India v New Zealand, 2nd Test, Hyderabad

Harbhajan slams Indian flatbeds

ESPNcricinfo staff

November 18, 2010

Comments: 111 | Text size: A | A

Harbhajan Singh celebrates his second successive Test century, India v New Zealand, 2nd Test, Hyderabad, 4th day, November 15, 2010
Harbhajan has had more success with the bat than ball during the series © AFP

Harbhajan Singh has criticised the Hyderabad pitch that was prepared for India's second Test against New Zealand, which offered no help to the fast bowlers or spinners and produced a draw, saying India is developing a reputation for batsmen-friendly pitches.

"These days foreign teams come to India secure in the knowledge that it is the best place to get runs," he told the Times of India. "Gary Kirsten told me that when he came to play a Test series in India, the best place to bat was as an opener, because once the spinners came on, batting became difficult. But now, every wicket has been re-laid and the black soil has made the wickets pretty firm. It just doesn't turn and the wicket plays well even on the final day.''

He was critical of the curator, saying he "deserves to be given the contract to build national highways''.

Harbhajan has had more success with the bat than the ball in the series, having scored back-to-back centuries but taken just six wickets in the first two Tests. In the Hyderabad Test, he and Sreesanth put together a 105-run partnership for the last wicket in India's first innings, which Harbhajan thinks signifies how flat the wicket was. "Even our No. 11 was playing like Sachin Tendulkar," he said. "So we should give all the credit to the groundsmen.''

India's bowlers have failed to take 20 wickets in each of the two Test matches and India captain MS Dhoni had blamed the pitches for failing to produce results and said teams would "have to play 10 days" to get a result.

Rain foils India's practice session

  • India's preparations for the third Test against New Zealand on Saturday are being scuppered by the Nagpur weather, as a heavy downpour washed out Thursday's practice session. New Zealand finished their practice session before the weather struck on Thursday and have the afternoon slot for Friday's nets. The Regional Meteorological Centre predicted that the clouds would clear by Friday afternoon

Harbhajan said flat pitches had become a recurring problem in Test series in India. "I can't remember the last time I bowled on a turning track where the ball spun and bounced," he said. "I think Kanpur was the last and we got the desired result against South Africa in 2008. I don't suggest we play on bad wickets. But we should play to our strength, and our strength, over the years, has been spin bowling."

India go into the deciding Test at Nagpur, on Saturday, without Zaheer Khan, which will increase the pressure on Harbhajan to spearhead the attack. Harbhajan's centuries have elicited suggestions he is turning into an allrounder, but his bowling has received criticism from some quarters. "I think I have bowled well in the last two Tests," he said. "But the way our critics think, you bowl well only when you take wickets. When I took four wickets in the first innings in Hyderabad, I bowled well. But on the final day, when I took just one wicket, I was in the line of fire. Some days, I can bowl a few full tosses and get five wickets. Figures do not always do justice.''

India came into the series ranked No.1 in the ICC Test rankings, with New Zealand at No.8, and having recently beaten Australia 2-0 at home, anything less than a win in Nagpur would be considered a disappointment. But Harbhajan still has his hopes up. "Hopefully, Sachin Tendulkar will get his 50th Test hundred, I'll get another hundred and pick up 7 to 8 wickets and India will win.''

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (November 25, 2010, 13:40 GMT)

@SFGoldenGate sorry for the mistake..Steyn took 7 wickets in Nagpur not Ahmedabad as i wrote.My friend sonjjay is spot on here!Go back to 2006 when India toured SA.Sreesanth tore apart SA line up bowling 'em out for 84 runs in Jo'burg.So the battle is not only between our batsmen nd SA bowlers. The reverse is also going to be interesting.Indian bowlers toils hard on batting friendly pitches so they are very good whenever they get good support from the pitch.Zaheer and Bhajji are bowlers of stupendous caliber along with Sreesanth and Ishant who are rising stars of Indian cricket. Another thing, please have respect for the person who has scored more than 30000 runs in international cricket and for his country. We have been playing cricket since 1936 and have a rich history producing a number of great cricketers. Have respect for 'em as Indians have great respect for their SA counterparts.Take it easy and enjoy the coming showdown.May the best team win!

Posted by sonjjay on (November 25, 2010, 12:11 GMT)

@SFgoldengate as a matter of fact i remember the Ahmedabad test match ur talking about. It was a green pitch and that is what took the batsmen by surprise but it was good bowling and these sort of collapse's happen. remember 2006 Jburg SA was bowled out for a similar total and nagpur 2010 we had 3 debutants again and new stadium in Nagpur that is Jamtha is the hardest Indian wicket you will get. You should have seen peter siddle bowl here in an odi match,having said that i will be the first one to admit SA have challenged India the most on our home soil in the last 15 yrs or so.

Posted by   on (November 25, 2010, 9:35 GMT)

@SFGoldenGate my friend,you may be suffering from selective amnesia. Yes Steyn bowled a spell of 7/51 in Ahmedabad but he took just 1(!) wicket and gave 147 runs in next test in Kolkata.It wasn't a batting pitch either as SA scored 296 and 290 where India slammed 4 centuries amassing 643.Also the so-called destruction includes inexperienced WP SAHA,M VIJAY and BADRI(no Dravid and Laxman). You said India don't win outside India.on the contrary,India won in New Zealand( where pitches are more grassy and bouncy than SA.Harbhajan has taken 378 wickets in tests so he doesn't need ur certificate to be a self-acclaimed bowler.and I don't understand the fuss over Indian flatbeds.Am I suppose to understand that other batsmen can't play on flat pitches?!!! Ridiculous.

Posted by diri on (November 25, 2010, 6:03 GMT)

SFGoldenGate thanks for agreeing with me. You are spot on bro!!!!

Posted by SFGoldenGate on (November 24, 2010, 16:41 GMT)

I forgot to mention another match, SA vs IND at Ahmedabad in 2008. India were all out for 76 in their own soil by Steyn, Ntini and Morkel. Every famous Indian batsmen were their except Sachin. It was not a bowling pitch either, SA scored 494 with AB Deviliers scoring 217* and eventually SA won by Innings and 90 runs. In 2nd innings IND was little better, but one good session for Steyn is enough. Acorecard here, . And it is no fluke. Steyn again destroyed India in India soil at Nagpur in Feb 2010. From 192 for 3 IND were all out for 233 (Steyn 7/51) and SA piled up 558 (Amla 253*, Kallis 173). and SA won by Innings and 6 runs. Scorecard here On both occasion SA batting proved that batting is ok. On both occasion IND also batted well in 2nd inns. But as I say, one session can change everything. Zaheer, Ishant, Sreshant -- all decent bowler but nothing like Steyn.

Posted by SFGoldenGate on (November 24, 2010, 16:26 GMT)

@sonjjay, You are showing Sachin's ODI double hundred against SA. In my earlier post I mentioned what is the difference between ODI and test. Now, can you show me Sachin any double hundred in SA ? BIG NO !! ok, did Sachin score 200 against SA in India , again BIG NO. Sachin did not score 200s in his SA in his entire 21 years career for test but scored a solitary 200 against SA, which only proves that two formats are a lot different. I am not in any way discriminating Sachin. I am saying that, test cricket is so tough that even Sachin could not achieve many feat. In ODI, Sachin is just GOD. Salute to this great player.

Posted by SFGoldenGate on (November 24, 2010, 15:05 GMT)

@sonjjay, first of all, ODI and Tests are different even on flatbeds. In tests the best bowlers does not have limitation of blowing only 10 overs. Fast bowlers can give more bouncers which prevents many batsmen to come on front foot even on flatbeds. Another thing, many batsmen are very weak against bouncer (I am not saying Sachin). One example is early days Steve Waugh. He was criticized heavily for his lack of skill to handle good bouncer but later he corrected the flaw. And remember, the bowlers have to have one good ball to dismiss anyone including Sachin. In ODIs, bowlers are restricted. Yes there are no side who conceded 200 to a batsmen, but hey there are many 180+ score in ODI which are no less. And 200 in ODI does not happen everyday. Maybe SA are also allowed have bad day, right? (on Indian soil LOL). In Nagpur, Sehwag and Sachin got century. Thank god, at least , now you can not say that pitch was unplayable for Indian batsmen. Steyn had one good day, you see what happened?

Posted by SFGoldenGate on (November 24, 2010, 14:51 GMT)

@swaroopjammula, Yes, Sachin has good average. But if you look further you will see that Ponting has similar average all over the world except India. Ponting fails miserably in India. In the same way Sachin can fail also. You mention Sachin's 169. That was a great innings but India lost that macth by 282 runs. Sachin helped avoid the follow on. Inida scores on that series are @ Durban SA(235,259), IND (100, 66) @Cape Town (529, 256) IND(359, 144) @ Johannesberg SA (321,228) IND(410,266). Sachin's contribution in that series, 15,4,169,9,35,9. From that you can say that Sachin had a rare good day. India score of 100, 66 and 144 shows how they collapsed when mattered. My point is Sachin's average is decent everywhere. You have so many 50+ average people so why so few overseas win as a nation? You are playing cricket from when, 1936 right? In my eyes the most solid Indian batsman is Sunil Gavaskar. At least he was tested against the best. He had 13 hundreds against mighty 70-80s W Indies

Posted by diri on (November 24, 2010, 7:32 GMT)

swaroopjammula the indian batting line up is not the best in the world, on paper they all have good averages and tons of runs ( mostly scored on flat flat piches) but on current form the SA batting line up is the best.....Amla no1 and AB no2 according to ICC rankings....You throw in Kallis and Smith and thats a top class line up. oh and please dont compare Ishant , Zaheer , Sreesanth to Steyn and morkel lol.... Steyn and Morkel are in a class of their own

Posted by diri on (November 24, 2010, 7:26 GMT)

Subhojit Nandy dont forget Steyn destroyed India in their own back yard ....imagine whats going to happen in SA.. India should be worried

Posted by diri on (November 24, 2010, 7:24 GMT)

Subhojit Nandy even you could have batted on that pitch in abu dhabi....come to SA and thats a whole different story.. Steyn will destroy the indian batting line up in SA. and you say nobody is loosing sleep over facing Steyn? lol i bet the whole of the Indian team cant sleep because they know what awaits them.

Posted by sonjjay on (November 24, 2010, 4:23 GMT)

@SFgoldengate. Yes it was a good spell in Nagpur by steyn but we were playing with 3 debutants in the middle order.The exp batsmen like Sehwag and Sachin still scored a century in that test if u dont remember. And u should also remember the double century in odi's against SA. You may say it was a flat pitch. But no other team has allowed anyone to score a double century on these flat pitches. SL and Aus came here before SA and played on the same pitches and how come there was no double century in those matches??

Posted by swaroopjammula on (November 24, 2010, 2:39 GMT)

@diri :if steyn and morkel can pierce into the best batting line up of the world, then on the bowling conditions of sa ishant sharma ,sreesanth and zaheer can also do very similar to sa will see the fast bowlers of india coming to the party very soon. these bowlers are very under rated.i still remember the last time India toured sa zaheer and sreeshanth totterd the sa attack twice in a test and eventually won that test. so dont underestimate indian fast bowlers.

Posted by swaroopjammula on (November 24, 2010, 2:32 GMT)

@SFGoldenGate:you said only average doesnt mean everything and said india were allout for 100 and 66 ,then i do remember a match where tendulkar tore the sa attck of donald,pollock and scored 169 runs .so u cant say it happened once. any team will have a bad day.that might be a bad day for india .beware this time indians have the best team and i am sure this team will be victorious in sa.

Posted by swaroopjammula on (November 24, 2010, 2:19 GMT)

@SFGoldenGate:in australia sachin's average is 58.53,in england it is 62,in nz it is 49.52,iin sa it is 39.76 and in wi it is 47.69.these are the averages of sachin outside the subcontinent and by no means these are less .

Posted by SFGoldenGate on (November 23, 2010, 23:32 GMT)

@ Subhojit Nandy, Another thing. You said that, inexperienced Pakistan batsmen scored well against SA. But In experienced NZ also played very well in India and most of the NZ batsmen never played in Indian condition. Why ? Because of the flatbed batting pitches. Now, you change the pitch in Nagpur and see the result. The Nagpur pitch had something for the bowler from the 3rd evening. Now, be ready to expect many hostile conditions in SA. And you probably do not know much about Steyn. Just this year February he destroyed famous Indian batting line-up in their own soil in Nagpur. Check the scorecard here, . He took 7 wickets. Oh another thing, it was not a bowling pitch altogether. Because SA scored 558 in its first innings with Hashim Amla 253* . Show me one fast bowler who can take 7 wickets in an innings in India. He also won matches in Melbourne against AUS (he took 10 wickets in that match) and helped to win the series in AUS.

Posted by SFGoldenGate on (November 23, 2010, 19:09 GMT)

@Subhojit Nandy, there is no harm just to be cautious. Only average does not show how the people plays in certain condition. I remember, once Donald and co ripped India for 100 and 66 (Tendulakr, Dravid, Azharudding, Ganguly ). Now Steyn is Donald but still you have to respect them. Suppose Steyn and co may not all-out India for 100 and 66 but maybe 300, 250 s. But still 250-300 is also no good and may not prove defendable without Kumble. Harbhajan is the most over-rated bowler even in India. He is a liabilty outside India. Hmm, you say PAK batsmen are inexperienced. But that doe not prevent to be good batsmen. In fact, they are playing in Eng seaming condition against AUS and ENG. So, there are so many defeats. India is playing in home for last 2 years and that why all the averages are inflated. Anyway, just wait and see IND Vs SA. If Inida wins I will be happy but past history says they were destroyed in SA.

Posted by SFGoldenGate on (November 23, 2010, 16:07 GMT)

@ swaroopjammula, Can you check the Indian batsman averages outside sub-continent? Also exclude ZIm when you are counting outside sub-continent. Because, pitches in Sri lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh are no different. Sachin's average against minnows like BD is 136 with 5 hundreds. Sachin scored 1800 runs against BD and ZIM (More than 10% of his carrer runs). Indian batsman are very good in sub-continent, there is no doubt. and it is probabble that India plays most of the matches in sub-continent. I do not see any bowler from sub-continent team who could challange Sachin in sub-continent pitches. Sehwag, Sachin, Dravid and Laxman did quite well in AUS but only 2 wins in AUS. But all their average takes a bitting in SA and ENG. My point is Sachin's average was more than 55 for whole decade along with Dravid bur its a shame that two 50+ averaging batsmen could not help to win test matches regularly in abroad. Invincible AUS also operated with maybe two 50+ average but won regularly.

Posted by   on (November 23, 2010, 15:52 GMT)

@Diri Don't be ridiculous. An inexperienced batting line up of Pakistan made 434 against your so called fearsome STEYN-MORKEL duo in abu dhabi.They also amassed 343 runs and lost only 3 wickets against SA in 2nd innings in first test.Indian batsmen are much more experienced than Pakistan.Yes, conditions will be different in SA but everyone in Indian batting line up has exp playing in SA.Another thing, please don't compare Donald and Steyn. Donald was way more fearsome than Steyn and gave many batsmen sleepless nights.Nobody is loosing their sleep over Steyn. Steyn has a long way to go.

Posted by diri on (November 23, 2010, 12:38 GMT)

Vishal Gupta facing Steyn in a ODI ( which was made for batsmen) and facing him in a test match is way different....Conditions will be different, Pitch will be different ( Not the flat ones you get in india where you can score 200) and the ball will be if Sachin and India fail horribily in SA dont say i neva warn you. And i think Steyn is just as good as Donald , maybe even better

Posted by   on (November 23, 2010, 11:17 GMT)

@Diri and others: People talk about Indian batsmen(including Sachin) being fearful of SA Attack... their averages against SA... are you guys kidding me?? As far as I remember Sachin is the 1st batsman to score 200 in ODI... and what was the team against which he was playing?? I think it was SA rite? And watch the video guys, how helpless Steyn was!! P.S. Search for articles by A Donald where he hails Tendulkar as the best batsman ever... Are Steyn and Morkel better then Donald?

Posted by diri on (November 23, 2010, 8:26 GMT)

swaroopjammula you obviously dont know whats sarcasm....I said Harbhajan is better than Sachin because he just scored more runs than Sachin in the New zealand Serries. dont be Silly, Sachin is obviously a better batsmen tho.....and as far as all those good averages you just gave me can you tell me how much these guys average against SA???? Because i can see Steyn and Morkel tearing through that batting line up very soon

Posted by swaroopjammula on (November 23, 2010, 2:37 GMT)

@diri:Indians have high averages when played even outside India.Sachin's average outside India is 56.25 with 27 centuries playing 95 matches.Rahul dravid averages 55.53 outside India playing 80 matches which is higher than his overall average of 53.31.laxman averages 46.06 playing 63 matches outside India.sehwag averages 50.67 outside India playing 43 matches.Gambhir has an average of 64.10 playing outside Ibdia but that will change as he played only 13 testa outside India. You said harbhajan is better than sachin these days.I think you are an alien to cricket because sachin has surpassed his personel record of 1392 runs in this year and all set to break younis khan's record of 1728 runs in an acaemic year.Dont just post baseless comments.

Posted by akkash12321 on (November 22, 2010, 23:59 GMT)

I think that Indian pitches and Harbhajan (the bowler) need to step up their game.

Posted by   on (November 22, 2010, 15:32 GMT)

Those people who r blaming Bhajji......please remember that he has 374 test wickets.A lackey can't take nearly 400 wickets. Only vettori is anywhere near him with 336 wickets. He has continuously proven himself and surely he will do it again. Just Like dhoni slamming 98 right across the faces of his critics today.Indian pitches are known for turners but of late, turners are almost non-existent.There is nothing wrong if a bowler demands pitches suitable for his and his team's attack.But,again,obviously BCCI want to make sure that test matches continue for five days killing home teams advantage and filling their coffers.

Posted by diri on (November 22, 2010, 7:43 GMT)

Harbhajan is a better batsmen than sachin nowdays lol.....Nowonder all the players from india have high averages. its brcause of the pitches

Posted by 270380 on (November 22, 2010, 6:56 GMT)

Harbhajan, you have accepted that you need turning wickets to be successful. What will you do when India tours other countries. The fact is that you have lost your sting and effectiveness. On the same wickets whcih you think are nightmares for the bowlers have helped you in scoring centuries, Zaheer Khan in the meanwhile has been very successful. He not only takes wickets in his opening spells by taking important wickets he late swings the ball when it is old. Remember the great off spinner E. Prasanna. He was successful even on the most batsman freindly wickets. Why ? because he had the skill and brains. The Indian team does not need you as a batsman. They need you as a bowler. Stop crying and go to Prasanna and learn from him.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 20:00 GMT)

harbajan don a goo jab and we expert from him more like this

Posted by sonjjay on (November 19, 2010, 17:33 GMT)

Some English fans are on here now talking about spin !!Jeez Relax now will ya. Indian batsmen have performed everywhere more so in English conditions outside India. The truth is NZ have compartively played better than Aus,Sri Lanka, England when they toured here in the past 2 years.The fact is English and Aus batsmen have more often than not failed miserably on these same pitches so lets just give the kiwis some credit.

Posted by alfredmynn on (November 19, 2010, 15:18 GMT)

Harbhajan Singh has a point, although it's not clear why he jumped the gun just a few days earlier and declared that the pitch was a good one! It must be depressing to be an Indian bowler. Encountering those pathetic roads on a regular basis, and seeing batsmen (in their own team as well as the opposition) of only modest ability score century after century, must destroy your confidence. Indian pitches have never been fast (nor have their bowlers), but now they don't even spin! It's a measure of how poor their top-order batsmen's form has been (particularly Dravid - who always struggles equally irrespective of pitch or bowling) that they haven't scored a few double or triple hundreds. They'd be disappointed for not having filled their boots in anticipation of SA.

Posted by Ramz_SL on (November 19, 2010, 15:13 GMT)

he he bajji better off to play as a batsman rather den bowler.resnt past ur batting recodes better den bowling.whn ur nt bowling well itz nt a gud thing to blame da wickets.2nd test after 1st inns bajji pause da wicket bt nw????

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 14:25 GMT)

'slams Indian flatbeds'? really? very prone to mischief headline :-)

Posted by ratedstfu44 on (November 19, 2010, 13:37 GMT)

Pitch where batsman like harbhajan can score 2 a worst pitch ever. now i see why sachin ,dravid , sehwag can score too many centuries in indian soil.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 12:21 GMT)

Beta! Angoor khatte hain. Bhajji, this is right. You lack the kill and penetration in your bowling and got to go back to off spin basics and correct your line and length. You must be able to exploit the conditions for your favor and barg through the gates. The easiest of excuses is either to curse the pitch or the climatic conditions. What for your are representing 150 million people and 5 million cricketers have been left behind you to represent the best cricketing nation...India. You must accept and work for your betterment instead of asking the curators to construct roads.

Posted by Srikolith on (November 19, 2010, 11:42 GMT)

I completely agree with harbajan. Now a days people doesn't like test cricket much due to shorter versions. these pitches make it worse. any way test cricket is the best. so we have to protect it. without spectators there is no point in holding matches. so its important to make a pitch which gives a result. as a sri lankan i think if there were turning pitch india would easily beat NZ. curators think that people like to watch a team getting 500+ runs at a run rate about 4-5 per over. but real cricket lovers like to watch a match ending in a result. there is no value in a 100 if someone gets it in a flat wicket. 80 runs in a difficult pitch is more valuable than that.

Posted by diri on (November 19, 2010, 11:38 GMT)

He is over rated....but then again he is the only world class bowler in the Indian team lol

Posted by BellCurve on (November 19, 2010, 11:26 GMT)

I feel really sorry for Indian bowlers. They live in the shadow of their more glamorous batting colleagues. A lot has been written about Sehwag, Tendulkar and Laxman fantastic form over the last 4 years of so. But few have stopped to look at the performance of the Indian bowlers during this period. Fact is that during this period Kumble, Harbajan, Sharma, Ojha, Mishra, Singh and Sreesanth have all averaged more than 35. The only Indian bowler with respectable numbers during this period is Zaheer (28.67); and he is a fine bowler at the peak of his powers. Conclusion: India always plays on flat tracks, home and away, because the BCCI has a lot of influence, and Indian fans want to see their batting heroes score lots of runs and break lots of records. The informed among us will always look at the current crop of Indian batsmen's stats with a touch of scepticism.

Posted by chrismo on (November 19, 2010, 10:48 GMT)

Even being a Kiwi I agree with this, NZ has done the same thing over the last few years! We have gone away from our seaming wickets (which was our strength) to flat bed tracks as well... One of the great things about test cricket is having different conditions in different countries but at the moment everyone seems to want batting friendly conditions. In saying that though NZ top order should be given a bit more credit than they have been for the way they have batted this serries, Taylor, Ryder and Williamson(probably move to 3 in 10 tests time) are going to turn into the best middle order New Zealand has ever had.. the only thing to suprise me from this serries so far is our 2 best batsman of last 4 years Taylor and Vetori have not performed...

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 10:46 GMT)

Harbhajan is just not effective as he used to be. Harbhajan ended the 2010 ICC Wold 20/20 Tournament wicketless. In 5 matches (he bowled his maximum overs in each match) he sent down 20 overs and yielded 123 runs.

Posted by Razor88 on (November 19, 2010, 10:37 GMT)

I think the BCCI Want to Produce Batting Legends like VVS,SRT,Viru,Dravid n Dada With Zaheer in we have the Best attack for a test(Atleast in India..Barring in mind that the Pitches are Turners)Zaheer have the Talent of Reversing in any Dry Wicket,If bhaji can Flight the ball more,he can be a handful.Abt Ojha its time we bring Ashwin in,Because we need to Rotate the bench strength(Ojha because i don't think they are going to drop bhaji when he is showing the talent of an all rounder for the future where he will be abv 30 years old :O.)Best bid is that Ashwin and Ojha should play.We already have 7 Batsmen,Y do u we No.8 to be batsmen or an all rounder?

Dhoni Should be the Captain.He has Lots of Luck.we were the minnows going Down under for the Tri nation Series which included Aus and SL.And Jus for the record we have Lost only a couple of series(All Formats Included).Which is amazing.we also Won the First T20 WorldCup. With Results coming Our way he is best Suited.

Posted by Meety on (November 19, 2010, 10:18 GMT)

@Rishabh Jain - spot on, H Singh is not the bowler he was 4 or 5 years ago. I suggest he is going to struggle in SA, unless he gets some turn happening - they always could play him as an allrounder @6 & drop Raina!!! I think a bigger problem is that Ojha is not doing any better - yet is not being scrutinised! @Gupta.Ankur - WRONG! India must NOT make pitches for itself or otherwise they will just be known as a laughing stock outside of India. The pitches must be sporting, I don't care if they fall apart on Day4 & 5, just as long as there is a bit of pace & bounce on the first couple of days. I think it would be boring to have pitches which are dominated by spin. Spin has an important place - particularly in Indian cricket - this should be cherished, but how is someone like Sharma going to prosper bowling on decks like this pitch? @keblerelf92 - good comments - I liked India's mix back when Pathan batted in the top 6 & you had 2 pacers & 2 spinners.

Posted by SettingSun on (November 19, 2010, 9:56 GMT)

You never see all these Indian fans complaining about these featherbed pitches when they are crowing about the 'fantastic' averages of their batsmen. You can probably take between 5 and 10 runs off the averages of all Indian batsmen - and Sri Lankans for that matter.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 9:36 GMT)

I agree with harbajan when their is a test series in india you know its gonna be aboring runfest. they want all their to 6 to get centuries presonally i would thinkg a century scored ona achallengin pitch would be worth much more than when another 5-56 batsmen also made centuries int he same match.

Posted by Bytheway on (November 19, 2010, 9:34 GMT)

It won't be long before India are playing a Test series in South Africa. With this bowling attack they will be consigned to the dustbin. Time to blood a new bowler NOW, before it is too late. Time for Ashwin.

Posted by sportsfanatic1972 on (November 19, 2010, 9:24 GMT)

Harbhajan says spin is our strength. Can any one remember the last test match won by our spinners. It is the faster bowlers who has been winning matches for India. When Anil Kumble was playing India used to win matches and Harbhajan used to take wickets because Anil used to maintain the pressure at the other end.Harbhajan stopped taking wickets once Anil retires. Nowadays Harbhajan is incapable of taking wickets in one day internationals too. Time to drop him. But there is a cocus in the Indian team who supports him. Let me tell you, these Indian batsmen is going to struggle in South Africa where the ball flies past their nose. Here in India the batsman can use a broom to sweep the ball, since the ball barely rises above the Knee.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 9:11 GMT)

so Bhajji think the pitches are flatter now india are not winning dont think he said that when we was beating the asssies was he ?

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 8:55 GMT)

Forget is ur own inability to take wickets here. This has been the case for a long time now and I seriously feel that India should start looking at R Ashwin

Posted by Rahulrajesh on (November 19, 2010, 8:14 GMT)

It is not fair to criticize the pitch for his own failure in bowling. Harbahajan should concentrate on his bowling first, probably this is the time he should take a look at his own best figure videos to gain confidence and he needs to stick to the basics to achieve success.

Posted by KALPANA. on (November 19, 2010, 8:09 GMT)


Posted by Prats6 on (November 19, 2010, 8:05 GMT)

Yes the pitches were flat, but how did he bowl ? How can you take wickets like that ? Sorry to say, Bhajji is equally responsible for this. When will he stop whining ?

Posted by Viper2.0 on (November 19, 2010, 6:01 GMT)

Wow,just a few days ago he told that Hyderabad pitch is good for bowling.When you take wickets then the pitch is good,if u don't then the pitch is a feather bed for bowlers.Why is that Mr.Harbajan??All i can say is go get a life :x,Nz batted better and you failed miserably with the ball.You haven't done anything remarkable with your bowling this year to give this sort of comments.If your saying Indian pitches have become feather beds,why didn't you take wickets in srilanka?.Maybe the 2nd test in srilanka was a feather bed,what about the 1st test?.Being the no.1 team,there shouldn't be any excuses and you should accept that Nz played better cricket instead of blasting the pitches and also the poor curators.Hope India realize there are better spinners in the domestic circuit than harbajan.Lets see what he has to tell about the pitch in the 3rd test match :P

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 5:27 GMT)

Please Post my comment!!!! Please...

The same HIGHLY OVERRATED Indian Spinner Harbhajan quoted "This is a good wicket for Test cricket" ( when he took four wickets on Day 2.

This is what they say ppl with __________.

Posted by keralite on (November 19, 2010, 5:26 GMT)

Bhajji scores a hundred but Sachin does not.... what happened to sachin? Was he not batting on the same flat pitch?

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 5:12 GMT)

I think, Bhajji should be replaced with R.Ashwin for the fact Ashwin is better spinner. Bhajji shall give company to Yuvi for going parties. As Ganguly says, Dhoni is a lucky fellow...we need lucky + aggressive captain, Like Price of Kolkatta...Dhoni can hand-over it to Sehwag and to Gambir by 2012. I am not trying to be harsh on Dhoni but trying to find someone aggressive and a team player. Dhoni clearly never given due credits to players like Sachin, Dravid, Sehwag or Laxman...If Yuvi, Gambir, Raina plays then its a batsman effort else he will praise Zaheer and Bhajji.

Posted by David_Doss on (November 19, 2010, 4:59 GMT)

Hmm, Looks comical. There was a time when they were blasting the indian pitches as rank turners due ot which india was failing overseas. Now that they r winning overseas and not doing so @ home, they r blasting flat pitches. He He He...

Posted by Percy_Fender on (November 19, 2010, 4:49 GMT)

I heard on Dial C for cricket that Harbhajan Singh is the best off spinner in the country. It was said that he was not bowling badly and that he was not getting the right fields to get any reward. My observations in this regard are that there is no doubt that Harbhajan has control over his bowling skills. But he is good only when he bowls at around 50 to 52 mph and flighting the ball. I have not seen him getting too much of drift like say Powar does or say even Sehwag does. If he flights to above the eyebrow level, he is always very good. As far his field placements are concerned, it is possible that Dhoni not being a spin bowler may not have the nous to place the field strategically. But Harbhajan is very senior and should organise his field as he thinks fit. The point is that despite all these years he has not evolved as a spinner like say Kumble did all the time. Ashwin on the other hand, has really evolved in flight, in doosra and in also the carrom ball. For me he is the future.

Posted by heterosexualcricketfan on (November 19, 2010, 3:59 GMT)

@Nampally:You're joking aren't ya?The indian bowlers in the past bowled with local umpires, who did half their job,on pitches that until the late 90's turned square on the last 2 days.In this decade,that hasn't been a common occurence.Particularlyin the last few years.Kumble is a legend of indian cricket but I've seen him struggle inthe last 2-3 years of his career on these types of indian pitches.This is someone who always did well at home.I remember SA & even Aus having as gr8 time against Kumble in his last couple of years at home.Facts are, the pitches are flatter,no biased home umpires,a packed schedule with 3 forms of the game,extra emphasis on fielding & batting(Bishan Bedi & his merry,happy spin partners who showed of their potbellies didn't believe in the concept of fielding or batting),better bats & batting line-ups more used to coming to india have made it harder for Indian spinners to run through teams.Unfortunate that older generation indians like you are so rigid.

Posted by anonymousfan on (November 19, 2010, 3:58 GMT)

Harbhajan is slowly becoming another Dhoni. 90% talk and 10% performance. Will he become the next Indian captain ?

Posted by YGSR on (November 19, 2010, 3:02 GMT)

Because the wicket was what it was at Hyderabad : 1. Vettori, the NZ spinner got five wickets, 2. Sachin Tendulkar did not get his century - unfortunate though, 3. MS Dhoni failed with the bat.

If the pitch was good enough for Vettori to get 5 wickets against the famed Indian batting line-up there can be no complaints. Also the relatively inexperienced NZ bowling line-up could reasonably hold the Indian batting line-up. It was only the freak batting performance of Harbhajan and the lower order that saved India from emabarassment in the first two tests.

Clearly, blaming the pitches is an excuse to hide the ineffective and umnpenetrative bowling attack that India produced during the last two tests.

The Indian bowlers and batsmen are just not making the necessary efforts - both in terms of physical fitness (bending their backs to bowl and bat) and mental alertness (not bowling/batting to a plan).

The alarm call has just rung for MS Dhoni - the Indian test captain

Posted by mahi678 on (November 19, 2010, 2:39 GMT)

hey hey bhajji joins hand with dhoni criticizing the pitch. he lost his ability to bowl long ago. need to find better youngsters. also it is needed to play unadkat in the test. both sharma and sreesanth are known failed commodities. try unadkat if he succeedes its bonus. His records say he is a very good bowler. there are very good pacers in india like vinay kumar, ranadeb bose who do far better than sree and sharma in domestic.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 1:40 GMT)

Shame, he should come bowl on some of the English pitches this year. Lords was a pretty good spinning pitch, so was Edgebaston which both Swann and Ajmal really enjoyed. I'm sure Bhaji would have given his left leg to have bowled at the Oval last year. I don't really get it either, it's not like India need the help to make runs, bowling is there problem. What are these curators being told... Maybe to kill test cricket...

Posted by   on (November 19, 2010, 1:13 GMT)

I was expecting India will New Zealand by 2-0. But they couldn't do that on their home !!

Posted by EverybodylovesSachin on (November 19, 2010, 0:52 GMT)

I lost interest in this series....Guys who made this pitches (Ahemadabad and Hyderabad) they are always going to say... Bowlers have to bend their back and wicket is good let me go to America for what BCCI paid to me...Surely this guys must have been paid highly.....

Posted by SaqlainHK on (November 19, 2010, 0:44 GMT)

Baji darling you lost what u have before now stop complaining and ball or leave n give some elles chance, wickets in india has been always same run geting wickets , in past spiners were good quality now your guys spend more time in entertainment then in nets. so coaching lession for you ball every day three hours in nets n you will gets result.

Posted by kiwiinaus on (November 19, 2010, 0:33 GMT)

As the Aussies say, opinions are like bums, everyone has got one, so here goes.

I don't think Harbhajan has been bowling too mechanically, quite the opposite. I reckon he is a very good off spinner who is ruining himself by trying to bowl too many toppies and doosras. He's a big lateral spinner but is giving that advantage up to try and become another Murali.

I thoroughly enjoyed the India-Australia series but, in light of events of the last three weeks, I am revising my assessments of both those teams.

I was disappointed by Zaheer Khan's bowling against New Zealand in the first session of the second test. There was some bounce, and definite seam, but he seemed to have a predetermined approach of making the in-ducker his danger ball, bowling nearly five an over outside off swinging away to set them up and, effectively, managed to bowl two out of form and confidence batsmen back into touch. If he'd just played the conditions, as they were, it could have been very different.

Posted by gzawilliam on (November 19, 2010, 0:26 GMT)

I agree that vettori was spinning the ball more than harbhajan but he is right that indian pitches have been getting less and less results. And look at the crowds. India always believes they are the way foward for cricket but they are the ones doing the wrong thing.

The cricket public like a contest between bat and ball. Not just bat vs bat.

Even as an aussie who loves fast bowling i would still love to see a series in india like the 2001 series. Spin. Drama and some good balanced cricket in the middle there.

But no around the world we are starting to see india's affect. Was it 4 tests in the last week that have been high scoring draws. Wow that will get the public to the ground.

Posted by AustManjoo on (November 19, 2010, 0:12 GMT)

I think india is being a suck they win against Australia, there was no complains about wicket now u cant win at home and wickets are no good, pickup your act mate!

Posted by sinchl on (November 19, 2010, 0:10 GMT)

Harbhajan Singh can never take five wickets by bowling full tosses because he is the worst spinner to play for such a long time period in any test team. His last five years bowling average is around 40, and people call him as a leading spinner in the team. He is the most overated bowler, and his performances speaks for him. The only time he played well was in the series against Australia in 2001. BCCI should seriously think to include player like R Ashwin in the Test team because he is performing very well in the domestic competition. Other thing I would like to point out is about the captaincy of MS Dhoni. Commentators call him a cool captain, but they don't realize that the team needs a agressive captain who can lift the team during crisis. However, I have never seen Dhoni motivating the other players. Whenever the test match starts, he looks like as he has no interest in playing the game. Take a break man if you are fed up of it.

Posted by Mannix16 on (November 18, 2010, 23:59 GMT)

i like how this comment about indian pitches come up ONLY AFTER they can't produce a win against New Zealand. Indian pitches have been flat for quite some time now, not just recently...

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 23:41 GMT)

Bhaji is supposed to be the main strike bowler and find ways to claim wickets. If he cannot take wickets at home, no luck in SA either.

Posted by MinusZero on (November 18, 2010, 23:33 GMT)

They were turning against Australia werent they?

Posted by Bytheway on (November 18, 2010, 23:29 GMT)

Harbhajan would like wickets specially laid for him so he can bowl batsmen out! Wow! A top bowler takes on the batsmen and the conditions. He does not make excuses. As a bowler Harbhajan is stagnating. Nothing innovative, nothing new. Allow me to put forward the name of Ashwin, a cricketer who has all the attributes of a top international bowler, and a repertoire to keep batsmen on their toes. He is also aggressive -- just what the Indian bowling attack needs.

Posted by sixesandfours on (November 18, 2010, 23:15 GMT)

Bring PIYOOSH CHAWLA he is the best leg spinner India have and very effective when played against AUS in the tour match. He is talented with his bowling and also useful lower order batsman. Selectors please bring PIYOOSH and give him a chance by sitting Ojha. Ojha same flat bowling cannot be effective any more.

Posted by ScottNZ on (November 18, 2010, 21:58 GMT)

As a kiwi you guys are to hard on Bhaji, you are like that with all your cricketers. What he says is right, and comparing him to Vettori on this pitches is incorrect as they are different types of bowlers.

Vettori hardly spins on pitches that turn let alone pitches that dont. He is the master of flight and speed variation which is where he gets his wickets by decieving the batsman. Personally I though Bhajji bowled well and he had at least 3 catches dropped of his bowling that I remember, he was also very economical and troubled the batsman which is what you want in a test.

IMO he is still one of the best spinners in the world, now if only we can figure a way to get him out (not having 9 men on the boundry helps, he is a number 8 batsman Vettori, what are you thinking!!!)

Posted by kurtisMcgurtis on (November 18, 2010, 20:41 GMT)

Harbi is right. How can he expect to get wickets on indian flatbed pitches. As dhoni said they coudl have played on this for 10 days. you have to have a balance. the pitch was doctored so tendulkar can get his 50th hundred. Warne struggled in india and he was the greatest there is. you cant bowl on flat surfaces. you can only limit runs. Never warnes` style. After 5 days of TEST cricket u HAVE to have a result. SIMPLE. if you cant the surface is no good. 5 Days people. That is 2700 balls to get 20 wickets from one team. come on.

Posted by P.K.B on (November 18, 2010, 20:33 GMT)

To Be Honest, Bhaji Is Trying His Hardest To Get The Ball To Turn But It Is Not. On The Other Hand Vettori Has Been Turning The Ball. Is It Skill, Attitude Or Just Sheer Impaitence That Bhaji Is Being Confused Over?

Posted by SanjivAwesome on (November 18, 2010, 20:33 GMT)

He is trying, but failing, to hide the fact that he is second to Daniel Vettori in the art of spin bowling. Tweek it well before you throw it and it will spin. Simple.

Posted by starbashers on (November 18, 2010, 20:33 GMT)

BHAJJI needs to be relieved from test spinner job. He is no longer effective. We need to give chance to Mishra, Karthik, and a tamil nadu/CSK spinner (i forgot the name, can someone remind me - he did well in IPL final this year). so they get some international experience. We need to redo all the pitches so they get turn and some bounce. Bhajji has not improved over the years. He is the same bowler as 2000-2001 Aus Series. Everybody knows his tactics and so play well. Get bhajji out of the team. STARBASHERS

Posted by santoshyd on (November 18, 2010, 20:31 GMT)

I read the following article couple of days back... Harbhajan happy with Hyderabad pitch:

And now he is saying exactly opposite stuff...

Posted by Stark62 on (November 18, 2010, 20:18 GMT)

Oh please, stop complaining about your incompetence as a spin bowler!

Learn how to be a spinner and then come talk. Personally, I would say even Ajmal is a better spinner even though you have played more matches then him.

Posted by Nampally on (November 18, 2010, 20:18 GMT)

If Harbhajan cannot bowl on these wickets, he must give way to other keen youngsters.Ashwin is waiting for his crack at the off spin. He has a carrom ball as added bonus to off spin and Doosra. Spin bowling which has variety will fetch wickets rather than the same monotonous stuff with no guile at all. Ojha should watch Mankad's tape and learn from it. Harbhajan needs to do a lot of learning too as he has become too mechanical. I also feel that he deserves some rest to have new outlook to bowling and get himself in better physical shape.Indian bowling needs a lot of tweaking if the team needs to be in a fight to be a world leading team.India needs bowlers who go there with the intent of getting wickets and who can adjust their bowling accordingly.Indian wickets were always dead one except for one or 2.Indian spin bowlers led the team in the past. Now India has batting but bowlers are no longer skillful or intelligent like Zaheer & Kumble.Losers blame the pitch for their failures.

Posted by Sunil_Canada on (November 18, 2010, 19:53 GMT)

What about batting on such pitches? There sould be different yardstick for performamce. How many runs you scored is not the only important thing, how you scored is more important. In the last match Dravid played 144 balls and scored 45 runs which included few 4s and 2s as such he wasted more than 100 balls without scoring. If you have seen him play in last match, you would have noticed, his objective is to play defensive shot rather than making runs. Mr. Captain, selectors & coach, if your objective is to have a draw, players like Dravid are useful but they will never let you win anymore (I have great respect for Dravid of the past but I think it's time for him to say good bye). Do we have courage to take Vijay & Pujara instead of Gambhir & Dravid. None of our bowlers are good so it does not matter who you take, I am happy with any 4 bowlers. BCCI, the richest cricket body, instead of politics, please do something to bring-up some good fast bowlers who can bowl >150km/hour.

Posted by Nampally on (November 18, 2010, 19:52 GMT)

The Kanpur wicket was always bowling friendly- as Harbhajan says. I recall, Jasu Patel taking all 10 wickets in one test match. Eden Garden wicket always assisted good opening bowlers during the first hour of each day. Chennai wickets were sporting ones. Only Brabourne stadium at Mumbai was batting wicket.Calcutta, Kanpur and Chennai were the 3 sure test match centres. Now BCCI rarely stage any tests there.So India has to blame itself for wrong selection of test venues.Having said that I also believe that the bowlers need to be more inventive by varying flight, spin and direction rather than mechanically bowling the same stuff. Mankad, Gupte & Bedi were great at this & they reaped rich rewards. Kumble & Chnadra relied on pace & bounce with more googlies & top spin than legspin.Martin sent back the cream of Indian batting with swing bowling in first test.Bhaiji must know than the past spinners also bowled on dead wkts. but were accurate, inventive and patient to be successful.

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 19:27 GMT)

He should first learn to actually turn the ball. If you give it a good rip you'll turn it on the flattest tracks.

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 18:57 GMT)

The sooner he admits that he has a problem with his bowling, the sooner something can be done about it. If all that he's going to do is point fingers, then I'm afraid he will be finding himself out of the XI pretty soon (it should have happened by now, IMHO). India has been struggling to find an attacking bowler ever since Anil retired.

Posted by SettingSun on (November 18, 2010, 18:53 GMT)

Funny, Graeme Swann never has trouble taking wickets on any pitches. Then again, he IS a a far better bowler than Harbhajan. As is Vettori, for that matter. Harbhajan is perhaps more on a level with Paul Harris and Suleiman Benn?

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 18:41 GMT)

A guy called Daniel Vettori has taken 11 wickets from just 3 innings vs Harbhajan who has 6 wickets from 4 innings....Oh may be Vettori was bowling on a different pitch? It has been a while since Harbhajan performed with the ball and the sooner he realizes and corrects it better for India...His batting should be viewed as just a "Bonus"

Posted by SidLovesIndia on (November 18, 2010, 18:32 GMT)

How ridiculous is this...after the end of the 2nd day when he himself picked up 4 wickets he was happy (proof: now he slams the SAME pitch and says you shouldn't judge performances based on wickets! Wah Bhajji wah!

Posted by arvindram on (November 18, 2010, 18:22 GMT)

Two factual errors in Harbajan's observations: 1. The wicket/pitch doesnt turn anything by itself, its the bowler who turns the ball and a ball when given a good tweak turns a lot on hard surfaces (like highways and cement roads). 2. If we play to our strengths then the curators are doing a good job! As per Dhoni our strength is batting. India's strength has not been spin bowling especially since Kumble's retirement.

Posted by Sameer-hbk on (November 18, 2010, 18:21 GMT)

yes, make turning tracks and by turning tracks harbhajan means dust bowls where he can put 6 fielders around the batsman and hope those bat pads come his way. Fair demand really from our bhajji really since he cant turn the ball, cannot bowl proper consistent line & length or actually get batsman out... hopeless bloke.

Posted by Sameer_Ponnada on (November 18, 2010, 18:20 GMT)

Well done Harbhajan!! Its really nice to see someone from the team criticizing the nature of pitches being made in India. Flat tracks dont provide good cricket. May be good T20 matches, but never test cricket. Good seaming surfaces not only makes the game exciting but also helps the next crop of fast bowlers gain some expertise. No wonder we dont get good fast bowlers.

Posted by explorer18 on (November 18, 2010, 18:17 GMT)

I'd rather Bhajji worry about 7 or 8 wickets than worry about scoring another century. If groundsmen are to blame for the grounds, selectors are to blame for poor selection. Could Harbhajan and Dravid be rested? We could use Pujara and Nehra.

Posted by anuajm on (November 18, 2010, 18:04 GMT)

Surprised to see these comments!! It's not this series that Bhajji has not performed with the bowl..Its like the whole year..instead of focussing on improving his bowling, bhajji is giving these weird statements just to hide his inadequzcies. Wonder why murali said Bhajii has the best chance of overtaking him. He has done well with his batting, but does not have the technical skills to become an all rounder. If he doesn't bowl, he should be out of the team. In SA only one spinner will be in the team, hope Bhajji's batting prowess is not given consideration and the best spinner is selected. Hope Mishra gets a chance in the last test and performs..Cheers!!

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 17:54 GMT)

The pitch was such an embarrassment. I'm calling for the banishment the curator from all things cricket.

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 17:42 GMT)

Harbhajan should concentrate on bowling more than the pitch. Look at the difference between faces of Harbhajan and Kumble while they take their delivery stride. Just that moment will tell you the difference between a great bowler and a bowler. We need a wicket taking bowler and not a bowler. Sreesanth should learn good bowling from Zaheer. I feel that Zaheer did not bowl much better than Sreesanth but he definitely bowled with consistency and intelligent planning which is the reason of his success and secured place in Indian side.Sreesanth should ask himself why after bowling so well in so many matches he has still not been able to become a good bowler for India. I mean he looks like taking wickets but fails to actually take them.

Posted by Tendulkars_Tennis_Elbow on (November 18, 2010, 17:32 GMT)

if only he could bowl as well as he gives soundbites....

Posted by Hiteshdevilliers on (November 18, 2010, 17:31 GMT)

I agree 100% with Harbhajan. Over the last decade, Indian pitches have become too flat to be spin friendly. Fifth day pitches are just as good as the first day now and that reflects on why so many batsmen are making third and fourth innings centuries and saving matches. In fact, McCullum made a double in the fourth innings of the last match. The BCCI and their equally greedy sponsors/advertisers are demanding these flat pitches to maximize ad revenue, it is damaging the sport, just like the IPL eventually will. The superficial Indian media rally behind their bowlers when their in the wickets, but chastise them for one bad innings. As an avid cricket lover the media reaction infuriates me as well because numbers don't tell the whole story and cricketers aren't exactly god, even though people treat them as such. Stop expecting five wicket hauls and centuries every innings, and learn of how the game actually works!!! Jeez.

Posted by keblerelf92 on (November 18, 2010, 17:28 GMT)

The wicket isn't doing anything but somehow Vettori manages to get a five-for? And NZ took 20 wickets in the last game... sounds like a bunch of excuses for a toothless bowling attack. They should get rid of Raina, move Dhoni up a spot and play 5 bowlers. If they're unwilling to do that they should at least give Ashwin a game

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 17:24 GMT)

Can someone call those nice people who used to dig up pitches in random protests back then, might get better cricket then.

Posted by poderdubdubdub on (November 18, 2010, 17:21 GMT)

So much for India being No.1, if they cant beat ranked No.8 on their own soil how do they deserve the top spot? People like Mark Waugh and Ian Chappel have been voicing their doubts about India being ranked No.1. Indians are the best batting side, no doubt, but no credible bowling attack. I think South Africa will definitely put India in its place later this year when the Indians travel to South Africa.

Posted by ArnavSingh on (November 18, 2010, 17:20 GMT)

Can't disagree with Harbhajan. We make the flattest pitches in the world. If people aren't satisfied, with the comments made by him and skipper MSD, check the results of Ranji Trophy, hardly any match has produced result. The story is same in all parts of the country. All pitches in India have literally become grave yards for bowlers and heaven for batsmen. In contrast check the results of Sheffield Shield of Australia, or Plunket Shield of New Zealand, and compare there results with ours, and you will see that, most of the matches in those competition have produced results. Another thing to consider is that on those domestic competitions only 6 teams take part, which means that the difference in talent quality is minimum, most matches are intense and closely fought, still they produce results, but in our country there are 27 teams, there are huge differences in talent quality of one side when compared to other. Can u compare Hyderabad with Mumbai, or Jharkhand with Delhi, no way.

Posted by kannancet86 on (November 18, 2010, 17:15 GMT)

But this time he is correct. He proved that Indian tracks are too flat by scoring two centuries himself

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 17:08 GMT)

One Thing is for Sure , If test matches are played on these kind of pitches , Soon We Will See Test Cricket die ! Being A cricket fan Its Very Disapointing to see , the board seems to be more intrested in producing pitches that last 5 days , but they are not intrseted to make the pitch produce a result ! Poor For the Game .. We Should Stop playing test Cricket in India !

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 17:06 GMT)

but what he said is a fact,a pitch where Bhajji scores a free flow 100 and Sree lasts 60 odd deliveries IS A HIGHWAY!

Posted by Gupta.Ankur on (November 18, 2010, 17:02 GMT)

Its shame really for India to see a batting side like NZ outscoring them in two tests continously....

I think India must make pitches for itself and not for opposition.

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 16:53 GMT)

@Sandy Did you see the match? There was no proper turn for spinners even on the final day, not to mention hardly any swing for the bowlers once the ball gets older. Bhajji is right. We must prepare result oriented pitches like the ones in Bangalore, Mohali, Kolkata etc.,

Posted by bhaloniaz on (November 18, 2010, 16:48 GMT)

India's strength is accumulating runs without making mistakes. So flat wickets is actually home team advantage. Pak, Srilanka, England, NZ, SA, Bang, have decent spinners to pull a surprise on turning wickets. Specially the spinners of some of those teams [Pak, SA, Eng] would be helped by a few wickets from the quicks. (See Sri vs WI). Apart from Harbhajan, none of the indian spinners looks dangerous and Harbhajan of late is not at his best. Eng, Sri, Pak can best india in the spin department. India's advantage is to have batsmen who play spin better.

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 16:48 GMT)

it is easy to blame the groundsmenm but Harbhajan has been a shadow of his former self (2001 Aus series at home) for quite some time now. How did the kiwis take so many wickets in the first test? Whee he will go abroad he will complain tht wickets are pace friendly, and at home wickets are batsman friendly. where does he want to bowl then? What is his performance in sri lanka or bangladesh where wickets are spin-friendly and their bowlers are taking plenty of spin wickets? How is graeme swann taking so many wickets wherever he goes? I dont understand why Harbhajan is not being kicked out of the test team.

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 16:44 GMT)

LOL.. Bhajji is funny....

Posted by   on (November 18, 2010, 16:36 GMT)

Yeah rite Bhajji. If you bowl flat, middle / leg stump line, and with men at boundary all the time, it does'nt matter how much the pitch turns. Bhajji's stats for the last few years, in his role as the leading spinner post Kumble days, are attrocious. Graeme Swann does'nt bowl in Kanpur / Eden Gardens, and does'nt have as strong a batting line up as India's to protect him, and still gets wickets by bucket loads. All of Bhajji's aggression is in his body language, words, and of late in batting. I can't remember the last time he flighted the ball, or bowled doosra, or bowled aggressive line / lengths to a batsmen ready to attack him. I agree the pitches are flat, but Bhajji is very highly reliant on helpful conditions to get wickets.

Posted by sandy_bangalore on (November 18, 2010, 16:23 GMT)

Can someone silence this 'unofficial spokesperson' of the Indian team for good? Before every series, there is big talk from him and now that he has failed with the ball,and has been failing for a few years now, takes the time to blame anyone but him. The most overrated bowler in Indian cricket.

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