like Murali vijay is required. I do not see Kohli , Yuvraj, Raina or Rohit playing test cricket as do not seem to have the temperment for test cricket. We have to look out for Ambati Rayadu,Manoj tiwary and few other u-19 cricketers and groom them. Zaheer's also looks like not being the same, india now has to look out for faster bowlers with athleticism and fielding abilitiy from u-19 level. Wasim akram stating Indian quickes not bending their back on flat tracks says volumes about the fitness of indian speedsters. Bring some legendary sesst indian fast bowling coach and a spin coach like murlidharan else we are going to lose all games played in india as well

  • spiritwithin on December 9, 2012, 6:55 GMT

    @Paul Rone-Clarke,dont equate BCCI's money with cricket infrastructure,the grass root level seldom gets the kind of facilities which players gets in Aus & Eng,in domestic cricket the Ranji Teams barely has a professional physio and medics team etc,its only when the players gets selected in indian team that they gets good facilities with the indian team..also more number does'nt means quality bcoz quantity wont give u quality,so india may have more number of players but almost all r of same quality,so does'nt matter how many teams u make all will give u same results

  • sony_sr on December 9, 2012, 6:53 GMT

    Only one positive I can see in these loses is at least now we will make the inevitable changes (hoping so). Zaheer, ishant, harbhajan, ghambir and yuvraj shoul dbe dropped and they should be replaced with pankaj singh, shami ahmed, ravindra jadeja, abhinav mukund or jivanjot singh and manoj thiwary.

    sachin needs to be in team for atleast around 1 more year before this young team gets their feet firm in international cricket.

    many would argue that dhoni should also go. but I can't see any other guy who is good enough to replace dhoni as a captain. saha may be a better keeper, by dropping dhoni, we will lose a captain for whom there is no replacement as of now. also I think dhoni will perform better as a captain if we give him an young team.

    and teh main thing is we need to be patient, anyways its better to loss with a younger team than oldies.

  • cricket__fan on December 9, 2012, 6:52 GMT

    The sad thing is that despite this humiliation, nothing will change with Indian cricket, BCCI and Indian cricketers. The simple fact is that most youngsters in India only want an "IPL" contract and nothing more. And as for BCCI, it is an organisation without any accountability which does not care for the game and is only interested in Money.

  • on December 9, 2012, 6:38 GMT

    Heard on TV that the curator of Eden - Mr Prabir Mukherjee will be relieved of his duties for making such a lovely sporting pitch conducive to batting as well as bowling... what is the world coming to....

    The challenge is not about creating "turners" to harness the opposition's weakness. the challenge is about winning on pitches conducive to the opposition, like England have done on this tour... when will they learn...

  • TaHirH on December 9, 2012, 6:34 GMT

    I am from Pakistan and you can understand how keen one can be and criical one can be about Indian cricket. Till 2000 Indian cricket has been defensive phsychology.Even in test cricket, they showed the level of defensive mindset and draw was always the objective. India lacked hunting and aggressive intent. Post 2000, I must say with Dhoni incharge that seemed to change for some time, however the whole infrastructure is not tuned for that. However the IPL and the over commercialization and over protection of players due to massive influence Indian management has on world cricket, the players become heros over night, they become over rich and 'fat cat' not to push harder for improvement. An ordinary fast bowler becomes a national celebrity. The indian media and cricketing pundits (both local and recruited from abroad) have only praise for the newly rich cricketor. As a result excellence is not emerging form India when it come to fast bowling and fielding.

  • on December 9, 2012, 6:33 GMT

    Potential will come to the fore when we motivate the guys and believe in them... not when you mistrust them...

  • on December 9, 2012, 6:32 GMT

    The loss @ Eden is not humiliating, it is just a part of the learning process... It is amazing what senior players say - Maninder Singh & K.Srikkanth... they are talking crap.... actually they lost more matches than the present Indian team....

    Once K.Srikkanth steps down as a selector, he thinks the captain has lost control - When he was the Chairman of selectors, India lost shamefully in England and Australia, in fact they lost all the tests - The captain was in control then...

    We don't need a postmortem or an operation as Maninder Singh says - remember the same captain won the T50 and limited over world cup...

    We have just lost Dravid, Laxman and Tendulkar (almost, i don't consider him a part of the team apart from psychological reasons, if they exist at all, he is no motivation when he doesn't score and he is no threat to the opposition if he keeps playing this way..) and it is a young team, playing with 10 players. Give them time....

  • criclight on December 9, 2012, 6:21 GMT

    Happy to see Tendulkar and bats like him in team, may they play few more years, and make others team happier.

  • indiasucksgobd on December 9, 2012, 6:14 GMT

    Come on sidarth you surely didn't have to mention bangladesh especially after their heroics with bat ball and in the field yesterday.they are young side and they are rapidly improving'.cricinfo please publish.PLEASE PUBLISH

  • on December 9, 2012, 6:09 GMT

    Good article. 1. Forget age, Sachin needs to be sacked on form. 2. Yuvraj and Kohli are limited overs players - Yuvraj have only once batted a whole day in first class cricket. 3. Had Laxman been around we would have won Mumbai. 4. To remember playing spinners, Indian batsmen have to play domestic cricket regularly. 5. Zak is pure Unfit. 6. Badri and Tiwary deserve a go just as Pujara did. 7. What is Duncan doing? 8. Dhoni hasn't batted well enough to inspire - his keeping was never good enough. 9. Talent is not enough 10. Ashwin is not consistent enough for a spinner.

  • on December 9, 2012, 5:56 GMT

    Monga is on the ball. Indian cricketers are a pampered lot and are currently trying to hide behind excuses. Mongia's description of them as the worst fielding side and arguably the worst bowling side is spot on. I would go further and add that they are an unfit side with an arrogant attitude. They rank 5th at present, but I would rate Sri Lanka, West Indies and perhaps even New Zealand and Bangldesh above them.

  • spinkingKK on December 9, 2012, 5:50 GMT

    Does anyone realise that it is the batting which let the Indian team down again? It was a batting track and bowlers have done the right thing by waiting for the batsmen to make the mistake once they have settled. But, our batsmen, just didn't have the tooth to fight it out in the middle. Sehwag and Gambhir batted well in the second innings. That's what they should have done in the first innings and seize the initiative. Guys like Kohli and Yuvraj are not doing. We may be witnessing the decline of Pujura as well, by the look of it. Only Tendulkar, with a sword on his back, fought it out. So, please place an axe on all of these guys and they will perform. Give them two innings notice and tell them if they fail in two innings in a row, they will be dropped.

  • Mcroos on December 9, 2012, 5:46 GMT

    simple England is the better team than India now ....also i would like to mentioned Dhoni is not a good captain in team selection ... its almost india is lost the series now even they win the last match England is the best in this series ........ weldone England

  • on December 9, 2012, 5:34 GMT

    India need to face facts: Where they always had Sachin, VVS and Dravid to rely on they've lost VVS and Dravid and Sachin should retire as he's doing more damage to his record than good! He's avg 28 over the last 12 months and 38 over the last two years. This is a far cry from what he used to be. Also they do not have bowlers!! To say that Khan is in the top 6 in the world is a joke!! He has a bowling avg of 39.5 and a strike rate of 80.6 over the last 12 months!!

  • on December 9, 2012, 5:31 GMT

    false assurances is quite a habit it seems

  • bopsy777 on December 9, 2012, 4:55 GMT

    I dont know where this sense of entitlement comes from in the current indian setup. In order to be considered a good cricket team, you need to perform in all conditions - something India has not done in a long time. Some blame has to be aimed towards the BCCI as they only opted for one tour match before the Australia series. How can players acclimate to new conditions with just one game, especially when Tendulkar didnt even play? A similar Australian bowling attack took the 80 wickets required to beat India 4-0 in about 16 days of cricket, yet they could not get anywhere near enough wickets to knock over South Africa on home soil 10 months later. Says plenty about where Indian cricket is at the moment. Pujarra, Kohli and Ohja are the future of Indian test cricket but obviously the latter two need an attitude adjustment. Change of captain or coach maybe?

  • on December 9, 2012, 4:49 GMT

    A Blunt & Brilliant article... Siddharth. Good Work. If only BBCI, players have the spine to even read such truths leave alone take any action.

    So..What's the latest excuse Team India ?? That England had better Willows and Hands to play professional cricket. A loss is fine, that is sport. You win, you lose. But being OUTPLAYED in back to back tests, that too in your own Backyard !! --- all the while denying the truth staring in your face is anything but "Sport". Oh we all have the much more important IPL to play for. Who cares about Test cricket right. Well just invite Bangladesh every alternate months and feast your superstar egos and statistics.

    Well Done England - You brought the game to India years ago... now you are teaching India how to play in Indian conditions.. "History repeats itself"...

  • on December 9, 2012, 4:45 GMT

    India seriously missing Laxman and dravid their middle order expose against quality english seam fast & spin bowling

  • r0ketman on December 9, 2012, 4:41 GMT

    " That currently they are arguably the worst bowling unit in the world, bar Bangladesh." Really? At least BD is winning in home conditions, and their bowlers are capable of restricting India's so called "Panzer" battling line up at home enough where their batsmen can hammer the Indian bowling attack all over the field, forgot Asia cup already? Why would a Cricinfo writer make a statement similar to the arrogant Flat track bully Sehwag? And where is Sehwag's big talk now? BD still looking ordinary to you? Better look at your own team first!!!

  • hems4cric on December 9, 2012, 4:37 GMT

    I guess the blame lays with us fans as much as with players and BCCI. We are the people who give the BCCI that attitude by giving them the money through TV revenue. We need to stop watching these incompetent guys and make sure that TV ratings fall so that sponsors think twice before putting their money on these guys. We need to stop accepting these less than mediocre players.. but will that happen? I guess not, we are a crazy nation worshipping individuals than the team. If only we could move our passion from the players to the team..

  • on December 9, 2012, 4:36 GMT

    Best appraisal of Indian Test Team at present coming from their own words..

  • Finnmeister on December 9, 2012, 4:31 GMT

    So, it's over. One fascination remains. What will the Indian players and board say now? It's always been the eternal and dependable litany of Indian cricket after a loss. The Whinge. Playing overseas, doctored pitches, injuries, weather, losing the toss, racism, etc. ... I am more looking forward to Dhoni's after-match summation than anything else thus far. There just CAN be no more excuses. What will he say? Will an Indian finally say ... wait for it ... ''they're better than us''. Hey, the rest of the world has known it, well, forever ... will it finally be acknowledged, with no possible recourse to any excuse?

  • on December 9, 2012, 4:29 GMT

    Thankfully is not run by India, else this article would have never made it out! Very well written....

  • on December 9, 2012, 4:13 GMT


    1. Rahane or Manoj Tiwari to replace Yuvraj. 2. SRT to get his long over due farewell. 3. Dhoni to get his due farewell from Test arena. Karthik for future. 3.Gambhir to be announced as future captain. 4. Bhajji to replace Ashwin as a bowler. Ashwin to replace Kohli at 5. 5. Sehwag to bat at 4. Kohli to open. 6. Yadav to play. He can take catches off his bowling even if half fit.

  • Finnmeister on December 9, 2012, 3:47 GMT

    Such utter humiliation. Has there ever been a greater? We all knew India ''ranked No.1'' was a farce on the back of a heavy-loading of home matches against rebuilding teams, and it would only mean something if they then beat England, South Africa and Australia away. Not only did that not happen (and HOW!) this girlish whining about how things would be different in India. As if THAT wasn't bad enough, they then became the ONLY team not ashamed enough to actually beg of their Board and their groundsmen to actively doctor pitches. And THEN, at home, on doctored pitches, they WIN all their tosses. And they're not even playing the number one in the world. And, oh dear ... What utter shame. Thank the Gods the true teams of men are at the top - SA, England and Australia.

  • on December 9, 2012, 2:46 GMT

    When is the next IPL? we need to organize one immediately if we lose this series. IPL is great, it always ends up with an Indian team winning it. The unprecedented success of this year's IPL was flabbergasting and at the same time very enlightening.

  • on December 9, 2012, 2:34 GMT

    Mr Dhoni & BCCI seems badly under estimated England, India has to accept that their batting in last 4 innings & overseas series, let them down after winning the toss and not scoring enough to have any pressure on English batting though bowlers were ordinary as well, Mr Dhoni is more interested to critisize umpiring when BCCI & skipper doesnt want to use DRS no one can help you and like to dictate his terms on prepartions of Pitches, now whats happen you are losing in your own backyard, eden garden wicket is quite sporting, Mumbai was a sharp turner,now english people has a right to say " England ne India ki band baja dee"

  • ccrriicc on December 9, 2012, 2:07 GMT

    Englans looks good - why because india is so very very poor. Remove Tendulkar, Dhoni, Yuraj Singh, Zaheer Khan,Gautamghambhir (in that order) and finally the ignorant BCCI (Srinivasan's etc) and you will see India will fly. It is sad that this english side is beating the hell out of India at home - this indian side is pathetic!

  • on December 9, 2012, 2:05 GMT

    Serious, yes serious changes should me made. Losing to England and Australia 4-0 was not fluke. Our middle order does not perform as before. bowling is week( I miss Kumble). The IPLs do not help the cause. If we are going to lose 3-1 then at least get some some young guns like Rahane, Sharma.... Somebody..

  • on December 9, 2012, 1:57 GMT

    Good article. Hope people take notice. IMHO, Indians do not benefit from the attitude manifest in the "pungi" ad that was prominent in Amdabad, but faded away thereafter. You only motivate the opponent by an open display of arrogance. You may notice that most US sports teams show extraordinary respect to opponents -outside the arena, even when they know that they will thrash them inside the arena. I have also seen top tennis / golf players being so humble even when they win match after match...

  • RandyOZ on December 9, 2012, 1:55 GMT

    How embarassing do these comments look now. Great article thanks Sid!

  • I-Like-Cricket on December 9, 2012, 1:55 GMT

    I don't think most of you understand the impact of this article and most of the 270+ comments (as I type) but the Indian cricket team (and BCCI) has started to make me believe that most Indians are just really that ignorant. I am honestly glad to say that you all have proven me wrong, let's hope that this starts to get through to your selectors.

  • on December 9, 2012, 1:19 GMT

    Where are the Sachin bashers now ? They talked about the young generation being MSD and others. Our bowling is well below par and our batting horrible. . . .Who is accountable for such a loss? I do not think anything will happen after England goes back. People will forget and wait for the next defeat...Not to think that the current gen of cricketers make more money than yester year ones.

  • on December 9, 2012, 1:08 GMT

    To the writer: Please do not compare Indian team's Bowling (or matter of fact anything) with Bangladesh team. It is a insult to us. Thanks.

  • sfarazi on December 9, 2012, 0:46 GMT

    At least Bangladesh don''t deny their bowling incompetencies and are actually trying to improve their game in all aspects. Hopefully India will allow themselves to evolve and move on from those Dravid, Laxman and Kumble days.

  • on December 9, 2012, 0:45 GMT

    Finally, someone admits the pitches in England and Australia were NOT 'green-tops'. They were good test wickets. Dhoni got the square turner in Mumbai he pleaded for, and nearly lost by an innings. This IS a mediocre team, albeit with good young batsmen like pujara playing, and rahane waiting in the wings for SRT to finally retire. The massive problem lies with the bowling; I don't care what Boycott says. That is how I see it.

  • jonesy.2 on December 9, 2012, 0:33 GMT

    why are all the good cricketers in england, i call the poms as i am an aussie and its my duty lol.i wish cooky was an aussie as he put put us to the sword hes done the same to india but he was a plum been run out but he woul have to be run out as that was the only was india would have taken his wicket.

  • BHARATLIFE on December 9, 2012, 0:27 GMT

    I do not know!!!!! England were a bit lucky in England (2nd Test remember we had them 128-8 and were 215 odd for 4 in the first inning @Trent Bridge). It is not like we are extremely bad, but we are not poor either. But this lack of admitting defeat, is not good. Sachin in Germany "... we lost in Australia only , because of one or two good partnerships ....." ,(did he forget the WC 2011 Semifinal ??? Where India were "gifted" cat's lives) that kind of attitude from a senior statesmen,is egoistic.(Kohli okay young blood a little bit immature , still learning , even he dropped his ego to give Cook a pat on the back in Mumbai). I still think BCCI is Mumbai baised, not all players are given equal treatment, Dravid, Laxman and Ganguly always fighting for their place/team while this so called "god" is credited for everything, now everybody sees the results without those three. Atleast we should identify who are the "real-performers". At least we should have the humility...

  • cloudmess on December 9, 2012, 0:26 GMT

    I think the biggest misconception of the past 18 months has been to blame the batsmen (forcing 2 of India's best, and possibly now a 3rd into premature retirement), without addressing the real issue - the lack of fitness and discipline among the bowlers, who keep conceding well above par scores. What has happened to Harbajan and Zaheer? These two should still be world class bowlers, but one is out of the team, and the other turned up overweight in England last year and has been reduced to a county trundler. Even Ishant should do so much better, he is a dangerous bowler at his best. India's current team reminds me a little of England's in the mid 1980s - they had stars like Botham, Gower, Lamb, Gatting, more famous for partying and drinking (and eating) than for working at their disciplines and physical conditioning - and in the second half of the 80s, during this so-called 'golden' age, the rest of the world patiently queued up, one by one, to give us a good drubbing. Even Holland.

  • on December 9, 2012, 0:22 GMT

    Duncan Fletcher must be accountable for India's demise (surely). How many series has he now lost as coach of India and England? How many series have his teams been whitewashed? I would sure love to be paid as much as he is for such mediorce performances. India have regressed completely under his guidance after the great work by Wright and Kirsten.

  • cloudmess on December 9, 2012, 0:09 GMT

    Maybe England and Australia have just played well too... In any case, it's like India have already lost this series, when they could still win the final test.

  • on December 8, 2012, 23:55 GMT

    pak is gonna own india :'(

  • Kizz23456 on December 8, 2012, 22:40 GMT

    Great article. India need to stop making excuses and perform well in other countries. I hope they loose this series and get belted by the media, that they got beaten at home. It was so embarrassing see them loose,in England and Australia. They need to do there jobs well, they are way to overpaid.If they don't start performing, AUS will smash them when they go to india

  • on December 8, 2012, 22:29 GMT

    A shame that out of1billion population, Indian selectors are so closed minded and selfish as to stick with the old guys. India probably should be top but untill petty politics is taken out of the great game, im afraid the best talent will not be on show. Tendulkar should step down, so should gambhir and khan. Kholi needs to step up. So much talent in India, why cant we see it?

  • Nerk on December 8, 2012, 21:45 GMT

    Good article. Noted that Dravid and Laxman are conspicuous by their absence in these comments.They never made excuses for their performances, and if India want to go forward they have to stop making excuses. They lost in Australian and England because they played poorly. They lacked preparation and they were cocky. They came touting that they were number one in the world, and totally failed to back that up. The fact is India has good players, particularly batsmen. But they talk too much. They should realise that talk is cheap. It is walking the talk that is the hard part.

  • LindenW on December 8, 2012, 21:36 GMT

    What an excellent article. As an English fan part of the rise from the bottom of the rankings to the top 1/2 was a acceptance of a revamp of grass roots/coaching etc. Eventually this approach will blossom, India has has aslow decline over a few years now in terms of Test cricket, hopelessly falling back on the stat that few no/few teams win in India, now that myth has been put to the sword. There are no more excuses!

  • on December 8, 2012, 21:27 GMT

    It is shameful to see that even senior players like sachin made such comments. They deserve this humiliation. Nowhere to hide now. The problem is, captains like ganguly, Dravid & kumble were passionate about and took pride in winning overseas games and they rubbed their passion to their teammates. That's how we drew series in Australia and that's how Dravid won series in England and became the first Indian captain to win a test in south Africa. I don't remember them complaining about too fast pitches at Perth or wanderers. Dhoni has created a bunch of cry babies who have no passion, just excuses. Dhoni made them believe that cricket is a 12 man game, 12th man being the pitch. He forgot that pitch is nothing but a piece of land.

  • Alexk400 on December 8, 2012, 21:23 GMT

    I always think if you have good leader , team follows him. Dhoni lost completely what brought his all the great accolades and become egomaniac after world cup. Basically players are not playing for him. Captain is as good as team. I think reverse is true as well. We have non performing egomaniac captain who want to put blame on everyone except himself. He quick to put blame on openers but his wicket keeping is shoddy and test batting is abysmal. That said 60% of blame goes to duncan can fletcher. Once Duncan took over indian team slide to bottom came off Asking indian player about why india losing is like asking thief to guard the bank. They will not look at mirror because what they see will be ugly , so they all come out with excuses. Even N srinivasan bought the team mumbo jumbo excuse in his interview in cricinfo. For me i drop gambhir , yuvi , dhoni and zaheer khan immediately along with duncan fletcher.

  • RandyOZ on December 8, 2012, 21:22 GMT

    This battle of the minnows is incredibly boring to watch. Two average teams slogging it out on dead pitches. No wonder the crowds arent there.

  • Jaggadaaku on December 8, 2012, 21:17 GMT

    What Indian so called greats are doing? When they come to bat blind fans and the audience give them standing ovation, and they don't survive for more than 10 balls. However, whenever needs, Indian each tailender survives more than 40 balls. Last 2 foreign tours(ENG and AUS), when they lost the series comprehensively, the captain Dhonku said they had busy schedule; that is the reason, they couldn't even fight and couldn't even draw any test. WOW, what a reason! and Indian fans believed him. When this series starts, Indian team wasn't busy; moreover, the pitch maker created the pitch on Mr. Cold's(Dhonku) instruction, so he and his full of so called greats can defeat ENG comprehensively, and can take the revenge of ENG tour. What a day dreamer of Indian captain! Gambhir made 3 figure in January 2010, since then, in 47 innings, he made 2 figure score about 10 times, and some of them near 50. Bowler Ashwin carries the test avg. higher than Kohli, Yuvi, Dhonku, Raina, Vijay.

  • sleepy1660 on December 8, 2012, 20:59 GMT

    "Currently they are arguably the worst bowling unit in the world, bar Bangladesh."--you dared saying this one a day when Bangladesh, with their so-called "worst bowling attack" clinched a series against current World T-20 champs. We expect more sensible comments from a Cricinfo editor than we do from that arrogant snob, Sehwag. Before, the start of the series he irrelevantly said that English wickets are not as cheap as the Bangladeshis. You know, Cricket is a glorious game that severly punishes arrogants. See- whose wickets look cheaper now(bar Ashwin)?

  • citizenkc on December 8, 2012, 20:59 GMT

    Thanks for this piece. The Emperor has no clothes. India is indeed in a state of denial. Lakhs are being spent on Duncan Fletcher. What has he accomplished? We've spent the last year and a half making excuses. Dhoni has become the master of the excuse. Face the truth! Our bowling attack is pathetic; our batting is in decline; worst of all, the selectors seem not to have a clue. Where is the pride? To lose at Eden Gardens. What a shame. The same ground where we beat Andy Roberts and the Windies, pulled off a brilliant feat against the invincible Aussies, made South Africa look ordinary. Weep, oh ye heroes of the past!

  • on December 8, 2012, 20:58 GMT

    The BCCI and the players live in the IPL dream. They are more interested in the IPL. We should remember that right after the England and Australia whitewashes the IPL was conducted and everyone forgot the drubbing. Now that India is faltering in test series again the drubbing comes back in the mind.

    Its not just the BCCI or the players but also the media who don't really wish to focus on the real plight of our cricket team. As long as priorities remain elsewhere for both the players and the admin with the watchdog preferring to snore in slumber Indian cricket will continue to remain static like this.

  • disco_bob on December 8, 2012, 20:48 GMT

    "When India admit that, they will start improving as a Test side.", I cannot agree with this. India would never admit their past lame excuses were exactly that, delusions. And even if they perchance did admit it, that in itself would not automatically mean they would improve.

    I think the attitude whereby the rest of the world enjoys a bit of schadenfreude at India's expense is brought on solely by the abuse of power by the BBCI and their arrogant money grubbing ways as well as their neglect of Test cricket in general and fostering of all dancing T20 charades.

  • luvcricket_new_gen on December 8, 2012, 19:39 GMT

    The players should read this article. They should admit that their technique and quality has deteriorated over the past 1.5 years since the WC. No excuses on pitches, past records. And avoid schoolboy stuff like not giving England spinners during their practice matches, asking for square turners (well our batsmen cannot play quality spin). The board needs good ppl who can be pros.

  • James.The.Ripper on December 8, 2012, 19:30 GMT

    All I want to say is in this quote: "The first step to finding a solution is to admit that there is a problem"

  • itsthewayuplay on December 8, 2012, 19:25 GMT

    Interesting to hear many Indians on here agree with Monga and also saying that India is an ordinary team. I'm afraid India has a long way to go to reach the standard of ordinary. India struggled in the last 2 home series against both WI and NZ and only won because of the absence of DRS and some truly shocking umpiring. A long time ago Wasim Akram said that the Indians don't have the fire in the belly. After that came Dravid and VVS, Ganguly and Kumble and to a lessor extent Zaheer. With 3 of these gone and 1 in currently indifferent form, this current crop of players who are guaranteed their places in the side only their biryani in their overfed bellies.

  • KukaSekhon on December 8, 2012, 19:15 GMT

    Enough is enough. This team BCCI is a joke like it's politician and businessman owners and managers

  • AnchitB on December 8, 2012, 19:09 GMT

    I think we all have very short memory...Once this team stars winning in ODI's we will forget about the test debacle.. I believe BCCI arrange Indian team matches very smartly... remember West Indies series was sandwiched between eng and Aus tour, series with pakistan was arranged as if BCCI knew what England can do to us....They wanted Indian team to win few matches before Eng is back for ODI's, every now and then series with Sri Lanka is arranged so that we can win few matches. That's why despite being big Indian supporter I want India to loose to Pakistan and then to Eng in ODI's, maybe this will force BCCI to use their brain in right direction...and rather than planning Indian matches smartly they will try to bulid solid INdian team...

  • PanGlupek on December 8, 2012, 19:08 GMT

    Glad to see so many Indian fans in agreement with this article. Ever since the 4-0 defeat to England, right up until the the 2nd test this series, the fans seem to have been buying this rubbish coming out of the players & official's mouths, judging by the remarks from posters on other articles.

    Hopefully, now that thier own fans are voicing dissent at these lame excuses, people will stop making them & start doing something to change. If they lose this series 3-1, it might be a massive blessing in disguise!

  • Cpt.Meanster on December 8, 2012, 19:07 GMT

    Hey Sid, any way you can get these sets of quotes, frame them and hand them over to the authorities in Nagpur ? I want EVERY Indian player to read them and hang their heads in shame and guilt. They have let down INDIA and it's passionate fans BIG TIME. It's a betrayal of enormous proportions. The crowd at the Eden Gardens were still chanting "India, India" inspite of a toothless performance by the team. GOD, the people of India deserve so much better. Please make arrangements to have these quotes sent to every member of the Indian team, especially Mr. Tendulkar.

  • MWaqqar on December 8, 2012, 18:59 GMT

    A good team and good players can play well anywhere and any kind of pitch. All this talk of home and away and favorable pitches smacks of a weak team.

  • asiacricket1234 on December 8, 2012, 18:53 GMT

    Sachin's comment shocked me :O Really respect that guy but was he trying to compare a test series lost with a ODI series win??? Seriously after playing cricket for 23 years you donno the difference between ODI & Test :O???

  • on December 8, 2012, 18:43 GMT

    Such stupid reactions coming from players is bigger worry than batting collapses or bowling ineptitude or fielding lapses. This is clearly an attitude problem, that air of being indispensible and living in a cocoon of comfort of home conditions - slow, deteriorating pitches! But all these words have to be eaten back now! High time BCCI takes stern actions against such moronic replies. We were a great team in 2011 and now within a year and half are staring at the barrel! Shame! I think first to be in the shooting line should be such players who make excuses for their failures, who comfort themselves with past achievements. Its just worrying that all seem to have come under this same roof of complacency.

  • on December 8, 2012, 18:42 GMT

    In every word of that piece, I felt the deep pain and hurt of being an Indian fan right now. Well written, Siddarth.

  • on December 8, 2012, 18:28 GMT

    The Indian cricket team have lost the plot, and it's not just the current team which are to blame for this consistent mediocrity! Whenever there is a mediocre performance (which is quite frequent nowadays), ex-cricketers, commentators and ofcourse the current batting line up been quick to blame the bowling department. Whilst I admit that our blowing is shabby at best, maybe it's time to admit that our batting just as bad. The team are in denial, and much of this denial stems from the captain's attitude. I used to admire Dhoni, but recently feel that he's got too big for his own boots....I say this not because India have lost (that is a part and parcel of any sport) but because the captain current lacks (or has decided to hide) any small iota of humility

  • ishan_t on December 8, 2012, 18:15 GMT

    Wow, I can't believe a site of your calibre will post articles like these. Stop giving into the media hype for a few extra page views.

    Yes, India has been disappointing in the last 12 months, but that doesn't mean that they are an ordinary side. The spinner trio of Harbajan, Ashwin and Ojha are world class. You/media raved about them no more than 3 weeks ago. The batsmen in Sehwag, Gambhir and Tendulkar are no short of brilliant, no one can argue that. Kohli and Yuvraj definitely need more experience which will bring in the required patience that a Test match commands.

    Mind you, England is arguably the nest Test side in the world. It's not New Zealand or West Indies that we are performing badly against. No good has ever come out of being cynical. It's a game, some is bound to lose. It sucks that India has been in that situation more than we would like. Also, no one can argue that today, this is the best Test side at our disposal. So we have to work with what we have.

  • on December 8, 2012, 18:14 GMT

    The art of Self-Aggrandizement is not lost to Indians as a society. It is not only Cricket, you talk to most Indians today, they consider themselves as the God's gift to the earth. It has become a national trait. Dhoni is trying to intimidate curators and umpires to Team India's 12th, 13th and 14th players. About 4 controversial decisions in Kolkata tests have all gone in favor of India. It seems that Tucker and Dharmasena are intimidated by Dhoni. I must say India is bringing Cricket to a new low.

  • mannan_ma on December 8, 2012, 18:12 GMT

    All those quotes from indian players and the bcci president are nothing but lame excuses.The current series proves the point. Dhoni and the selectors should atleast now have the guts to see the writing on the wall.Drop every non performing player. Sachin is playing on the basis of his grand exploits in the past and so is zaheer. Gambhir,Kohli and yuvraj are faring no better.Why was dinda not given a chance.Why was manoj tiwary or Rahane not given a chance.No point in dwelling on the past.Drop all the players named and bring in Badrinath, dinda, rahane, manoj tiwary,vijay and there are many more who can be given a chance.Above all Dhoni needs to change his rigid attitude.Last chance for him.

  • on December 8, 2012, 18:11 GMT

    Well, we got drubbed. Let's have separate team for Test. Its a specialization. Its up to the cricketer to perform better and move up. I believe test player is highest level followed by 50/50, then 20/20. Test player need to be paid more for match considering the lack of test matches. Any thoughts?

  • on December 8, 2012, 18:02 GMT

    Wouldn't be surprised one bit if Pakistan beat India soon. Tedulkar, Yuvraj, Zaheer, Ashwin and Dhoni must go. Gambhir needs to stop running out other batsmen. Unless there is a change in the selectors and long-term thinking by the BCCI, India will not proaper anytime soon. Give the young blood a chance to learn for the future instead of persisting with the oldies who are not goodies any longer.

  • on December 8, 2012, 17:58 GMT

    Tendulkar cannot play pace or spin anymore. Please retire already. Yuvraj is played as a batsman - there are others far superior - heck I'd give Rohit Sharma a chance with his spin bowling - what about Irfan Pathan? Dhoni and Duncan don't have a clue. Gambhir keeps running his mates out. Ashwin is a one day and T20 specialist - would have preferred Bhajji, Chawla. Why can't Indian selectors pull their heads out of Tendular's ass and give the likes of Tiwary, Sanjeev Sharma, Rahane and others a go? India's bowling is the weakest of any Test playing nation. Start creating pitches in India to help pace bowlers. If India want to succeed in the near future, they need to groom the youth. Heck we can't win with the oldies so why not lose with youngens who will pay off dividends in the future?

  • Inducker on December 8, 2012, 17:43 GMT

    I think Dhoni is an average player. Not a great wicketkeeper. An average batsman. How good a captain? He manages to keep India together and probably does the captaincy job better than anyone else but doesn't seem to inspire the new generation. I think the problem with Indian cricket is that they don't seem hungry to win probably because they are celebrities at home with out trying which is why they don't seem to care about winning anywhere else. There is the big daddy Indian cricket board which because it has all the money thumb noses at the rest of world cricket. I would bet as long there is hero worship at home and the grounds are full the board is quite happy. Absolutely rediculous they get away without DRS. India should take lessons from South Africa how to use the DRS. Petersen would have been out LBW in England's first innings with the DRS and India might not be losing this test match.

  • AzAb12754 on December 8, 2012, 17:34 GMT

    Siddarth Monga clearly has issues with Bangladesh when I read that 'bar' bit but thats because he didn't mention Zimbabwe who obviously have a worse bowling attack than India. By the way Indian fans, I have no problem with any Indian players well with the exception of Sehweg think they're a great team. I just like to say to Siddarth Monga that Bangladesh will beat India many more times especially when your top experience older players are retiring and getting older by the minute whereas the Bangladesh team have the youngest and maturing now. Unlike India they are even starting to groom in more young players like Anamul Haque. Really feel bad for players coming up like Unmukt Chand who still has to wait.

  • on December 8, 2012, 17:27 GMT

    Remove Dhoni as captain, then this team will perform well. How can a wicket keeper be captain for so long. it should be a talatented batsman or a bowler. The behavior of dhoni after winning the last world cup has changed the attitude of the team. At the heart of the heart, no player supports / accepts Dhoni as captain.The way he bahved at Sachin Tandulkar after world cup made all this misunderstanding. After winning the cup just one good performance in the final , he has ignored Tandulkar by not inviting him to hold the cup. Mr. Dhoni was hinding somewhere, it was Kholi and other aptly invited Tandulkay to hold the cup. He is very egoist person. We would lost in semifinals to Pakistan had Tandulkar not made 80 runns. I am a viewer felt that that is going cost haevily on the team and it had happened. Best thing now is make Gambir captain, so that he will give his best or alternatively Sehwag. These two enjoy support of team members because of their international fame as batsmen.

  • CaptainKool on December 8, 2012, 17:14 GMT

    It is a bitter truth. Whole team needs change when team starts to lose in home conditions.

  • S.Jagernath on December 8, 2012, 16:55 GMT

    So the pitches that were severly covered with grass were not greentops?what is Monga talking about?India do not have the worst bowling attack around,the attack seemed a lot better than New Zealand's & the West Indies & its surely better than Sri Lanka's rubbish attack.

  • on December 8, 2012, 16:45 GMT

    India is either trying kill the test format or waiting to go below New Zealand in rating before acting. Good thing Dravid and Laxman reitred otherwise this series would have been another whitewash. Now, time to axe almost everyone and start afresh. Axe Dhoni as captain. Forcibly retire the batting Sachin and the bowling Sachin. Rest Sehwag, Gambhir, Dhoni, Ashwin, Ojha for a year. Irfan would be better than Zaheer these days.

  • stormy16 on December 8, 2012, 16:15 GMT

    No doubt touching a few nerves this article but its true. Like it or not India have gone about their business with a lot of big talk and you can only do that if you are actually very good. I get the feeling India assumes some of the financial strength it enjoys automatically entitles them to quality cricket on the field and of course a larger than life attitude. In short nothing is bigger than the game and everything must be proven on the field. Its time for India to wake up and smell the roses.

  • JustAnotherJoe on December 8, 2012, 16:10 GMT

    We all know that the press conference statements are a charade. As long as we have these ex-players who are "analysts of the game", working hand in glove with BCCI and placating these over-rated players, nothing will change. This mafia will continue on but this type of ineptitude is perfectly acceptable in our society.

  • on December 8, 2012, 16:03 GMT

    The only thing I would like to point out is that Bangladesh are more than likely a better bowling side in subcontinent condition than India right now.

  • bumsonseats on December 8, 2012, 15:48 GMT

    its nothing to do with the coach he picked england out of the doldrums. selecting guys he saw in county cricket that he saw as something special. he not had the same grip of selection or non selection that the ecb gave him he was always very much a hands on coach.i expect that he will get the chop and the blame from the bcci. as to the selection of ST for what i guess will be the whole of the english series im not sure what he feels he gives the team as a player but the bcci and the acb as with ponting, i guess the cupboard is bare.

  • on December 8, 2012, 15:40 GMT

    Spot on! Well done Sidharth Monga to capture these facts! I am a Sri Lankan, But i feel sorry for the subcontinent players failing in tests, like India losing in India to "England" and Sri Lanka losing to "New Zealand" i think the main reason is too much of T20 Cricket and ODIs India and SL play, they don't tune back in their technique enough to play Test Cricket hence get beaten in their own backyard! I'm predicting a nightmare for SL in Australia this season unless they tune their technique in TESTS! Cheers!

  • youknow on December 8, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    nice article Sid! nothing is this much wrong with this Indian team, just minus the media, etc. hype and it will look like a normal team.

  • s3ns3 on December 8, 2012, 15:34 GMT

    How about an article on predictions by Glenn McGrath???

  • Sun25 on December 8, 2012, 15:28 GMT

    It remains to be seen whether the new selection committee will finally wield the axe and make wholesale changes in the team. We need a team of youngsters, but led by a man with experience who will command the respect of all. IMHO the person to lead the revival of India's fortunes is none other then Kumble, probably still the best bowler in the country. Time to call an end to careers of SRT and Zak, and for Gambhir to go back to domestic cricket. Sehwag to move down to number 4, new openers and number 6. From the bowlers, only Ojha has done enough to retain his place and Yadav, if fit.

  • on December 8, 2012, 15:20 GMT

    Whole world knows how Indian batting has let their team down in abroad and people in India were over-estimating that thing, letting it be their tradition. They had always something to argue about in abroad like "Ah, they're making pitches, which doesn't suit India" and other many things. I would like to congratulate England team for their brilliant performance in this series. It was just imnpossible for them to return into the series after being totally demolished by Indians.

    Just waiting for MS Dhoni and other Indian team members's next arguement about this loss.

    Good luck finding one, Indian ;)

  • WAKE_UP_CALL on December 8, 2012, 15:13 GMT

    ROFL ..Srinivasan is funny.what the hell is SUPER FAST PITCH.That medium pace bowler like sanjay bangar who bowls 125 km/hr suddenly turn into shaun tait 150 km/hr.heard about grass on pitch,overcast conditions,moisture to help in swing,pitch with bounce but super fast he is funny.

  • on December 8, 2012, 15:08 GMT

    nyc_missile, Excuses is all Dhoni is allowed to give. Here's a list of guidelines issued to Team India & the media covering India's matches. 1. No more than 2 Batsmen are allowed to outscore Sachin R Tendulkar. 2. Media is not permitted to Criticize Sachin.

    If Sachin knew that performance is a requirement to stay in the team, he would have retired a year ago.

    Sachin refuses to retire...because he knows that with the kind of money he is distributing to the media & BCCI, the media will simply refuse to highlight his non-performance & Dhoni will not have the guts to drop Sachin on performance grounds (BCCI will immediately find some technical excuse to drop Dhoni).

    Of late, we all seen Sachin getting out to balls that would not get the wicket of my son who can't hold a cricket bat. But Sachin claims to have cricket left in him (where I wonder) & to enjoy the feeling of walking out to the cricket field (enjoys becoming the new bunny for anyone who can release a cricket ball ?).

  • on December 8, 2012, 14:59 GMT

    Nice Article!!! but I dont think the team needs to come to public and criticize itself.

    You need to appreciate the team spirit is not lost. Its a matter of couple of good games and series and the momentum will swing back for us for the glory journey.

  • IPSY on December 8, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    "We also need to consider that immediately after that series when England came to India, we beat them 5-0, which cannot be forgotten." - Sachin Tendulkar, November 8, 2012:

    This is a good observation made by Mr Tendulkar. The interesting thing though is that he was conspicuously not part of the actual "we". And, I think that had a lot to do with the positive way the young Indian guns came out and took revenge for the hiding that the English men had dished out to their seniors in England. The young talented Indian batsmen, Kholi, Raina, Sharma, freed up by the absence of the old guard made India cricket proud. Now the English men are back again, Sachin in his "denial bubble" has fixed himself in the middle of the youngsters, and with his painstaking method of batting now, creating lots of pressure for the brilliant young Indian stroke players. His many hours of grafting is enhancing the mental condition of the opposition bowlers to produce their best spells against the rest of the team

  • on December 8, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    This is a nice article to jot down the lame excuses these cricketers have been hiding behind the pathetic loses we have had in the test matches both overseas and at home. Even when England lost the first test, they lost with a fight. Cook has been leading the side with brilliant scores ; on the other hand Dhoni has been a baggage in the Indian Test side. And most of all, I guess its high time Sachin hangs up his boots rather than being in the side for his past glory. The sooner the Indian team realizes their mistakes, the better for Indian team's future.

  • WAKE_UP_CALL on December 8, 2012, 14:49 GMT

    England suffered when they dropped amla four five times and that actually cost them the series 2-0.but at least England gave a fight while chasing in the third test against the best attack at home.if someone wins the other looses but the way India is been loosing is not acceptable to an Indian fan and especially to a cricket fan.from(2001 to 2010)India Australia test clash was seen as high voltage series above ashes as England was constantly loosing 5-0 or 4-1 to aus and even Indo Pak clash was not more entertaining but now its all needs India performing well in test cricket and bcci taking severe actions in improving domestic structure.but this recent consistent looser tag in test world has reminded nothing but shame.maybe dhoni has forced every Indian player to watch "American Beauty" and asked to focus on one quote by Ricky "Never Underestimate the power of denial.

  • on December 8, 2012, 14:47 GMT

    I agree with each single word not less than the article heading.

  • on December 8, 2012, 14:32 GMT

    What an article? I always thought that Cricinfo became defenceable towards Indian cricket, but this article goes a long way to disproving my so called theory. Anyway India will never be a good test playing nation now and in the near future (If they have one) because of the IPL. In the past (for Indian players) it was Test Cricket that was preferred because of all the fame and fortune that it bought, but it seems now it's the IPL and T20's that are preferred by all Indian player's rather than Test Cricket. If Indians now drop playing Test Cricket, they should be punished and dropped from any ICC run One Dayer's and T20's too. They have to be told that they cannot do as they please. If only the ICC had a backbone and some gut's test cricket wouldn't be in this situation. COME ON THE BARMY ARMY THRASH THEM....

  • Desihungama on December 8, 2012, 14:25 GMT

    All they need to do is to look over at their neighbors and learn from their tenacity and resiliency. Those lads have zero home advantage and virtually living off their suit cases but they appreciate and are thankful for this opportunity to play this great game of cricket. On the other hand, India has taken it's recent success and wealth for granted and instead of working toward the betterment of the game has become a hindrance and are involved in petty matters like arm twisting boards that do not play ball.

  • Sinhaya on December 8, 2012, 14:17 GMT

    @afridi102 yes cricinfo has forgotten to post the comment by Suresh Raina who lives in a deluded world. These big talkers can never ever win 4-0. Even should they win, it is all due to nothing but umpiring howlers.

  • Sinhaya on December 8, 2012, 14:13 GMT

    This Indian side is nothing but mediocre. Today simply proved that they are bullies of no surface. The BCCI is only in imaginary fantasy to think it is a cricket bully. England will definitely win the series 3-1. The quotes clearly prove that Indians deserve an Oscars medal for all the excuses as they are champions of that. Can take a laughter holiday based on the comment by the bowling coach of India.

  • Crickathon on December 8, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    The non-performing seniors in the side are a group. They back each other for failures. Dhoni says Sehwag will be back to form, Sehwag says Gambhir will come back and Gambhir will say there is nothing to worry about Zaheer, but the fact is all of them are failing, failing for long enough now and wasting the slots in the team. It is already 2.5 years. How long more should we wait before we see one good innings from Sehwag? Pathetically, we are wasting crucial young years of Rahane for the sake of Sehwag. I think BCCI has shot at its own leg by establishing IPL out of sheer greed for commercializing cricket. God save Indian cricket!

  • drvp on December 8, 2012, 13:56 GMT

    good article!....the best thing which can come about from this loss- i cant see rain coming to our resue / ashwin being possessed by vvs laxman's spirit!.... is that ( hopefullY) the team will accept it's shortcomings and work to improve them..... cant see dhoni leading this team for much longer!... he is a wonderful inspired limited overs cricketer and captain, but woefully short in the test match arena....need more wicket taking bowlers too!....

  • on December 8, 2012, 13:56 GMT

    Great article and a mirror for Team India to look into. India's batsmen need to look at themselves and take personal responsibility. That is the bit that lacks in our team. We have amazing things behind us to continue achieving greatness, but its the need to take responsibility and fight to get the confidence back. In the last decade, we have achieved great things (granted we have had great players gone), but every team has gone through this. The biggest teams in the world - the mighty windies, then the australians, the english and now the South Africans - have all gone through change and have come out better. We are going through change and now is the time to tell the young minds to take personal responsibility. The way Dravid, Sachin, Laxman, Ganguly etc. did. They practised, they re-focused, they practised again and took everything in their stride. Our side has some great players, but they need to be held accountable. Set targets for them and watch them bloom.

  • Sanj747 on December 8, 2012, 13:48 GMT

    Spot on with this article. I would see Gambhir, Sehwag, Yuvraj, Tendulkar, Dhoni and Zaheer Khan all well gone past their use by date. Dhoni is not fit to play test cricket and unfortunately does not have any respect for the game.

  • KingOwl on December 8, 2012, 13:46 GMT

    Indians have always been FTBs (except Rahul Dravid, VVS, and before he became old, Sachin). For a while, the BCCI put pressure on overseas cricket boards and got favourable pitches when traveling overseas. But that has gone away over the last year or so, with the foreign boards coming to terms with BCCI (except for the small ones, who still cater to their needs, even at the expense of the home team, like in SL during the T20 WC!). IPL has not helped.

  • on December 8, 2012, 13:42 GMT

    This is reminiscent of the West Indies in the late 1990's when the hope was another pair of match winning pacers would appear, but they haven't yet. Denial is a hell of a thing and India will be in a lot of trouble once Sachin goes.

  • on December 8, 2012, 13:42 GMT

    Beef. Thats the only word Joe Dawes needs in his coaching manual.

  • on December 8, 2012, 13:35 GMT

    Selectors are responsible for these kind of performances. If these players were sacked after loosing 8 test matches on a trot then India would have been in different situation now.

    If there is no value of RANJI TROPHY then why you are running that tournament. TEST TEAM is selected on the basis of IPL this is ridiculous . I bet if our RANJI CHAMPION TEAM would have played in this series England would have been whitewashed because RANJI PLAYERS know what is test cricket .These T20 bashers will destroy INDIAN TEST CRICKET.

    There are four players from Delhi in this team and these 4 players played in the RANJI MATCH against UTTAR PRADESH and LOST the match convincingly. This shows how good player they are at the moment .They are no match for our RANJI circketers.

  • on December 8, 2012, 13:30 GMT

    It was heart rending to see the Indian Bating line up collapse like a pack of cards.. Tough calls need to be taken to put Indian Cricket back on track. It is already late. We have been exposed in our own conditions. This is the first time we have been challenged at home since we lost to Australia in 2005.

    The batting looks extremely fragile and its high time the selectors took some tough decisions. If it means replacing Tendulkar with Anjinkya Rahane for the Nagpur Test, so be it. An inform Rahane will serve the team better than an out of form Sachin. The openers have performed in patches in the series so far but clearly have not applied themselves. Pujara has jad an off game but he is definitely one for the future. Virat Kohli needs to rediscover his lost form. His dismissal today was particularly disappointing considering the situation we were in.

  • on December 8, 2012, 13:26 GMT

    The innings of Ashwin in the second innings have proved two things that he is not a top class bowler, however he is better than our batsmen which includes one or two so called greats.

  • Percy_Fender on December 8, 2012, 13:25 GMT

    Dhoni should resign after this test if he has any shame or principle. He was a successful captain not very long ago when his luck was unmatched. Now that has dried up and he should resign. I believe just a change in the captain will set things rolling for a new beginning. Duncan Fletcher too seems to be having absolutely no impact but a negative one on this Indian team. It is the same with Dawes. I do not know how he came to be selected all of a sudden after the Australian disaster. He and Fkletcher should pack up and go when their contracts are over. Fletcher could be kept at the NCA for the balance of his term and someone like Dravid should take charge as the full time coach/ Thinga cannot get worse. I feel it is time to look for a new beginning.

  • Sudeeksh on December 8, 2012, 13:24 GMT

    Is this why Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman retired, so that Gambhir, Virat and other youngsters can loudmouth without any substance. They left playing cricket for a reason. They wanted youngsters to have a fair run on sub-continental conditions before going abroad. And these ppl are indulging in just talking nonsense. Well they need to remember that Rahul and VVS are both capable of coming back and scoring on any pitch provided to them without complaining. In a way they left the game because they love it and want the game to grow in times to come, not so that these youngsters waste the opportunities given to them.

  • IPSY on December 8, 2012, 12:42 GMT

    The irony of this article is that it is criticising Cricket India for a problem which is also starkly reflected in the contents as presented here. That is, Cricket India and this article's biggest state of denial, not only for this year, but for some time now; is that: "India is not only the worst bowling and fielding unit in the world; but without Dravid and Laxman, the India team is also the worst batting unit in the world". Even with Dravid and Laxman, it was the worst batting unit in the world outside of India last year. Because even Bagladesh gave England a more impressive fight than India when they last toured England. And as I indicated in some of my previous submissions (something I heard Geoff Boycott echoing), Indian cricket pundits have been unfairly criticising their bowlers and sparing their batsmen. But we all know that the two consecutive white washes that they suffered in England and Australia respectively, their batting was the worst of the three departments on show.

  • ANSH.JAIN on December 8, 2012, 12:39 GMT

    Very shameful and very heart breaking dat ppl r burning sachin tendulkar's posters... Firstly dey treated him the GOD of cricket nd demanded Bharat Ratna for him and after serving 23 years for nation, when he is in last stage of cricket and struggling , Ppl instead of supporting him are blaming him. Incredible India

  • on December 8, 2012, 12:29 GMT

    Shame India. India can't play test cricket. The only thing they can do is to talk bad about other teams. Indian players and media must criticize themselves rather than criticizing other teams.

  • Biophysicist on December 8, 2012, 12:23 GMT

    Mr. Monga: One more DENIAL is regarding SACHIN TENDULKAR being no longer good enough for playing test cricket for India. The sooner the selectors admit it and drop him - since he doesn't seem to be willing to accept it himself and quit - the sooner India can hope to start improving as a Test side. On relative performance (taking the last 5 test matches, including the Kolkata test against England), Tendulkar (8 innings, avg. 21.6) is below Pujara (9 innings, avg. 89.7), Kohli (9 innings, avg. 42.4), Ashwin (7 innings, avg. 55.0) Dhoni (8 innings, avg. 39.3), Sehwag (9 innings, avg. 42.3) and Gambhir (8 innings, avg.34.0). So even by relative performance, not by the high standards he used to set for himself, he should be asked to quit, if as you said he can't be dropped. He used to be the crown jewel in the Indian team; now he has become a liability. It is not that he is the only one not performing well, but his performance is the worst! And he is not an investment for the future!

  • Avradeep on December 8, 2012, 12:21 GMT

    Let's go back to few selection related incidents. During ODI's in England, India constantly selected Vinay Kumar instead of Umesh and Varon. In Perth - india picked Vinay again. If you even look to T20 squad, right from the World T20 in England - Ravindra Jadeja virtually lost all the matches for india batting at no. 3, yet he still got favored. Same is the case with Raina, Vijay.

    What am i hinting at? Indian team was never extraordinary in the last 30 years. It took extraordinary vision and attitude to convert the same players playing from 1990's to world beaters in the 2000's. It's all about leadership and vision in India. Picking 2 18 yr old guys from nowhere in 2000, converting sehwag to an opener, demoting from opening leading to rebirth of Laxman. Recalling a person contemplating to become taxi driver.

    The one at the top needs to identify quality, and that's what is lacking in indian cricket. What we see today is a culmination of years of lack of leadership vision.

  • on December 8, 2012, 12:16 GMT

    A well-versed assessment of the situation. If India continues the same trend, it may lose whatever viewership it has and we will face the same condition of Zimbabwe. Our money power can go only to a certain limit beyond which it will be an all lose-lose situation. We have already started the procedure of "Halal" of the Duck laying Golden Eggs and if we dont stop this the duck will die and we will be left only with its mortal remains. I only pray that BCCI wakes up and prevents the total collapse of Cricket in India. All senior players should be rested and a new team with young blood selected for the final test. Nothing more will be lost than what has already happened. Another point worth considering is the preparation of pitches. It has been proved counter productive if we doctor the pitches presuming that it would suit us better than the touring team. Hence it will be a good policy to prepare sporting wickets with something to offer to all players.

  • 07sanjeewakaru on December 8, 2012, 12:15 GMT

    Someone who have eyes and head.But shame is this comes when all said and done!Indian media also have to have fair amount of share in this pathetic downfall.

  • SamRoy on December 8, 2012, 12:10 GMT

    Yes, Joe Dawes so very true. Well IMHO you, Duncan and Dhoni should be fired from test team.

  • on December 8, 2012, 12:07 GMT

    England were clearly the better team both in England and in India so far. Lets grow up and learn to accept our mistakes and deficiencies.

  • on December 8, 2012, 12:05 GMT

    Bowlers win matches. When Zaheer, Harbahjan and Ishant bowled well, India started to win. Unfortunately, the bowlers now are mediocre, and we say, Bowlers win matches. Last two games the batsmen let down the team, and the bowlers never responded, however previously, the bowlers allowed teams to score heavily. Too much hype on Dhoni and Tendulkar,not enough on the bowlers.

  • CandidIndian on December 8, 2012, 12:04 GMT

    Excellent article, agree to everything except that India is an ordinary test side, they actually are poor test side with glamorous IPL captains.Glory and pride India earned in last 8 years after 1-1 in Aus and SA , series victories in Eng,WI,NZ,Pak has all gone to dust.Now we are losing at home too,sad time for Indian cricket fans.

  • on December 8, 2012, 11:58 GMT

    Brilliant, concise piece showing the Indian team (and the BCCI) 's complete denial of their rapid descent from the Number 1 test side 18 months ago to where they are now.

    Surely even they must realise that Zaheer Khan is on his last legs and should retire after the 4th test, Tendulkar has maybe 6 months left (retire after home Australia series?), Dhoni needs replacing as test captain at the end of this series, Sehwag is becoming a liability in the field, and other than Umesh Yadav they have no test standard seam/swing bowlers.

    Also just how bad will their results have to be before Duncan Fletcher gets the sack?!!

  • Ms.Cricket on December 8, 2012, 11:56 GMT

    The current lot of Indian cricketers have completely forgot how to play Test cricket. IPL has ruined Indian cricket.

  • on December 8, 2012, 11:53 GMT

    totally agreed ! Indian cricket is on the fall ! they are constantly denying it again & again

  • itsthewayuplay on December 8, 2012, 11:51 GMT

    No Sehwag Gambhir Tendulkar in the last WI tour and India wins one and draws 2. In England last Sehwag (2 tests), Gambhir (3 test) and Tendulkar (all 4 tests) and India lose all 4 tests. These 3 players played in all 4 tests in Australia and India lost all 4. Again these 3 players have played all 3 tests against England so far and has won 1 and is going to 2. India as shown in the WI is a better team without these 3 players.

  • everestpeak on December 8, 2012, 11:49 GMT

    In addition to the above, if we have people like Me. Curator of Eden....they make life a little more hell than what i should be. We should have rank turners.....give the team what they want....

  • itsthewayuplay on December 8, 2012, 11:43 GMT

    The sad reality is that, and however unlikely it appears to be, if India were to win the last test the BCCI will brush everything under the carpet in same way Tendulkar's die hard fans are saying that his 76 in the 1st innings is evidence that he's still got it. This series should have been about planning for the future and giving the opportunity to youngsters. Cook and Compton have that consistent steady openers lay the foundations and not the 1 in 20 performer that Sehwag is. In the short term, team selection is more important results. Cannot see what value is added with the automatic inclusion Sehwag Gambhir Tendulkar Yuvraj Harbajan in the squad.

  • on December 8, 2012, 11:42 GMT

    India - A country with more cricketers than the other top 8 nations put together, more finance than the rest of the cricketing world put together. India shouldn't just have the number one team, with resources like that, infratructure like they have and number of players they have, they should be utterly DOMINATING every format of the game. Instead, since IPL all we hear is "money, motorbikes, egos," and all we see are guys with big guts and two or more chins each wobbling around the field moaning about how unfair everything is for them. The difference between how good India THINK they are and how good they REALLY ARE is HUUUUUUUUGE. India are probably the 5th or 6th best team in the world. Behind SA, Aus, Pak, England and maybe even WI. and not far ahead of Bangladesh. IPL - an exciting format played by (once you remove the overseas stars) pretty low grade teams is ruining Indian cricket.

  • AswinSP on December 8, 2012, 11:42 GMT

    Time to kick Sachin, Dhoni, Gambhir and Zaheer Khan out of the team. The problem with the Indian team is that we always have way too many good for nothing 'seniors'.

  • cricmatters on December 8, 2012, 11:40 GMT

    Very average effort by a team which once used to take pride in taking the fight to opposition. Steve Waugh described India tour as the "final frontier", the most coveted prize any good international side could dream of conquering. Now it seems Indian Test Team has become a punching bag for all and sundry both at home and abroad. You can make few changes when you feel that a team is not playing to its potential but when the rot has set in so deep that losing has become a norm than exception, you need to overhaul the whole structure from top to bottom. 1) Dhoni should focus on shorter format and retire from Test Cricket. 2) If Sachin repeats the same excuse that he will continue to play till the body and mind is willing, drop him for few matches till he regains form. 3) Yuvi has been given enough chances in Tests. Time to look for a solid middle order player who can perform consistently. 4) "three strikes and you are out" meaning if you don't perform well in 3 Tests, you are rested.

  • s3ns3 on December 8, 2012, 11:39 GMT

    This is one of the most horrible and most annoying articles ever written. You guys really take these contextual, yet positive, statements seriously and come up with such an article?

  • on December 8, 2012, 11:35 GMT

    Indian cricket establishment needs a complete overhaul. It is really appreciable how Gary Kirsten worked and made these bunch of players #1 in Tests. The same team sliding down so horribly is a contentious issue. I will not pick up any names, but yes, our team is not playing to its potential. All the best cricketing minds, i.e., Gavaskars, Gangulys, Shastris, Devs, with Dhoni & Co. and address the chinks in our team.

  • AswinSP on December 8, 2012, 11:32 GMT

    Now that's an article! Kudos, Mr. Sidharth.

  • noID on December 8, 2012, 11:22 GMT

    Good one Sid. The issue with this Indian team (and management) is they first need to recognize that there is a problem. Complete denial is dragging down the team match after match. I wish that the Indian team should be humiliated to the core. Only then, the remedial actions would start (Let's hope so). Dhoni, Yuvraj, Ashwin (as a bowler), Sachin (My full respects, but it's time sir), Zaheer, Ishant should not be in the test team. Start trialling new players. Bring in Rahane, Manoj Tiwari, and so on. Sadly, we don't have much bowlers (pace as well as spin) to pick from. Groom new players.

  • on December 8, 2012, 11:21 GMT

    Ahhh, a one sport country with one billion people that cannot find one world class bowler or batsman to defend its cause is really a disgrace, indefensible.

  • on December 8, 2012, 11:18 GMT

    brilliant work Siddharth make these Indians eat their own words. England teamm made this so called Indian Team bite their own "DUST". So much for Revenge-series...whatever happend to skill n application...the patience...the stuggle..It wasn't even a struggle give the way each batsmen got out...I mean even Aswin is not out on 80 sufin. This is an absolute disgrace. I'm even afraid what state the Pak team's gonna leave us, come next series. This calls for a massive change in the team and the infrastructure liek one the commentor said "Horses for Courses" a seperate team for each format with just 2 or 3 players playing in all formats. If possible even 2 different captain please.

  • on December 8, 2012, 11:18 GMT

    Yes, like all other notorious deniers, we indeed indulge in denials. The root cause is lack of passion ,pride and interest in adorning Indian cap in test cricket. The very body language of the captain says it all. You study his total conduct in the last dozen of tests, it exudes total lack of interest in test cricket. This spirit is contagious and half the team members just seem to go through the motions.The time has come for BCCI to intervene immediately and take drastic action in consultation with former test greats. Otherwise, it's just to play with the emotions of Indian fans.

  • on December 8, 2012, 10:55 GMT

    Since his debut, Ashwin Averages more than Most of Indian batting stalwarts including our young and dynamic captain M.S. DHONI... Says a lot about the batting forms of our batsmen... Most of them are out of form for a very long time... Now one would doubt,, Are they out of form or Are they Finished ?

  • on December 8, 2012, 10:53 GMT

    For the sake of team England dropped vice captain for 2nd and 3rd test now its time for BCCI to take tough decision its high time

  • hraghava on December 8, 2012, 10:52 GMT

    Perhaps only Rahul Dravid ever spoke about cricket fans; and how happy we feel about victory, and how disappointed we are about defeat! What Siddharth has described (as an honest emotional cricket fan, NOT as a journalist) is a crunching deflation at the manner of this & previous defeats, the attitude to defeat, and almost certain-to-follow head-in-the-sand reaction of Indian Cricketers and the BCCI. No strategy to change guard, no will to ask the non-performers to go, no pride whatsoever! Being an Indian, this is deflatingly Indian to watch. A 0-3/4 whipping follows against the soon-to-visit Australians.

  • ronnydog on December 8, 2012, 10:28 GMT

    Hey guys don't beat yourself up too much. The article is of course right, India's cricketers, commentators and bloggers, including here, have been hiding from the truth with false excuses for the last few months. But the reality is that like Aust , India have come to the end of an era with great , once in a generation cricketers retiring close together. Geniuses lke Warne and Tendulkar come along once in maybe 50 years, fine player like the Waughs, Laxman, Dravid, McGrath, Gilchrist and Kumble aren't necessarily replaced straight away unless you are lucky. WbIndies once assumed new champs would just come along as old ones retired - 15 years later they now realise it doesn't always work that way. It doesn't seem long ago English commentators were lamenting how feeble they were, how their system would never produce decent Test players, County cricket was rubbish etc etc. These things go in cycles. However planning for the future is a mist

  • JBKSHAH on December 8, 2012, 10:27 GMT

    When Ishant Sharma dropped the easiest catch, Sivaramkrishnan commented that he was not expecting the catch !! Now onwards India should ask the opponents to inform Indian fielders when they are giving the catch so that Indian butter fingers can hold them.

    Compare that with Mithcel JOHNSON'S catch. We are still in kindergarten class.Still a long way to go to university.

  • on December 8, 2012, 10:27 GMT

    very hard liners... India has one of the best batting side available in world cricket, they should start respecting the teams and be humble in order to achieve more. They can bounce back so Indian fans don't be discouraged keep faith in them but make them to respect and acknowledge the facts....

  • on December 8, 2012, 10:23 GMT

    A year of denial... and a year of incredible delusions as well. India deludes itself that Tendulkar is STILL the world's greatest batsman in these days of consistently outstanding run scorers like Michael Clarke, Allistair Cook, Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, Shiv Chanderpaul, Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene. Tendulkar is STILL supposed to be treated as the best, even though in the test career of R Ashwin spanning 11 matches, the half decent off spinner batting at number 8 has comfortably outperformed India's celebrated, immovable, undroppable number 4. India obviously has no intention of allowing truth and fact to spoil a story that only becomes more unbelievable as time goes by. If Tendulkar is entitled to continue indefinitely at this poor level of run-scoring performance, why not convince Dravid and Laxman to come out of retirement and hang around indefinitely as well?

  • TheJake on December 8, 2012, 10:15 GMT

    Well, someone has to say it sooner or later. And remember India got whitewashed by an Australian side not even full strengh and with one of the most brittle (At the time at least) top orders in world cricket, when Warner (Swing at everything, and with terrible bowling he somehow got 180 from 159), Cowan (Block, block, leave, block...) and Marsh (Walking wicket) together hasn't played half the Tests of any Indian batsmen bar Kohli. Excuses have ran out for BCCI and the players

  • Bobby_Talyarkhan on December 8, 2012, 10:06 GMT

    We need long term thinking. Forget who is going to win the next test or series - we must admit we are rubbish anyway. Get a coach who is prepared to back his own judgement and is not scared of the so called "stars" in the dressing room. First class cricket is the nursery of test cricket - create a healthy structure for first class cricket. Reduce the length of IPL. Reduce the amount of ODI's played. Improve the quality of pitches (and facilities for spectators). Play more first class practice matches on overseas tours. Try and carry out scientific studies into why so many fast bowlers break down. Play more overseas "A" team, junior team tours.

  • memoriesofthepast on December 8, 2012, 9:56 GMT

    Dhoni looks to be a player disinterested in playing test cricket. What coaching is being given by the Englishman Duncan Fletcher to the Indian cricket team? Or he is the beneficiary decided by the cash rich BCCI? Except Kirsten and Wright, the other non-Indian coaches appointed by BCCI have turned out to be flops. There was no coach for the Indian cricket team that won 1983 World Cup or even the 1971 test serieses in England and West Indies. Gambhir has been involved in running out Sehwag and Pujara in this test and run-out in testmatch is unacceptable. How come no legspinner in this Indian team when the opponent is England? Yuvraj, Kohli, Ashwin, Dhoni and Zaheer should retire from tests. At this rate India may be whitewashed at home in future series. When team starts losing badly at home, local spectators may turn away from the game.

  • fr600 on December 8, 2012, 9:47 GMT

    Totally spot on. Some players need to retire so that youngsters get chances to play and prove themselves better than seniors.

  • on December 8, 2012, 9:25 GMT

    It's Dis-heartening to see that we are only capable of beating teams who are currently weak like New Zealand, West Indies and Bangladesh. Even that time, our wins didn't seem to be outright. They waited for them to make mistakes. It was the same here against England. They waited for them to make mistakes. Whereas when England bowled, they tried to get the Indian Batsmen out. It's very frustrating to see it. If the opposition doesn't make mistakes then there is no way Indian bowlers look even capable of getting a wicket. I would really though be interested in seeing what reasons and excuses Dhoni and Co come up with. And like Siddharth has said, unless Indian team accepts it, they are not going to try and rectify it or improve. At present, their statements right from the players to the bowling coach seem to be just a case of talking to save their own skin and frankly speaking the direction in which they started moving the topic of teams being good in their own den had even me believing.

  • on December 8, 2012, 9:25 GMT

    Absolutely agree to every point...

  • on December 8, 2012, 9:24 GMT

    Seems like MSD has bought his seat.Its not like we do not have any stand up captains in our team!Like everyone else,he should be removed from the team and asked to play domestic cricket like everyone else since he's not SPECIAL.Im sure once he finds his form india will win again because i know he's a good captain

  • on December 8, 2012, 9:22 GMT

    Accepting and making change is the right way to go about it. Very well written article

  • salman_ak on December 8, 2012, 9:07 GMT

    I think that every one is missing a point over here. we will see a lot more teams performing better in India than before, and the reason is champion's league and Indian Premiere League. Many foreign players are now used to Indian Conditions and this was surely not the case before. I think Indian players should prefer playing more in the English counties and the Australian leagues rather than just playing the silly IPL and making heaps of money. Only then India can improve on their record overseas otherwise NO... As far as English team is concerned they faced a whitewash against Pakistan in Dubai, then went to Sirilanka and improved, and now they are looking a far better side compared to what it was in Dubai against Pakistan.

  • on December 8, 2012, 8:49 GMT

    When Your Assets becoming your liability, Classic Examples are :- Mr Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar and Mr Mahendra Singh Dhoni!!!(Anyways he was not an asset @ all in Tests) If these two Gentlemen have any selfrespect one should retire immediately and another should resign from his captainacy(CRICINFO PLEASE POST THIS COMMENT)

  • Kohli_2020 on December 8, 2012, 8:45 GMT

    1. Duncan Fletcher is not the right man for Indian leadership, he simply does not know the country and talent well enough. 2. On Dhoni: as for leadership, and waiting for declaration, i think this has a lot to do with the teams lack of ability to build pressure, either in the field or through bowling that is just not threatening enough. No excuses for Dhoni though, leaders must lead, and his batting / keeping are not good enough.

    This is a set up that does not work - but set up's do not win test series, players always do, and perhaps we have to face the fact India doesn't have enough good players at this time to be a super-power in the game. But, as India hit's the bottom it should take the opportunity to completely re-build. Structure and team. Accept some defeats in Tests short term, to give Kohli, Pujara, Rahane and Badrinath the batting leadership roles. I think the best 2 spin bowlers are in the team - time to try pacers and see who has the skills to test the best.

  • cheenu_balaji on December 8, 2012, 8:44 GMT

    After the World Cup win, Dhoni, BCCI and all of us took for granted that victories will come automatically hereafter. Instead, we should have overhauled the system of selection and higher standards should have been applied. Instead, every one is finding excuses for the failure. Let us admit that there is no class of batsmen now like - Shewag, Dravid, Sachin, Laxman, Saurav - and the bowlers like - Kumble, Harbajan, Zaheer, Ishant. Let us also admit that it takes time for the youngsters to reach that class. But, the system should be in such a way that it grooms and rewards talent and dedication.

  • on December 8, 2012, 8:31 GMT

    Now Dhoni will going through his book of finding excuses for losses .. Indian Captain should concentrate prepare his teams batting & bowling rather than concern about pitch . As Mr.Mukarjee said its all about 22 players not 22 yards even in this flat deck if they cant perform then how can u expect them to do well in spin tracks

  • on December 8, 2012, 8:30 GMT

    If you ask me the real problem is with DHoni and the Srinivasan and other supporting him..... Initially he was lucky and got the best team so everything was going his way(Even his wrong decisions) but now as soon as his luck passed by he is showing how bad and mediocre captain he is...

    In world cup final Gambhir was the one who laid all the platform for our win and by every means Yuvraj should have come on betting but Dhoni knew india is in very good position came and won the match and HOGGED all the limelight. And all were in favor of dhoni .

    We the viewers are the worst to take india to this position... By his monopoly he threw Ganguly , dravid , laxman, tried to throw Sehwag , Gambhir , Tendulkar and we the viewers are doing nothing.........

    He always prmote CSK guys Raina (over Rohit , uthapa, Manoj tiwari) , Jadeja over others , Ashwin over (Ojha , bhajji) still we r quite.... This is going to be worse mark my words....... I loved him as a wicketkeeper batsaman...

  • imrankhan76uk on December 8, 2012, 8:29 GMT

    Its not only Indian Team, its many of their fans as well living in deniel. Someone (a Fan) said on day3 match 3, "write my words Statchin will be our saviour in 2nd inings".... Now 146/6 at tea, Statchin and all other Legends are already gone, what do you say now

  • sheenu on December 8, 2012, 8:21 GMT

    What does it take for BCCI to Gary Kirsten back to our team?, possibly as a PLAYER!!!

  • SRHaider on December 8, 2012, 8:20 GMT

    The 'best six bowlers' theory is interesting. Lets do a cross-sectional analysis. WI and Ban do not have any quality fast bowler. Sri Lanka has Malinga but he does not play test cricket.

    That means, SA, Aus, Eng, Pak and NZ are the other countries under consideration. The bowlers are: Steyn, Morkel, Andersen, Finn and Gul only.

    Johnson is a spent force and Pattinson, Starc, Philander and Southee are a bit new to the scene so not under consideration. This means that if Zaheer is among the top 6 in the world (if at all he is), that is not a noticeable qualification. He could be the worst of all the top bowlers and still be in top 6!

    To me, he is a spent force, like Johnson at best!

    BCCI has a good sense of humor:)

  • on December 8, 2012, 8:19 GMT

    Indian test side needs a complete make over Virat ( capt), Gambhir ( Vijay), Shewag , Rohit( Rahane) ,Pujra, Tiwary ,Umesh , Saha, Jadeja ( 12th man),dinda, ojha, Ashwin Rest retire gracefully and respectfully , Dhoni can lead one day and T 20 sides Ishant : needs catching coaching

  • Alkais on December 8, 2012, 8:09 GMT

    Time for split captaincy. Dhoni for ODIs. Suresh Raina for T20s. Gambhir for Tests. Gambhir as test captain will make him more responsible. Drop Dhoni from Tests. Play some one like Saha who has better technique. Dhoni is sticking on to team just because of Srinivasan,BCCI President. Ashwin needs to be asked to work on his bowling. He needs to take wickets, that should be his main job. Scoring runs is plus point.

  • Gupta.Ankur on December 8, 2012, 8:02 GMT

    Well we indians were really living in fool's paradise when we first thought whitewash in Eng was due to injuries or pure bad form of team in Australia.

    We thought we would do well in India and maybe come out of the rut by winning at home and finding some form.

    Its now quite evident that this team is going down the hill and has reached 90% to the end.

    Our bowling is abysmal and our batting even if ask Sachin to go, will remain poor...

    BCCI needs to do urgent rectification or we would fighting for "wooden spoon" with NZ and WI next year.

  • on December 8, 2012, 7:59 GMT

    Now We are Surely missing VVS Laxman and Rahul Dravid Who always kept the opposition in bays in similair situation

  • krvij on December 8, 2012, 7:58 GMT

    I hope someone reads out this article loud to Dhoni & co and his BCCI supporters. I don't mind India losing the series (they deserve it) and hope that people acknowledge the realities. We need strong action and changes in mentality, approach, leadership, players, and everything. Will this happen? I sincerely hope from inside but without hope after seeing the way Indian cricket is being managed for the last 2 yrs!!!

  • gentlemans-game on December 8, 2012, 7:57 GMT

    It's not the pitch, not the toss, not the selectors, not the BCCI, not the coach, not the IPL, not global warming, not the global recession etc. etc. It's down to the 11 men in the middle and what they're not doing. It's time to take a complete review of what the core issues are, something that the BCCI refused to do after the whitewashes in England and Australia. It's time India's actual performance on the field of play justified its stature as a power center in cricket.

  • sweetspot on December 8, 2012, 7:55 GMT

    Hey geniuses! Whatever denial may be there, and whatever may be exposed by articles and people eager to kick something going down already, the fact that is really yet to be "unearthed" for many is that India is not interested in Test cricket any more. The format is going down and the Indian team is just paying some formal respect to it.

    That's the plain reality. India no longer want it that badly in Test cricket. Soon after the WC win, they just lost the motivation for Test cricket. In a few years from now, Test cricket will be a side show to franchise cricket. The Indians are way ahead of that time, it would seem, but that change is inevitable.

  • on December 8, 2012, 7:54 GMT

    The attitude needs to be better from the Indian team. When England lost to Pakistan earlier in the year, Strauss simply said "England need to play better in Asia." England have greatly improved and tackled the problem of playing on sub-continent pitches. If India want to become a great cricketing side they will have to at least start admitting to the problems rather than avoiding it all together.

  • Alkais on December 8, 2012, 7:53 GMT

    Worst performance ever seen in recent times.Its better not to expect any miracle from this team for next 3-4yrs. They only talk,talk. Dont play well. Major Overhaul is required in the team. Time for selectors to take bold decision. Ashwin is suited only for ODIs and T20s. Zaheer is pale shadow of his past performance. Time for sachin call quits. Where are the fast bowlers who are on the reserves. What plans BCCI has put for their re-habilitation. Dhoni is not suited for Test matches. He should be left out of the test team. Bring some other player who can play like a test player. Bring in a young captain for test side. Give him 5-6 yrs time. Its time to blood in Rahanae,Rohit Sharma in the team. Yuvraj is only good in domestic matches just like Graeme Hick. Not good at International level. He scored on docile pitch and against ordinary players. Ishant sharma should be advised to play domestic matches and in county matches for 2 seasons , then select him like zaheer.

  • nahan on December 8, 2012, 7:52 GMT

    Indian cricket is aiming beyond the bottom level of Titanic MSD is taking the team from Top of Mount Everest into deep blue sea.

  • PTtheAxis on December 8, 2012, 7:51 GMT

    have said for last 3 years ago on this very site that dhoni should not be in test team let alone be test captain and what has happened in those last few years is there for everyone to see. how can you have a person who has no interest whatsoever in winning as your captain ? cook wants to win in his first assignment abroad. dhoni is just happy as long as non one kicks him out and in india once you get a position no one has the clarity or firm action instinct to take you out. it is all like a govt job for life. no competency required. pathetic state of affairs.

  • lokesh.agarwal on December 8, 2012, 7:48 GMT

    After losing possibly the greatest middle order India ever possessed in a short duration, this is a humbling time. Test matches really are a true test of temperament and skill and the sooner India recognizes where they stand, the sooner they will make efforts to improve themselves. This has been a humbling series, and England have really played well. Their batting has been consistent, their bowling has been accurate. Hats off to England. This article seems to be seething with anger, and so it should.

  • on December 8, 2012, 7:39 GMT

    No more denial ! Accept the current team is in lack of technique .Both the batting and bowling is in disarray .Somebody needs to fix it.Does the BCCI have the courage to do that?

  • zoot on December 8, 2012, 7:34 GMT

    It's time to try youth. India's older players have failed them yet again. Sorry Tendulkar, Yuvraj your time has come. Averaging twenty-something will lead to more defeats.

  • varunsharma18178 on December 8, 2012, 7:18 GMT

    the results in this series were quiet evident that we have slumped down to the bottom, in 25years i have not seen an Indian team caving in so easily even at home.not only bowler but batters also dont have any sort idea of their counterparts. while dmanding 4 slow wkts dhoni shud have also dmanded a skipper like AZHAR 4 handling bowlers & field-setting 4 slow wkts. So far dhoni was lucky many a times whenever he took a brave decision, it paid off. but luck will not go your way all the time Mr. dhoni. Current team will do good for T20 but 4 test it is as good as nothing & as long as IPL is there it will continue to ruin India its test matches. bcaz of IPL you think Kohli a good player but the fact that he keeps on playing across & with angled bat. SRT was not a crisis man even at peak of his career he was not there.Pujara will be gud 4 home only as his technic suggests.Openner sehwag is a openner of wkts account 4 opposition. Bowling as hopeless & helpless as ever. Tough task ahead

  • yankinsa on December 8, 2012, 7:11 GMT

    Indian cricket is in trouble and who to blame ? The coach? IPL ?? The administrators ? Or just the Indian cricketers who think they are too good, too rich, too untouchable ?? The fast attack is so 2nd class (Zaheer in the top 6 bowlers ?? In your dreams !!); the batsmen are aging and over the hill (Tendulkar, Sehwag, Singh) and the spin attack is HIGHLY over-rated and can only function on a turner....but then the batsment arent up to the much better opposition spinners who show up the Indian spinners for the journeymen they are. And all this is happening at home. I shudder to think of the lynching party that will greet the Indians next time they come home from a tour to SA or OZ.

  • on December 8, 2012, 7:04 GMT

    I wonder what is the role of a "coach" when the going get's tough for a team - just similar to the case of India. I guess it is time India get a Coach, someone who give priority to his Individual Credibility as a Coach and don't wait for things to happen along with the Incredible Indian Captain.

  • PhaniBhaskar24 on December 8, 2012, 6:55 GMT

    Its better we leave this article with out writing any comments...the article is soo true, not in the mind of a writer, but in practical....I hope doors closing in sports for India..Boxing, Archery are banned for frauds, recently tennis mishap with Bhupathi, Paes during olympics, hockey - a nightmare wins...Football- never a cause of cricket - Everyone Indian in decending order for some arrogant statements..Oh! god save Indian Sports ( in particular cricket)

  • on December 8, 2012, 6:47 GMT

    This is not just a revenge series, I want more deserving team to win this series this time its England, period.

  • VivtheGreatest on December 8, 2012, 5:06 GMT

    Absolutely agree with everything. Its high time we admitted that we are a mediocre team instead of believing all this hype and tripe dished out by TV commercials. Talking of miracles, we'll need some divine intervention to save this Test.

  • on December 8, 2012, 5:03 GMT

    Probably we will NEVER admit and unfortunate part is even eminent ex-cricketers like Gavaskar, Saurav, Shastri and even Dravid are not accepting this TRUE FACT that we are an ORDINARY side. May be all these guys needs the BCCI pension and hence will not make any negative comments. Hard truth is that we are and will continue to be an ordinary side until the selectors like Australia and England starts opting for "horses for courses" teams for all 3 formats. Presently without a doubt Zaheer, Ishant, Gambhir, Ojha and Ashwin are total liability on field. Even for that matter Glenn Macgrath was not a great fielder but was always more than committed more than 100%, where as Zaheer thinks that bowling his quota of 10 - 12 overs are his forte and batting and fielding are not part of his contribution.We only can bad as the BCCI and their members do not think otherwise.

  • buntyj on December 8, 2012, 4:52 GMT

    a very well written and much awaited article. hope bcci, selectors n team wake up

  • on December 8, 2012, 4:36 GMT

    hope Dhoni read this. bcci fire duncan already, cmon man

  • dan24 on December 8, 2012, 4:36 GMT

    The big elephant in the room has finally been let out by this articles... and its about damn time too. The Indian team, the BCCI and all of their over inflated egos are all summed up nicely by this article. India continuously use the excuse that foreign teams play just as poorly on Indian pitches as Indian teams on pitches in South Africa, Australia and England. This far from the truth. While Australia, South Africa and England don't dominate on Indian wickets, they are by far more competitive than India is when traveling - India have never won a series in Australia, ever! The same cannot be said for Australia.

  • on December 8, 2012, 4:23 GMT

    India are an ordinary side now there is no doubt about that........we were good when we had Dravid,Lakshman, a firing sachin, kumble, a firing zaheer, a firing harbhajan and ganguly...........the batting is soo brittle will take a long time to get back to the top 3....don't see that in the near future.........looks like the nightmare of the 90's has come to haunt us.....i really hope we loose this series really hoope there is a massive massive change in the test side.....lets some new players come....shewag/sachin/kohli/gambhir/ashiwn/ojha/ishant cannot make us a winning team.. There is a glimmer of hope - Can someone from this team do a Lakshman ? If you guys remember that one innings (281) triggered a major change and led to india's ascend to the top for the next 7-8 years...really doubt anyone has the talent in the present team....Pujara? Can he change our fortunes ? only time will tell

  • Y2SJ on December 8, 2012, 4:12 GMT

    Dhoni has wasted all the good work done by Ganguly, Kumble and Dravid. They built a team. Now Dhoni just seems to have his cronies around him and wait for things to happen.

  • on December 8, 2012, 4:12 GMT

    Whitewashes in England & Australia, Asia Cup loss to Bangladesh and now humiliation at home ! Cmon team india stop making lame excuses series-after-series of shameful performances !!! just face reality that you are a very ordinary weak side with fake hype ! its a shame for cricket that you have world cup with this kind of performances...seem like you purchased it ! love to see you thrashed at your own home by Pakistan very soon.........!

  • cric_frank on December 8, 2012, 4:04 GMT

    Awesome,revealing and a scorching comment on the current state of Indian cricket.BCCI,Dhoni&his pathetic attitude rubbing off on some of the few aggressive players have almost destroyed the winning spirit.Sid hits the nail on its head with a heavy-weight hammer.Excuses is all Dhoni is good at.Though I completely agree with Sid's earlier defense of Dhoni's asking for spin tracks,his never-ending defensive field placings,general lethargy and spinelessness have brought about this mess in Indian cricket.He has become a captain who waits for declaration to happen at the slightest resistance from the opposition.You know there is simply no hope left when the President himself speaks as a cheerleader of the team with shamefully unacceptable excuses when he has to be the well-meaning critic..

  • Arachnodouche on December 8, 2012, 3:54 GMT

    Brilliant work, Siddharth. We need more people like you laying into these unfit, overpaid misfits.

  • indianpunter on December 8, 2012, 3:45 GMT

    Frankly, i find it quite incredible that they sent out the fielding coach and the bowling coach on successive days, when the going got tough. If this isnt shirking, then i wonder what is? Where is the accountability? Where is the responsibility? What will it take a senior member of the team to address the press, admit and acknowledge that they need to do better.? To me, this is all part of the "denial" plot. Even god cant save Indian cricket.

  • ItHappensOnlyInIndia on December 8, 2012, 3:27 GMT

    If England declares without batting this morning. A lead of 193 is still more than enough to beat India with an innings defeat.

  • Al_Bundy1 on December 8, 2012, 3:26 GMT

    Indian fans have also been the culprit - they thought that they could beat any side with spinners like Ashwin and Ojha. They never realized that their so-called super hero batsmen are just flat track bullies - they can neither play swing nor spin. Also we don't have spinners of Saeed Ajmal's calibre. We do have a good number of decent medium pacers like Pankaj Singh, B Kumar, Shami Ahmed, Sandeep Sharma, Awana. We need to try good Ranji Trophy batsmen like Rahane, Badri, Tiwary, Kaif, Saha, etc.

  • indianpunter on December 8, 2012, 3:20 GMT

    Spot on!! i was wondering when such a piece would appear. Denial, all the way. Right from the BCCI boss, down to the level of the fringe player. The first step in rectifying a problem is accepting that there is one! As a committed Indian cricket fan, i am devastated, not only by the thrashing that awaits us in Kolkata, but more at the fact that the powers that be couldnt care less. Maybe, after this defeat, they will say .." we still have IPL". Such a crying shame.

  • on December 8, 2012, 3:16 GMT

    Well dashing batting bang bang boundaries, that is what Indian audience likes & Dhoni & company is providing that. Really after ODI world cup win AT HOME, they have nothing to show for them. They were kicked out of Asia cup, kicked out of world T20 before semis & off-curse they are unarguably a pathetic test team with most test defeats in 2011-2012 season not to forget the 2 flawless white washes in England & Australia. Living in past records & stats does not safe guard against eminent defeats of present & future unless they start to accept their problems & mistakes, drop their heads down to work on their problems to come up with better shows.

  • jimbond on December 8, 2012, 3:14 GMT

    Currently India's bowling is inferior to Bangladesh also. only if and when the injured guys return to the team,will they be considered better than Bangladesh. I guess Indian selectors have a lot to answer for the slide. When the warning signs were there - during the England/Australia series, the selectors refused to test out new players. Even now, if they don't test out quite a few players- such as Rahane, Rayudu, Rohit Sharma (in tests), and many of the other debutants scoring big in Ranji, people like Pujara and Kohli may be left with too much to do in the coming few years. Also, while Ishant looks a slightly better bet than Dinda (who doesnt even bowl with a proper seam position), he has been tried and found to be wanting in Indian conditions. Definitely, someone like Bhubaneswar Kumar or Awana couldnt have done worse. Till players like Gambhir, Sehwag or Yuvraj get back into form, they could be limited to the shorter formats.

  • Ven61 on December 8, 2012, 2:52 GMT

    Sid, you have spoken about our bowling and fielding. What do you think about our captaincy? All observers/commentators have spoken field placements, but have stopped short of speaking of captaincy.

  • ItHappensOnlyInIndia on December 8, 2012, 2:52 GMT

    Before the start of the match, my prediction was something of this sort: Day 1: Toss = India; Batting first = India; Lunch = Ind 60/4; Tea = Ind 165 all out; End of day = Eng = 95/0 Day 2: All day batting 430/3 (Cook 200+; Trott 100+; KP something not out) Day 3: End bat until Tea 750/6 declare; Ind bat after tea 35/4 Day 4: Lunch match over. You know the result.

    When I see the actual scorecard, it looks like reality has kicked in but the plot is still the same.

  • captain70 on December 8, 2012, 2:51 GMT

    those quoted comments clearly indicate a team living in the past, hiding from the cold hard truth . how were they even rated no 1 ill never know

  • on December 8, 2012, 2:45 GMT

    not a single comment yet, I guess the truths are too hard-hitting....I think its time the captain of the team comes out and gives everyone an explanation, why does he alz send someone else to the press conference and why it has to be a junior member, the team is having 6 IPL captains, can;t any of them come out????....its high time to overhaul the complete system, its as if everyone is waiting for the meaningless IPL to start so that they can make money with meaningless innings...

  • on December 8, 2012, 2:39 GMT

    Very well written article! Very true but few people realize this!

  • KiwiRocker- on December 8, 2012, 2:37 GMT

    Another excellent collection from Sid Monga. However, Indian players are not the only ones who are in denial. Actually, if anything, Indian players are the least guilty party. The real issue is with BCCI/Selectors. BCCI has somehow over hyped its cricket team and for a while was able to take advantage of special cricket balls, 65M grounds, lack of DRS, and a lot of home test matches. These advantages ensured that India was briefly a No.1 ranked test nation and a WC champion, however, with the retirement of two fine Indian servents Dravid and Laxman, India's batting is exposed. One can not expect Tendulya to win matches for India. Shahdi Afridi with almost no technique has won more matches for Pak in his career than Tendulya ever did or ever will. Tendulya is a player who has never stood up to be a leader when needed.He only bats at No.4 and if India's test status is now under review, it is because of him.India fans needs to accept the reality that India is an ordinary test nation

  • ItHappensOnlyInIndia on December 8, 2012, 2:34 GMT

    There was a time in my life when Sachin would come out to bat and I would literary pray to God that hit's ton and wins a match for India.

    And now when I see him come out to bat I pray that he doesn't score another scratchy 40, 50, 70 or a 100 and then stays for another 2-3 years showing how miserable he has become.

    Everytime the camera rolls on the ground, it is so sad to see him hanging on the boundary line, aloof and disillusioned.

    I wish he finds that strength within him to call it quits. And more importantly I hope the media doesn't make a drama out of it.

  • ItHappensOnlyInIndia on December 8, 2012, 2:20 GMT

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! For posting the best article of the year. And the best part is these are pure unadulterated facts.

  • on December 8, 2012, 2:18 GMT

    True Story!! ..........................

  • strider23 on December 8, 2012, 2:18 GMT

    India's bowling is at it's absolute nadir. Even during the nineties, when Indians got hammered abroad, they would at least dish out the same to opponents at home. But never in our cricketing history have we been more vulnerable playing in our backyard. Hail Dhoni ! Long live BCCI !

  • spinkingKK on December 8, 2012, 2:17 GMT

    Indian players always take the easiest way to make their positions secure. They make some huge scores when it doesn't matter and then they are allowed to keep their positions for a long time even if they keep failing. I can't imagine Kohli or Pujara getting dropped for a long time from now. Because, they had some terrific knocks and that's all it takes. Raina couldn't get those big knocks and he gets dropped all the time. Indian players doesn't seems to have that mind to put up a fight so that they can justify their position in each and every match. The failures should be an aberration and the success should be the norm. It is other way around in this Indian team. These players only succeed once in every 4 games on an overage. For instance, Dhoni finally socred a fifty, batting first on a batting pitch at home. When was the last time he scored something? Only player who was under pressure to score in this match was Tendulkar. He scored alright. So, they only score when they have to.

  • emmwill on December 8, 2012, 2:10 GMT

    Interesting article here. I wouldn't go to such extremes in my comments on India cricket but they are close to be an ordinary side. Their bowling unit is almost ordinary on non spinner friendly pitches. However, I still rate the India team as a batting unit. They have their work cut out for them in the next 5 years to prove that they deserve to be called a top test team.

  • on December 8, 2012, 2:06 GMT

    I remember a cartoon a few years back in a newspaper where the news presenter announced that the Indian captain was here to explain the reasons for the recent defeat and the captain began to unleash a whole load of excuses. Reading these rather hilarious quotes is like watching that cartoon come to life. Maybe Haughty Gambhir & Co don't realize it now but they have just pressed the self destruct button with their incorrigible attitude. And here's proof then that the much venerated and deified 'Little Champion' is, whether we like it or not, in their corner. So much for being the Elderly Statesman of the team.

  • DebChodeary on December 8, 2012, 1:54 GMT

    India has been specialising in these listless, rudderless performances for too long now. Something needs to be done. A Schofield type report maybe? An Argus review perhaps? Yes, that's it. An investigation into what has caused Indian cricket to go stale. A fact finding mission if you will. Who will lead the inquest? SIDHARTH MONGA OF COURSE!

  • on December 8, 2012, 1:52 GMT

    Incredible article. I have a so much respect for Sidarth Monga.

  • on December 8, 2012, 1:35 GMT

    i hope india loses the next test also so they can drop the non performers gambhir,zaheer,ashwin,yuvraj, ishant, tendulkar even dhoni needs to be dropped they need to give chance to other players think about the future

  • 07sanjeewakaru on December 8, 2012, 1:33 GMT

    I didn't saw a grassy wicket when India played in ENG or AUS.Only grassy wicket I saw for years in recent test cricket was in Hobart NZ vs AUS.

  • leggetinoz on December 8, 2012, 1:21 GMT

    About time an article like this was written. It needs to be said. However it goes deeper than this. Not just the team, I think the Indian fans need to change their mindset as well as they will routinely spew out the same comments that the players make and quite regularly give the impression that the only way India loses is that the opposition got lucky. When the Indian players stop getting treated like gods that are far superior to the common Indian than maybe they will change their own mindset and play with pride. Can't help but think that the players get away with t as they are worshipped. If smith, Clarke, ponying, cook, pietersen etc said any of those kings they will be slammed by media and fans alike in their own countries so they know that they have to perform. I don't think the Indian team thinks this way as they will be worshipped anyway.

  • on December 8, 2012, 1:16 GMT

    You can only begin to fix a problem when you have accepted that there is a problem. All sides lose games but the most concerning factor has been the attitude of Indian team, board and the management staff. It was amazing how cocky all the Indian commentary staff and players were after Ahmedabad win. They truly underestimated England. England accepted they had a problem with the turning ball and they worked hard to rectify the issue. I would be surprise if Ian Bell don't score some runs soon. That is what professional teams do, they accept they weren't good and find a way to improve. Look at Australia, after the loss at Perth, Clarke came out and accepted that we weren't close to being number 1 and we have a long way to go. India need to accept they are not good enough.

  • on December 8, 2012, 1:14 GMT

    Well summarised Sidharth. India also doesn't seem to understand that two teams have to bat on a pitch, and the team that wins in the one that handles the conditions better i.e has the better technique. Cricket is an outdoor sport, and it is absurd to simply say, oh it's the doctored pitch. If India truly think they played on greentops in the white wash series they are deluding themselves. All the players should get down on their knees and thank their god they were born in this age, because essentially they're saying we can't play on these ptiches. And of course they don't have that excuse as England flog them.

    That being the case, they wouldnt have go anywhere near a Test in the 70's, and there would have been deaths in the days of uncovered pitches. They're biggest problem is the elephant in the room. Time to tap Sachin on the shoulder. He's only playing for himself and that is clearly infecting the team with a certain malaise.

  • warnerbasher on December 8, 2012, 0:52 GMT

    I'm looking forward to the preening prima donnas in the indian cricket team getting their comeuppance in the next couple of days. They whinged and whined all last summer here in Australia and were quite simply not up to standard on or off the pitch. Well played England and here's hoping for a 3-1 result

  • TRAM on December 8, 2012, 0:50 GMT

    Well said. I think there were many more excuses during Aus/Eng defeats. Lets not forget the non-stop excuses and support the BCCI hired commentators are making to support their favorite players.

  • Raju_Iyer on December 8, 2012, 0:49 GMT

    A superb collection of quotes which brings out the old maxim , "Accepting a mistake is the first step towards improvement " .

  • baskar_guha on December 8, 2012, 0:42 GMT

    The reality that Indian fans more than Indian administration dont like to hear is thatIndia are rebuilding. Of the team that played at Lords in July 2011, Dravid, Laxman, Harbhajan are gone. Those are three major contributors of the 2000s. You just cant replace these players easily or quickly. Pujara isnt Dravid yet and Kohli isnt Laxman yet and Ashwin isnt the old Harbhajan yet. With the impending retirements of Zaheer and Tendulkar, India will get even worse before they get better. England on the other hand is a team that is at its peak and we are seeing that in their performances. If India manage to draw this series, it will be an encouraging achievement. I would argue that India will start peaking as a test side in 2015.

  • indianpunter on December 8, 2012, 0:36 GMT

    Spot on!! i was wondering when such a piece would appear. Denial, all the way. Right from the BCCI boss, down to the level of the fringe player. The first step in rectifying a problem is accepting that there is one! As a committed Indian cricket fan, i am devastated, not only by the thrashing that awaits us in Kolkata, but more at the fact that the powers that be couldnt care less. Maybe, after this defeat, they will say .." we still have IPL". Such a crying shame.

  • Sivaprem on December 8, 2012, 0:35 GMT

    ROFLMAO!!! Will someone post this article in their dressing room, hoping they can read! There's nothing wrong in losing, but winners don't whinge!!

  • Rahulbose on December 8, 2012, 0:24 GMT

    Well they have to say something in front of the cameras. Ultimately it is the Indian fans blame as well. Everyone who flocked to watch IPL games in the last few years should raise their hands and say I killed Indian test cricket.

  • AvidCricFan on December 8, 2012, 0:20 GMT

    With England's score there can't be miracle of 2000-01 repeated. Indian team will be lucky to avoid innings defeat. The problems is not only with Indian bowling, the batting has also faltered in the last two years. Even on a flat home wicket, the team is struggling to put up a decent score. Add bad fielding and mediocre bowling to it. The worse part is that there is not much depth in the bowling or quality batting. All players are spoiled by IPL.

  • on December 8, 2012, 0:19 GMT

    wonderful analysis, denial only make them look like sore loosers.

  • on December 8, 2012, 0:08 GMT

    I am glad you wrote this article Sidharth. This probably is the feeling of majority of Indians and kudos for bringing it out in the form of an article. Rather than giving statements, we should be showing intent on the field and the show the desire to win. I am hoping we do not have another mindless statement from someone in case we go on to lose/draw the series. We need to accept that we do not have the same good team that we had a couple of years ago and work towards improving that. Poor starts, exposed middle order and toothless bowling leave along the fielding needs to be improved and the team needs that fresh impetus. Probably need to take guidance of people like Dravid, Kumble, Ganguly who have left the sport recently, as they would be the best guides available to us.Also dont know how the fitness program and routines are going on and if they are good because the public are not seeing the results yet. Hoping as a true Indian cricket fan that we put all our things in place.

  • mikeyp147 on December 8, 2012, 0:06 GMT

    Finally, the truth. In England last year there were hundreds of ready-made excuses for an utterly pathetic effort from India. Green tops, cold, rainy weather, bad luck, losing the toss, 'foreign' players in the England team (yes, that old chestnut) blah blah, you name it. But none of it mattered, because revenge was going to be dished out in merciless fashion as 'India can't be beaten in their own backyard' and 'England are hopeless against spin on turning pitches'. Yet now, after a poor effort in the first Test, England have shown some fight and immediately India just can't be bothered, Truly appalling. India, a cricket-mad country of 1.2 billion people, can't turn out 11 cricketers who are prepared to put up any sort of fight when things don't go their way. Absolutely extraordinary. The BCCI needs to take a very long, hard look at themselves and be honest, as Sidharth Monga has done here. Hint: IPL is not the be all and end all.

  • bustermove on December 7, 2012, 23:55 GMT

    So glad an Indian wrote this piece. Perhaps when it's said by one of their own countrymen then the people that matter will listen. Watching India play in Australia over their last 3 trips here has been revealing. The tours 03/04 & 07/08 were probably the best series I've seen (Monkeygate notwithstanding).My favourite cricketers in the last 20 years are all Indians, Tendulkar, Laxman, Dravid, Zaheer and even the much maligned Harbajhan. They played cricket here with incredible drive, taking on the Aussies at their own game. Last year they were just woeful. 1st innings Melbourne 2 for 214 chasing Aussie's 333...excellent...Tendulkar gets out and all of a sudden it's a different team.The big 3s reflexes had clearly slowed. Zaheer's attitude was terrible....His batting told that tale. A good bowler when he's winning. Only Kohli looked like he wanted to win. Apparently they got greentops....Are you kidding? I fear that the IPL baby conceived in love has become a very disruptive teenager.

  • arvsingh on December 7, 2012, 23:55 GMT

    Ashwin is a dismal failure & deserve to be kicked out. If he can't take wickets on doctored spin pitches than where can he? Eden Gardens has been the hunting pitch for Indian spinners where Bedi, Chandra, Prasanna, Kumble, & Bhajji had ruled. Two Indian spinners bowled 102 overs, gave 323 runs, and took 4 wickets. In this series alone, Asswin has given 541 runs for 7 wickets. Commentators keep praising Asswin and blaming flat pitches. Wait till Monty and Swann bowl at the Indian batsmen! Dhoni also keeps yelling , "Bowling Asswin". Really? Indian bowling needs an attacking spinner like Harbhajan. Remember how Ponting was called "Bhajji's Bunny" and how the Aussie hated his guts. Bhajji has taken 400+ wickets but he is not in the team. Recently he took 5 wickets to have England batting on their knees in 2012 T20 World cup. Why was he removed? Even in Mumbai, Dhoni underbowled him. He was given half of the overs given to Asswin. Why? The answer lies in the Idly-Sambhar politics of BCCI,

  • Ram_O on December 7, 2012, 23:53 GMT

    Please spare Bangladesh! Their eleventh batsman scored a killing century recently! By the way I am a "hardcore" Indian fan, always "dreaming" of the day when India "brown washes", SA in SA; AUS in AUS; NEG in ENG and NZL in NZL! I have had this dream for the last 25 years. Hey we won the WORLD CUP after 28 years - Why not ream this DREAM!!!!!! But something deep down whispers that "FORGET IT" and become an "American Football" fan

  • on December 7, 2012, 23:49 GMT

    Superb article by Sidharth Monga ... Its really sad to witness Indian cricket in such dire-straits & the ridiculous comments made by its players makes us Indians nothing more than a laughing stock now ... Sincerely hope some drastic changes are made quickly for the betterment of Indian cricket and its fans !!

  • on December 7, 2012, 23:45 GMT

    There is no way with this attitude and the bowling unit, and such a super cool captain who doesn't mind and find any difference in winning and loosing are still there in the indian cricket team that india can expect some wins. Why not have a series with Bangladesh and Kenya and improve our records instead. Australia was expected to slide further and further as time passed after the exit of the greats, but they accepted the truth in some form and started working towards it and are now seeing the results. I see the rankings, India in 5th position, do not see a reason how and why Sri Lanka is in 6th position, they are far better than the Paper Tigers. Don't see any player other than Sachin in Top 20 in Test Batsmen, Zaheer in top 20 Test bowlers, Ashwin in Top 20 ODI Bowlers... how can we expect to win such a worst of all time team. Dada was the best captain india ever had. Though he had very new faces he instilled the habit of winning, Dhoni instead is instilling the habit of sleeping...

  • SFGoldenGate on December 7, 2012, 23:32 GMT

    Hats of to the writer for the writing. Its been a long time that we are seeing these excuses from Indian players and their supporters. Some of the excuses in 8-0 whitewash were 1) lack of practice match 2) toss 3) rain 4) green top pitch 5) Injured Zaheer in 1st ENG test 6) Shewag not available for first 2 ENG test (But when he returned the loosing margin only increased) 7) Pitch didn't spin 8) COACH (hahaha, thats the best excuse) 9) Every team strong at home 10) 'We will reply them at home when they travel India" 11) Umpiring 12) Busy schedule 13) "We always loose the first match but come back hard later" :D 14) Injury 15) inept bowling is putting huge pressure on batting 16) inept batting is putting huge pressure on bowling. The truth is, the margin of the defeats were huge , there was no fight and no planning. But all these years, every other nation had to listen how great their SRT GOD is, how SRT is greater than Bradman, how fantastic 4 should be the in all-time eleven. Wake up.

  • on December 7, 2012, 23:30 GMT

    Though what you have quoted here is correct, did they lie at that point in time? Absolutely not. Yes, they are trundling in the current series. But that doesn't mean what they said earlier was not true.

    To extrapolate stuff is as bad as denial.

  • xtra on December 7, 2012, 23:27 GMT

    Slide of India cricket is becoming more and more apparent after Gary left for South Africa helping home country's cricket. As an acute coincidence, SA has improved from good team to winning team. "There is something about Gary"

  • IndCricFan2013 on December 7, 2012, 23:25 GMT

    LOL!!! Well Complied!!! Most definitely India is becoming an average side. But there is no point in blaming the individuals. They will keep talking. It is up to the selectors to build a strong side. I would imagine all these Indian players, who are multi millionairess in dollars, need not worry about their financial health, should it not make them play fearless? obviously not, which appears only make them talk much and perform less.

  • AP2013 on December 7, 2012, 23:25 GMT

    I couldn't agree more with this article! You can only change if you first accept that there is a change required. Time for a revamp, and it will take time but at least we will know that we are on the track to make progress rather than where we are today.

  • on December 7, 2012, 23:16 GMT

    Zaheer Khan is too slow to be effective anymore. Ishant has no variety at all, no swing, no seam, no reverse swing, no pace, just the short of a length kicker ball. Ashwin's straight ball is not for variety, that's his stock ball. India is the worst bowling unit in the world without the 'bar Bangladesh' caveat. But groom Aaron & Pankaj Singh, guys who can hit 140K and swing & seam--then with Yadav back and Ojha turning the ball, the attack gets to be decent with these 4.

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on December 7, 2012, 23:16 GMT

    India have been denying reality for a while now. As if the whitewash in England wasn't enough, the 'revenge tour' where England play in India has been a disaster as England have proved superior in every facet of the game. Every excuse that has been given along the way has turned out to be false. They really are being blown away in this test series.

  • on December 7, 2012, 23:16 GMT

    Perhaps, they should make an Indian 11, in the IPL and all these players in the test team should play there, they would start winning some matches and Sirinivasan/Shashthi/Gavaskar would be happy, would be shouting about "Tracer Bulets"/Kabon Kamaals etc..

    Thank god for some balanced characters like Akash Chopra/Sanjay Manjrekar/and this writer, if you listen to the standard fare in the Indian media/NDTV/commentries... there is nothing much to like about India....

    When Sachin made one of his most ugliest ,it was quite "beautiful" for L Siva, these are like folks who are paid to mourn in funerals ....

    I am not Pakistani...

  • on December 7, 2012, 23:10 GMT

    Denial is the default state of mind of Indian cricket. This isn't a recent phenomenon - may I point out the continuing delusion that India had become "good tourists" during the Ganguly era. Apart from a narrow win against a weakened England side in 2007, India are yet to achieve an away series victory against strong opposition, the hallmark of a strong Test side. India have always been invincible at home, including the mediocre teams of the 1990s. If that home advantage is being eroded, as this series is showing, the writing is truly on the wall for Indian test cricket.

  • D.Sharma on December 7, 2012, 23:02 GMT

    Now I must give give credit to Mr. Monga for mentioning Tendulkar and his pathetic excuses.

  • Marcio on December 7, 2012, 22:58 GMT

    Pretty embarrassing stuff, and thanks for gathering together these quotes, Sidarth Monga. A culture of victimhood is a culture of justified failure. I don't know about the English series in ENG, but India was given very sporting pitches in AUS, and the accusations of pitch doctoring were outrageous. India should look at the way certain other teams respond to big losses. When AUS lost the last Ashes series there wasn't a single reference to the weird climactic conditions that summer which turned Australia into England-away-from-home. Instead they fully admitted their faults and established an official review of the entire cricketing system. Since then they have played 17 tests: W9, D5, L3. That's how you deal with failure. Watching Kohli in Australia strut around the pitch for ages after being given out, fuming at the neutral umpire's decicion, just about typified the victim/blame mentality I am talking about.

  • Skylight28 on December 7, 2012, 22:45 GMT

    Its always 20-20 in hindsight. Sure the comments look silly now, but to some extent, the media and the fans make it necessary - imagine the flak the players would face if after every single defeat they said "yes, we sucked!". I agree that there is a lot of work to be done to be world beaters (home or away) again, and I sincerely hope that while the team makes these remarks to the media, they also do some serious introspection to see what they need to improve on. Of course, the results do not show that they are taking concrete steps to get better, but I have to believe that these losses hurt the team as much as they hurt us fans and that a turnaround will happen soon. Lie to the media all you want, but please don't lie to the guy in the mirror!

  • Kolpak1989 on December 7, 2012, 22:43 GMT

    Great article, I think everyone outside of India has been saying for a very long time that the Indian team has a poor attitude and need to face up to their shortcomings if they want to be a serious cricketing force in the future.

  • subbass on December 7, 2012, 22:39 GMT

    Good article. Not much more needs to be said but the denials of the Indian players is indicative of the huge pressures they are always under, it must be very tough at times been an Indian Test player. No wonder they seek comfort in the ODI results ! But yes, the green tops quotes are utter rubbish one only needs to look at the big scores England made for proof of this, yes the Indian bowling is poor but there was only Trent bridge where the deck was anything like a green top. It is the weather that makes the ball swing in England not the decks. It's not like there is loads of movement off the pitches themselves.

  • SrUmpire on December 7, 2012, 22:25 GMT

    As long a people worship cricketers like gods and cricket as religion, India will always remain in a state of denial.

  • Ravendark on December 7, 2012, 22:10 GMT

    Great article. Maybe when India start losing at home, something might click.

  • on December 7, 2012, 22:04 GMT

    Indian cricketers always believe that something would happen overnight to convert a losing match into a winning one. I think they had overdoses of fairy tales that they heard from their grand parents. It is our duty to bring them to the reality. The first thing that should be stopped immediately is "Bragging". We talk a lot but when time comes to prove that, we give up so easily. Bragging suits a team who has proven their superiority to others a number of times and not by means of flook. Let us now all pray to Lord Varun who only can do something to save this match.

  • mokaddim on December 7, 2012, 21:50 GMT

    In fact, India do possess a bowling attack worse than Bangladesh in limited overs. If things move in the current pace and direction, soon they'll find themselves possessing a lesser capable bowling unit than Bangladesh even in the tests. I wonder whether India feel insecure to call Bangladesh tour them for series because they might lose to Bangladesh. Sadly enough, they must focus on improving their batting, bowling, fielding and not keep on boasting glory and stats which are not nearly as heroic as that of teams like South Africa and Australia.

  • Mitcher on December 7, 2012, 21:48 GMT

    Ouch!! The truth hurts, right? I hope a few people get far enough to read this quote: "That the whitewashes in England and Australia didn't happen on doctored green tops." Maybe even some of the players. Though they seem more inclined to wrap themselves in a cloak of delusion.

  • on December 7, 2012, 21:40 GMT

    hahaha.... funny article...!! i given up on Indian cricket.... and Indian team. No class... nothin...!! Once Ganguly is gone....everything is gone...!!

  • KarachiKid on December 7, 2012, 21:31 GMT

    Good piece. There is fine line between confidence and arrogance.

  • on December 7, 2012, 21:31 GMT

    India is simply getting outplayed by a better team. Period. This thing happens when the primacy of Test cricket in India is being surrendered to the glamour and instant gratification and lure of IPL, T20 and one-day formats. The Indian cricket team looks like a spent force after winning the WC in 2011 and does not care at all about these Test results and has developed a devil-may-care attitude to its new lows in Test cricket. "Ye sab chalta hain - kuch parwa nahin. IPL to hain na next year" attitude.

  • on December 7, 2012, 21:27 GMT

    I am sure there will always be one more excuse... Its probably curator's fault as Dhoni will tell you... he has sabotaged the pitch such that only England can bat and bowl. And Srinivasan will tell you all of the Indian Team members are conserving their energy and skills for IPL in April. The only way India can draw this match is by Dhoni threatening the curator to transform the pitch to a batting paradise for the next two days - otherwise, Dhoni will make sure that the curator will not be able to buy any products that he endorses which means everything in the monthly rations and also threatening the umpires that he will make sure that they will not get any IPL contracts henceforth.

  • StatisticsRocks on December 7, 2012, 21:24 GMT

    Since the WC 2011 victory, we are on a serious decline. Miracle of 2000-01 is not going to happen as we do not have the batting calibre of Dravid and LAX. We have the worst bowling attack period..BNG have better spinners. We wont improve as a test side as India is happy not playing test matches. If Virat, Yuvi, Sehwag, Gauti, SRT, Dhoni cannot bat at home, I don;t know where they will bat. I sincerely hope SRT calls it quits, drop Yuvi, Kohli and bring Raina, Rohit or Manot Tiwary. As far as bowling is concerned, well Good luck.. There is no one in India who can bowl so point in bringing anyone.

  • niknick on December 7, 2012, 21:19 GMT

    very rightly said..the 4-0 drubbing in England is where it all started..our bowling can safely be said is the worst right now..I think with all due respect to England, are worthy winners of the series (if they do).Indians have a lot of contemplation to do. the whole team has to be restructured and everyone's careers must be reviewed at this point. and ideally the number of t20's have to be reduced. People like Suresh Raina cannot pride on the fact that he is an indispensable t20 player. Test cricket has to be given its due respect.

  • on December 7, 2012, 21:18 GMT

    This is so true. And the amount of self praise that the team seem to be bestowing on themselves is ridiculous. It's one thing to be confident on ones ability and another to be live in denial and not improve, I think the team as a whole has fallen into this trap. It was very evident with Hariharan and his drop in form and it has been laid bare in this tour.

  • 2.14istherunrate on December 7, 2012, 21:14 GMT

    Why on earth do Duncan Fletcher and Trevor Penney have anything to do with Indian cricket. Penney was the best fielder in the county system , and Fletcher is a very fielding oriented coach. It kind of beggars belief that these two look after a side with one fielder( who cannot really bat and doesn't bowl) and ten player swho engage in their own skill perfectly satisfactorily but are as immobile a fielding unit as can have been seen in the modern game. In this side a Monty would be a shining light in the fielding department.

  • on December 7, 2012, 21:05 GMT

    brilliant piece...... just brilliant....

  • vipravara on December 7, 2012, 20:45 GMT

    Mr Monga: Just wondered why there was no quote of Dhoni the leader. Dhoni turned out to be the leader with the approach and attitude of covering/shielding the weaknesses rather than addressing them like just opposite to what Mr Cook was doing for England after the loss at Ahmedabad test. Shame on all the Indian team members. Well, they are all well blessed with the skills and abiliy of justifying their non-performane with excuses and arguments instead of improving their performance.

  • AB_DeVilliers on December 7, 2012, 20:38 GMT

    Great article. Wake-up India, the primadona's of the cricket world. You will never be the best until you start winning overseas. Best get your home form in order first though. You suck.

  • CricketingStargazer on December 7, 2012, 20:36 GMT

    Sid, brave words. You will take a lot of stick for this. On the "doctored greentops" in England, England scored 474-8d, 544, 710-7d and 591-6d, declaring 4 of their 6 innings in the series. Didn't any of the Indians notice this? Indian fans now repeat as a matter of faith that the English groundsmen were working to order to prepare dangerous, green surfaces for the Tests to justify Indian groundsmen working to orders too.

  • BnH1985Fan on December 7, 2012, 20:35 GMT

    This is a terrible India team made up of stars of yesteryear, and youngsters who do just enough to lay claim to their positions. And despite non-performance they continue to get several chances. Just look at Yuvraj, Harbhajan, and one only assumes Raina will be next to be brought in. Good article -- Correction: actually India's bowling attack is worse than BANG.

  • Buggsy on December 7, 2012, 20:35 GMT

    About time this came from an Indian. I can't help but think most of this is Dhoni's fault; I've never seen such a negative, infectious attitude in a captain, ever.

  • on December 7, 2012, 20:31 GMT

    My exact sentiments :)...when you deny the existence of a problem you live in denial, not optimism. Thin line yes, but the line can't be 2-3 years long for God's sake.

  • on December 7, 2012, 20:28 GMT

    hahahahaha thank you for this article

  • waqtpk on December 7, 2012, 20:25 GMT

    It was green tops in England, green tops in Australia, rain in World T20, and it goes on. Only thing Indian team is getting good at is making lame excuses. Why can't Dhoni be a man and be honest. Have they all gone completely selfish, no passion for game and nation. Just personal records and personal gains. There should be ban on test players to play in IPL. This below standard cricket is not doing any good for indian team.

  • on December 7, 2012, 20:10 GMT

    But for that miracle, there is no Dravid, no Laxman, No Sourav (to take the boldest of decisions). It would be nice to see, what happens when Sachin retires. The first thing Dhoni does is to go Defensive once the batsman starts hitting boundries. Even for a common man like me, thats ridiculous. For all those people who told India is better off without the FAB four !!! Take a Bow !!!

  • dock_haul on December 7, 2012, 20:07 GMT

    what an eye opener article but its not going to have any impact as people who are decision makers have their eyes permanently closed

  • royalg on December 7, 2012, 20:07 GMT

    the last paragraph has all the answers to INDIAN CRICKETS problems... its absolutely embarrasing when u get beat 8-0 with the soo called the best batting lineup in the WORLD which couldnt go past 300 even once,

  • Gary_the_Pom on December 7, 2012, 20:06 GMT

    i love this piece of writing, can you now do a report about the indian supporters year of denial to. After what i keep reading here.

  • WAKE_UP_CALL on December 7, 2012, 20:04 GMT

    look at the bench strength .same guys picked over and over again without making their performance shout but just on reputation .Ishant and harbhajan .though they might perform but it reflects the insecurity among selectors of being one of the odi's in australia dhoni used umesh in 23 rd over.if one is not confident to give an opening burst to his fast bowler with 145plus capability in australian conditions then where does he wanted to use demoralizing is that for a fast bowler.ravinder jadeja the most capped player in whole of australian series.his field placings in second test in mumbai.his mystery tactics of not using fast bowlers on second evening in kolkata which every one knows helps them in reverse swing is a clear sign of stubbornness.pujara,ashwin,sehwag rotational policy at first slip which is a clear match wining specialist position which requires long hours of conecentration but dhoni doesnt believe in it and hides behind from the press conference

  • on December 7, 2012, 20:01 GMT

    I can feel the pain Mr. Monga. It hurts!!! I m angry too..

  • on December 7, 2012, 20:00 GMT

    Why did you have to bring Bangladesh into this! Your biased, one track attitude, towards Bangladesh cricket is unprofessional. England is a much better Test Cricket team on any day and any pitch because they perform on the field and do not blow their own trumpet. If the Indian media, players and board concentrated more on their own game and pondered less over Bangladesh, they could have been the Best team. Good luck England.

  • on December 7, 2012, 20:00 GMT

    splendid . the problem with indian team is they are more interested in talking rather then performing on the field.

  • on December 7, 2012, 19:57 GMT

    Stupid Indian Players. Just admit they are bad team. Probably just better than Bangladesh.

  • hhillbumper on December 7, 2012, 19:56 GMT

    India have no desire to do something that will involve hard work.What ever they do will be forgotten soon when the IPL comes around so why work hard? Sachin could get ducks for a year and still be picked.The individual is more important than the team and that shows in their play.

  • Emperador on December 7, 2012, 19:55 GMT

    Has anyone else noticed the reason behind the wane in India's performance coincides with Duncan Fletcher taking over?

  • WAKE_UP_CALL on December 7, 2012, 19:55 GMT

    Finally there is an article which tastes like water after crawling through the desert.Indian performance (well its not performance ,this is the kind of shit you expect from an office temp with a bad attitude) in this test match or in this series or in past two years in test cricket has offered lucidity about where BCCI and Indian cricket stands (doesn't "stand" by the way it looks like a leaning tower of pisa but in motion to a great fall ) in world cricket.everyone i mean everyone who is still under BCCIi;ex cricketers and former players have not questioned dhoni and his tactics.even in media after humiliating Mumbai loss the "Indian media" was all focused on tendulkars retirement.though if it was not tendulklar's determined 76 India would have not reached even 300 mark.but that's not the issue.its the mental attitude towards game.gambhirs tentative batting on kolkata pitch,sehwag run out,his reason for run out was more baffling,his selfish 60 odd in mumbai speaks volumes abt attitude

  • rahulcricindia on December 7, 2012, 19:54 GMT

    This is the stark reality of current stage of Indian cricket especially in tests, not only the captain but the players and management are denying their incompetence as a test team. The reason we are continuously loosing in tests is we are refusing to learn from mistakes and covering that up with one or the other lame excuses. Dhoni despite being a WC winning captain has an attitude of a looser, never seen a player/captain giving more excuses than him. Its disheartening to loose a match but it is disgraceful to give excuses after loss that too match after match. Never seen a team that was no.1 year and a half ago drop to such ordinary level and never seen a player bragging about their previous triumphs, I thought that was the job spectators but I think that is what they are these days. Wake up...Dhoni n Indian Team..!!!!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 19:53 GMT

    Hope the Indian player take some time out and read this article..Denial is the most fatal mistake one can it in sports or in Life...

  • Engee on December 7, 2012, 19:44 GMT

    Bravo, Mr.Monga! Couldn't have said it better. I guess until we start playing only in neutral venues (like Pak) this conundrum won't be solved. True measure of performance should be producing runs/wkts both home and abroad..perhaps you can add catches too!

  • Hillaire on December 7, 2012, 19:36 GMT

    Wow, someone finally had the guts to say it. Prepare for a backlash!

  • on December 7, 2012, 19:32 GMT

    Also, this series is a blessing in disguise for India because now some changes will have to be made. If India had won this series comfortably, no one would have cared much about the 0-8 drubbing against England and Australia last year.

  • seeknshare on December 7, 2012, 19:31 GMT

    To rectify the problem, one needs to ADMIT having one. Team India (is there really such thing or it's just marketing gimmick) has issue of plenty (of problems!). Even God won't be able to help Indians with this kind of attitude.

  • on December 7, 2012, 19:29 GMT

    good article. Entering into 2011's world cup when india was the no.1 team in test cricket, their last away series results against England, South Africa and Australia were 1-0 (2007), 1-1 (2011) and 1-2 (2007/08, in a closely contested series). When india was the no.1 team, their away performance was good too. Now, they've gone back to the mindset Indian team had in the 90s.

  • Lmaotsetung on December 7, 2012, 19:29 GMT

    I mentioned in another article, when England got whitewashed in the Ashes 06/07, they had the Schoefield Report. When Australia lost back to back Ashes series they came up with the Argus Report. Unfortunately when India got whitewashed 0-8 in away tests, we get the above quotes. You beauty Monga! Great job digging those quotes up and not to mention Kohli's "wait til you guys come to India" during India's tour to England. The first quote from Gambhir is a thing of beauty, it should be enlarged and framed for everyone to see.

  • kuntala on December 7, 2012, 19:23 GMT

    Time for India to do a reality check !! These are very lame excuses, they should win the games before defending themselves.

  • Nampally on December 7, 2012, 19:22 GMT

    When a Team is swept 4-0 in 2 consecutive series abroad, it should have been a matter of grave concern to BCCI. There was no effort to find the Root cause or implement corrective Actions. This attitude from the governing body, BCCI, makes one wonder whether BCCI is in place because of Cricket or it is an independent organisation just making money.Mr. Srinivasan's recent remarks added insult to injury .While he spoke, Team India is being blown right out of their own backyard by England!. It makes Mr. Srinivasan's comments look ridiculous with Zero understanding of Indian Cricket & its Fans. It is the Fans who made Cricket what it is. Kolkatta drew crowds of 90,000 not long back but is lucky to get 20,000 now. India won 8 Olympic Hockey Gold medals in a row but now struggle to make the play off. The same fate awaits India unless the top of BCCI is torn & rebuilt.This should be headed by action orientated ex-Cricketers accountable & committed to rebuild Cricket from School to Test level.

  • Harvey on December 7, 2012, 19:20 GMT

    A brilliant article that totally hits the nail on the head. Virat Kohli's allegation that England gave them flat tracks and rubbish bowlers in practice matches was outrageous. India arrogantly thought they only needed one practice match before the Test series. It was against Somerset, one of our strongest teams. If the pitch was so flat and the quality of bowling so poor, how did they get bowled out for 224, conceding a 1st innings lead of 201? If India wanted to get used to English conditions, maybe they should have played a few more practice matches. As for green tops and fast pitches, the only fast pitch in either England or Australia was at Perth, and even that's not as fast as it used to be. The pitches in England were the normal ones you would expect at the respective venues, with The Oval actually offering significant turn. India's policy of denying England practice against decent spin bowlers, or strong opposition, has to be unprecedented anywhere in the world.

  • NairUSA on December 7, 2012, 19:13 GMT

    It is all England's fault :)

  • DevarakondaAngirasa on December 7, 2012, 19:12 GMT

    The first thing all genuine Indian cricket lovers should do is this: boycott all products endorsed by Indian cricketers!

  • Emperador on December 7, 2012, 19:08 GMT

    Ouch!! But true to every darn word... It is really a shameful situation to be in and we must come out of false cocoons and realize how exposed we are

  • prime.lens on December 7, 2012, 19:07 GMT

    Thank you for collecting these quotes in one place. If possible, the denial and brashness of this group of players has been even harder to stomach than the miserable run of test losses.

  • TequillaGuy on December 7, 2012, 19:06 GMT

    Very well done Sid.This is one thing that has troubled me most as a cricket fan over last year.Not owning up!We have lost series abroad in past but with the previous generation,we did not get to hear such excuses that we got green tops,we will show them when they come to India and this very aggressive-defensive talk!Kohl,Gautam and Dhoni have very aggressively defended these losses,instead of owning up and saying that yes,we do not have the technique nor the tactical strength and need to work on it.I don't know how this brash attitude developed and what was an otherwise grounded and 'cool' Dhoni doing when people were making such statements.I believe the attitude comes from the top.Dhoni needs to own up to his tactical failure n the general lack of application and technique by his team.Unless he does that and stops taking refuge in past glory days,things will not improve.The past games were won because people owned up and worked hard to improve instead of blaming imaginary green-tops!

  • RameshRayaprolu on December 7, 2012, 19:04 GMT

    Good collection of comments, Sir :) !! Hope you can take it to the Indian team and remind them :) :) ha ha ha !!!

    The current Indian team is NEVER learning from their previous mistakes. MSD is solely responsible for this "death" of Indian test cricket over the past one year or more. I don't see it coming back alive in the next 5 years, even if you change captaincy, remove Sachin from the team, or what so ever!! Each player of the team has to LEARN from every match and take their responsibilities to a new level.

    Initially when MSD started captaincy, it looked great because he had more seniors to cover up the damages. Now, there is almost no senior player who can take responsibility on to his shoulder and drive the game.

    This was not the case when Dada was Captaining India. Every match had a strategy and meaning, and more importantly Dada's team had attitude towards "fight for win" and the "spirit of game".

    Miss you DADA, RAHUL and VVS :( :( :( !!

  • NarayanShankar on December 7, 2012, 19:03 GMT

    Brilliant summary of denial, delusion and externalisation. How long can we go on blaming the pitch, weather, toss, umpiring, sledging, injuries, scheduling, technology, individual lapses and selection and captaincy decisions? Why do we behave like an ostrich towards basic issues in batting, bowling, fielding, fitness, discipline and players' attitude? We have the talent but what else?

  • on December 7, 2012, 19:02 GMT

    Resounding silence... and perhaps satisfying too, for those who grew up watching the Indian legends whose hard work has been wasted on a well-supported but complacent generation. The Indian fan should realize that it is humility, hunger and determination to be better that made Dravid, Tendulkar, Ganguly who they are... not commercialization, excuses and loud talks about "giving the pain back".

    The fans of Indian cricket are to blame, I feel. It is our choices, and what we venerate, that has driven Indian cricket to this end. IPL, t20, refusal to acknowledge our shortcomings and being loudmouths.... the results are evident.

  • VivSingh on December 7, 2012, 19:02 GMT

    India losing this series may be what is needed in order for India to improve in the future. If India win then everything will be swept under the carpet until the next hammering at the hands of the Proteas in South Africa. Watching Sehwag bat with a potbelly is embarrassing. Gambhir may score some more runs in this series but his fate on South African pitches is totally predictable...and people think he should be captain?! The guy's attitude about "rank turners" should've been enough proof that he isn't the right man to captain the side. Pujara looks physically frail in the field. Zaheer Khan was a superb bowler but he is now a fat old man, like Sehwag. India have been outplayed by spin. In India. Wake up BCCI. Wake up Indian cricket.

  • on December 7, 2012, 19:02 GMT

    I think Monga has hit the nail on its head...its time that India wakes up & realizes that they are nowhere near the best.its time they start admitting their mistakes and work on rebuilding the team.

  • Long-Leg on December 7, 2012, 18:52 GMT

    What an excellent article. I have pointed out several times on these boards that England produced good batting tracks for the India tour some 16 months ago. They were 5 day test pitches and certainly not green tops. Judging by the comments from Indian fans at the time, I don't think many of them believed me.

  • Optimistix on December 7, 2012, 18:51 GMT

    Agree absolutely - until they stop making excuses and overhaul their entire approach to things, they'll keep losing abroad, and perhaps at home as well.

    On current form, only Pujara, Ojha and Umesh deserve to play, and Virat could be given a slightly longer rope. If we keep going back to Yuvi and Raina for the test team, and more than half of the team keeps playing in spite of not performing, then we do deserve all the defeats.

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:48 GMT

    A perfectly written article, Sid. I was actually hoping that someone should remind what the Indian batsmen were bragging about the 'green tops' and the 'home advantage'. In my opinion, unless the BCCI, Indian cricketers and the Indian fans shred off their cockiness, over-agression and over-confidence, team India may not reach to its desired level. These guys need to put their hands up, accept their mistakes and try to rectify them, instead of finding excuses, e.g. green tops, no-practice and out-of-form thing.

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:42 GMT

    Admit it India you are finished!!!!!!

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on December 7, 2012, 18:41 GMT

    What about the poor articles from the 'esteemed' journos on Cricinfo, with your good self included? What happened to the objectivity when you guys were coming up with article after article by looking for hilarious justifications for Statchin to continue. You know what, we don't seem to worry about winning anymore, in whichever way it may come. Most of you guys are happy to see a win coming from the blade of a Statchin or a Dravid or a VVS. This obsession with individuals has pushed us into this mess. This wish for a win to come only from the blades of our 'heroes' is a bane. Worse still, some fan boys are content as long as their hero scores and couldn't care less with an Indian win or loss. Now start cleaning this mess by chucking out the elephants, the biggest of them all being Statchin, Dhoni runs a close second. Who says that we will struggle without them, but hey, aren't we already?

  • xylo on December 7, 2012, 18:41 GMT

    I don't think it is fair to include Ojha's statement in this piece. After all, you cannot publicly say that you think you have lost the game while it is still progressing. As for the rest, there is no denying that India did not have a succession plan for the stalwarts that were Dravid and Laxman. Whether to blame that on BCCI selectors or Gary Kirsten or MS Dhoni, we do not know. Personally, I do not think there is nothing wrong in losing a series if it helps you identify your weaknesses and work on them. But, put up a good fight to the best of your ability. Look at how Australia ran South Africa ragged until the third test. It is not like India does not have the resources. Dhoni once played out a day in England against England to hold on for a draw. Gambhir did that spectacularly in NZ. Kohli, Pujara, and the master of all records surely have the ability to do that. Yuvraj, I don't think he belongs in the test side. Sehwag could turn the momentum in India's favor if he applies himself

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:40 GMT

    well said sid.excellent article.really this is the worst bowling line up in the world

  • Sriram_Krishnamurthy on December 7, 2012, 18:40 GMT

    As a fan only thing we can say to ourselves is we really suck as a team. It is high time we graciously accept that fact and concede that we are only second best to England this season.

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:36 GMT

    Well written...i wanted team India to lose this series(before it started) so that they will think whats wrong with them other than pointing others for their failures.

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:32 GMT

    Thinks have been put in black and white, very clear and very true...

  • A_Vacant_Slip on December 7, 2012, 18:29 GMT

    Wow! - what a shocking collection of shocking statement by Monga! OMG! These comment about the nature of pitch in England and in Australia are just so much garbage. If India think that pitch in these county are doctored then they are gravely mistaken. It seem that the mindset of India player is " these away result don't matter because these game were played in doctored green top specific to deny India chance. In India we only play on fair pitch. So now we need not worry about our performance away from our home. Only match in India count....". This too is so much garbage. India will never ever become competitive until such time as it accept reality - which is that EVERY Test match count equally no matter where in the world it is played. It is terrible to think that this cricketing nation, which was once "powerhouse" has been reduced to such conceit, self-deception and complacency. Come on India - Wake Up! Please publish.

  • rogermal57 on December 7, 2012, 18:27 GMT

    Mr. Monga, This is an excellent piece with a very apt title. It was compelling and funny reading, UNTIL started the paragraph "One of these days, India will admit they have become an ordinary side..." Will they admit or not remains to be seen. Also will they have to admit fi there is a turn-around in fortunes also remains to be seen. Until then, I just have one journalistic advice - after such a persuasive piece that lets Indian players' quotes speak so eloquently to the denials, why do you have to be so directly blunt and bitter in proclaiming that they are the worst or the 3rd worst. Stop just a bit short of being so negative and your piece will be more impactful and perhaps less hurtful to those you are writing about.

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:25 GMT

    well said and well deserve setback for Indian team...its not that from billion one can not find talent.. but every thing is being ruined ,right from sports to country.. and people say "aisa hi chalta hai". Its irritating. everyone is talking big (including me) but don't have guts to do anything. In fact my mind is blank. Its like my mother is being raped and i am tied, left to watch but cant do anything.

  • YorkshirePudding on December 7, 2012, 18:22 GMT

    An interesting recap, in regards to the lack of practice in England, that really was the BCCI's fault and the coach, counties would have loved to have faced India as it would have brought in a lot of cash from Indian supporters in the UK, I think Northants had a record crowd when india played there.

    The problem is that its too easy to make excuses for not doing the basics, I saw it at the Oval England would turn up and do thier fielding drills the indian players were too busy kicking a ball around with very little slip catching practice, highball catching even chasing ground balls and throwing at a set of stumps seemed to only interest a few.

  • shanghai_chinaman on December 7, 2012, 18:22 GMT

    The attitude change will only begin with a change in captain. Nothing less will do.

  • pratit on December 7, 2012, 18:19 GMT

    Just wait till Indian fans read this and come up with a deluge of excuses and irrelevant facts to justify their performance. You have hit the nail right on its head. India are an ordinary side at the moment. Strange that a country of 1.2 billion does not have a decent bowler. Thankfully, most countries don't play cricket. Otherwise India's ranking in cricket would be like that in football

  • Nutcutlet on December 7, 2012, 18:18 GMT

    Ok. A fair & honest article, in which several influential voices of Indian cricket seem to have a chorus: we know we don't win away, but we win at home. There's no problem. Stop complaining! To complete the self-delusion, there's India's bowling coach who claims that Z Khan is in the best 6 in the world! Utterly staggering! There's not a knowledgeable cricket watcher anywhere who'd have ZK in the top 12! (And it's certain that he's one of the worst fielders too!). Still, Joe Dawes has to talk up his work as coach; it's called looking after yr job! These comments aside, I have to wonder whether there is much appetite for Test cricket within the Indian team. MSD clearly prefers matches to last 3 days not 5 (no wonder he fell out with Mr Mukerjee!); in general, the batsmen lack the discipline to dig in (exc. the admirable Pujara) & the fielding (exc. Kohli) is barely club standard. The side isn't fit, wilts under pressure, is in self-denial, but has a genius for believing its own myths!

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:17 GMT

    The article is incorrect. Bangladesh have a better bowling attack than India.

  • astopal on December 7, 2012, 18:16 GMT

    Well compiled Mr. Monga

    Though i do not totally disagree with what they said mostly. Playing spin well is no less a craft than playing pace but now that you do bad at both there is a problem. I don't see much of the problem in the team though. In any professional environment if couple of things are not working it generally is personnel problem but if most of the things are not working it is a leadership problem most of the time.

    Dhoni the captain has had a good record but his own zeal for playing test is no longer there , we remember the comment in the middle of the australia tour whitewash that he isn't keen on playing all formats of the game.

    Captaincy is tough. Also good point with the support staff well the less said the better Venketesh prasad was the best Bowling coach Indian team ever had. John wright was the best Coach and Ganguly the best captain but that is all past. Time to move on and appoint Gambhir as the test team captain.

  • Farce-Follower on December 7, 2012, 18:15 GMT

    When the captain and the board conspire to have some of the most committed and dedicated middle order icons retire early, then this is the result. Dravid and VVS were hustled into retiring early so that the shelf life of spurious talent was extended. Shame on BCCI and shame on its stooges who have been giving expert comments over the past 5 years.

  • mautan on December 7, 2012, 18:15 GMT

    To me it is sheer arrogance. And when arrogance goes with average talent, it sticks out as a sore thumb. I stopped supporting Indian team about ten years back, although I must admit that Saurav did take India forward a bit. As BCCI became all powerful, Indian players started getting too big for their shoes. They would get umpires changed, decisions challenged, stop DRS when the world is in favour mainly because our captains were very bad at asking the review..captains like Dhoni, started as confident guys, then started becoming stubborn and arrogant, with no care for what looks good or bad..Infact except a couple of guys like Sehwg and Dravid, nobody in Indian team even wears the official 'county' cap of India. They all wear that 'baseball' hats..starting with Dhoni! They want to be known star India players, they very few of their own fans truely 'respect' them. To gain respect you need to be honest, Kapil, Jimmy, Sunny, Dravid, Sachin, Dilip etc

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:15 GMT

    The elephant is passing and Indian cricket says it can't see it...this is the problem with us. We don't listen and we can't think anything other than shortcuts. This is the time to do two things...change the captain, coach and drop one of Gambhir, Sachin, Shewag or Yuvraj. Better to get in a Ranji team and it will do well in Indian conditions.

  • Afta on December 7, 2012, 18:13 GMT

    This Test will eventually end in a win for England or a draw if India can put up a defiant batting performance on the 4th and 5th days. (not so easy). The problem with India is that they not only live in a state of denial but also have answeres and explanations that sound very immature or foolish and everyone can see that. Look at the negative stand they take regarding the DRS, when everybody else accepts that it's the best thing. So,now other teams have learnt how to tame India...."get the bat to talk".

  • Dhanno on December 7, 2012, 18:11 GMT

    Miracle of 2000-01 happened because the team had players of rahul and vvs calibre. For now the fate is sealed. T

    endulkar should be substituted if possible, by say rahane/ badr/ Tiwarii. Sure in pressure 3rd innings, 250+ runs down, sachin is not playing matchsaving/ face saving 170 runs. Sehwag can sizzle, maybe fast 70 until Gabmhir runs him out.

    Once the middle order fades (expect kohli/ yuvi to fail), Dhoni might counterfight with a 50, and people can rejoice that Dhoni atleast tried. Guys. Dhoni will never play a meaningful test innings. Fact. He may score 50 like the first innings, and it might look as if he propped up innings, but he is never really comfortable at this level. He will score when all is lost and mountain of runs to climb. Both scenarios, its just that there is no real pressure, as the game is gone. Give him 40 overs to play out with 4 tail enders.. he wont do it. you need a Very Very Special guy for that!

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:10 GMT

    If selectors or Chairman of BCCI, can tell Dhoni to rest for 4th Test and select Dinesh Karthik or Saha in place of him(only for 4th test) and experiment so that, it tests the ability of Dhoni,... Can BCCI take this steps,.. then i can say Miracle do happen

  • on December 7, 2012, 18:08 GMT

    Miracle would have happend, But this time Dada is not on the ground,.. he is in commentary box,.. still his charm may work,.. but Dhoni`s tactics will overcome that,.. if Dhoni tactics changed then Miracle do happen...

  • Gomzilla on December 7, 2012, 18:05 GMT

    Excellent article. Being an Indian, I am tired of Indian cricketers not admitting their mistakes. 8-0 overseas, and their respinse is that no one can beat them at home? Lets see what excuse is dished out once they lose this series. Pathetic!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:56 GMT

    Well said, it is tragic that we continue to live in denial... Test cricket in India has gone down to dogs but still we believe in these so called superstars... Where are the fast bowlers? Zaheer/Sachin should retire immediately. Split captaincy is needed as Dhoni is ridiculous as a test captain. Huge change is needed but BCCI will live off in its glory IPL and ruin the test future in India.

  • Cpt.Meanster on December 7, 2012, 17:55 GMT

    Reading some of the quotes of the Indian players BOILS my blood with anger. Seriously, I could do some harm to some of the Indian players because whatever they are saying is RIDICULOUS. Especially the quote from Sehwag: "We also won 2-0 in India" !!! REALLY ? My GOD ! So much self-denial is killing me. I can't believe how Indian fans continue to support THIS team !! I am slowly going to change sides and become an England fan at this rate. Besides, being a Canadian, we are traditionally inclined to support the crown and her Majesty. Really, such absurd comments is making me laugh so much. Well India are going to get what they deserve in this series. England will thrash them 3-1 and bring about the executioner with his flashing blade. Some heads will roll before Christmas.

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:54 GMT

    Article expose the current Indian Cricket Team!

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:53 GMT

    brilliant piece of writing!! this mode of denial is going to help no one....but I must say I'm disappointed that you didnt include any of MSD's quotes. He has surely said a few funny things along the way :)....

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:52 GMT

    India is going down. Without laxman and dravid india has been exposed..sehwag cant concentrate ..gambhir's form is always a question mark...sachin is now days a liability...yuvraj has nt fully recovered...bowling is like school grade level types...dont know what will happen to India ....

  • Cpt.Meanster on December 7, 2012, 17:50 GMT

    A fantastic article FINALLY ! Yes, India are living in a world of delusion and self-denial. I feel we Indian fans need a reality check, especially some of the ARROGANT ones here on Cricinfo who feel our team is really 'good' enough to compete in test cricket. No, we are anything but good. We are below mediocre. The problem really is simple to digress - we need to be HONEST with ourselves. Dhoni needs to be honest with the nation and come out and say the truth. The Indian team is finished in test cricket ! We survived for long thanks to the contributions of Tendulkar, Ganguly, Dravid, Laxman, Kumble, Harbhajan, Srinath etc in the past decade. Now we have players who are more flamboyant and useful in T20s and ODIs. They lack a personality to play test cricket which is fine by me. BUT, they need to be honest and admit it. Sadly, they haven't done that. India as a nation should NOT believe in this team any more.

  • RameshSubramaniam on December 7, 2012, 17:49 GMT

    Sidharth, hats off to the comments picked but ashamed of the article. When a media person ask question - Can India did wrong in not playing spinner in the practice matches, what you answer? Most of the answers above are to the questions asked by media like you and Players responded to the question. Yes India is playing bad and not ready to agree they are an ordinary side. It is not only players, what about coach? If you loose to England at home, there is no way they are doing good job. So denial is from the BCCI, coach and selection comittee and not from players. Who in the world tell the media we are bad side. Did Ponting tell that after loosing Ashes? Did clarke say that? It is unfortunate non batsman or is in form. If batsman scores 500s, you get wickets by having close in fielders. Havinf said that, Dhoni is running out of ideas and its time for change. Fleming would have been better option. Kristen did bad to Indian cricket by suggesting Fletcher and BCCI blindly trusted him

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:48 GMT

    When one is playing badly the best thing is to keep shut and concentrate - Indian players and the board needs to learn

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:40 GMT

    wonderful article... felt like a perfect film script or a gripping novel... u hav just put the facts 2gethr beautifully.... unfortunately,tis article is so gud cos of the situation the team is in.... All the players seem 2 b in a hypocritical world wid their egos bulging out... I alwaz believed tht if the crew is not disciplined the executives r at fault... It is the fault of bcci...Instead of goin back 2 the drawin board nd analyse wat went wrong,they encouraged false pride among their players and the results r showing...

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:36 GMT

    BCCI after this series.."Nobody watches Test Cricket anyways..We'll definitely do well in the ODI and T-20s. They are the future of cricket"

  • MysticMan on December 7, 2012, 17:33 GMT

    Couldn't agree with you more! In one of my posts yesterday, I had mentioned the contribution of Fab5 which masked our bowling and fielding limitations. You can cite any number of reasons for this but to me, having seen my children grow up in the United States, the first and foremost is that schools except for a few, do not train the children at an early age to be athletes; being able to run fast, have a good form, great reflexes etc. Even budding cricketer's fitness regime revolves mostly around batting. This maybe a stereotypification but there is evidence that more Indians tune in to their TV when India bats! There are movies where the father chides the child for not wanting to be a Sachin! In one of his interviews, Kumble had said how he progressed quickly at every level because he liked to bowl (he was an all-rounder who could bat) as there were so few! If the 5 wisemen are smart, they will start Sandeep S, Unmukt, Harmeet, Baba Aparajith in tests b4 IPL to hone skills early.

  • Alexk400 on December 7, 2012, 17:31 GMT

    They are ordinary because they refuse accept the reality. Sugar coating only last long only some time. India do not have a system to identify the bowlers by correct parameters ( Tall , Young , meat diet from young age). Vegetarian fast bowler is oxy moron. Fast bowling is hard work. All liquid in between joints dry up as you need replenishment , only meat diet can supplement that. Ofcourse you hav e to hit gym everyday. Its a way of life. Indian bowlers are batsman in their heart. That is a major reason. Bowlers should think like bowlers and do necessary hard work. No one going to point at themself and saying i suck. Coach gona sugar coat to keep his job. Player going to sugar coat to keep his job. We just need people who see things as it is. Dravid is ideal chairman of selector. I think identifying and training players is a thankless job. It needs to be rewarded. So if BCCI implement scouting for talent , they can find fast bowlers.

  • TamilIndian on December 7, 2012, 17:27 GMT

    Good collection of denial quotes. There should have been a couple from Dhoni too. Anyway the sad truth is nothing will change. India don't give a damn to test cricket. That is the bottom line.

  • SachinIsTheGreatest on December 7, 2012, 17:20 GMT

    You can also thrown in Gambhir's 53-average comment there.

  • DeepakSarathy on December 7, 2012, 17:19 GMT

    yeah.... but will they??? no way... noone can force the BCCI to do anything but themselves, but all they do is create world class domestic tournaments. and if you harp on about it, they all answer inj unison about the one time payment to the old stalwarts. while an utterly amazing gesture in itself, it does nothing to change the fact that we are becoming an increasingly mediocre test side, and a competitive one day side at best. an andy flower-esque overhaul of the system would do good, but woe betide the BCCI give anyone more authority... the BCCI is nothing but an extension of India's long history of incapable governing bodies, that is happening to exploit the massive golden goose, that is the indian cricket fan...

  • Hellboy82 on December 7, 2012, 17:16 GMT

    Little gem in there "You can accuse the BCCI of many things, but it doesn't lack humour, as is evident through the timing of this piece." I hope India lose the remaining matches as well. This is the result of a board and selectors with no vision. India should have started grooming a new generation of batsmen 2-3 years back. Rotating 1/2 of Sachin/Dravid/VVS depending on the opposition and conditions when they were doing well. I still feel VVS & Dravid retired a little too early, especially since they were only playing test cricket. I don't see much hope on the bowling side. Zaheer needs to retire for sure. He has been a liability for too long now. Ashwin needs to prove himself in Ranji Trophy. Perhaps this is what happens when T20 bowlers are promoted to test cricket. Finally, deny it all you want, the IPL buffoonery has a big role in the decline of Indian test cricket.

  • yogi.s on December 7, 2012, 17:16 GMT

    Excellent!! You put the anguish of all the indian cricket fans into words succinctly. As if the losses were not bad enough after a near decade of consistent performances the response to the losses have been worse. We seem to have hit the nadir(hopefully) with the home performance in this series and I really hope they lose this series if thats what it will take to make them look at the state of affairs with honesty.

  • Harmony111 on December 7, 2012, 17:14 GMT

    The denial could be that of old players. The denial could be that of lack of skill. The denial could be that of poor technique vs fats bowlers. The denial could be that of a captain not being good enough for Tests. It could be that of poor tour planning due to cramped schedules. It could be that of the other team simply being too good. But I guess the strongest denial is that about lack of mental toughness. I am surprised to see someone as talented and exp as Yuvraj STILL struggling to play decent knock in Tests AT HOME. I am surprised to see a 99 test old spinner being the 3rd option and looking even worse. I am surprised to see a ODI superhero like Kohli playing such loose shots to get out. I am surprised to see Dhoni being a worse batsman than Swann or Broad. I am surprised to see 5 year old Ishant STILL learning about line and length and tactical awareness. Faf scored 78* & 100 on debut AWAY, Clarke scored a 100 on debut AWAY. We need to admit the denial's about MENTAL TOUGHNESS.

  • Shan156 on December 7, 2012, 17:14 GMT

    Surprising to see Sachin referring to the 5-0 ODI whitewash last year. Surely, he knows that they are two different formats and winning a ODI series (they won 5-0 in 2008-2009 as well) is scant consolation for a test series humiliation. In any case, England won the tests 4-0, ODIs 3-0, and the solitary T-20. England have now managed to win a test and also the T20 last year. They are in a good position in the Kolkata test too. At least, Sachin and Sehwag, you can understand. They are great players. What I cannot understand is Kohli - the Indian media probably has hyped him to such an extent that he thinks of himself as a God? "playing on turning tracks and definitely would know where they stand". Such arrogance. Do you now know where you stand Mr.Kohli? India have all the rights to serve rank turners and flat pitches in the practice games but there were no green tops served in England. If anything, India had the best of the conditions in the 1st two tests last year.

  • CricFanKrish on December 7, 2012, 17:14 GMT

    Sigh ... Sid you're always right!

  • mikey76 on December 7, 2012, 17:12 GMT

    Kohli and Gambhir must be hanging their heads. Total lies about English wickets being green tops, they have sinically doctored their own pitches to get a cheap result and it has backfired horribly. They are getting what they deserve. They are lazy and hubristic, teams that cant be bothered to back up or chase down balls to the boundary don't deserve anything but what has happened so far. Lets hope an Innings victory for England now follows.

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:11 GMT

    Agree a 100 percent. Lack of enough skills, is one thing which can be forgiven. But attitude along with it, never. These guys really need a lesson on etiquette.

  • Triple_A on December 7, 2012, 17:09 GMT

    Thank you, Sid for penning this article. Complete and utter lack of responsibility shown by the national side. And I know that when the team has lost the series to Eng (yes, that is exactly what is bound to happen), these same players will come out and say, "No one should be dropped, no one should retire" and " All players contributed - only Kohli didnt, but he is young and will learn". Rohit Sharma and Jadeja will come back for the T20 and ODI's coz Tiwary isnt "technically better" and there is no place for Rahane. Also, IPL is coming up, these guys need to be in the national squad to retain some limelight in the hearts of the fickle-minded, ever-forgetting public of India. They will make their 30's/40's, maybe win the ODI series, and be content with their fat paychecks! Absolutely disgusting scenario! I am probably going to stop watching cricket after this series - supporting the team for 15 years - as a fan, i do not deserve this lack of commitment and responsibility of recent...

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:07 GMT

    The pitch at Eden is to blame. It did not help Indian batters or bowlers it helped the England team - Ban the unpatriotic pitch

  • baranasai on December 7, 2012, 17:06 GMT

    I think MSD should stop offering explanations to all the concerns- He should answer the critics by saying They are sorry for tht poor performance-they have learned somevaluable lessons so that they will not be in a similar situation in the future.That needs guts and self belief. Iam not sure any such thing will ever hapen-MSDwill substantiate the grass in the pitch was facing south west instead of south east by 20 so that whenver the indian bowlers bowled the opponents could read well and hammer them rightly whereas when the Englishmen bowled the balls vbecame extremely lethal and unplayable because the grass was doing well Unless the attitude chnages the team will never show progress. Indians need a new team like Aussies-Ricky has to go out ( without being pushed-he understands ) s well the non performers will go out whether it is watson or hussey .only who are fit to do justice fr their inclusion should be there -no petty excuses all the time for such silly performances

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:05 GMT

    Add to this: The 2011 WC win was fixed with ton of IPL money by BCCI to provide a consolation WC win for great Sachin Tendulkar!

  • on December 7, 2012, 17:02 GMT

    Team I can understand are trying to save their jobs...What are the selectors doing

  • Narbavi on December 7, 2012, 17:01 GMT

    Our bowling attack at the moment is really bad, agreed, especially the fast bowling department, but why are you trying to make a mockery of our team with this article? Ok, let all the fans worldwide start make fun of us now!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:58 GMT

    Well compiled article.They need to accept that they are bad and sweeping changes have to be made.

  • SMIR2011 on December 7, 2012, 16:57 GMT

    Indian players and the board all living in a fantasy world. Making excuses and blaming pitches, weather and toss is not a good sign for any team. At test level you are expected to play in any conditions. Indian bowling is very mediocre and there are no match winning bowlers in the present side. Team India needs to give chances to young bowlers and find genuine all rounders if they want to be a force in Test Cricket.

  • Biggest_Cricket_Fan on December 7, 2012, 16:57 GMT

    As they say in one of the national language of India. You can wake up a person who is sleeping, but can not wake up a person who is pretending to be asleep. Indian team including BCCI and Sectors are not willing to recognize that they have problem. In this case I really don't think any one can do anything to improve the situation. When we "celebrate" 76 of sachin Tendulkar scored to prove a point for himself rather than fighting for team's cause then may only almighty can help. Forget about repeat of 2001 Calcutta test, Indian fans shall bel glad if India does not suffer innings defeat at the hands of English team in this match. Wake up India wake up. Can not even say "Go India Go".

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:53 GMT

    No quote from Dhoni?? He has made so many quote blunders. So why is he being ignored? Come on be fair.

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:53 GMT

    It is absolutely TRUE story of Indian cricket

  • FlashAsh on December 7, 2012, 16:52 GMT

    This is a great read and as an ENG fan I always read your articles to get a different perpective!

    I've got a sneaking thought that ENG (with Priors stalwart assistance!) will reach approx. 600 by lunch have a lead of 300 shortly after and then bowl IND out before the close! I'm not saying this through misfounded belief but what appears to be staring IND in the face!

    IND current team have been knocked about so much recently and had so many great players retire they simply don't know what to do! It's so much like ENG of old that its now screaming out that BCCI need to do a root and branch appraisal of their systems, Ranji Trophy etc. as ENG & now AUS have done.

    its also no good IND fans keep saying they've won all these wonderful ICC trophies and ENG haven't! They are forgetting which format is being played and it's not Twenty/20 or ODI where fielding for 7 sessions doesn't matter!

    So please IND do all Test cricket fans a favour and sort yourselves out!!

  • BroccoliPower on December 7, 2012, 16:51 GMT

    Well said Sidharth. The worst thing to do in times of peril is to not identify the mistakes and counter them in order to improve. They are professionals; thus there is no room for excuses. These excuses just make the opposition stronger and gives them a glimmer of their mentality and attitude. It makes them peril thus farther. lets see when team India and their supporters identify this simple concept.


  • jb633 on December 7, 2012, 16:50 GMT

    This is hilarious. After the first test when a small minority of the English fans were complaining about the pitches a large Indian contingent said get on with it we never complained about pitches etc. Here is the proof all along that the Indian players constantly blamed the pitches on the tour of Eng. Indian players need to look at Ali Cook as a model professional. By his own admission he struggled massivley in the UAE against good spinners on surfaces that made run scoring difficult. Did Cook, Prior, KP complain about pithces. No. Did they question Ajmal's action? No. Did they admit they were outplayed? Yes. Cook went away and worked and worked on his game against spin. He is now bearing the fruits of all the countless hours he put in at developing a game against slow bowling that allowed him to scored big 100's in these conditions. Now Indian players have more talent than Cook but they now need to show the work ethic to realise it. The IPL provides no reason to work hard though.

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:50 GMT

    Well this article has been spot on

  • Kapil.Gulechha on December 7, 2012, 16:50 GMT

    Very very well written.....instead of curing the disease, they are simply covering it. Close your eyes & assume as if everything is right....sack these arrogant players,,,,,if lose, better with new fresh faces.....give them a chance at least....

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:43 GMT

    Hats off to Sid Monga for hitting the nail on its head.

  • smalishah84 on December 7, 2012, 16:38 GMT

    wow.....what an absolutely scathing article. But the idea is right. Somebody needs to remind the players of the statements (read as excuses) they have been making for the last 18 months

  • ilyas on December 7, 2012, 16:38 GMT

    A really funny but quite sad article showing the mindset of Indian cricket! All the great sides win everywhere and do not moan about different conditions. The best players adapt and look to improve when they are playing abroad. Dravid never complained about playing in unfamiliar territory - he jsut got on with the task in hand and therein lies the difference between him and glorified flat track bullies like Gambhir and Kohli. Kohli at least has the talent to be a top batsman in all conditions but he needs to get away from making excuses and looking to improve himself. As for Gambhir if the ball bounces above his knees then it is terrible track!! India are going through a transitional period and need to be mentally strong to move forward otherwise there will be a long period of being in the wilderness!

  • dailycric on December 7, 2012, 16:36 GMT

    Leadership breeds team culture. In terms of quality, at least 7 or 8 people in this side are good enough to play Test cricket, still. Pujara, Kohli, Umesh and Ojha are real talents for the future. Kohli and Gambhir have proven themselves abroad. Sachin and Sehwag, though past their best, still provide class and quality, Viru an X-factor that teams fear. Rahane, Tiwary, Saha and Dinda have been performing strongly, year in and year out, in domestic cricket - if they are ever finally given a chance, they will grab it. The problem is at the top. We have seen how captains like Ganguly, and coaches like Wright and Kirsten, took a bunch of good players and made them perform like great ones, in all conditions. Similarly, Dhoni and Fletcher have instilled a culture of mediocrity, taking good players and making them perform at a level that schoolboys would be ashamed of. In not mentioning Dhoni even once, Monga is continuing the delusion he accuses Indian cricket of.

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:35 GMT

    It is amply clear that the Indian team lack the ability to learn from past mistakes and this to me is teh main reason for all our troubles in the recent past. The solutions to India's test woes are simple. Dhoni needs to be removed from test captaincy - He is a gem of a cricketer in ODI's and T20's - but leave him out of tests. Yuvraj too is an excellent ODI and T20 player and should only be retained in those sides and dropped from the test side. Zaheer Khan is past his best and is a liability in the field and should go too. Ashwin should be on notice for one last test series (I think he is trying too many variations that work in ODI's and T20's and are not effective in tests). My XI for the next SERIES is : Gambhir (C), Rahane, Pujara, Sehwag, Kohli, Badrinath, Saha/Naman, Ashwin, Ishant, Umesh and Ohja. Manoj Tiwary can get in when Sehwag retires. Rahane, Pujara, Kohli and Badrinath provide batting solidity and an excellent fielding unit too.

  • SrUmpire on December 7, 2012, 16:34 GMT

    I knew this was going to come.

  • doubtingthomas on December 7, 2012, 16:31 GMT

    We expect too much political correctness from Cricketers. They certainly do not get training on how to talk to the media. Coming from the educational background we know very well, too much should not be read into their 'statements'. Come to think of it, since when did it become customary to hold so many press briefings?

  • Malret on December 7, 2012, 16:28 GMT

    Ha ha, the penultimate paragraph summarizes aptly the Indian side's mentality. It is more to do with BCCI than the players. What can the players do if they are old and inept. It is the BCCI's job to make sure they put some youngsters who still have the fight in them. Politics ensures lacklustre players relying on past glories to still be part of the side: Not just Tendulkar (I am still willing to cut him some slack, but would be happy to see him go) but Gambhir, Zaheer, Sehwag, Yuvraj, Dhoni, Ashwin, Sharma all do not deserve. I think we need to see Rahane in at the cost of Gambhir or Sehwag pretty soon. Mishra as well.

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:28 GMT

    I agree with Sidharth, India must not try to find excuses when they lost, they must have to show ability to overcome any condition provided, if they want to be called as ''good team''. I would like to add here the comments of Dhoni after being knocked out from the world T20 group stage, '' we lost only one match and we are out. we can not control how the other teams play (pointing toward the loss of Australia and win of Pakistan).'' still trying to find an excuse. Why not accept with open heart like Smith and try to come better next match. Acceptance of mistake decrease chances of not repeating it next time.

  • OptimusPrimal on December 7, 2012, 16:26 GMT

    Wow... quite a scathing but an accurate representation of India's forever present nagging and the grapes are sour attitude. Maybe India needs to loose this series badly in order to realize the problems that has plagued their cricket for such a long time. Personality cults that refuse to let go of the old and accept the new, preference of t20s over test cricket, inability to find a genuine fast bowler since forever. Awesome grounds and a premier T20 tournament are good, but if your team doesn't perform at the highest level then everything else doesn't really matter.

  • Venkat_Super_11 on December 7, 2012, 16:23 GMT

    Well done, Sidharth, for chewing on the past. Don't be surprised if Sachin asks for excuse again by saying that they play more cricket than any other team and that perhaps, is to be blamed. We, the Indians are good at excuses. Excuse me!

  • Dhanno on December 7, 2012, 16:20 GMT

    Haha.. good compilation Sidharth. I am bookmarking this and pinning it in my cricket's hall of shame!

    The follow-up article can show what the aussies/ english/ saffas have been saying about us all the while. They will offer lip service and say india can be still competitive/a decent side/ good cricket team/ we cant take things for granted against them/ every test is new game etc etc etc etc while laughing on inside at what a bunch of jokers we have assembled here.

  • MrsBoycottsPinny on December 7, 2012, 16:19 GMT

    And we hear the same comments from hundreds of Cricinfo followers. The point about the 'greentops' is a good one. I don't think any of the pitches India played on in Eng or Aus could be described as a greentop. Weather conditions in England certainly played a part, as there was cloud cover for most of the series which helped the England bowlers (and should have helped the Indian pacers too). But the Oval test was played over five fine days on a flat dry pitch and India still capitulated. Absolutely obvious in my view that the primacy of ODIs (incl T20) in India is breeding cricketers with no resilience. Step forward Gautam Gambhir, Exhibit A.

  • Rohan-Lalpudha on December 7, 2012, 16:19 GMT

    us Indians need to stop being delusional and acknowledge that we are better than only Bangladesh at the moment. Our bowling is arguably the worst amont the test plaing nations (yes, im including bangladesh as well) and even Pakistan have a better batting line up. We need to follow the route that pakistan are taking in blooding in the youth. Tendulkar is WAYYYY beyond his sell by date, Dhoni is a poor all rounder, sehvag is VERY inconsistent and Kohli is confused. we need to only retain ashwin, kohli, ojha, and pukara. get rid of the rest. Oh where are the Dravids and the Laxmans of this generation?

  • moBlue on December 7, 2012, 16:18 GMT

    sidharth, most of what you say is true... but it is also valid that IND should play at home on fast-turning bouncy pitches - which would indeed be playing to our strength! i don't agree with dhoni [and virat and gambhir] being poohpoohed for that recommendation!!! why should world cricket teams' performance only be measured using batters' ability to score on fast or flat tracks, and *not* on turners with consistent bounce?!? that does not make any sense to me at all!!!

    didn't y'all love the kolkata test in 2001? what do you think that pitch was? flat or seam-friendly? think again! that was a fast-turning pitch with consistent high bounce!!! warne and bhajji bowled brilliantly on it, and the seamers did reasonably well on it. AUS piled up mammoth runs in the first inning and forced IND to follow on, so "home field advantage" wasn't a given! again, i ask, what is wrong with dhoni wanting a pitch like that?!? he has been vilified for what i consider a perfectly fair and valid request!!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:17 GMT

    India need good wicket tacking bowlers. Period. And why pick a recovering Ishant over an inform Dinda on his home ground?Alao Ashwin should be reclassified as a batting all rounder. Totally ineffective. Also the batsmen need to score if they hope to save the match.

  • jokerbala on December 7, 2012, 16:13 GMT

    Very aptly put . India and Indian players have to come out of this denial and accept that they are a poor test side and I would even put the current West Indies and New Zealand sides marginally above us . Also pointed out rightly by Rahul Dravid ,who called it "the cocoon mindset".

  • jvrags on December 7, 2012, 16:13 GMT

    Terrific piece, Sidharth. I did not seriously expected India to win 4-0 against England. What we fans want is for India to accept reality for what it is and put in genuine efforts to address issues. BCCI don't seem to be care for anything other than the IPL and Indians are showing their apathy by turning up just 2 days before a test after losing a test (when they got more than a week between the two tests). Where is the commitment to improve and excel? What is Duncan Fletcher's role and does he have the freedom to take players to task for wrong attitude? I am sure he is worried about what happened to Greg Chappel so he dare not open his mouth.

    Come on, team India. You need to show that you are serious about doing well in the future and the first step to get there is being modest and accepting what your issues are. If you do that, I am sure you will win at Nagpur even if you don't manage a draw here.

  • Kangroos.Proteas.Monkeys.Lions on December 7, 2012, 16:12 GMT

    Bangladesh bowling has also given tough times to West Indies who are developing better than India. They have kept Gayle in check, won two ODIs which too much for them. I doubt this Indian bwoling attack or defence whatever would have controlled Gayle and Co that much.

  • PrasPunter on December 7, 2012, 16:12 GMT

    bcci's team never fails to impress with their loads of complaints, cries, whinges... and what not.

  • niceguy31 on December 7, 2012, 16:12 GMT

    Beautiful, Thanks Sidharth! All those Quotes have to be printed out and posted in the Indian dressing rooms. Not that it will make them realise how much they have fallen as a team but atleast puts an end to all that false bravado. We are in terminal decline for some time and its been proven beyond any doubt in this test match.

  • AjaySridharan on December 7, 2012, 16:10 GMT

    "Vinasha Kaale Vipareetha budhi". A very nicely compiled article...unfortunately this will be like rain drops on a buffalo (pardon my literal translation of a Tamil saying). Unless you accept that you have a problem, you can't begin fixing it in right earnest. Australia minced no words in acknowledging that they were a team in transition when McGrath and Warne left. Ponting stepped down from captaincy when he felt the team needed a different direction and eventually quit when his form slumped beyond meaningful redemption. Once up on a pedestal, Indians are too proud to admit that they are still human and can still make mistakes. They refuse to go back to the drawing board to sort out their problems. A bunch of slackers with huge entitlement mentality masquerading as professionals. Shame.

  • Punter.Pratik on December 7, 2012, 16:10 GMT

    Apart from Sachin all have I given childish remarks...

  • sitaram58 on December 7, 2012, 16:07 GMT

    Why does you pundits moan about our test record. It should be obvious that the players, the board, the spectators and the viewers only care about the T20 cricket & the IPL (who wants to be a test match bowler - or any kind of bowler). Test match cricket is only the feeder system for the IPL so who cares. If the BCCI had its druthers the IPL would last for three months and we would have a champions league that lasted for two months and and T20 world cup every other year. England, Australia and the others could play test matches if they can get anyone to watch and pay!!!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:07 GMT

    Mr.Monga - And why are you hell bent on making the Indian team accept that they are ordinary ? That will solve their issues. Which team in the world doesnt want to have a positive attitude when they go out to play ? We all know this is an ordinary team. You need to move on, Mr. Monga.

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:05 GMT

    Who has Piyush Chawla offended, are there no good Indian legspinners, England struggles against good legspin

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:05 GMT

    Perfectly written article.. This Indian team has its head stuck in sand!!! Pathetic bowling & fielding.. and Dhoni's request for a spinning track has blown up in his face!! You got to be careful what you wish for!! I can see India losing this Test Match by innings.. I am pretty sure that the Indian batsmen will fail against Swann & Monty. The thing that I do not understand is how come their bowlers can extract bounce, spin etc...and our bowlers cannot? We need a complete overhaul of the team, starting with the players, coaches and more importantly the CAPTAIN!! Dhoni is captain by proxy as there is nobody to take over and what happened to Kohli??

  • wibblewibble on December 7, 2012, 16:03 GMT

    Harsh - but probably accurate.

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:02 GMT

    Candid and correct analysis..

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:01 GMT

    wel done have belled the cat !!..but then what if the mice is deaf too !!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 16:01 GMT

    excellent article :) .....its a bitter truth for india

  • ravikb on December 7, 2012, 16:00 GMT

    Siddharth, don't bother too much. Concerned people are saying there is nothing wrong with the team at the moment even though they are on the verge of losing home series against a team not known as good players of spin. I can bet you that even after this series loss at home, they will definitely have few more excuses like we entered the ground with wrong foot, curator prepared pitches favoring England, even England lost home series against SA, so on and on and on..Guess what there won't be any changes to the team whatsoever. Really frustrating to see the attitude of players, management, everyone involved with Indian cricket.

  • ProdigyA on December 7, 2012, 15:58 GMT

    Im glad that Sid came up with all these "excuses" made, but my question what do you expect? You cant expect players coming out in media and critisizing their team mates. The most professional way to deal with it is to take the responsibility as a "team" (which GG does every time he talks) and trying to take confidence from good experiences in the past. But behind closed doors, i think almost everybody needs a kick in the backside for their performance. Its been pathetic to say the least. People always talk about the bowling but i think for the first time in my life, batting does not look good either.

  • Kteam on December 7, 2012, 15:55 GMT

    Absolutely Spot on. It is beyond my comprehension as to why this simple, obvious truth that is staring right out in the face, escapes not only the players, bcci themselves but also the fans and commentators alike.

    I think this reflects of arrogance, if not stupidity.

    Also, just to add : you should mention Dhoni's comments on the dew/water on the pitch as a reason of them being out of the World T-20. I think there is a systemic deterioration of the standard of indian cricket, in ODI, T-20 as well.

  • cricjaffa on December 7, 2012, 15:53 GMT

    Out bowling is Toothless, batting is spineless and our performance is shameless !!. The only statement which looks somewhat realistic was the one made by Ojha. The statement made by India's bowling coach arguably is joke of the year. I agree with the writer's conclusion that the ideal response would be to work on techniques (both bowlers & batsmen) before we can think of playing against Pakistan & Australia as i believe in the saying "Once bitten, twice shy"...

  • getsetgopk on December 7, 2012, 15:53 GMT

    We knew it long before that India is an ordinary team. Statements like these may sound insensitive to the India fans but truth needs to be told and thats exactly where India stand in world cricket. To improve, you need to admit that there is something wrong. Without that, all is useless. Like I predicted in my previous posts, things will take a turn for the worst as the worst is yet to come which will be lesser teams like WI and BD coming to India and beating them in the backyard. The bowling unit is useless, albeit their bowling coach saying otherwise, its his job, he's paid to say something like that. Batting is fairly thin too, its a myth that India produces good batsmen, where are those good batsmen? Scores of round about 300 are good scores for teams like SA, PAK and Eng but not for teams like Ind. Enough of these excuses please, when you get beaten then be good sports and admit it that you have been an ordinary side. No shame in that, that would mean that you are awake now!

  • afridi102 on December 7, 2012, 15:51 GMT

    Well wrttien!

    You just could ad the Suresh Raina's sentences about a 4-0 revenge and the tracks in England...

  • AbhijeetC on December 7, 2012, 15:50 GMT


    The team is in denial since last and half years....Apart from WI and NZ, India did not beat any significant side....I think Selectors/ BCCI now need to take some hard calls.....India can not win this series and if the performance remain same with Aussies then it's end for some of our players.....

    Sadly, The golden generation is officially over...the new generation should start now....

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:50 GMT

    Absolutely spot-on, Sid. India are definitely stronger at home than away. The big problem in Indian cricket is that nobody (absolutely NOBODY) has the guts to take tough decisions. In England/Australia/South Africa/many other teams, Zaheer Khan (and many others) will not make the team because of his sub-par fielding and fitness. I can't believe Trevor Penney has the audacity to defend his fielding - seniors cannot take their spot in the team for granted. The bowlers have been duped into thinking that they're world-class, after running through weaker sides like West Indies and New Zealand. India's batting is in capable hands, but they must realise the hard work that is needed to succeed.

    For things to change, it seems that 8-0 is not enough - looks like India need a reverse at home against England and Australia. Only then will the culture change, into one of guts, hard work, fight and determination to succeed.

  • wolf777 on December 7, 2012, 15:47 GMT

    Indian bowlers need lessons from their English counterparts. Suddenly, the pitch becomes easy to bat on when England comes to bat? Monty can trouble the best players of spin bowling and Indian spinners cannot trouble batsmen who are weak against spin bowling? On Indian wickets? Why James Anderson can produce reverse swing and Zaheer Khan with as much experience cannot? The only conclusion one can draw from this performance is that the Indian bowling attack is garbage. The captain and the leadership, however, are primarily responsible for the state of Indian bowling. India has a fetish of playing six batsmen and that leaves only four bowlers in the side with no allrounder who can provide relief and variety. Long tiring spells in every test match will make any bowlers lose his variety as batsmen get comfortable playing him. England scored 500 plus runs and India used only four bowlers. Why Dhoni did not bowl Yuvraj Singh more? Sorry; but, that is a bad captainship and gross mismanagement

  • bighit14 on December 7, 2012, 15:43 GMT

    Superbly pointed out by Sid. These days, players have gone more into complaining mode and letting their mouth do the talking instead of their performance. We need the temperament and patience in tune of Dravid, Laxman, Kumble to win matches.

  • Herbet on December 7, 2012, 15:41 GMT

    Somebody needs to show Indians what a green top is. Green tops these days in England are very rare, the standards of ground keeping and coverage of squares are too high, and the pressure from administrators for the games to go the distance too great to allow it. You could argue that since pitch covers became used everywhere, there have been no proper green tops. India toured here in conditions that were far friendlier than when Pakistan came, when it was swinging round corners. I'm not sure there has ever been green tops in Australia, certainly not now. Sticky dogs maybe, in the days before covers when it rained over night, but not green tops. Its too warm and dry everywhere bar Hobart. Visiting teams have struggled in England recently against swing, and our bowlers expert use of it. Swing occurs because of atmospheric conditions, like on damp cloudy days, not because of the pitch.

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:40 GMT

    the collection of the quotes are awesome,enough to increase the bp of an indian fan.........waited patiently,cheered my heart out under the sun at the eden only to see my team perform as if they are challenging the test status granted to them;and now this OJHA comment.....give me a break TEAM INDIA..

  • nickcarter80 on December 7, 2012, 15:37 GMT

    Those comments were so funny! I hope Indian players and BCCI will realize that sooner than later. Is Ojha crying in the photo?

  • ToTellUTheTruth on December 7, 2012, 15:35 GMT

    In a land where nothing was achieved since Aryabhatta's zero, you are asking for too much here.

  • rock_kar on December 7, 2012, 15:34 GMT

    England played well and kudos to them, they are in the driver seat. India by tradition have done poorly when under pressure. It would be interesting if they rise up this time.

  • Nampally on December 7, 2012, 15:33 GMT

    From regularTest players to the President of BCCI - people at all levels only justify their failures rather than be Accountable for them. It takes lot of guts to stand up & be counted. When XI players are on the field, the final result shows how they performed. No one wants to see guys blaming others for their failures.The Selectors look foolish when they stubbornly put the same defeated team to face the same winners.Common sense tells us that the deficiencies in the team must be addressed & the team regrouped/retooled with new guys.When you make such flagrant mistakes by defying common sense & expect miracles, you fail.Then the Excuses game starts in a chain reaction. Let your actions speak for you.This comes thru' an"Accountable" culture. When people are held accountable for their failures individually & at all levels up to the ladder, no one goes unpunished.This is sadly lacking in the Indian culture. Conclusion: India can bat strongly in their second innings & silence all critics!

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:29 GMT

    Everyone commenting on all team players, but forgetting about coach, From the day he entered India going down on all formats.He is taking some crores of Indian salary nobody concentrating on him. First coach should leave, Dhoni has to be dropped as captain. But we have to appritiate cook, the way he batted and inspired his team.

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:26 GMT

    I dont think a team becomes great in one day or bad in one day. Its a process. It is the process that took them to number one. It is the loss of RD and VVS that is gonna take some time to rebuild. Ashwin and Ojha are still new. Zak and Ish are not at their best. plus we have too much politics on pitches . We shuld get rank turners period even if results are not on our side in India.

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:26 GMT

    That's as apt and precise as they get. India are just a mere shadow of a unit they were some time back. Or we can say, welcome back, mid 1990's .. #ordinary_fan_of_an_ordinary_side

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:24 GMT

    Needless India-bashing from Monga. What do you expect the players to do, keep declaring publicly that they are an ordinary side? Which side does that? Look at Aussies. They claim that their fast bowling crop is the best in the world. They could not bowl out SA. In fact,they did not even win one test at home in the latest series. Do you see them admitting how pathetic their current team is? This is a classic case of preconceived notions. India were, no doubt outplayed by a better side, no doubt. They are a team in transition. Not so long ago England went winless in a home series against Saffers. And yes, India did whitewash Australia the last time they toured as Sehwag said. There is a difference between positive thinking and denial. Ojha's comment is one of the former, not the latter. "I am confident our guys will do well." Whats wrong with that? And this "worst bowling attack" took 20 wickets on a flat deck in Ahmedabad just two matches ago. Such short memories people have these days

  • Nvins on December 7, 2012, 15:24 GMT

    Look at the way Sardar Singh & company is turning it around for team India in the ongoing Champions Trophy hockey. They showed courage to admit the horrendous display in Olympics and fine tuned their performance. When would team India have a Sardar Singh, show guts to admit shabby performance and NOT come out with lame excuses, just like kinter garden kids!! How many series debacle would it take....Grow up Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Company , its HIGH TIME !!!!

  • SixoverSlips on December 7, 2012, 15:23 GMT

    (Contd..) Not sure we have better bowling options. But Ishant does not seem to be in the groove. Ashwin has been quite shoddy.

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:23 GMT

    IPL at work I say. Too much money, nobody wants to rub it out 5 days anymore. It has alot to with leadership as well, Misbah raised a test team from heaps, bharat needs to pick a leaf of Misbahs book on test cricket.

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:21 GMT

    Awesome post.If journos keep posting article like this we would have done a good start.Cricketers will follow.

  • SixoverSlips on December 7, 2012, 15:21 GMT

    You are very right that some of India's Test match skills have become very ordinary, and I felt the exact same comparing the first day and second day of the Eden Gardens Test match. The English bowlers did so much with the ball, yet in the same pitch the Indian bowlers had no resemblance. 216/1, 385/3, even in good batting wickets, the bowlers could do more than that.

    I do agree with the initial Gambhir comment. They had played well against those sides in the past, and was right to point out the home strength. Unfortunately, India have waned alarmingly recently. Bowling has been a particular cause of worry. Even in England lot of bowling failures were forgotten by batting failures. Dravid was in the form of his life, and even he was getting beaten, and he could see the movement and trouble the English bowlers were causing. Yet, when India started bowling ten minutes later, nothing of that sort happened. It's time to have a serious look at the Indian bowling.

  • Amit_13 on December 7, 2012, 15:21 GMT

    Its BCCI's arrogance - justified or not - which has now spread to the team. The BCCI, for all its flaws, atleast earns its keep.

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:20 GMT

    If only someone from the Indian team, especially the captain, had cared to read this fantastic article , if only the Indian team had cared to understand the idea that the article tries to convey , if only.. if only.. then we wouldn't have been playing the same brand of cowardly cricket at Eden Gardens ,at Lords or at the WACA !

  • AF2199 on December 7, 2012, 15:19 GMT

    Wow feels like a slap but I wonder if anyone feels it or not :p

  • handyandy6666uk on December 7, 2012, 15:16 GMT

    interesting article..we are all guilty through life of blaming others or outside influences.the knack is to take it on the chin ,dust yourself down and try again.

  • brusselslion on December 7, 2012, 15:14 GMT

    Title, strapline and quotes sum up the problem with Indian cricket.

    Perhaps, like the twinning of cities, the overpaid, underachieving Indian cricketers could be 'twinned' with their overpaid, underachieving counterparts in the English Premier football League?

  • Satyam_max on December 7, 2012, 15:13 GMT

    Siddharth , you nailed it !!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:12 GMT

    The coin manufacturer needs to be sacked... did he not know in Eden we won when we followed on... we needed to follow on to win... how could he make a coin which won us the toss :X

  • immit13 on December 7, 2012, 15:10 GMT

    GREAT GREAT GREAT Article by Sid, I believe it says a lot what we all India fans have to say to our so called great team!. Better accept than find excuses... I am sure there should be an equal number of such diplomatic and bookish statements given by DHONI as well. Even being a Indian fan i am loving that we are made to realize that how ordinary TEST squad we are. IN TESTS YOU CANNOT WIN MATCHES against good side with PART TIMERS and HALF FIT PLAYERS. Hope all this players read their own comments and so some soul searching and atleast give their 100%.

  • aa61761 on December 7, 2012, 15:10 GMT

    Are Dhoni and his teammates having the "Statements" Biryani prepared by none other than the Great "Cook" from England?

  • ElvisKing on December 7, 2012, 15:09 GMT

    It was definitely not the bowlers so much responsible for the England score but it was the Captaincy and inept handling of the bowling resources of the team.What with part time bowlers like Kohli,Vriu, Yuvraj and Tendulkar in the team and they were not even given a few overs to bowl, requires the Selection committee to question his captaincy. It could not have accelerated the score much, if that is what he feared. You cant blame who said what here, it definitely is the Captaincy to blame.

  • DevarakondaAngirasa on December 7, 2012, 15:08 GMT

    India is facing the prospect of 3-1 defeat in the series against England. One can only guess what is going to happen against Australia that follows this. It is not just denial. Indian team actually is highly over-rated by Indian media pundits, players themselves, and BCCI. It looks like playing cricket is the same as appearing in Mumbai movies- dancing and all! The cricket "stars" are indeed dancing better than movie "stars". It is not clear why they need dancers at IPL circus. The players themselves are doing an excellent job of that aspect of entertainment.

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:04 GMT

    Its evident that the Indian team is filled with people who have a huge problem facing facts. Even worse, the BCCI is the same too. But the worst is that the team is suddenly filled with politicians- Sehwag pointing to a good score in the middle of a horrendous run, Kohli talking the talk but not walking the walk in Tests, SRT using his status to sit out international tours but play the IPL, Zaheer resting on the 2011 World Cup laurels, Ojha saying things even he might find difficult to believe...the fielding is truly horrible, India might be the worst fielding side bar Pakistan, but at least Pakistan has younger and fitter fielders....and much better bowlers.....The excuses above make it very clear where the priorities of the team lie, and that by far is the biggest problem....with apparently no cure in sight!!

  • DevarakondaAngirasa on December 7, 2012, 15:00 GMT

    The selection of quotes is very good. Thank you Sidharth. Lack of technique is not the only reason for the current sorry mess of Indian test cricket. The approach is based on first building cricket "stars" and then let them play test cricket. How else can one explain the hype around every comment a rookie like Kohli makes? The foremost attitude of Indian cricketers and BCCI can be summarized in two words- greed and arrogance. Sehwag and Tendulkar are very ordinary cricket players today, not matter what they once were. BCCI keeps them (forget about the selection committee- it's a farce) in the team as "star" attraction. Dhoni is never a test class player and is not a captaincy material. Why is he in the team? He is a "star" and also belongs to Chennai Super Kings part owned by BCCI current president, no less! Zaheer Khan is over the hill. Ashwin is club class bowler. And Dhoni plays favorites with team selection and Mr Srinivasan listens, of course! Mind you- all of them are very rich!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 15:00 GMT

    But if India were to win against Pakistan they will spin it in such a way that this one will be pushed under the carpet? LoL

  • rock_kar on December 7, 2012, 14:58 GMT

    Well researched and well written. Indian bowlers are less effective in picking wickets and more effective in saving runs. Indian batsmen cannot absorb pressure and play a long, boring innings that can save a test. I remember people used to call Ravi Shastri as a boring cricketer. Indeed he was. I saw him once scoring 5 runs off 105 balls. But he stuck around for 105 deliveries! How many from the current crop can manage to do that? Biding time at the crease reveals temperment and a willingness to do the larger good for the team. Our team lacks both.

  • Humdingers on December 7, 2012, 14:54 GMT

    Oh dear.... Wonder how they feel now....

  • rahulgog on December 7, 2012, 14:54 GMT

    YES! It is time we accept that we are a mediocre team and it will probably take another generation before we can field a team which will compete, yes compete not win, in all condition.

  • on December 7, 2012, 14:52 GMT

    As an Indian fan I am absolutely delighted this has happened....The fact of being walloped 8-0 away can never be shadowed by home performances..Now England have shown if you adjust to the conditions India can been beaten at their own turf..

    You would expect an argus review of sorts after the downfall in tests but I am sure that there will come more excuses from BCCI , Dhoni and Co. If they really cared about test cricket, we will have a good young side for Aus test and even if they dont perform lets back them and develop them. Alas, I have followed Indian cricket for a long time to know this is never possible

  • Nvins on December 7, 2012, 14:51 GMT

    Dont these dumb players get it! They are being rolled over again and again, still shows audacity to make some lame statements in public media. These guys dont have the passion of representing the country. Only after Money and only bothered about holding onto their place in the side. When will BCCI make players accountable and performance an yard stick, we are left to wonder !!!!

  • Vasi-Koosi on December 7, 2012, 14:49 GMT

    Holy cow, I could not believe anyone could really remember and compile all these comments. Well Done - however, nothing will change; it is not as if we have never lost a series at home; No one really cares about the results of a normal rubber.

  • on December 7, 2012, 14:48 GMT

    I totally agree with this article. India should not just say, 'we won at home' because that's not the way to play competitive cricket. A good team should perform consistently, regardless of the conditions. And making turners is not actually a bad idea...if India played all of their tests at home. True, that would increase their chances to win but will not help in long term as they are not playing on, "green tops." India keep denying their overseas shortcomings and turn to their home record for defense. For how long, though? They should admit that they have certain areas to work on, and get around to doing it. Their first priority should be fielding.They should also work on their bowling. But the first step towards all this would be admitting their shortcomings, and not denying them.

  • bumsonseats on December 7, 2012, 14:46 GMT

    please tell me were did india have a fast track on their tour of england i must have missed it. i dont know how we can. iv have not seen a green top in tests in england for over 40. what we prepare are good wickets with a bit of grass were if you bowl well you could get 3/4 wickets or you could get 80 odd for 1 wicket and go on and get a good score.our wickets are similar to Australia but without the hardness of the wicket. if a bowler puts the effort in he gets rewards. as i have posted on other similar topics. prepare the wicket that you want but dont go to the media and publicize what you want or have a shouting match with the groundsman and criticize his wicket preparation. you have sun you have rain both of which produces grass, pace bowler enjoy pitches do this and more boys and young men will want to be pace bowlers that in turn help you when you go abroad. get a grip BCCI, those boys need your help

  • Varunlovescricket on December 7, 2012, 14:46 GMT

    Also not to forget Suresh Raina's talks about 'REVENGE' and stuff

  • Sandy69 on December 7, 2012, 14:42 GMT

    Disappointment is an understatement for an Indian cricket fan today. However we probably knew already for some time now that this is going to happen sooner rather than later. With BCCI busy miking cricket cow for money in whatever way possible and players busy with endorsements it appears as if cricket has made a complete transformation from sports to business in India. Its not that Indian players lack quality, its more of a lack of hunger and fighting spirit in them which is leading to this downfall. Players like Laxman & Dravid even when they used to struggle used to slog hard and showed real grit and determination. But with the new generation players sure of their demi god status and IPL money does not seem to have that type of fighting attitude and temperament. To make matter worse BCCI is full of Indian politicians and not sport persons. So one can feel sad for this team's debacle but cannot be surprised. RIP Indian Test Cricket

  • SurlyCynic on December 7, 2012, 14:41 GMT

    Brilliant article, the quotes say it all. I thought the tactic of not bowling any spin to England in the warm up games betrayed a lack of confidence. If they were so sure that England were terrible against spin surely a few overs of spin in a warm up game wouldn't make much difference? If I was an England batsman this would have boosted my confidence.

  • PiyushD on December 7, 2012, 14:40 GMT

    Sidharth, we all can see this, each and every Indian cricket fan, saw it but amazing blindness by people who play and run cricket in India. This series loss will confirm that Indian cricket team is just not good enough. I had doubts over England when they routed India and became No.1, I still do not think they are best in world but admit that they are much better than India. sooner BCCI and team India players accept this sooner will be India's chances of climbing back the ladder.

  • on December 7, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    Great Article....! Really!!!

  • on December 7, 2012, 14:31 GMT

    We are wounding Indian test cricket with a double edged sword.

    India had produced players of test calibre in the past. Gavaskar, Dravid, VVS, Jaffer, Badrinath etc are all pure test class players. We still do, like Rahane, & Tiwari. Bexcessive commercialization of cricket incentivised test players to adapt to suit the short format. Even Dravid & VVS were forced to, by circumstances.

    Destroying test class players is only one sharp edge, cutting into the gentle body of test cricket. The other cutting edge is the fact that we keep on pushing great players of the short format into the test teams, totally neglecting the test calibre players. Rahane's frustration on the one hand, and Kohli's (to some extent Yuvi's too) travails on the other symbolise this: bleeding with self inflicted wounds with this double-edged sword.

    Let us pray for the badly wounded Indian test cricket's healing and speedy recovery. Hope, timely remedies will save us all from writing obituaries.

  • on December 7, 2012, 14:27 GMT

    Thanks Sidharth - for telling it like it is. But don't just blame the players - blame the entire culture of greed and grandstanding that produces them.

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  • on December 7, 2012, 14:27 GMT

    Thanks Sidharth - for telling it like it is. But don't just blame the players - blame the entire culture of greed and grandstanding that produces them.

  • on December 7, 2012, 14:31 GMT

    We are wounding Indian test cricket with a double edged sword.

    India had produced players of test calibre in the past. Gavaskar, Dravid, VVS, Jaffer, Badrinath etc are all pure test class players. We still do, like Rahane, & Tiwari. Bexcessive commercialization of cricket incentivised test players to adapt to suit the short format. Even Dravid & VVS were forced to, by circumstances.

    Destroying test class players is only one sharp edge, cutting into the gentle body of test cricket. The other cutting edge is the fact that we keep on pushing great players of the short format into the test teams, totally neglecting the test calibre players. Rahane's frustration on the one hand, and Kohli's (to some extent Yuvi's too) travails on the other symbolise this: bleeding with self inflicted wounds with this double-edged sword.

    Let us pray for the badly wounded Indian test cricket's healing and speedy recovery. Hope, timely remedies will save us all from writing obituaries.

  • on December 7, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    Great Article....! Really!!!

  • PiyushD on December 7, 2012, 14:40 GMT

    Sidharth, we all can see this, each and every Indian cricket fan, saw it but amazing blindness by people who play and run cricket in India. This series loss will confirm that Indian cricket team is just not good enough. I had doubts over England when they routed India and became No.1, I still do not think they are best in world but admit that they are much better than India. sooner BCCI and team India players accept this sooner will be India's chances of climbing back the ladder.

  • SurlyCynic on December 7, 2012, 14:41 GMT

    Brilliant article, the quotes say it all. I thought the tactic of not bowling any spin to England in the warm up games betrayed a lack of confidence. If they were so sure that England were terrible against spin surely a few overs of spin in a warm up game wouldn't make much difference? If I was an England batsman this would have boosted my confidence.

  • Sandy69 on December 7, 2012, 14:42 GMT

    Disappointment is an understatement for an Indian cricket fan today. However we probably knew already for some time now that this is going to happen sooner rather than later. With BCCI busy miking cricket cow for money in whatever way possible and players busy with endorsements it appears as if cricket has made a complete transformation from sports to business in India. Its not that Indian players lack quality, its more of a lack of hunger and fighting spirit in them which is leading to this downfall. Players like Laxman & Dravid even when they used to struggle used to slog hard and showed real grit and determination. But with the new generation players sure of their demi god status and IPL money does not seem to have that type of fighting attitude and temperament. To make matter worse BCCI is full of Indian politicians and not sport persons. So one can feel sad for this team's debacle but cannot be surprised. RIP Indian Test Cricket

  • Varunlovescricket on December 7, 2012, 14:46 GMT

    Also not to forget Suresh Raina's talks about 'REVENGE' and stuff

  • bumsonseats on December 7, 2012, 14:46 GMT

    please tell me were did india have a fast track on their tour of england i must have missed it. i dont know how we can. iv have not seen a green top in tests in england for over 40. what we prepare are good wickets with a bit of grass were if you bowl well you could get 3/4 wickets or you could get 80 odd for 1 wicket and go on and get a good score.our wickets are similar to Australia but without the hardness of the wicket. if a bowler puts the effort in he gets rewards. as i have posted on other similar topics. prepare the wicket that you want but dont go to the media and publicize what you want or have a shouting match with the groundsman and criticize his wicket preparation. you have sun you have rain both of which produces grass, pace bowler enjoy pitches do this and more boys and young men will want to be pace bowlers that in turn help you when you go abroad. get a grip BCCI, those boys need your help

  • on December 7, 2012, 14:48 GMT

    I totally agree with this article. India should not just say, 'we won at home' because that's not the way to play competitive cricket. A good team should perform consistently, regardless of the conditions. And making turners is not actually a bad idea...if India played all of their tests at home. True, that would increase their chances to win but will not help in long term as they are not playing on, "green tops." India keep denying their overseas shortcomings and turn to their home record for defense. For how long, though? They should admit that they have certain areas to work on, and get around to doing it. Their first priority should be fielding.They should also work on their bowling. But the first step towards all this would be admitting their shortcomings, and not denying them.

  • Vasi-Koosi on December 7, 2012, 14:49 GMT

    Holy cow, I could not believe anyone could really remember and compile all these comments. Well Done - however, nothing will change; it is not as if we have never lost a series at home; No one really cares about the results of a normal rubber.