India news November 24, 2013

'Mature' Vijay eager for overseas success

44

M Vijay has played each of India's last six Tests, which is more successive matches he has played in the national team in any format since his international debut more than five years ago. The prolonged dip in form of established Test openers, Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag, allowed him a look-in and a couple of big hundreds against Australia earlier this year have, at long last, earned him something of a sustained run in the longest format.

"I'm more mature now," Vijay said in Meerut, when asked to explain his Test success in 2013. "I know my game better. It's about being consistent in all forms of the game. "

Firmly established as a batting star in the IPL, where his strokeplay can be both brutal and easy on the eye, Vijay showed he could shelve the flashy strokes in the Tests against Australia.

"It is very tough mentally to tune to formats, playing Test cricket to suddenly teeing off from the first ball. But, as a professional, that is my challenge," he said. "Hopefully I can transform my game accordingly whenever required."

He will have to make changes to succeed over the next year or so, as India are set to tour South Africa, New Zealand, England and Australia - four countries where conditions differ drastically from the subcontinental tracks Vijay is most comfortable batting.

"I have a long way to go but I've learnt a lot of things," he said. "I want to do well abroad, I'm working hard on my game and hopefully I'm on the right track."

Things haven't quite gone to plan since the Australia Test series for Vijay, as he struggled to establish himself in the one-day squad and couldn't make much of an impact on the tour of South Africa with a strong A team. Vijay was in the squad for the Champions Trophy in England, but couldn't get a game. He played three ODIs in the tri-series against Sri Lanka and West Indies, featuring in a one-day game after nearly two years. On India A's tour to South Africa, Vijay scored 48 runs at an average of 16 in the two unofficial Tests. With India not playing Tests for eight months after the Australia series, Vijay said he did feel the pressure going into the recent West Indies series.

"Personally yes, because I knew I was going to play the next series (against West Indies), I had that much confidence," he said. "From my expectation, I let myself down, I tweaked a lot of things (mentally) and it didn't come out properly, I didn't get to play the longer version in between. It's good that I'm getting back to playing a few."

Vijay played just one first-class match in the lead-up to the West Indies series, but should get three rounds of Ranji games before heading to South Africa next month. The fact that he will open the innings with Shikhar Dhawan, a man in red-hot form across formats this year, will also help Vijay.

"He's on a high - high on confidence and batting at his best. We're good friends both on and off the field. It's great to bat with him," Vijay said. "Whenever we're out there, it's like two friends batting together. Pressure situations get lighter hopefully we can continue to do this. You sense it inside, when he is striking the ball well, you can't go with a pre-planned notion. If you think your partner is batting well, you can take time and not take risks. If he's struggling, I try to get going and push singles so that I can help him out."

Siddarth Ravindran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • sailorsupreme on December 1, 2013, 10:56 GMT

    @Joe-car or is it Joker jokes apart Dhawan has made a stupendous start to his test career in India and he has the shots the cut and the pull. He is a freak, not unlike Sehwag. He will have to make the necessary adjustments but then not so long ago he smashed 248 in an ODI in SA. Rohit is sheer class and Kohli's batting has come a long way. Pujara is in the Alastair Cook mould and will flourish, you will see. SA bowlers are are over rated. The recent mediocre performance by the English against one Aus bowler is a clear indicator that England does not have world class batsmen. The Indians have a point to prove and the answers will be there at the end of this month when they thrash the daylights out of the likes of Steyn and Philander, first in the ODI and then in the tests. The last time around Sachin , playing from memory was able to knock up a century against the very same tyros. SA is in for a hiding and after that its is the turn of Aus and England. NZ is no match, really.

  • on November 29, 2013, 5:52 GMT

    No doubt alli the new batsman have done well in international games at home. We have to be patient to see them do well in SA,Australia,England , New Zealand and WI

    Organize more Ranji games on wickets like Lahl Put more money in U19/ Ranji/ Duleep and stop IPL

  • RaghavCric on November 28, 2013, 21:05 GMT

    If Vijay had been from Delhi or Mumbai, this wouldn't even be an issue after he scored not one but two centuries against Australia this year.

  • on November 28, 2013, 10:59 GMT

    murali vijay has a chance to be in the permanent chance if he performs well in south African tour . Lets give it a try if he fail then there has to be a serious question in who has to be in opening slot. I hope our Indian team wont fail against south African pace led by dale steyn

  • on November 28, 2013, 6:33 GMT

    easiest way to get in to Indian team ? a) play for csk b) be from tamil nadu srinivasan will ensure u play for India... Dhoni will not say no coz srini backed him during 0-8 loss... everyone knows that vijay doesn't have the game nor the attitude to succeed in saf.. remember wasim jaffer ? He was scoring double hundreds in Indian conditions and how Brett Lee troubled him ? vijay's situation will be similar with steyn n morkel

  • CricketMaan on November 26, 2013, 9:35 GMT

    People, note Rahane does not even open for Mumbai, his mumbai captains have mentioned int he past he is cut for middle order. And Rayudu does not open for his state teams. Not everyone is a Viru to just walk into No.1 slot and end up scoring 8000+ runs. Vijay has been selected, give him a go. He knows that if he fails in these 2 outings, he may be out for a long time. But who else can be trusted for opeinng apart from GG. I think message to GG is that if he keeps scoring he is a sure shot for many overseas tests to come. If GG fails in SA he will be warming bench for a long time, rather let him score heavily and most likely will replace one of Vijay, Dhawan in NZ or England. And for Vijay, he was found out more often fishing outside offstump very early in his innings, he has been compact with the incoming deliveries, but the one that leaves him is his nemesis. Steyn, Phil can bowl that sort of length and line with eyes closed. So watch out Vijay.

  • Naresh28 on November 26, 2013, 9:12 GMT

    Rayudu is a player who displays patience. This is a one requirement needed for a Test opener. He has to work on the other attributes. The selectors obviously would want him to have a good run.This i feel will be a make or break series for him.

  • on November 25, 2013, 21:56 GMT

    His avarage in ten innings outside India is about 18. India has not selected horses for the courses by selecting Vijay.

  • binu.emiliya on November 25, 2013, 14:57 GMT

    Vijay was man of the series and top scorer when CLT20 first season in SA

  • TRAM on November 25, 2013, 13:20 GMT

    Funny some people commenting here dont even have the idea that opener slot is a specialist slot. With pitch behavior unknown, ball new and swinging, bowlers and fielders most energetic and pumped up, it is the harshest conditions for the batsmen. Especially in test matches where there are no restrictions on fielding or overs, if one can open and score big that means he has passed ALL tests for batting. Both Dhawan and MVijay have passed that several times in India. They only need to prove in foreign pitches.

    Of the young lot today, Mukund did better than most other batsmen in foreign conditions and he scored 11,25,1,48,62,0,49,12,0,3 ALL IN FOREIGN PITCHES OPENER SLOT. How is this a bad performance for a youngster in opener slot? He was never given chance in local India matches. He showed he can stay at the crease for long which Gambhir failed(in foreign pitches). Mukund is such a good backfoot player very much needed in SA pitches.

  • sailorsupreme on December 1, 2013, 10:56 GMT

    @Joe-car or is it Joker jokes apart Dhawan has made a stupendous start to his test career in India and he has the shots the cut and the pull. He is a freak, not unlike Sehwag. He will have to make the necessary adjustments but then not so long ago he smashed 248 in an ODI in SA. Rohit is sheer class and Kohli's batting has come a long way. Pujara is in the Alastair Cook mould and will flourish, you will see. SA bowlers are are over rated. The recent mediocre performance by the English against one Aus bowler is a clear indicator that England does not have world class batsmen. The Indians have a point to prove and the answers will be there at the end of this month when they thrash the daylights out of the likes of Steyn and Philander, first in the ODI and then in the tests. The last time around Sachin , playing from memory was able to knock up a century against the very same tyros. SA is in for a hiding and after that its is the turn of Aus and England. NZ is no match, really.

  • on November 29, 2013, 5:52 GMT

    No doubt alli the new batsman have done well in international games at home. We have to be patient to see them do well in SA,Australia,England , New Zealand and WI

    Organize more Ranji games on wickets like Lahl Put more money in U19/ Ranji/ Duleep and stop IPL

  • RaghavCric on November 28, 2013, 21:05 GMT

    If Vijay had been from Delhi or Mumbai, this wouldn't even be an issue after he scored not one but two centuries against Australia this year.

  • on November 28, 2013, 10:59 GMT

    murali vijay has a chance to be in the permanent chance if he performs well in south African tour . Lets give it a try if he fail then there has to be a serious question in who has to be in opening slot. I hope our Indian team wont fail against south African pace led by dale steyn

  • on November 28, 2013, 6:33 GMT

    easiest way to get in to Indian team ? a) play for csk b) be from tamil nadu srinivasan will ensure u play for India... Dhoni will not say no coz srini backed him during 0-8 loss... everyone knows that vijay doesn't have the game nor the attitude to succeed in saf.. remember wasim jaffer ? He was scoring double hundreds in Indian conditions and how Brett Lee troubled him ? vijay's situation will be similar with steyn n morkel

  • CricketMaan on November 26, 2013, 9:35 GMT

    People, note Rahane does not even open for Mumbai, his mumbai captains have mentioned int he past he is cut for middle order. And Rayudu does not open for his state teams. Not everyone is a Viru to just walk into No.1 slot and end up scoring 8000+ runs. Vijay has been selected, give him a go. He knows that if he fails in these 2 outings, he may be out for a long time. But who else can be trusted for opeinng apart from GG. I think message to GG is that if he keeps scoring he is a sure shot for many overseas tests to come. If GG fails in SA he will be warming bench for a long time, rather let him score heavily and most likely will replace one of Vijay, Dhawan in NZ or England. And for Vijay, he was found out more often fishing outside offstump very early in his innings, he has been compact with the incoming deliveries, but the one that leaves him is his nemesis. Steyn, Phil can bowl that sort of length and line with eyes closed. So watch out Vijay.

  • Naresh28 on November 26, 2013, 9:12 GMT

    Rayudu is a player who displays patience. This is a one requirement needed for a Test opener. He has to work on the other attributes. The selectors obviously would want him to have a good run.This i feel will be a make or break series for him.

  • on November 25, 2013, 21:56 GMT

    His avarage in ten innings outside India is about 18. India has not selected horses for the courses by selecting Vijay.

  • binu.emiliya on November 25, 2013, 14:57 GMT

    Vijay was man of the series and top scorer when CLT20 first season in SA

  • TRAM on November 25, 2013, 13:20 GMT

    Funny some people commenting here dont even have the idea that opener slot is a specialist slot. With pitch behavior unknown, ball new and swinging, bowlers and fielders most energetic and pumped up, it is the harshest conditions for the batsmen. Especially in test matches where there are no restrictions on fielding or overs, if one can open and score big that means he has passed ALL tests for batting. Both Dhawan and MVijay have passed that several times in India. They only need to prove in foreign pitches.

    Of the young lot today, Mukund did better than most other batsmen in foreign conditions and he scored 11,25,1,48,62,0,49,12,0,3 ALL IN FOREIGN PITCHES OPENER SLOT. How is this a bad performance for a youngster in opener slot? He was never given chance in local India matches. He showed he can stay at the crease for long which Gambhir failed(in foreign pitches). Mukund is such a good backfoot player very much needed in SA pitches.

  • on November 25, 2013, 12:27 GMT

    sad to see that so many people want rahane to warm the bench for as long ad vijay retires! rohit was persuaded with because he had the talent but guys like vijay raina and yuvraj have technical flaws against fast bowling and cannot be persisted with! rahane is a real class act but keeps getting a raw deal! sad for the bloke :(

  • Amit_4_Sachin on November 25, 2013, 7:55 GMT

    I don't know why there's so much regional bias in India, which the comments here are reflecting. Vijay has done well in the last two Test series & is certainly going to play in SA. Moreover, I'm not sure we have a replacement, GG struggled in county cricket & as I have read in Ranji blogs, can still not avoid poking at deliveries outside the off stump.

    Most of Indian batsmen are young & have unproven or dismal record overseas so it's unfair to single Vijay out. The only debate should be whom to play at No.6 (or 7, if MS bats at 6), Jadeja or Rahane.

    I hope all the Indian batsmen succeed & we give SA a run for their money.

  • gdkrishna on November 25, 2013, 7:30 GMT

    yet another self boasting comment from yet another cricketer (remind of what happened after Ishant sharma remarks of "spearhead of bowling attack"). Murli vijay's consistently inconsistent show wont be lasting longer to ensure his place at the top; instead Gautam Gambhir has lot more to offer still..

  • Srini_Indian on November 25, 2013, 4:58 GMT

    @gsingh7: Your comment is embarrassing as most of your others too. You say Vijay is an Indian pitch specialist but you support Gambhir for his form achieved against Haryana in another Indian track. If selectors opt for Gambhir, he'll be all at sea against Steyn and co. Trust me, he is still very vulnerable outside off stump and haven't got rid of ugly nasty poke. Is Rahane an opener? I hope every player in our team performs well and pass the test with flying colours unlike some here(including you) who hopes for Vijay to fail.

  • on November 25, 2013, 4:20 GMT

    All the critics here must understand one thing.. It is not about copybook technique.. Look at Sehwag.. And why should Rahane open?? Tahane has been playing one drop for Bombay since he started first class cricket.. If he is threatening anybody's place in the Indian team it is Che Pujara.. That is out of the question now.. Rohit and Kohli seem to be set along with Pujara to be the batting mainstays of this team.. If you drop Vijay and play Rahane, did you guys even think what might happen to Rahane's career?? He was already at sea when he faced the Aussies at three drop.. So think before you talk.. Rohit was given a long enough rope.. Vijay should be too.. He has played all of six matches in a row.. So kindly back off with your armchair criticisms and watch the guy play for a while before you start spewing hate..

  • kiwicricketnut on November 25, 2013, 3:42 GMT

    @ Thomas Cherian, nothing wrong with asking the saffa's for a favour is there?, im a realist, we have very little chance of beating india, i know that the whole cricket world knows that, if india do well in south africa then they will come here with all the confidence in the world and we'll get hammered, the only chance of us sneaking past india is if they get demoralised in south africa and come to our shores with their tails between their legs, a team low on confidence is alot easier to beat no matter how unlikely that might be.

  • on November 25, 2013, 0:40 GMT

    kiwicricketnut you sound very pathetic asking SA to do things which you cannot. BTW you just got whopped in Bangladesh you think you can one up India...you must sbe kidding

  • on November 25, 2013, 0:36 GMT

    Vijay has played on domestic pitches let us wait till SA before we draw judgement. I doubt he has it in him to succeed abroad.

  • vik56in on November 24, 2013, 23:48 GMT

    Vijay is a good front foot player and is showing excellent temperament for Tests.He is biding his time and leaving out balls outside the off stump which is an excellent thing to do in tests.But he has a lot of work to do on his backfoot play.Practicing the pull shot in the nets and practicing in the MRF wickets which have good bounce similar to the ones in S.A will be a good option to him

  • A.Ak on November 24, 2013, 23:04 GMT

    None of the Indian test XI has proved their strength in overseas conditions. Why people criticise only Vijay?. Is it because of the region? Badrinath has given only 3 inngs, Mukunth given chance only in Eng and WI. RSharma given over 110 ODIs to get form? why this partiality?. Come one people grow up.

  • Nppinte on November 24, 2013, 20:31 GMT

    Vijay deserves to be in the first 11. The Australian attack he scored against was nothing to sneer at. Those same Aussie bowlers have just demolished England. Vijay was solid in defence and never once looked flustered against that attack that kept clocking 145+kph- not easy to face under any conditions. Rohit is extremely talented, but the runs he scored were against a depleted WI attack. Virat is also an extremely talented ODI player but hasn't really translated that to test success yet. Do keep these in mind before slagging him off.

    Vijay is one of the very few batsmen in world cricket who knows exactly where his off stump is, is not afraid to leave the ball, has a barn-door of a defence and most importantly can bat for time. There are very few among the current Indian batsmen who can bat for more than a day and grind the opposition as VVS Laxman's has mentioned. He will succeed abroad for these very reasons. Just give him a chance to prove the nay-sayers wrong.

  • vatsap on November 24, 2013, 17:42 GMT

    I seriously hope Vijay is reading some of these comments, it should spur himself up to do well in SA. Vijay is no different from the Dhawan/Rohit/Kohli none of them have so far proven in foreign tracks. So let us give this man a chance or a few chances to prove his mettle.

  • Sunil_Roger on November 24, 2013, 17:33 GMT

    @gsingh7 @Ashik Sali could you guys be more specific? What has he done to not deserve a place in the 11? He has succeeded in the Aus series and the WI series was just a joke, so noone really cares about that. Rohit has failed for umpteen times before this year but was still persisted with because of his strong technique. If you are any good observer, you would notice that Vijay has as strong a technique as anyone and a beautiful timer of the ball. Its just his temperament which needs a check but otherwise a very good player he is. Don't just blindly oppose him because he is from a region you don't like.

    Rohit, Kohli, Pujara, Vijay and Dhawan are our future in batting. This is not a game of cards to shuffle and reshuffle. So this overseas season will certainly help in establishing themselves as the future.

    @chetanphanse dude your comment doesn't deserve a place in cricinfo.

  • tanstell87 on November 24, 2013, 17:13 GMT

    @Ramesh Rangachari - dont talk about regional things....Ajinkya Rahane has played only 1 test match & has been on sidelines since...Rahane was sidelined from test team to make way for Vijay & from ODI team to make way for Rohit...in ODI played at Vizag toady...India were playing with 5 CSK players from IPL - Dhoni,Raina,Jadeja,Ashwin & Mohit...i just want you to know that people from every region want to see their players to play in the national team just like Mumbaikars wish for Rahane & Zaheer, Bengal wish to see Manoj Tiwary, Karnataka wish to see Uthappa, Gujarat wants to see Pujara & Pathan brothers....Kashmiris want to see Parvez Rasool....Hyderabad want Rayudu to be part of the team, Madhya Pradesh want to see Ishwar Pandey to play, Himachal want Rishi Dhawan & Tamil Nadu want Karthik & Badrinath....but at the end of the day its not possible as only 11 men can take part in a game...but yes with Raina,Ashwin & Jadeja there are 3 vacant spots in Indian team.

  • mysecretme on November 24, 2013, 16:37 GMT

    Frankly there is a lot of doubt on whether Vijay will succeed. More accomplished batsmen than him have failed. Indian batting is really suspect against bounce and swing. Now there's no tendulkar and Dravid. We know for a fact that Dhoni is useless there. Kohli is good for one innings. Hopes are all on pujara, Rohit and dhawan. Vijay would be lucky to get selected. India will do well drawing or sneaking one match if they attack. SA has not done too well when they have been attacked at home. Especially against India. They are mentally a bit fragile- steyn and tahir in particular. . But hopes are slim because one needs the game to do that.

  • on November 24, 2013, 12:55 GMT

    if Rohit was given a long rope to prove, why not Vijay? Talent sould not be regional..it should be appreciated across regions.Gambir was good...not any more!if Yuvy has to be given chances so do Vijay! What has ajinkya Rahane done..just being a Mumbaikar gets him a slot?

  • on November 24, 2013, 11:11 GMT

    Vijay has lots of flaws in his technique to survive in SA conditions. All these runs have come in Indian conditions, nothing special to boast about. Sure he knows his game well enough that he would not succeed in SA.

  • SamRoy on November 24, 2013, 10:08 GMT

    Gambhir should bat at 5 or 6. A left hander will in the middle order will help. Also Gambhir has experience of 50+ tests. Play Vijay, Dhawan, Pujara, Kohli, Gambhir, Rohit, Dhoni, Ashwin, Bhuvi, Umesh, Shami in the first test vs SA at Wanderers. Wanderers is the fastest pitch in SA and Durban (second test venue) is the bounciest, so be careful but confident.

  • chetanphanse on November 24, 2013, 10:00 GMT

    Completely agree with @gsingh7. Vijay doesn't deserve a chance to play in SA.

  • on November 24, 2013, 9:26 GMT

    With Gambhir amongst the runs, a good start in South Africa will be critical to Vijay's immediate success in the longer format. He should relish the smaller grounds in New Zealand if he can get past the first hurdle.

  • SamRoy on November 24, 2013, 8:57 GMT

    I seriously hope Vijay is working on his back-foot stroke-play. It always looked non-existent. At least learn to play the cut shot well. If you survive 70 deliveries and score just 15 runs it is not going help India. His front-foot strokeplay on both off-side and leg-side is very good.

  • on November 24, 2013, 8:48 GMT

    India will come out trumps if the bowlers can do their Lil bit

  • kiwicricketnut on November 24, 2013, 8:26 GMT

    I know the south africans will want to prove a point and stamp their authority on the number 1 ranking when india tour there and i honestly think india will be slaughtered. My biggest wish is that south africa demolish them and shatter their confidence so much that they come to nz as nervous wrecks and we pull off some sort of heist against one of the super powers. Our pitches are a bit flatter than south africa's though and i believe we should juice our pitches up a bit as well just to put that doubt in their minds. So come on south africa can you do your mates from nz a favour and pummel india into the ground like you did to us, i honestly believe your success will go a long way to us being successfull.

  • CricketFever11 on November 24, 2013, 7:54 GMT

    day dreams will be demolished by steyn and co..............

  • Joe-car on November 24, 2013, 7:38 GMT

    @sailorsupreme__Surely you jest, right? Do you honestly think that Dhawan won't be found out in tests in SA? And you can't honestly think Kholi and Rohit are the best batsmen of their generation in tests. What have they actually done to suggest that they are?

  • vaidy on November 24, 2013, 7:35 GMT

    I am sick and tired of reading ad nauseum that the young Indian batsmen got it all easy at home. Hello? Have you been sleeping when England beat India 2-1? To say that Indian batsmen are flat track bullies is to deride and denigrate the bowling prowess of the opponents. No body is gifting away runs and centuries. Presumably, the great overseas batsmen, who are not flat track bullies, ergo, great batting talent, should also have found it easy to play on these flat pitches and score centuries? No?

  • sailorsupreme on November 24, 2013, 7:10 GMT

    @rahul Vijay is a genuine talent who needs to tighten up a little mentally, that is all. Gambhir will be found out again in South Africa. Gambhir is a great ODI and T-20 player but at test level the international pacers have got his number and you don't want him opening in South Africa. Like Raina and Yuvi Gambhir has to shelve his test plans because the next generation players have stepped up to the plate. Between Dhawan, Kohli, Pujara, Rohit and Vijay they seem to have laid claims to the top 5 positions in the batting order across all formats. It is indeed surprising that Pujara is being left out of the ODI set up. That will change soon, I guess. Shikahr will have to make adjustments to negotiate the extra bounce in South Africa but since he has the cut and pull he will come through. Cricket lovers are waiting for Rohit and Kohli to come good in South Africa. Success abroad will establish them as the two best batsmen of the current era. Vijay is good for a few surprises.

  • Llik2 on November 24, 2013, 7:01 GMT

    Flat tracks,weak bowling,paceless pitches is all a batsmen need to be succeeded.go to sa you will understand the meaning.

  • gsingh7 on November 24, 2013, 6:43 GMT

    vijay is an overrated indian pitch specialist. he fails miserably on away games. i wud be surprised and happy if vijay cud average even 30 in sa tour. if he averages below 20 and india losses all games then surely he will be axed . gambhir is back in form and rahane too is playing good. or give chance to youngsters like juneja or top scorer of last ranji- jiwenjot singh.

  • caught_knott_bowled_old on November 24, 2013, 5:23 GMT

    The reason I want M. Vijay to succeed is very simple. He's a very elegant batsman who's shots look beautiful. Wonderful to watch. People who deride him probably don't realize the talent he possesses. He's a lot like Rohit Sharma in that regard. Vijay's main problem is his all mixed up in his head and struggles when he has to switch formats. He needs 1) a continued run 2) to be picked only for Test Cricket (like Cheteshwar Pujara) and 3) a mental coach who can work on his mindset and get him in "the zone". Technically, he's good enough to play anywhere in the world.

  • Rahul_78 on November 24, 2013, 5:08 GMT

    Vijay is a good batsmen, no offense but there are lot of good batsmen in India. He somehow doesnt give you an impression that he will make the transition from being a good young player into an exceptional one like Kohli, Rohit and Dhawan. He has hardly played test cricket outside India. The captain and selectors have invested in him and has shown a lot of faith in him. But his toughest test is yet to come against Steyn, Philander and Morkel on fast and bouncy South African pitches. It would be better if selectors choose Gambhir as a second opener in case Vijay or Shikhar struggle in SAF which is very likely. There are few alternatives for experience. In meantime Gauti will do well to keep churning runs at domestic level. It would be treat to watch him opening the innings with Dhawan.

  • Srini_Indian on November 24, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    I hope he returns with good figures and shuts his naysayers who are plenty. The current SA tour is as big a test for Vijay as other players like Dhawan, Pujara, Kohli and Rohit. But somehow he'll be watched more closely and I'm sure will be more crucified than others if he fail.

  • on November 24, 2013, 4:47 GMT

    A lot of young Indians have had a good start to their test career - with big scores at home. But I think a lot of them will be put in their place by the South African and New Zealand seamers in home conditions. Good batsmen are able to score consistent runs both home and away, these young batsmen are yet to prove that.

  • ODI_BestFormOfCricket on November 24, 2013, 4:46 GMT

    because of that one particular test series against oz, his stroke making ability has been dimished as we saw in ipl 2013 and clt20.

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  • ODI_BestFormOfCricket on November 24, 2013, 4:46 GMT

    because of that one particular test series against oz, his stroke making ability has been dimished as we saw in ipl 2013 and clt20.

  • on November 24, 2013, 4:47 GMT

    A lot of young Indians have had a good start to their test career - with big scores at home. But I think a lot of them will be put in their place by the South African and New Zealand seamers in home conditions. Good batsmen are able to score consistent runs both home and away, these young batsmen are yet to prove that.

  • Srini_Indian on November 24, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    I hope he returns with good figures and shuts his naysayers who are plenty. The current SA tour is as big a test for Vijay as other players like Dhawan, Pujara, Kohli and Rohit. But somehow he'll be watched more closely and I'm sure will be more crucified than others if he fail.

  • Rahul_78 on November 24, 2013, 5:08 GMT

    Vijay is a good batsmen, no offense but there are lot of good batsmen in India. He somehow doesnt give you an impression that he will make the transition from being a good young player into an exceptional one like Kohli, Rohit and Dhawan. He has hardly played test cricket outside India. The captain and selectors have invested in him and has shown a lot of faith in him. But his toughest test is yet to come against Steyn, Philander and Morkel on fast and bouncy South African pitches. It would be better if selectors choose Gambhir as a second opener in case Vijay or Shikhar struggle in SAF which is very likely. There are few alternatives for experience. In meantime Gauti will do well to keep churning runs at domestic level. It would be treat to watch him opening the innings with Dhawan.

  • caught_knott_bowled_old on November 24, 2013, 5:23 GMT

    The reason I want M. Vijay to succeed is very simple. He's a very elegant batsman who's shots look beautiful. Wonderful to watch. People who deride him probably don't realize the talent he possesses. He's a lot like Rohit Sharma in that regard. Vijay's main problem is his all mixed up in his head and struggles when he has to switch formats. He needs 1) a continued run 2) to be picked only for Test Cricket (like Cheteshwar Pujara) and 3) a mental coach who can work on his mindset and get him in "the zone". Technically, he's good enough to play anywhere in the world.

  • gsingh7 on November 24, 2013, 6:43 GMT

    vijay is an overrated indian pitch specialist. he fails miserably on away games. i wud be surprised and happy if vijay cud average even 30 in sa tour. if he averages below 20 and india losses all games then surely he will be axed . gambhir is back in form and rahane too is playing good. or give chance to youngsters like juneja or top scorer of last ranji- jiwenjot singh.

  • Llik2 on November 24, 2013, 7:01 GMT

    Flat tracks,weak bowling,paceless pitches is all a batsmen need to be succeeded.go to sa you will understand the meaning.

  • sailorsupreme on November 24, 2013, 7:10 GMT

    @rahul Vijay is a genuine talent who needs to tighten up a little mentally, that is all. Gambhir will be found out again in South Africa. Gambhir is a great ODI and T-20 player but at test level the international pacers have got his number and you don't want him opening in South Africa. Like Raina and Yuvi Gambhir has to shelve his test plans because the next generation players have stepped up to the plate. Between Dhawan, Kohli, Pujara, Rohit and Vijay they seem to have laid claims to the top 5 positions in the batting order across all formats. It is indeed surprising that Pujara is being left out of the ODI set up. That will change soon, I guess. Shikahr will have to make adjustments to negotiate the extra bounce in South Africa but since he has the cut and pull he will come through. Cricket lovers are waiting for Rohit and Kohli to come good in South Africa. Success abroad will establish them as the two best batsmen of the current era. Vijay is good for a few surprises.

  • vaidy on November 24, 2013, 7:35 GMT

    I am sick and tired of reading ad nauseum that the young Indian batsmen got it all easy at home. Hello? Have you been sleeping when England beat India 2-1? To say that Indian batsmen are flat track bullies is to deride and denigrate the bowling prowess of the opponents. No body is gifting away runs and centuries. Presumably, the great overseas batsmen, who are not flat track bullies, ergo, great batting talent, should also have found it easy to play on these flat pitches and score centuries? No?

  • Joe-car on November 24, 2013, 7:38 GMT

    @sailorsupreme__Surely you jest, right? Do you honestly think that Dhawan won't be found out in tests in SA? And you can't honestly think Kholi and Rohit are the best batsmen of their generation in tests. What have they actually done to suggest that they are?