India v New Zealand, 3rd Test, Nagpur, 2nd day November 21, 2010

Botched celebrations and Martin's feat

ESPNcricinfo staff
Plays of the Day from the second day of the third Test between India and New Zealand in Nagpur

Celebration blooper of the day
Wicket-celebrations of bowlers are fun to watch. Some leap for joy, some keep running to nowhere, some even abuse, some pump their fist, and some just walk on expressionless. When Ishant Sharma removed his IPL captain Brendon McCullum this morning, he decided to jump for joy. Understandable, as he had seen an edge carry to the third man boundary just the previous delivery. The jump was alright but the landing wasn't. He stuttered, swayed, stumbled and somehow managed to avoid falling flat on his backside. Soon, he sported a sheepish smile when surrounded by his giggling team-mates.

Curtailed celebration part deux of the day
It wasn't quite a blooper. Daniel Vettori had just held a return catch after beating Virender Sehwag in flight. The context demanded a big celebration: Sehwag had smacked Vettori for a six, carved him inside-out for a four and was going after him in some style when he fell. Vettori took the catch, took a step forward and collapsed, clutching his thigh. He had perhaps strained it. Concerned team-mates rushed towards him and joy had briefly evaporated from the little big moment.

Field placing of the day (or not)
In the recent few games, MS Dhoni has shown a tendency as a captain to chase the ball. Four through covers? Place a guy there. Flicked through midwicket, plug that. And so, today when Tim Southee swatted Harbhajan Singh for three big hits, he kept pushing midwicket deeper. Finally, when the man was on the midwicket boundary, Southee swung one over his head. Surprisingly, Dhoni didn't place anyone in the stands.

The straight drive of the day
Late in the evening, when Sachin Tendulkar drove Andy McKay to the straight boundary, it felt almost perfect. But there was one better than that. Tendulkar, himself, had the best seat in the house to watch the most delicious straight drive of the day. Rahul Dravid had glided forward and caressed Tim Southee past Tendulkar. It had the whole jazz: The flowing arc made by the bat, the front elbow, the head position ... the works.

The stat of the day
They should sing a calypso for Chris Martin. No one could out him at all. The king of ducks walked back to the dressing room after remaining unbeaten for the 44th time in 84 innings. Phantom, the ghost who bats, proudly walked off the field. Time, then, to head to Youtube for that video again.