India v England, 4th Test, Nagpur, 5th day

From fitness to fielding...how England won in India

Few gave England hope after defeat in Ahmedabad, but a few weeks later they left with a famous series victory. There were a few key reasons why they came out on top

Andrew McGlashan

December 17, 2012

Comments: 48 | Text size: A | A

MS Dhoni was run out for 99, India v England, 4th Test, Nagpur, 3rd day, December 15, 2012
MS Dhoni was run out for 99, one example of England's superior fielding © BCCI
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Dhoni's pitch plea

The events in Nagpur, where a dead pitch led to a largely forgettable contest, showed how this series could have gone. After going 1-0 up, the call could have been for flat, low, slow surfaces and India aiming to keep what they had. Instead, MS Dhoni was strongly critical of the Ahmedabad surface so in Mumbai the teams were greeted by a pitch that spun from the start and, crucially, had bounce. Those two factors brought England back into contention but, it was assumed, would also suit the home side. This is where the move backfired. England's spinners were better than India's and they also had two batsmen score hundreds. India really were beaten at their own game. Kolkata also had help for the bowlers, this time quicks as well as spinners, and again Dhoni did not have the quality of bowling to make the most of it. Alastair Cook did.

Flexible thinking

It was blatantly obvious within a very short period of time that Monty Panesar's omission in the first Test was a huge error. Andy Flower later admitted so. Therefore it was a no-brainer that he would be recalled for Mumbai. However, not all England's selection decisions were so cut-and-dried. Stuart Broad was clearly struggling in the first two Tests, but to drop your vice-captain, and a player hugely valued within team, is not an easy decision. But it was spot on. Steven Finn, in his only appearance of the series, took four wickets in Kolkata and showed again what a bright future he has so long as he can stay fit. The boldest call, though, was still to come. A few hours before the final Test started rumours began circulating that a new No. 6 was going to play. Jonny Bairstow? Nope. Eoin Morgan? Nope. It was a debut for Joe Root, by trade an opener for Yorkshire, who had impressed Graham Thorpe and Andy Flower during the tour. He walked in with the score 119 for 4 and a series on the line. His response was an innings way beyond his years as he made 73 off 229 balls. It had a two-fold effect by eating up time and giving England a workable total. The England system, and the selectors, were shown in a very good light.

Fit for purpose

There will be some tired bodies flying home for Christmas, but crucially fatigue never played a part on the field. The way England kept going, often having key successes late in a day, was a credit to all the off-field work that goes in by the large backroom staff the team now carries around. Most notably this occurred in Nagpur, when a late burst of wickets meant India were not able to bat deep into the fourth day and build a lead. James Anderson typified England's fitness, coming in for spell after spell as part of a two-man (and occasionally one-man) pace attack, but Cook's stamina was also incredible.

In the field

Cricket is a three dimensional game and it has long been accepted that the old-school India players are not too keen on the third part - fielding. Plain old hard work can make a team better, but if anything India got worse. England were miles ahead. They produced three crucial run outs; the team work, led by the often derided Samit Patel, to remove Virender Sehwag after a brisk start on Kolkata; Bell's direct hit to shift the in-form Cheteshwar Pujara in the same Test and then Cook's direct hit to remove Dhoni in Nagpur. Coaches often talk about the fielders taking a wicket and this was reward for the hours of training done between Tests and before play. The catching, a significant problem in 2012, also improved after a poor start in Ahmedabad.

Digging in

After a horror first innings, bundled out for 191 on a largely blameless pitch, Cook showed his team-mates that run-scoring was possible in India with some hard graft. They heeded the lesson. Nick Compton's first tour was not prolific, but he and Cook ensured the middle order was not regularly exposed early. England accepted that a run-rate of three-an-over would often be the summit of their ambitions, but knew the value of keeping India in the field for hours on end. Of course, Kevin Pietersen's 186 in Mumbai was a glorious, thrilling exception but it was an innings that could only be played by a unique, and perhaps great, player. He was the only England specialist batsman to have a strike-rate over 50. Most of the time it was head down and dig in. The series finished on such a note, with Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell refusing to yield, facing a combined 616 balls between them.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by JG2704 on (December 20, 2012, 9:45 GMT)

@CricketingStargazer on (December 19 2012, 20:29 PM GMT) TBH , I think too that Swann's contribution has been underrecognised (is that a word?) in this series but I did (as said before) say Swann was IMO our 2nd best player out there and there are arguments for him being our best. The reason I mentioned Monty was that his inclusion had a strong influence in changing the course of the series. However I said at the time (after the 1st test) that Swann was head and shoulders above oor pacers. Hopefully you'll agree with me here. BOTH players were key in our victory and had Monty or Swann been a lone spinner for the whole series we would not have won. Also reckon that if Monty was the lone spinner in the 1st test and Swann came in and made the difference , Swann would have got the plaudits. Agreed?

Posted by CricketingStargazer on (December 19, 2012, 20:29 GMT)

@JG, nothing against you, old chap. I just find it personally annoying that articles like this (and many posters) talk endlessly about Monty's contribution and Swann becomes a loyal side-kick who helps him out a bit at the other end. Much as I have defended Monty in the past, this series has done little to asuage my fear that he is very effective as a shock weapon for a couple of matches, but rarely sees out a series because he gets rumbled quickly. We are lucky to have both Monty and Swann and probably only Pakistan can field such a potent spin attack. In fact, Alec Stewart is suggesting that Australia get presented with dusty, turning tracks next summer as they have a slow bowler, but no spinner (ahem... not sure about doctoring tracks to suit us). The sad fact is that unless we have an unusually hot, dry next summer not even the BCCI would be able to produce raging turners in England and even one spinner will be a luxury at times.

Posted by JG2704 on (December 19, 2012, 17:44 GMT)

@CricketingStargazer on (December 18 2012, 16:02 PM GMT) Not sure if you think I'm showing Monty bias here or not but if you are then please read my comms on the marks out of 10 page where I rate Eng's top 4 Cook,Swann,Monty ,Jimmy in that order. Swann was immense and there was even a case for him being marked our best player. As it was I did not even compare Monty to Swann in this series and if there were comparisons made there isn't much in it bowling wise. Swann has the better average,has taken more wickets and has the better SR.Monty has 2x5 fors comp to Swann's 1 , 1x10 for comp to 0 from Swann and also has a better wickets taken - innings bowled in ratio but why split hairs over it? Both were hugely influential players on the series. I only mentioned Monty because when he came in (in tandem with Swann) we actually looked twice as good bowling wise. PS I have given Swann huge credit throughout and will happily go on record in saying that he will be our biggest loss in the ODI/T20s

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (December 19, 2012, 12:35 GMT)

England long ago, so many years ago, proved themselves fitter and more skillful than teams like Australia and India. They inflicted defeats upon them which pain, especially Australian fans, so much that the shock waves are still reverberating. What a contrast we see when we look at England having the world's best test opener, spinner, seamer plus so much more, and down under all they have to enjoy is the 'Ultimate battle of the Minnows', dubbed by many as the 'Christmas Minnow Big Bash'. The party and good times for England just keep coming, much to the hatred of Australian fans. Big smiles all round :)

Posted by R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (December 19, 2012, 11:18 GMT)

'Flexible thinking' is the one that sealed it for me. I had this series down as 4-0 to India during/after the first game, because England have (in the past) been so reluctant to use two or more front-line spinners in tests. Bringing in Monty was a no-brainer, and to be honest I'd have had Tredwell in the squad from the very start as well. Broad should not even have been brought to India; he was picked on promise alone. Prior doesn't need to be mentioned because he's so reliable and a great player. Cook was a juggernaut, and the other batsmen chipped in when it mattered (eventually, in the case of some...).

Posted by   on (December 19, 2012, 8:29 GMT)

I haven't seen any of the other test playing captains very keen to demand pitches as Dhoni did this time.International venues traditionally behave in the same way barring a very few. It is really shame that England spinners did very well to contain India in Bombay where as Indian spinners have no clue for Pieterson or Cook. You have to perform in any given pitches to your potential.It is a honour to represent your country. Recent tours and the worst defeats suffered have exposed the bowlers and the so called explosive batting (a myth) in local conditions as well. Time for selectors to wake up and select the team for the future and jusitify their selection only on merit.Please remember the game is big than any individuals It is really hurting to see India defeated again and again without showing characters.I really wonder whether our current set of players completely forget the test cricket and more keen on IPL .Five editions of IPL has brought the Indian Test cricket to a grinding halt

Posted by cric_J on (December 19, 2012, 7:54 GMT)

England and SA are probably the fittest sides today.What puzzles me though is why are Broad ,Bresnan and Finn all aged 24 to 26 always ending up with injuries when Jimmy can run in consistently at 142,trouble the batsman and be equally aggressive and spot on even when he clearly struggled on day 3 of the final test.Proud to be a Jimmy fan.

Posted by andash007 on (December 19, 2012, 4:29 GMT)

Good performance by England cricket team. India didn't show the commitment that was required. In my opinion, MSD should leave his captaincy & hand it over to Virat Kohli for all the three formats of the game, as he likes yougsters much!! Sachin should be retained in the team as he is superior to others wrt his experience and abilities that he has gained in these many years. His mere presence boosts India's moral & of course, he would be also supporting for Virat Kohli's captaincy. He can guide new & bright minds, but not to the defensive MSD. Again, I would say India can do better in the upcoming games, if the decision is taken as soon as possible & also, as MSD is tired, he should be given some rest for his betterment.

Posted by A_Vacant_Slip on (December 18, 2012, 20:59 GMT)

I like this article. I like all analysis of why it went the way it went. It reminded me of Ashes 2010/11... At Brisbane the Aussie had us under cosh for most of game but then Cook, Strauss and Trott dug us out to that memorable 517/1. This for me was defining moment of Ashes series because England said "no we will not roll over". At Ahmedhabad India also well on top in same way except here England had not enough in first inning unlike Brisbane. Cook nearly got us out of Ahmedhabad with draw. Although result looked bad England in fact were only 30/40 over from safety. But Cook had made statement here in spite of defeat saying same thing "we/I will not roll over". For this HUGE respect. What a captain and what player this lad is. SO - defining moment of this India tour was Cook hundred at Ahmedhabad, in spite of defeat there. It showed that England were mentally tough and WERE going to fight. When India placed in similar corner at Mumbai/Kolkota they fell apart.

Posted by prabachris on (December 18, 2012, 18:04 GMT)

THE TRUTH: Tendulkar is the highest run getter of all time Tendulkar is highest rungetter in test Tendulkar is highest run getter in one dayers. Tendulker is the only player who played cricket for 22 years. Tendulkar is the highest paid and earning cricketer of all time ..so What else he need to prove to still sit in indian team?he is done enough no one can near him in his records.So what is the stubbornness in him making him to glue his place still in team.he need to move on play for ranji tropies, if he needs to still play cricket and give chance to one of the young indian batsmen dreaming to play for the nation as he dreamed when he entered the team in 1989.

Posted by CricketingStargazer on (December 18, 2012, 16:02 GMT)

JG, interesting that, as usual, all the focus is on Monty but Graeme Swann took more wickets at a better strike rate and better average (something similar happened in the UAE) yet he is regarded as being no more than a bit-player in the series. What does he have to do to get some recognition?

Posted by CricketingStargazer on (December 18, 2012, 15:30 GMT)

One of the key factors in the series was the solid starts by England. Save briefly in the 1st Test, the Indian new ball attack was anything but threatening and the openers solid. India's openers never suggested permanence and there was always a sense that a couple of wickets could fall at any time. Another was the blind insistence - based to a large degree on underestimating England - that the more spinners were selected and the more difficult the surfaces, the easier it would be: there was never a realisation that the England attack might themselves be a problem. After the 2nd Test the mantra was "Monty was the difference", suggesting that it was a temporary aberration. Time and time again we heard from players and fans that they would score 500 and then knock over England quickly with their 3/4/5 spinners and it never happened: in contrast a pitch that looked merely awkward when India bowled, became difficult when England bowled, yet the England bowlers were consistently underrated.

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 14:56 GMT)

Please give credit to Matt Prior:::PLEASE....and dont leave out Swann....they were two most influential players when England were bowling!!!

Posted by Chris_P on (December 18, 2012, 14:52 GMT)

You also forgot A) India showing little to no respect for their opponents, B) The BCCI 'head in the sand atitude" to wverything outside of Indian cricket, & C) the "wait till you play here" attitudes of most of the Indian fraternity. All in all, a decent old payback from the blimey, say what!

Posted by John-Price on (December 18, 2012, 11:02 GMT)

Surprising to find that the name Prior has not featured in the article or the comments. I thought his batting was outstanding throughout the series. Assured, fluent and consistent, enabling England to build decent totals even when the top order failed.

Posted by jmcilhinney on (December 18, 2012, 9:30 GMT)

I said before the series that my main concern was to see improvement in the team and that a drawn series would be a positive result. I hoped for a series win and believed England capable of it but I was far from confident. No doubt there was improvement so I'm happy with that and I'm ecstatic with the win. True, India is not the team it was a few years ago so it's not quite the achievement now that it would have been then but it's still an achievement. One of the most pleasing aspects was the improvement in the field. Dropped catches were the main difference between the sides in the last two games against SA and may have cost England the #1 ranking. The first innings of the series looked like more of the same but things got much better after that. Hopefully that's the last we see of England's butter fingers. The batting was an improvement too, with everyone contributing at some point. The bowling continued to be mostly good but Broad and Bresnan continue to be worrisome.

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 9:01 GMT)

@Sachin_vvsfan @Ashok Sridharan @Ashwath Nk ................ be cool guyz, accept that your team is an over rated one, who cant even play in their home now, you can just play the fancy cricket and not even a good at that too. After winning the T20 world cup, you were thrashed out of the next 4 and this clearly shows the state of your team. On the other hand Pakistan has qualified for the Semi finals of all the editions and even went on to win the title in 2009. As far as ODI World cup is concerned, you got into the final not because of your ability but only because of your rigged influence over the game and then went on to win the world cup which is highly suspicious in itself. I agree that India have got good team in just the past decade, but that was only due to Sourav, Dravid and Laxman(only for tests) amd not due to your demi god Tendulkar who is the most over rated cricketer in the world, if you dont agree look him batting against Saeed Ajmal in WC SF. Plz publish, these are facts

Posted by SMALI_RWP on (December 18, 2012, 8:24 GMT)

Its bit unfortunate that teham India has been made to look rather ordinary. Without taking away anything from England's performance India could have given a much tougher time but there was not much bonding in the team and some players showed outright disrespect to India as crciket team. No doubt Indian bowling attack was not upto th mark but then the same bowlers could have a better performance had there been more serious committment from the fielders and MSD. Having said this I don't want to take away anything from England they played like a team wanting to be recognised as champ by the dint of their pwrformance. Hats off to them and well done England. Going forward India needs to sort out their own problem within the team. Players are not giving their full support to MSD which they did only couple years back. Good luck India and show that in ODI and T20.

and the never say die attitude brought thrm not

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 7:34 GMT)

Indian team is very ordinary like Shewag,They have got big mouths but useless which has been found time after time.Seriously guys,look at your team.U dont have players like Dravid and Laxman or Kumble to drag you.Tendulkar shud retire immediately.bring some fresh air.Tendulkar,i am sorry to say only plays for himself.you have to accept it.

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 7:30 GMT)

Trouble with India is they have no Bowler or Batsman all are sale by date that is why England won the series if you see last two years India's top order never perform & bowler never look like taking 24 wickets

Posted by sachin_vvsfan on (December 18, 2012, 7:03 GMT)

@KiwiRocker May be icc will review Pakistans odi status (or even their qualification to WC given their record against india). I know you are pak fan and keep writing rubbish whenever india loses. So please comeback after pak odi series.

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 6:27 GMT)

@Kiwirocker: Misleading rankings? Do you mean to say that South Africa, England, Australia and Pakistan do not deserve to rank above India in the ICC test rankings? Blow me, you seem to live in some parallel universe buddy. I thought its a pretty fair indicator of where the test teams stand right now.

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 5:31 GMT)

Very simple. One team wants to play test cricket and the other team is only interested in playing IPL. Go figure this out.

Posted by sheenu on (December 18, 2012, 5:29 GMT)

There is ONLY ONE (not FIVE) reason why England won: The PATHETIC performance of the Indian team!!!

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 5:23 GMT)

Root and crompton have been grand finds for england!They batted out of their skins and made life hard for indians,in the end of the series england looked more comfortable against indian spinners than the fast bowlers,what an irony!!!!But still i think the odi series will be won by india,maybe a 3-2 or 4-1.........Also the t20 series may end up as 1-1 or 2-0 in favour of india.........

Posted by Edassery on (December 18, 2012, 5:16 GMT)

Well done England! You had all your pieces in the right places and things happened perfectly your way via hard work, huge thinking and planning and application on the field. KP's comeback, Broad's injury and sending back, induction of Panesar from second test onwards, Cook's grit as a captain - all perfect.

As for India, it's time for real introspection both for the Indian players as well as BCCI. The players need to decide whether they are in for test cricket or just quick bucks via IPL - T20 route. Many of them want to play for India because only permanent members in the test or ODI team get huge bucks in IPL and more endorsements as well. Those who are unnecessarily prolonging their career are there for pretty much the same reason. As for BCCI, it's time to take call on DRS, test quality pitches, bowling-fielding coaches, and how test team selection has to take place looking ahead. Indian might win a few ODIs or even the series but they are a pathetic unit at the moment.

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 5:16 GMT)

KiwiRocker: Probably you must see the stats before posting such comments, don forget Coin will always have 2 sides and you got to think from the both the ends, thats actually called as Common sense! Probably you are just seeing the stats which Pak had achieved recently (from 2006), at the same time y cant you talk abt wht India has achieved recently? Won Wt20 in 2007, Won World cup for the 2nd time, has got many legends who holds almost all the records where any other player cant even reach there, Kohli gave right left center to Pak bowlers in Asia cup.And whole world knows wht is Pak n Pak players! There were Pak players who even fought on the filed by hitting each other among themselves!

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 5:11 GMT)

Maybe the practice they got against Pakistan in Dubai paid off. The run rate was the same and approach to the game also. Keep them in the field for the longest possible time and win mini battles when they mattered. What they have done is the same. Every player played its part and the indians superstar status is finally getting caught in its own tracks. You can't be a superstar by earning big money on t20 or ipl. You become a big star when you are tested and clearly they have failed to provide the results that are demanded of them. It is time sehwag and tendulkar move away from this arena. At home they couldn't perform, it would be a tougher situation if they move to any other country. Bowling is good as dead. Ashwin is playing more as a batsman then a bowler.

Posted by KiwiRocker- on (December 18, 2012, 4:16 GMT)

India has been a medicore team that was made to look world beaters. India lost in Pakistan(2006), India's Lost in England 4-0, India lost in AUstralia 4-0, India barely drew in SA and SL. India now has eve managed to lose at home. As far as ODI, Indian team was not even in final of Asia cup or tri series in Australia. As far as as T20, India team was booted out even before semis in Asia cup. Pakistan won two tests in England in 2010 that India has not managed in 26 years. Pakistan was in semi final of T20. Pakistan won Asia cup. Pakistan has thrashed England 3-0. That shows you how misleading the rankings are! Indian team and fans are exposed. Everyone knows for a long time that King is naked but they are yelling that King has clothes on. Indian selectors are a toothless bunch that cna not drop non performers like Tendulya, Sehwag and Gambhir etc. Indian players are big mouthed and talk like McGrath used to but nothing to back it up. ICC should review India's test status immeidiately!

Posted by satish619chandar on (December 18, 2012, 3:43 GMT)

1. Cook 2. Panesar 3. KP(Momentum changing innings) 4. Anderson 5. Swann and Prior.. We can add even Compton for sharing some invaluable time in the crease with Cook and Finn for a good role in the games he played. Excellent debut for Root and decent hand by Trott. Bell was a failure till the last innings. If there is a concern, it would be for the No.6 slot. Will Root be a long term option?

Posted by joseyesu on (December 18, 2012, 3:38 GMT)

Too much talk on pitches as with Gambir, Kohli, Dhoni- It is time to Zip it 2) Worst to depend completely on spinners 3) How long will you depend on Zak and out of nowhere a player has been picked(RP Singh in Eng and Chawla in Ind) 4) When Samit patel can do why not India 5) Except Pujara and Kohli, does anybody has the ability to defend and everybody cannot be a sehwag or pieterson. I hope a good series in ODI and T20.

Posted by challagalla on (December 18, 2012, 2:07 GMT)

On paper India was clearly the stronger team [ batting wise ] yet we lost. The difference being in character and intensity to win. The English clearly outplayed us in all facets of the game and that hurt me a lot. Ashwin bowled poorly and in Mumbai the spinners between them bowled around 100 overs and could not adjust to the pitch and bowl the right length. Our fielding was poor and batting patchy.

Posted by wiseshah on (December 18, 2012, 1:50 GMT)

They won because they are better team, not media hyped team like india

Posted by Silverbails on (December 18, 2012, 0:55 GMT)

India's idea of fielding is to let SOMEONE ELSE do it for them...like the England team!! Pathetic, and at the bottom of the heap in World cricket. Always have been, and always will be, unless they have much more intensive fielding drills during, and after, each and every match, instead of merely "relaxing" and doing NOTHING!! One could see that in the England camp, where there was always that EXTRA intensity. This is Indian cricket at its lowest point for years. M S Dhoni should go, to be replaced by Kohli, and SRT should say goodbye...

Posted by   on (December 18, 2012, 0:12 GMT)

This is an excellent analysis, from which India can learn a lot. Gnasher, correctly put it as the positives of England.Just turn it around, they are precisely the negatives of India. Does anyone care to address these issues, in the Indian camp, to purse serious efforts to correct these.

Posted by mikey76 on (December 17, 2012, 23:53 GMT)

England's win is all the more impressive as in 3 of the tests we had virtually 3 bowlers. Had Finn been fit or Onions utilised like he should have been then it would have been an even more dominant victory. Despite the defeat I dont think it is all doom and gloom for India. If they can get Yadav fit and Arun alongside him that is a decent pace attack. Ohja is a fine bowler and Jadeja looked a good prospect too. Replace Tendulkar with Rahane and find a captain able to motivate then they could prosper against Australia. The aussies don't posses a world class spinner, let alone two and I have a feeling Ohja will enjoy bowling to the likes of Warner and Hughes. India will be desperate not to lose 2 home series on the bounce.

Posted by ashlatchem on (December 17, 2012, 22:56 GMT)

The Selectors are given way much too much credit here. They lost the first test by choosing one spinner in India... That's a given and Broad has been poor for a long long time...and that lays at there feet not that of the players. So Root is a good call I will give you that But Broad should've been out earlier and the selectors lost the first test not the players.... And in saying that it was the players who won the 2nd and the 3rd then drew the fourth... And calling England's selectors flexible is the best joke I have seriously heard all morning... Be glad you guys won a test series in India but it is because Cook & Trott refuse to get out KP is one in a kind and Monty (When finally given the chance it is India remember) killed it and Swann didn't do half bad either...Oh and India are totally insipid and useless... Batting on the 4th or 5th? morning for 29 runs in 55 minutes with a HOME series on the line is nearly as funny as the Eng selectors being considered flexible.

Posted by   on (December 17, 2012, 21:42 GMT)

Well done to England. As an India fan living in England, I was deeply disappointed by the Indian team's performance (or lack of it). This is the 3rd series in a little over a year where they have been utterly outplayed. Very little guts and little fight and then to cap it off, a lack of humility to accept that they did not reach the mark. One can only hope that things will improve.

Posted by Alexk400 on (December 17, 2012, 20:00 GMT)

England played like Indians. To win india , you have to be think you are indian with guile. Cook and team did that very well. England players are athletic and strong. Only thing they may not have is guile and patience and not liking indian culture.. But by embracing indian culture they won in indea easily. Also i think indian team is divided and it helped england someway. Well done. That said england still can't play spin. That can be said about any team because indians supposed to be spin king had no clues against panesar & swann.. So its all relative.

Posted by sweetspot on (December 17, 2012, 20:00 GMT)

Yes, all of it was great from England, but had India's batting remained as good as it has been over the years, we would just as easily have overseen all of this.

Posted by   on (December 17, 2012, 19:09 GMT)

All England players chipped in with crucial performances while most of the Indian players gave one-off good performance just sufficient to retain their places. India should take some tough choices in next series. Ojha took some wickets, but seems to be one-dimensional to be truly threatening to good batsmen. Hence, I would play him only as 4th spinner. Ashwin and Chawla both seem to have some "mystery" deliveries which might develop into good ones in the future. Jadeja seems ideal for overseas conditions to tie one end up. Ishant was effective only when the pitch was up and down and at its worst. I would drop Ishant out of the squad. Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron, Parvinder Awana, Sreesanth, RP Singh, Ashok Dinda could be in the squad as seamers. For the batsmen, a rotation policy could be followed with chances given to Rahane, Badrinath, Tiwari, Raina, Rayadu.

Posted by sitaram58 on (December 17, 2012, 18:26 GMT)

Dhoni shold have asked for a maximum of two innings of 20 overs each instead of trying to mess with the pitches. Enjoy the win while you can because this is the proably the last time India will play Engalnd in test matches. We are going to take our bat and ball and go play another game yo ubig bad bullies!!!!!!!

Posted by JG2704 on (December 17, 2012, 17:59 GMT)

To me Monty's non selection was poor but Root's selection was inspiring.To me , I thought JB would be the next in line if they were to make any changes and while I still feel Jonny is unlucky to be discarded again after 1 inns where he was unlucky to be out , I think Root could be a real find. Obviously he could be flattering to deceive but he has certainly shown reason for optimism

Posted by   on (December 17, 2012, 17:33 GMT)

happy to see english win

Posted by adkum on (December 17, 2012, 17:33 GMT)

Great article. India"s folly has been exposed once again. There are many more reasons such as India takes days off sight seeing in between matches while opposing teams sweat it out in the field practicing. India makes dumb excuses after each failure rather than examining the real reason for failure.Their selectors are woefully unimaginative and believes in playing the same failures repeatedly.India is lucky to have a wealth of talented players waiting for an opportunity but the selectors seem to practice croynism and favouritism. If this loss is not a wake up call then I don"t know what will.

Posted by   on (December 17, 2012, 17:29 GMT)

great article... I want to few one more thing... overconfident to play spinners well... Sachin need breaks & should retire and focus on politics as a Rajya Sabha member... Wrong team selection... too much catch drops...

Posted by PrasPunter on (December 17, 2012, 17:26 GMT)

Ahhh !! How good will it be if these adjectives are to be used to describe my Aussies after test # 4 against india next year and the Ashes !! Wishful thinking !! Can we ever go the distance Eng travelled in india ? Can we do it in Eng ? And then back home ? Can we , with the sort of resources we have ?

Posted by RandyOZ on (December 17, 2012, 17:19 GMT)

Finally this epic battle of the minnows is complete. Two average teams filled with terrible spinners and batters makes for a decidedly boring and unskillful series. We can now focus on the best team in the world Australia, plying its trade against Sri Lanka, who are themselves far better than these two minnows.

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Andrew McGlashan Assistant Editor Andrew arrived at ESPNcricinfo via Manchester and Cape Town, after finding the assistant editor at a weak moment as he watched England's batting collapse in the Newlands Test. Andrew began his cricket writing as a freelance covering Lancashire during 2004 when they were relegated in the County Championship. In fact, they were top of the table when he began reporting on them but things went dramatically downhill. He likes to let people know that he is a supporter of county cricket, a fact his colleagues will testify to and bemoan in equal quantities.
Tour Results
India v England at Dharamsala - Jan 27, 2013
England won by 7 wickets (with 16 balls remaining)
India v England at Mohali - Jan 23, 2013
India won by 5 wickets (with 15 balls remaining)
India v England at Ranchi - Jan 19, 2013
India won by 7 wickets (with 131 balls remaining)
India v England at Kochi - Jan 15, 2013
India won by 127 runs
India v England at Rajkot - Jan 11, 2013
England won by 9 runs
More results »
News | Features Last 3 days
News | Features Last 3 days