November 5, 2010

A second wind for Dravid?

Watching his innings of two halves in Ahmedabad prompted the question: is Dravid too aware of his own mortality?
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By playing with a bat Michael Hussey called "three metres wide", and doing so in his 38th year, Sachin Tendulkar doesn't only continue to give people a hard time, he gives hope to many others that if you stay around long enough, a second wind is possible. Of course it assumes that you will be picked in that period - some teams cull ruthlessly while others enforce temporary bans - and be fit enough to scour the horizon for that second coming.

I thought of that as I watched Rahul Dravid struggle his way through his first hundred balls in Ahmedabad. My mind, so full of admiration for a great cricketer, was willing him on, but younger, more irreverent, observers on my Twitter feed were calling for his head. Apart from a little purple patch in 2009, Dravid has been averaging in the thirties over three years (interestingly these numbers are very similar to those Tendulkar generated during his lean phase in the middle of this decade) and didn't always look like the great player he is.

Surely on a cruelly flat deck and against an attack that wasn't likely to scare a top team, he could have batted like the player we knew, or indeed like the player we saw after the shackles he had imposed on himself were broken and a century appeared. Or was it that Dravid was building bunkers around him, creating defences against every possible dismissal? Was he getting so caught up with survival that not getting out would seem a success?

A couple of days earlier I heard Sourav Ganguly say, on a news channel, that as a player moves past the mid-thirties he loses his confidence far more than he does his ability. And I wondered if that was the case with Dravid, surrounded as he is by young batsmen, who admire him but challenge him nonetheless. Was he so increasingly aware of his mortality, I wondered, that he was guarding himself against every possibility?

Sometimes players, like managers, can analyse in such detail that they end up thinking of weaknesses that may or may not exist. Batsmen can start preparing for every possible way in which they can get out. As patients get older, they worry about infections cropping up from just about anywhere, where in younger days they might have drunk water out of a tap at a railway station, or jumped out of a tree oblivious to injury. Batsmen can therefore start focusing too much on not getting out rather than on scoring runs.

Indeed, watching cricket in that phase you couldn't help thinking that one player, Virender Sehwag, was looking for an opportunity to score, while another, Dravid, was searching for safety. One seemed to enjoy being out in the middle, like a kid might on a rollercoaster, while the other was gritting his teeth like he was preparing for an assignment on the implications of Bernoulli's Principle. (And given that the passage of a ball through air tends to be governed by the work of the aforementioned gentleman, he probably wasn't too far away anyway!)

Having said that, Dravid could well counter the point saying that he has addressed every match the same way in the last 14 years, and has an extraordinary body of work to support his thesis; that on another day Sehwag might look flippant and the gravitas that Dravid exudes might be more reassuring; that being a man of erudition, a deep thinker and an analyst, has always worked for him.

As it turned out, a century duly arrived, one that took him past Bradman's 29 - once considered as unattainable as a four-minute mile was - at a strike rate better than that achieved over his career. The second half of his innings, in terms of balls faced, produced 80% of his runs. The certainty that Dravid exuded through a glittering career was back, the feet had started to glide, and the bat was searching for runs where it had been intent on guarding the wicket.

Did the confidence that Ganguly was talking about return? Did a voice tell him that putting money in a locker was not much good in a bull market? And will this century, and the accompanying confidence, lead to the second wind, the kind Tendulkar has shown?

I do not know. But what I do know is that beyond a point, the more you analyse, the more you budget for failure. Now that may be good for Obama's security entourage but not necessarily so for quality cricketers.

Harsha Bhogle is a commentator, television presenter and writer. His Twitter feed is here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY Chinnabhandar on | November 8, 2010, 19:48 GMT

    Agreed Dravid is struggling a bit now. But if you look at his dismissals, you can see that most of them have been caught behind while playing away from the body. If he corrects this mistake he will definitely start scoring a lot more runs. He definitely can bounce back although slow and steady.

    I just don't want to miss him at Lord's when India tours England next year. I wish him all the best and hope he will bounce back and score a century at Lord's.

    All the best Dravid!!!

  • POSTED BY Jammy1632 on | November 8, 2010, 15:18 GMT

    Do you think any other cricketer can do that?

  • POSTED BY Meety on | November 8, 2010, 11:04 GMT

    Dravid did what SRT has learned to do so well, that is find a way to stay in even when your not playing well, then cash in when the form returns. This is what makes SRT a true legend. Dravid may find it harder & harder now to get past the first 30 runs, to stay relevant he then needs to convert the 30s into 100s, I think a few chats with SRT might do the trick.

  • POSTED BY Pradeeps_Speed on | November 8, 2010, 9:33 GMT

    Looks like we have comments here of people who have played less or no cricket and watched more of it. Most of them are obessed with T-20 that they don't understand the game of Test cricket. @Mahesh Thiagarajan - Yuvraj and Rohit in test team in place of Dravid? Buddy, let Yuvraj first get back into shape and the ODI team. Rohit? I am not sure he plays better for any team except Deccan Chargers. SA tour is not too far and the day is not too far as well when we'll see more posts of Dravid's accolades and none of his critics.

  • POSTED BY Pradeeps_Speed on | November 8, 2010, 9:16 GMT

    @TRAM When Gambhir was going all blazing in the first 2 years of his international cricket, they called him the next wall. When Raina scored that wonderful century followed by his marvelous couple of innings against Sri Lanka, they called him the next best thing in the middle order. But what are we seeing now? People like Ajay Jadeja are asking for Gambhir's head now. If Raina fails in the next match, I'll not be surprised if there are more cries for his head too. New parts are good, but will the new parts be of the same quality as the old ones? This is TEST cricket my friend. A totally different ball game. He is only next to Tendulkar in this country of great cricketers. He is one among the only 5 to have scored more than 10,000 runs in the history of both Test and ODIs. They said that 20-20 is not for Dravid. He proved everybody wrong. Check Not long ago Wasim Akram had said that Dravid has a lot of offer in ODIs too. Dravid is an unselfish assiduous fighter. Don't write off Dravid.

  • POSTED BY on | November 8, 2010, 5:48 GMT

    @TRAM- How many catches Dravid dropped?- The catches he could not take in this match were impossible to say the least- half chances that barely touched his fingers. Look at his catching record- he holds the world record for the most number of catches in Test Matches- so if you want to go by stats, he is one of the best. And as for his ability and energy, we'll see how able and energetic the "Young Guns" are against Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel when India tour SA- I would like to see Raina face some chin music from Steyn and see how he stands up to it!! If he can- I'll admit his greatness. But otherwise, we know that only 3 people can save India. Even the recent series against Aus, who scored key innings that helped India to win- Sachin, Laxman and Dravid. India cannot win unless these 3 guys fire at least once in each series and they have been winning in the last 5 years only because these 3 and Saurav Ganguly have consistently hit at least one important innings in each series.

  • POSTED BY sundarb on | November 8, 2010, 3:22 GMT

    @zero_knowledge, completely agree with your assessment. if there was one guy who we could rely on to save India's grace in away test matches it is rahul dravid. Cannot believe people will have such short term memory and forget Dravid's contributions to Team India. If there was one guy who was completely overlooked because of Yuvraj Singh being favored in Test team, it is Subramaniam Badrinath. He was much more qualified, has better test temperament and excellent domestic credentials to back his place in the Test team. Instead BCCI backed Yuvraj to succeed in Test cricket based on his ODI successes and that proved out to be an utter failure.

  • POSTED BY TRAM on | November 8, 2010, 1:27 GMT

    For those who think Dravid has been only very **cautious**, please understand. If a player is merely **cautious**, he would not be beaten by the deliveries umpteen number of times... He would not be OUT tamely outside off stump 90% of times in last 3 years. He would not stare blank and get his partner run-out, when there was an easy run in the shot. Understand cricket please...

  • POSTED BY TRAM on | November 8, 2010, 1:15 GMT

    If you want to win the car race, REPLACE the old parts with new ones in time. Your love to the old part will kill you. Old is NOT gold in a competition where energy matters. Those who blindly look only at Dravid's centuries, look at (i) the number of catches he has DROPPED or NOT TRIED (ii) the number of his partners he has run out (something like 104? He is one of the top worst in the world?). Tell me where should Dhoni field him? Dravid is (i) the one who creates panic in the batting even if the Sehwag /Gambhir score 200 @ 6 runs an over (ii) makes the team 10 member fielding team.

  • POSTED BY on | November 8, 2010, 1:07 GMT

    Pujara is a star....Dravid is fading....Dravid is a match saver or 2nd role batsmen, he seldom wins matches. We want people that win since we are number 1. Selectors didnt want him out as they can see South african green pitches coming up. WE SHALL SEE WHAT HAPPENS. and stop being so predictable Mr Transplant and have some ball$ to challenge someone in your media life....U SO DIPLOMATIC MR TRANSPLANT....NO GOOD TO INDIA

  • POSTED BY Chinnabhandar on | November 8, 2010, 19:48 GMT

    Agreed Dravid is struggling a bit now. But if you look at his dismissals, you can see that most of them have been caught behind while playing away from the body. If he corrects this mistake he will definitely start scoring a lot more runs. He definitely can bounce back although slow and steady.

    I just don't want to miss him at Lord's when India tours England next year. I wish him all the best and hope he will bounce back and score a century at Lord's.

    All the best Dravid!!!

  • POSTED BY Jammy1632 on | November 8, 2010, 15:18 GMT

    Do you think any other cricketer can do that?

  • POSTED BY Meety on | November 8, 2010, 11:04 GMT

    Dravid did what SRT has learned to do so well, that is find a way to stay in even when your not playing well, then cash in when the form returns. This is what makes SRT a true legend. Dravid may find it harder & harder now to get past the first 30 runs, to stay relevant he then needs to convert the 30s into 100s, I think a few chats with SRT might do the trick.

  • POSTED BY Pradeeps_Speed on | November 8, 2010, 9:33 GMT

    Looks like we have comments here of people who have played less or no cricket and watched more of it. Most of them are obessed with T-20 that they don't understand the game of Test cricket. @Mahesh Thiagarajan - Yuvraj and Rohit in test team in place of Dravid? Buddy, let Yuvraj first get back into shape and the ODI team. Rohit? I am not sure he plays better for any team except Deccan Chargers. SA tour is not too far and the day is not too far as well when we'll see more posts of Dravid's accolades and none of his critics.

  • POSTED BY Pradeeps_Speed on | November 8, 2010, 9:16 GMT

    @TRAM When Gambhir was going all blazing in the first 2 years of his international cricket, they called him the next wall. When Raina scored that wonderful century followed by his marvelous couple of innings against Sri Lanka, they called him the next best thing in the middle order. But what are we seeing now? People like Ajay Jadeja are asking for Gambhir's head now. If Raina fails in the next match, I'll not be surprised if there are more cries for his head too. New parts are good, but will the new parts be of the same quality as the old ones? This is TEST cricket my friend. A totally different ball game. He is only next to Tendulkar in this country of great cricketers. He is one among the only 5 to have scored more than 10,000 runs in the history of both Test and ODIs. They said that 20-20 is not for Dravid. He proved everybody wrong. Check Not long ago Wasim Akram had said that Dravid has a lot of offer in ODIs too. Dravid is an unselfish assiduous fighter. Don't write off Dravid.

  • POSTED BY on | November 8, 2010, 5:48 GMT

    @TRAM- How many catches Dravid dropped?- The catches he could not take in this match were impossible to say the least- half chances that barely touched his fingers. Look at his catching record- he holds the world record for the most number of catches in Test Matches- so if you want to go by stats, he is one of the best. And as for his ability and energy, we'll see how able and energetic the "Young Guns" are against Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel when India tour SA- I would like to see Raina face some chin music from Steyn and see how he stands up to it!! If he can- I'll admit his greatness. But otherwise, we know that only 3 people can save India. Even the recent series against Aus, who scored key innings that helped India to win- Sachin, Laxman and Dravid. India cannot win unless these 3 guys fire at least once in each series and they have been winning in the last 5 years only because these 3 and Saurav Ganguly have consistently hit at least one important innings in each series.

  • POSTED BY sundarb on | November 8, 2010, 3:22 GMT

    @zero_knowledge, completely agree with your assessment. if there was one guy who we could rely on to save India's grace in away test matches it is rahul dravid. Cannot believe people will have such short term memory and forget Dravid's contributions to Team India. If there was one guy who was completely overlooked because of Yuvraj Singh being favored in Test team, it is Subramaniam Badrinath. He was much more qualified, has better test temperament and excellent domestic credentials to back his place in the Test team. Instead BCCI backed Yuvraj to succeed in Test cricket based on his ODI successes and that proved out to be an utter failure.

  • POSTED BY TRAM on | November 8, 2010, 1:27 GMT

    For those who think Dravid has been only very **cautious**, please understand. If a player is merely **cautious**, he would not be beaten by the deliveries umpteen number of times... He would not be OUT tamely outside off stump 90% of times in last 3 years. He would not stare blank and get his partner run-out, when there was an easy run in the shot. Understand cricket please...

  • POSTED BY TRAM on | November 8, 2010, 1:15 GMT

    If you want to win the car race, REPLACE the old parts with new ones in time. Your love to the old part will kill you. Old is NOT gold in a competition where energy matters. Those who blindly look only at Dravid's centuries, look at (i) the number of catches he has DROPPED or NOT TRIED (ii) the number of his partners he has run out (something like 104? He is one of the top worst in the world?). Tell me where should Dhoni field him? Dravid is (i) the one who creates panic in the batting even if the Sehwag /Gambhir score 200 @ 6 runs an over (ii) makes the team 10 member fielding team.

  • POSTED BY on | November 8, 2010, 1:07 GMT

    Pujara is a star....Dravid is fading....Dravid is a match saver or 2nd role batsmen, he seldom wins matches. We want people that win since we are number 1. Selectors didnt want him out as they can see South african green pitches coming up. WE SHALL SEE WHAT HAPPENS. and stop being so predictable Mr Transplant and have some ball$ to challenge someone in your media life....U SO DIPLOMATIC MR TRANSPLANT....NO GOOD TO INDIA

  • POSTED BY 114_in_final_Six_overs on | November 8, 2010, 0:44 GMT

    One surely understands that it is test cricket and no one needs go berserk but 17 of 100 balls when guy at the opposite end is scoring more than run a ball is frustrating to say the least. Test cricket is a game of momentum and once it is lost; seldom regained. Thats what happened in this test, once momentum was lost India just slipped further and further away. Surely Rahul is not the only one responsible after all Raina and Gambhir failed miserably but since he is a senior batsman he must take more responsibility and assert himself. Unable to do so he should retire so at-least we can at-least see one Indian great going on his own term rather than being carried kicking and screaming.

  • POSTED BY ZA77 on | November 8, 2010, 0:07 GMT

    Dravid scored 11707 runs in test cricket and he still has potential to score century and people want to see his retirement. He scored 30th century now. How many scored 30 centuries in test cricket Tendulkar, Ponting, Kallis, Gavaskar, Lara and Waugh. From his country, he is third one in history of cricket. Else his ability to score frequent fifties is more than all others. How many people realize that his 59 half centuries are very near to Border 63 half centuries. It means he has too much potential to build inning in his team favor. In mostly cases, he played role of anchor in his team. His 70 or 80 runs in all innings means at least 200 or more runs in the score board. Batting at no. 3, stylish, orthodox, blocker and anchor too make him unique. Please do not compare his 30th century with Sir Don Bradman. Please compare him with same age like Victor Trumper or others. Victor Trumper was most stylish batsman of those day. Also he was better batsman on wet wickets.

  • POSTED BY cricket__fan on | November 7, 2010, 23:31 GMT

    A pointless article on a great batsman, who is well past his best. Dravid should retire for the future of Indian cricket and let youngsters (Pujara, Kohli) a chance to prove themselves at this level. We Indians have the tendency to go my sentiments rather rather than reality, which is that Dravid is finished as a top class cricketer, period. To select him based on his past is a silly thing to do.

  • POSTED BY on | November 7, 2010, 13:18 GMT

    after dravid's injury earlier this year he missed the series against south africa and played his next test match against sri lanka.... he was playing very well before his injury.. but nevertheless we know how gritty and strong dravid is and it would be foolish to ride him off... he will succeed... and mr bhogle is right...ITS A SECOND WIND FOR DRAVID

  • POSTED BY zero_knowledge on | November 7, 2010, 12:58 GMT

    @mahesh thiagarajan, do you anything about test cricket? check yuvraj's first class record or ranji trophy record before suggesting him for being no-3 in indian team.. yuvraj is that kind of a batsman who can hit 6 sixers when the ball is bowled between 110 to 135 kmph in conditions where it doesn't swing seam spin or bounce.. he should never have been in the test team at all.. people have very short memory as to how well he played in australia last tour..

  • POSTED BY Prats6 on | November 7, 2010, 6:28 GMT

    Second wind ? Joking right ? It was a dead track. It was toothless bowling. And his century came in a about a million balls ! I have been a big Rahul Dravid fan, but I am still wondering is it worth going on with him as he struggles with the demons in his own mind and maybe a bit of in-confidence perhaps ?

    No one would say that he does not deserve the extra chances he gets even if he fails, but the question is, Is it really worth it ? Its a question I find pretty tough to answer.

  • POSTED BY Pathiyal on | November 7, 2010, 5:33 GMT

    i think harsha is terribly wrong here!!! rahul did have an over cautious start, but thats how he has been. he is very watchful, he might seem to struggle at times, but makes sure he capitalises it later. in this way, this batsman was able to snatch away many matches from the opposition. he might be boring, but when it comes to result....he makes us understand who is the boss. i wish rahul shall be able to play a couple of more years.

  • POSTED BY on | November 7, 2010, 4:34 GMT

    Looking at some comments and the "accolades" the media is piling onto Dravid for his match-saving hundred at Ahmedabad, I think it's time he retired and allowed the "young guns" to put up "stellar" performances that everyone is so sure they can. We'll see how the likes of Raina stand up to Dale Steyn at Kingsmead or Mitchell Johnson at Perth. That really will be fun to watch- flat track bullies getting to face some chin music.

    Dravid's situation sort of reminds me of the book Atlas Shrugged wherein, when asked what advice he would give Atlas, who feels the weight of the world bear down still harder on his shoulders no matter how much he tries to hold it up, Hank Rearden says "I would ask him to shrug". Dravid must shrug now- and watch the fun!!

    One can see what happened after Kumble retired- India is unable to run through 20 wickets of any team quickly- Bhajji is no longer the force he was in 2001. Yet everyone wanted Kumble to retire when he was around- well we have the results now

  • POSTED BY MaruthuDelft on | November 7, 2010, 3:35 GMT

    Dravid will fail badly in Soth Africa. He no longer has the energy in hands to sustain his style of play against a keen attack. Tendulkar is like a solitary object. Dravid is like 6 objects assembled. When they were once fitted well to each other he was a great player but not now. I wouldn't say he should retire to make way for youngsters. He must fight until he is sacked but the end is almost arrived.

  • POSTED BY on | November 7, 2010, 3:31 GMT

    At all the people who say that Dravid should retire due to his age... Sachin and VVS are the same age... Based on skill, Dravid has performed well in all situations... Who has the highest score in tests in Australia? The Wall (233)... Who is the first to score a century against ALL test nations? Not Tendulkar, it was Dravid... Highest century partnerships? Dravid... Highest 300+ partnerships in ODIs? Dravid (with 2)... Who would have supported VVS at the other end in the legendary Eden Gardens test? NONE OTHER!!! Your GOD was out already... Why do you how many times has Sachin Tendulkar walked in @ 34/5? How many times has he saved that game? Why rebuke Dravid for being gritty as he is? And not rebuke Tendulkar for throwing his wicket away on numerous occasions? Bah! Humbug.. you wouldn't know class if it hit you in the face... and it just did.

  • POSTED BY on | November 7, 2010, 2:24 GMT

    RDs been keeping yuvrajs, rohit sharmas waiting for years now. Score a 100 or 50 by playing out of your skin every three matches and keep these guys out. A guy scores 173 in an innings, then his team should post around 450 and thats what Team India has. Dravid's 100 adds more value to his personal cause that the team's. Also, his 227 balls innings is already pushed back in the list of match maker innings by shewags, ryders and willamson's innings. The question to ask is "What RD has done the past 3-4 years? And If Yuvraj or Rohit sharma could have matched that?" My answer would be..yuvraj at No 3 and some innings along with Shewag would have brought out some wonderful attacking test cricket even in overseas tour..Its test cricket loss, actually! We know how shewag's innings releases pressure from fellow batsmen..when there is some batsman (yuvraj) who releases pressure from shewag; thats when shewag is most dangerous and team India would become intimidating team!

  • POSTED BY nems on | November 7, 2010, 2:23 GMT

    May be he did struggle his first hundred balls, but lets not forget it was a slower wicket and it was again important for him to get a big score to build his confidence. Also, Sehwag on the other end was playing his normal one day innings which took pressure of Dravid to keep up the scoring rate. This hundred will definitely help him boost his confidence and perform better in coming matches. I believe this has been a phase for all senior players. When there was a slump in Sachins career, there were lot of people out there who said he should retire, but he has proved he is still the best. Writing off Dravid soo early, I believe is too pre-mature. I believe he has lot of cricket left in him.

  • POSTED BY on | November 7, 2010, 1:49 GMT

    I want to go back to the melbourne test and see if anyone even dared to think beyond dravid. I have such pity for those so called cricket fans who forget the services of someone who did what "A tendulkar couldnt do". Win a test match is Australia. No one commented on the Tendulkar when he kept hitting the offside balls to leg side and didnt even dare to touch the off stump balls in the Australian tour and made 250. He was that scared. Everyone has a right to survive till he has the luxury to live. I pity thode people who can think of test matches with RAHUL DRAVID and mind you I am still 26 yrs of age.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 22:26 GMT

    Dravid deserves to be in the test side and will be an asset in overseas test matches especially on South African and Aussie pitches. Remember, the last two matches we have won on Aussie soil (the last one being on their 'fortress' WACA) were built on stellar contributions from Dravid.

    Having said that he does not belong on the limited over scheme of things any more. Citing the odd unbelievably quick fifty that he has scored at times or his middling IPL record does not change the fact the he had an issue accelerating in international limited overs cricket.

    Let's call a spade a spade.

  • POSTED BY Rahulbose on | November 6, 2010, 22:25 GMT

    You read way too much into this knock. It was just a slow track and he was batting against the old ball. Simple as that, apart from Sehwag every other top order player is scoring at about 40-50 strike rate in this test. And that includes the second wind Tendulkar.

  • POSTED BY wicknesan on | November 6, 2010, 20:40 GMT

    i think what harsha feels is cent percent true. dravid in his career graph has already reached is highest possible point from where i cant see him going further up.i feel its high time for him to take the most improtant decision. that should be taken keeping in mind the wake up call given by pujaara...... this decision should be even taken by sachin regardless what form he is after the world cup. if not we might be in the present aussie position in about two years time.

    the above said is totally keeping team's future in mind. thank you ,waiting for comments

  • POSTED BY Formanite_bunty on | November 6, 2010, 19:22 GMT

    Rahul was just building the innings and this is not for the first time that he has played like this. Its his style n he has been been known for this style for almost 14 years. He deserve to be in the One Day team also coz he can play aggressively also n everyone know this. He has scored fifity on 22 balls.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 18:43 GMT

    It is not merely because I have the advantage of hindsight (since I had already said this on facebook's cricketainment forum) calling for Dravid's head is premature. He is likely to be our best bet in SA as he had always been in our away games. There is no need to put pressure on him or analyse his approach more than is normally necessary. The three or four young men who have now been hyped by media as ready to replace the remaining three bulwarks of Indian middle order are not yet tested in real hostile conditions entirely on their own. Simply put, they are not experienced enough to be ready yet and so the three musketeers - Dravid, VVS and Sachin - must be left alone to do their own thing. The hoarse cry for sppeding up must sound hollow to Dravid doubters considering that neither Sachin nor Laxman outscored or out paced him subsequently. In fact only Bhajji and Gambhir scored faster than Dravid and ofcourse Sehwag as always did. So what are we trying to discover or foist on Rahul?

  • POSTED BY RajeshAC on | November 6, 2010, 17:36 GMT

    B'coz we eulogize people like sachin, they are immune from everything.pple like laxman and dravid doesn't play their 'games' behind the screen. Let's not forget that anybody other than sachin would have been shown the door when their form, at their ebb. his larger than life 'godly' aura around him, was the ONLY reason he survived that phase. People like dravid or ganguly doesn't have that kind of luxury. Indian media should conduct itself in a fair n mature manner when they pull up people like Dravid. Indian media would not dare to pull up people who have their lobbies in the establishment or write about some one who was not ready to pay taxes for his imported car but they can atleast show respect and consideration people like Rahul who was NOT SHREWD ENOUGH to put himself ahead of the team

  • POSTED BY AbAdvani on | November 6, 2010, 16:16 GMT

    I agree with Harsha -The Wall seems to be in a mental rut -his feet were barely moving against a toothless spin attack -however he applied himself well and managed to hit a century -I think the series against SA in SA will be his acid test -if he proves (and knowing him, he will already be preparing for it ) himself, the second wind will come back -the youngsters have a lot to do before they can think of replacing him yet !!! Succeeding in T20 is easy -succeeding in Test Cricket is a totally different ball game -Hope the Wall shows he is just as rock solid like Ambuja Cement !!!

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 16:15 GMT

    As a major Dravid fan I do hope this century marks a turnaround and that he gets back into his purplest of patches (a la 2003/04). That said, should he continue to struggle he should realise that can't keep talent like Pujara and Vijay out for long and retire gracefully instead of being nudged out. Not everyone over 35 can pull off a comeback like Sachin did because they're not Sachin!!!

  • POSTED BY shrikanthk on | November 6, 2010, 15:05 GMT

    @bkraks : Ofcourse, all records are "meant" to be broken. What I objected to was the mention of the 4 minute mile in the same breath as 29 test centuries in 80 test match innings!

    It's a bit like comparing Gone with the Wind with Citizen Kane!! The former, a classic of its time, plays today as a dated period piece. The latter is a classic for all time, which will continue to inspire moviemakers 100 years hence.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 13:52 GMT

    brilliant article. It was as painful to watch him struggle over the first half as it was a delight over the second. Let's hope this is the much-needed confidence boost before the South African tour. Like he's so often proved, difficult pitches and pressure cooker situations motivate him more than flat decks and ordinary bowling.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 13:35 GMT

    Dravid is the best Test batsman since i watched cricket from 2001. He is also good in odi's. Pls dont make him the next ganguly. He is a champion cricketer and he knows when to retire than anyone else. some one with 10k runs in odi's and 11k in test did not want to prove to anyone. All are saying shewagh is best!!! How many centuries he scored in second innings?? Dravid has the highest average outside home which is better than sachin.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 13:23 GMT

    Rahul is way beyond any of the cricketers of today- can you imagine a Saurabh Tiwari (of MI fame) hit a double century like the one Dravid hit in Adelaide- or can you imagine Raina stand up to swing and seam conditions in Headingly in the 2002 series. You'll yourself come up with the answer- Impossible. And here we have all the jokers coming online and calling for Dravid's head. He's truly an unlucky cricketer- like Anil Kumble- in that however much he does, he still has to prove himself in every innings. Whereas the tag of greatness is attached to Tendulkar regardless of how he performs in an innings. Case in point- entire media calling Dravid's innings slow at Ahmedabad when he hit a century, and in the same vein, stating the next day that Sachin missed out a century when he hit 40 runs!! Shows you just the kind of double standards applied to cricketers today- perhaps driven by the net worth that each cricketer brings in advertising revenue- cricket is truly on the decline today!!

  • POSTED BY Biophysicist on | November 6, 2010, 10:48 GMT

    I was just checking the stats for Dravid for matches played since Jan 2009 and I find that he averages 59.85 (four 100s and 6 50s). Of course, this year his average at the end of the 1st innings is 40.9, but with 4 more tests to go, he could very well improve this. But, everyone should note this. Dravid's average for a calender year never fell below 30. On the other hand, Sachin's average was lower than 30 for 4 calendar years: 19.5 ('91), 29 ('95), 17 ('03) and 24.27 ('06). Yet, everyone says that being the greatest batsman that he is, he will choose his time of retirement. I am not questioning the judgement that Sachin is a great batsman, but trying to point out that one can always use statistics make a point. What is important is the contribution of an individual in the context of the game. In that sense Dravid's innings most likely ensureed that India will not lose the test. Had he tried to score fast initially and lost his wicket, we might well have been looking to save the match!

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 10:15 GMT

    Wow! Looks like there are more people ready to jump to Dravid's defence than one thought. Good Karma in action. Dravid's that is. Decency does have a place, outdated though it may be in the times of IPL.

    The bottom line is that each of our current batting geniuses, Sehwag, Tendulkar, Laxman and Dravid, not to forget Ganguly, that brilliant Southpaw, have a style that they have made their own.Those of them currently in the team need the space and the grace of the selectors to exit at their chosen time. Meanwhile can we have a little less noise from the media and the public when they have their off days?

  • POSTED BY Biophysicist on | November 6, 2010, 9:25 GMT

    You say about Dravid "Surely on a cruelly flat deck and against an attack that wasn't likely to scare a top team, he could have batted like the player we knew...". Now at Tea on the third day, the NZ batsmen who stand nowhere in comparison to the Indian stars such as Sehwag, Sachin, Dravid and Laxman have shown that your words about the pitch are most likely true. Still, Sachin, who is supposed to be in the form of his life and the demi-GOD of Indian cricket-who can never be dropped(!), played 135 balls for 40 runs, while Laxman, who was dropped for players of the quality of Dinesh Mongia (ODIs) and Md. Kaif/Yovuraj (tests) scored the same no. of runs in 104 balls. Well, Dravid scored his 104 at a faster rate. Had he tried to score faster initially and lost his wicket with a 40 or 50 (still better than the slow 40 of SRT, people would be asking for his head. Dravid's innings made sure India can not lose. He deserves to be treated with respect and allowed to quit at his chosen time.

  • POSTED BY krickrazy on | November 6, 2010, 8:03 GMT

    Thnks to ur clique,true gr8s like Dravid are always insecure of their place in the side wen going thru a lean phase.Like u mentioned,the gr8 tendulkar has gone thru so many lean patches,but someone..i dunno who..definitely has been assuring him since his the inception of his career,that whatever he does,the word dropped will never appear against his name.That makes a big dfference.Can u tell me why only Gavaskar and Tendulkar have never been dropped when greater contributers to winning cuses like Kapil,Jimmy,Viru,VVS,Dada,Jammy,Jumbo etc have??

  • POSTED BY SUNDOS on | November 6, 2010, 8:01 GMT

    Again Harsha has done a great job analyzing the stage in Dravid's career.This is an exceptional batsman,no he is not as gifted as a Tendulkar ,or a Ganguly or Lakshman,but what he brings to the the side is a work ethic.that surely must have rubbed off on his illustrious colleagues.A team man,who did just about everything ,incluiding keeping wickets so his good friend Ganguly coud play with 7 batsmen in the ODI's ,his finest hour in the melodrama of the Greg Chappell era,displaying sheer class and not being drawn into controversies,a career that has been defined by exemplary behaviour,on and off the field.Surely Ponting and Lara have more runs, and are more attractive to watch,but Dravid,is the rock that the Indian line up has bulit its self on.Let the great man choose his day of retirement.Let him continue to contribute to Indian cricket even after he is done playing.Age may dim some skills,but the artistry is there.

  • POSTED BY SatyajitM on | November 6, 2010, 7:40 GMT

    @Farce-Follower, you are getting emotional, Dravid was the MVP batsman for India between 2002 to 2006 (not that everybody else did badly) but today he is not. The MVPs in batting section today for India are Sachin, Sehwag and Laxman. You can check stats and stats don't lie. But does he have a role to play in the current team? I think yes. He is many war hardened and that experience is invaluable. More so, when India visits foreign shores starting with SA in next one year. Whether his career can extend beyond that, depends on how he performs during that period plus his wish and willingness to continue. Meanwhile the likes of Pujara and Vijay can learn a lot from the sidelines and grabbing the odd opportunities their way.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 7:39 GMT

    RD has been batting like this for years. I remember a match in west indies when India won the toss and scored below 30 runs in one full session. Its always like "i wont get out, come whatsoever it may be". Its like survival of his place in team rests on this attitude. Hes not the kind of player who can come out with classiest innings of the match....theres shewags, haydens, laras, sachins, pontings! Its always been like play out of his skin, earn some fans and retain the place. An yuvraj at No 3 in tests since 3-4 years would have brought about fantastic test cricket.

  • POSTED BY Cricket__sri on | November 6, 2010, 7:13 GMT

    xactly my support is for Anu Kuruvilla and shanksnorth.i dont know how ppl say msd z gud wk-batsman hez a gr8 failure n both. Dravid,Sachin,Sehwag,VVS are the current batsman keepin us in no1 position still.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 6:34 GMT

    The most surprising part of the Dravid's knock was that of the sports writers in the next day news papers. They all said that Dravid was too slow...... But com eto think of it, when Dravid was only 18 of 120 balls, Sehwag was 121 of 130 balls. By the time Sehwag was out at 173, Dravid was at 91 of 180 balls. It means Dravid matched the strike rate of Sehwag during that stage!!.

    Moreoevr, strike rates Tendulkar and Laxman (both are supposed to be free stroking players!!) were lower than Dravid's.

    Why single out Dravid????

  • POSTED BY Farce-Follower on | November 6, 2010, 5:54 GMT

    The truth is...RD is India's MVP...and more than a few people cannot digest it...it is thus left to a few dedicated and discerning observers to get things on an even keel. Sad that even Cricinfo has gone the TRP way. Shameful.

  • POSTED BY Deepak28 on | November 6, 2010, 5:43 GMT

    I think this inning shows how Drvid is strugling for runs.now we look the future and dravid retirement.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 5:31 GMT

    Hi Hasha,

    I think you have written a great piece of article on Dravid here. In your article you have only tried to analyze the problems he might be facing in the current stage of his career, which obviously happens with every cricketer and the ways by which he is trying to get out of this phase. Secondly, you have compared him with the two best batsman the world has ever produced... 'The DON' and 'Sachin Tendulkar'. And if someone says that Dravid is much better than Sachin, let them stay in their own fancy world. I would only go on to say that it's Sachin who has to have burden of all expectation mostly and not David, so this makes it clear who is better. Thirdly, whoever says Sachin was playing for his 50th, I ask if he had scored that,wouldn't it have been Team India who would have benefited?? And wasn't Dravid playing just to regain his form ( 17 off 100 balls)? So where's the difference? Both were finally contributing to the team's cause itself..

  • POSTED BY Gulshan_Grover on | November 6, 2010, 5:10 GMT

    If this match becomes a draw it would be because of momentum killing batting of RD. It is time for him to gracefully retire. And please stop saying oh..he has served India for so long...thats no argument, yes he has but he is 38 years old and we should begin preparing for the POST SRT,RD, VVS era.

  • POSTED BY ganesh1024 on | November 6, 2010, 4:50 GMT

    i like ganguly's batting style and elegance more than any batsman in this world ever for his feet move to pacers on off side and for hitting six of a spinner,ganguly is the lord's own marionette,it cant get better.my regret on ganguly is that he should have fought his way back to the side.sachin,sourav,dravid,laxman,sehwag must play tests and sachin,sourav,sehwag as first-3 spots in Odis will be awesome.these 5 in tests ,3 in ODIS should play the game as long as the body allows them and mind focused.ganguly is a comeback man but he didnt assert on his skills and make a comeback after chappell's term ,despite all,if these 5 in tests,3 in odis do play for as long as their body allows and mind focused,it will benefit india the most.ganguly,if not barred from playing would have crossed 16k runs in odis and 12k in tests now and be #2 run maker in both forms but missed out on making a comeback.there are many to force into playing-11 but these senior-pros need reassert themselves for india.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 4:49 GMT

    Good article...I am sure if Rahul can get his form back, then imagine the Indian batting lineup? Sehwag, Gambhir, Dravid, Tendulkar, Laxman, Raina, Dhoni...OMG now that looks like a No:1 test team's batting lineup. Yeah I know, we had such a wonderful batting lineup, but they hardly ever perform on field... Harsha, I'm sure this is the only article to have the names Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid and Bernoulli...

  • POSTED BY beekay05 on | November 6, 2010, 4:41 GMT

    come on folks, just try to understand what Harsha is trying to say here...just don't jump in and write comments without reading the entire article thoroughly..read it again! sure you will understand....

  • POSTED BY jimbond on | November 6, 2010, 4:22 GMT

    The message from the article is very clear. It is time for the young guys to be given a chance, the old cannot continue their sub-standard ways. By young guys I mean people like Saurabh, Anil, and (whenever he retires) Rahul Dravid. These three can provide some sense to the commentary box, instead of the senile guys like Harsha, SMG, RS, etc.

  • POSTED BY chishtyirfan on | November 6, 2010, 4:09 GMT

    Rahul Dravid a true performer. one of the greatest cricketer, in my view he is the best player in the indian squad no doubt. sachin is playing good, lasxman is playing good shewag is wonderful.don't forget 90's & last decade who teach india habbit of winning. the wall.. whenever india need him he was there stay like a wall never give up. he was't player like other who just care for own their records. now is india at #1 in world everyone giving credit to others. they forget the contribute of the WALL coz of minor bed paches. I ask every one if u truely love cricket .. Who is the real match winner in indian cricket team for last two decade????

  • POSTED BY Farce-Follower on | November 6, 2010, 3:19 GMT

    Harsha - You have got it all wrong...terribly wrong...looks like even you like flamboyance and fluff over substance. And to think that we trusted you on all matters cricket. RD has been the greatest servant of Indian cricket. No SRT or SMG can compare with him. Not even a little bit. Give him respect. True cricket lovers and discerning observers have always known this. Always.

  • POSTED BY ajitht on | November 6, 2010, 3:11 GMT

    JoseBautista ......u r right...if india have to win world cup 2011..they want DRAVID..(THE WALL)...IN THEIR TEAM....AND people who ever talking bad about him PLZ stop talking about him bec he is legend and he is always playing for team so he knows wat he have to do. DRAVID....YOU R BEST CRICKETER IN THE WORLD SO PLAY UR GAME UNTIL .................RETIRE...

  • POSTED BY AB99 on | November 6, 2010, 2:42 GMT

    Compared to SRT at Ahmedabad, RD was more composed and fluent AND think of the Indian innings without RD's hundred. SRT set the downfall for Team India with his 40 in 135 balls as he was playing for the 50th ... RD shd be in the ODI for WC2011. He is better than the Rohit Sharma's, Virat Kohli's, etc added together. And remember the rest of the world would come prepared with chin music and perfume balls that RD can handle.

  • POSTED BY shanksnorth on | November 6, 2010, 2:42 GMT

    Since you're comparing averages and strike rates after each inning, you shud also do this to captain with "Midas Touch" Dhoni. He is a real failure with the bat for the past 2 years. No one asks any questions 'coz team India is winning and this is due to people like Dravid. Rahul is one of the greats and is contribution off the field like helping young cricketers has to be taken into account.The true worth of all the "young guns" will be known once they go to SA or Aus where for sure they will start dancing:P

  • POSTED BY SriUSA on | November 6, 2010, 2:35 GMT

    I think Dravid and Laxman (More) are under the scanner. One failure and people question their place in the side. These people forget the history conveniently. These are the two cricketers and ofcourse Kumble are the players who gave us more wins and saved many more over the past decade. Harsha, don't even ask the question. RD should play as long as he wishes. And I know he is a gentleman and knows when to quit. As many said he is still in better shape compared to many youngsters. Test cricket is different and RD knows how to play it. Leave him alone.

  • POSTED BY sunneyl on | November 6, 2010, 2:22 GMT

    Harsha's writing is also getting weak and cannot focus or write properly. The age and influence of Mumbai Indians has caused considerable fatigue on his objectivity and seriously he should look at retiring from all forms of writing. There are plenty of good young writers who are waiting to fill his boots and I have seen them write better than Harsha and even Dravid can have a second wind but for Harsha no amount of wind is going to be help - he can be the wind bag in the commentary circuit and there are a lots of hot air anyway which he will find it cosy. Please stop this dribble and retire soon making way for younger writers.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 2:17 GMT

    hi all,

    dravid was a great player and he is still a great player. he is still averaging 40 even on decline. put him at number 5 in place of number 3. put laxman at number 3 as he has better strike rate than dravid and can play more freely.

    also why are you all not after dhoni and gambhir. they are failing since almost last 1 year. it is now 6th test match where dhoni has failed. gambhir averages 17 in last year.

  • POSTED BY PhilGoorha on | November 6, 2010, 2:08 GMT

    You indulge in near-blasphemy when, on Dravid, you try your tasteless humour in a miserable attempt to get near Andy Zaltman vis-a-vis that genre of literature. It is only the other day you developed anything that can be called close to understanding cricket. If Cricinfo pays you for the tripe you write, you go ahead and pocket the dole, but stay clear of dishing out wisdom on Dravid. There were tens of thousands who could see what Dravid was doing the other day in Motera: you could not, Harsha.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 1:37 GMT

    A player should never play below his ability even if he is at the top of rankings. I mean people believe that Dravid is playing badly because he has played greatly most of his career. Though Dravid has scored a century today, I dare say that he is going through the leanest of the patches he had ever gone through. He is such a tremendous player and fighter that I don't have any doubt that there are many more double centuries waiting for him.Dravid was great, Dravid is great and will remain so. His fans should not worry. Dravid is surely going to play a bit more than Sachin. He just needs, as Harsha said 'Confidence'. He is not struggling with any weakness, its just that he needs more confidence and passion.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 1:21 GMT

    Harsha has nothing to write about, so he might have thought of poking Dravid. When Dravid retires there will be victories to showcase, look @ what will be there when Sachin retires, just STATISTICS and AVERAGES. Donot get carried away by India's Number Uno status and current scenario, we are playing in sub-continent. Let the SA tour start and we'll know who the tigers are. It will not be Dhoni, Pujara, Raina or Vijay, but Dravid & Laxman.

  • POSTED BY on | November 6, 2010, 1:01 GMT

    not dt im a genius.bt i wonder hw so many people succeed in misinterpreting harsha's words! he meant nothing bt gud things 4 dravid. he knows dravid n sachin more closely than any pseuo-intellectual out here does..and admires them dearly for that! what do u think he meant? sachin passed through a similar lean patch a few years ago too..as every player wd..however accomplished he is..being human. people asked him to retire. we know he has been at some of the best phases of his career ever since. dravid has had a little bad time too.people felt for a while he should retire..n d selectors already think we dnt need him 4 d ODIs..no matter how many match winning partnerships he hz been in. harsha meant that this 100 frm dravid may well be the beginning of another outstanding run of form for dravid.

    so please THINK before u decide that u r gonna rip harsha apart with criticism..which..frankly..an intelligent man like him..would never care about! we were in diapers when harsha began!

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 23:37 GMT

    Refer to the article by Sriram Veera title:Will Dravid find his form against NZ? : http://www.cricinfo.com/india-v-new-zealand-2010/content/story/485043.html . He did find form. Let's wish that he continues to do so.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 23:31 GMT

    dravid rock he will get so many toon

  • POSTED BY JoseBautista on | November 5, 2010, 20:55 GMT

    He is the second greatest indian batsman, without him thruoghout the last 14 years, we would be looking like NZ or ENG(no offence guys). He will help us the most in any situation when we need him, so stop questioning!!!! He should be there in the 2011 WC.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 20:47 GMT

    Few Observations: - Harsha closely works with the Mumbai Indians and hence he may never be able to Criticize Tendulkar - Even if he scores 5 blobs in a row - RD offlate has becoming a punching bag for few people for no reason - Send our team to Aus,Eng,WI,SA or NZ - there will be 10 jumping Apes - and 1 WALL - RD has nothing to prove - he is playing for his country and not to break any records - Without Dravid's Century - India in the ongoing test v NZ would nt have managed much considering our Middle Order falling off like a pack of Cards - Raina/Dhobi/VVS/Sach all managing not to add more than a 100 runs in between them

    So all calling for his head - pls back off. My request to RD - Pls retire on your own terms without anyone showing you the door pls....Once the RD/ST/VVS trio retires its Game over for Indian Batting - Dhobi can enjoy 210 cr contracts till then and hold on to his captaincy and the No1 test status for playing the most number of Test Matches in Subcontinent conditions.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 20:17 GMT

    Harsha, when we met in 2004, at a product launch in Bangalore, you mentioned that the Aussies consider Sehwag the best batsman in the World. Sehwag was nevertheless dropped for both ODIs and Tests. And now people are almost using the past tense for Dravid! Anyone would be slow before a Sehwag in current form!

    Dravid is the best batsman that India has produced for the sheer stickwithitness, batting skills and fitness. Even now, his fitness is never in doubt. When Dravid left on the first day, after scoring a century, India was at a healthy 300+ for three. Sachin scored at a strike rate that was far less than that of Dravid and he did not make much as also Laxman. The youngsters such as Vijay and Pujara although very good , still have some time to go. They will come in when Dravid chooses to go and not when the critics try to prematurely write him off. After seeing Raina today, who would consider him a substitute for Ganguly or Dravid.

  • POSTED BY kabe_ag7 on | November 5, 2010, 20:15 GMT

    @Graeme_Swanns_Cat: It's time you started watching Indian cricket. Actually it's time you started watching cricket. Nobody is calling RD the greatest number 3 ever, yet. He is not overrated. He is as underrated as it gets. And in your case, you don't even know him.

  • POSTED BY nlambda on | November 5, 2010, 20:04 GMT

    Dravid at 37 is leaner and trimmer than Rohit Sharma at 23 and Yuvraj at 29. Ultimately, it is FITNESS that matters, age is only a proxy for fitness and stamina.

  • POSTED BY bhadra on | November 5, 2010, 20:00 GMT

    I think people know that to secure your place in Indian cricket Team, you just need one good innings. Laxman 281, Dhoni smashimg hundred against SL, Yuvraj singh 84 vs AUS on debut, and now the talks about Pujara. Cone on guys, one inning is not sufficient to judge a player's caliber. I know pujara has scored in bulk at domestic cricket. But there are many like him Jaffer, Kanitkar, Sadagopan Ramesh. They too entered in International cricket with a bang but failed to prove again and again. Again Yuvraj, has given so many oppurtunity to prove himself also in ODI's too. Rahul and kaif with one bad patch were thrown out. I think dhoni is just lucky to have Dravid, Sachin and Laxman. or else we wouldn't have won a single.

  • POSTED BY techie_rk on | November 5, 2010, 19:55 GMT

    In my view, Rahul is better than Sachin in test cricket. I don't know why people are hounding him. Everybody is talking about his strike rate in this match. Before commenting did you guys looked into other's strike rate. Now you think that Vettori bowled tight line because sachin hasn't scored with better strike rate. How about Raina - You will see how good he is as a test cricketer - Badri, rahane and even AT Rayudu has lot better temperament and technique than Raina. People who is criticizing dravid's strike rate dont know what test cricket is!! Test cricket is not blind cricket(T20) just hit and run. Dravid should be allowed to play as long as he wants. He won more matches for India than Sachin, Afterall we watch cricket because we want India to Win. All other's can wait for him to retire. His humbleness and dignity should be respected.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 19:48 GMT

    Harsha, I think we still need Rahul Dravid more than ever, since he has great experience in foreign conditions!! He will be able to play the bounce in South Africa, West Indies, England and Australia, far better than the young Raina, Pujara, Kohli, Sharma or even for that matter, Yuvraj Singh, who is still relatively young in Test Cricket!! I think that even if he does not have a great tour of South Africa, he will be a great guide and mentor to youngsters like Raina and Pujara who will be touring with the Indian Team for the Test Matches!! And as you very rightly said, Dravid will argue that he is the think-tank of the team, and that he has always approached his cricket very thoughtfully, even if it means being a little more defensive than normal - That I think is the beauty of Rahul Dravid!! Please, let us not compare him to Sehwag and Tendulkar, who are naturally more aggressive players!!

  • POSTED BY MSDev on | November 5, 2010, 19:45 GMT

    Two hoots to you Harsha -- damn your article. Seriously, I mean how long do yoou wanna go back on counting the averages? Can you by same token appreciate the fact tht RD's avg since 2009/10 onwards is 58+? RD is purists delight on the pitch, not even the media created GOD has done so much to Indian test cricket than The WALL. I remember former coach John Wright once saying, if he could chose a test team, he will have 11 Rahul Dravid's playing in it! Shows the character, class and ability of the Man. Surely he's aged, but its only in India age becomes a factor. If Shaq can strut around the courts in Boston, I wonder why RD who is the fittest of the Indian cricketers cannot continue to make an impact on Test cricket!

  • POSTED BY arjun19dev on | November 5, 2010, 18:54 GMT

    hope he gets many more tons.. we need him to play for longer...

    for those talking bout how badly he's been treated - remember how he was picked for the last champions trophy cos it was in south africa and despite being our top scorer there, he was dropped for the subsequent series on flatter wickets..

  • POSTED BY InnocentGuy on | November 5, 2010, 18:42 GMT

    Ok first of all, Harsha is still a good writer. By no means is he biased against or being disrespectful of Dravid. This article is merely an observation/opinion by yet another fan of The Wall. Irrespective of this article, Dravid is and will always be one of the greatest cricketers to have ever played the game. Having said that, it's a fact that he isn't his usual confident self off-late. He is being compared here with not someone else but his own self - the Dravid of the late 90s and early 2000s. But that doesn't mean that he is done with cricket or that any of his numerous feats from the past are any less magnificent. I am a huge fan of SRT, RSD, and VVSL. As much as I enjoy their cricket, what I really like about them is their humility. They have always been perfect gentlemen on and off the field and upheld the spirit of cricket every time. They don't think of themselves as cool or awesome, but have always realized that they are forever students of this fine sport. I salute them.

  • POSTED BY ajayca4 on | November 5, 2010, 18:36 GMT

    Oh god am really amazed by the way people are critising Rahul Dravid i mean he has scored a century not a duck. the way Mr.Harsha has written this article looks like he is critising Rahul & may be hinting him that his time is over so he must retire.. one must not forget that Dravid is no way near his best still he has scored a century.. About his strike rate, if i am not wrong Tendulkar's Strike rate was also same as that of Dravid's & Mr.Harsha has no where mentioned it & Finally about Youngsters like Pujara & Murali, mr.harsha Send them to the tour of Africa leaving out the Dravids Laxmans & Sachins i bet India would suffer a clean white wash as england suffered in their previous ashes series.. Dravid need not prove anythin, he has done many things that no other cricketer has done 2 India & abt youngsters yes india have gr8 talent but Mr.Harsha lets see what happens when Dravid, Sachin & Laxman retire & i hope that by then dhoni is out his luck lets see what happens 2 Indian cricket

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 18:33 GMT

    hey guys harsha only meant gud abt dravid don't worry ....he's lke all dravid fans is hoping tht he'd continue this gud form now on.......but seriously guys stop talking abt sr again.....when sachin played slow no one's uttering a word.......so pls stop talking abt slow these ppl r experienced enough to klnow the conditions and play well so pls :)

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 18:31 GMT

    its just simply double standards of media and critics. people try to undermine the achievements of RD over other players irrespective of greatness. may be their eyes are covered with the dirt of biasness which can only praise one cricketer. wake up people and start seeing performances rather than players. RD has given so much to indian cricket selflessly which no other cricketer can ever dream of. he was a victim of some poor dirty politics else he would have been a crucial part of ODIs as well.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 18:16 GMT

    hey harsha man one must appreciate talent to

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 17:58 GMT

    His partisans from then on [2007,ODI exclusion] got so little on-field cricket time of their legend that the expectations only, and naturally so, grew each time he made an appearance. 2009, apt first time for Bhogle's "second wind" for Dravid did come when India traveled to NZ albeit the show stealer was Gambhir all through the calendar year. Same year Dravid played Lanka at home and with back to back centuries his comeback, for lack of a better word, were sealed. However 2010 has been dry and with the inevitable around the corner, 2 years I hear you say, we want India's greatest student to retire high and not dry. Heart's go out when he, who made school level coaching easy, struggles to spot a slow ball or reaches almost 4 ft away from his body, leaning forward to drive and fails. Ramachandra Guha mentions About "Good Guys finishing first", more apt I can't be for Dravid - although Guha himself left out Dravid in that list. Heroism deserves Dravid and not the other way round.

  • POSTED BY iceman87 on | November 5, 2010, 17:49 GMT

    I seriously cannot comprehend the purpose of this article Harsha. I'm a big fan of yours...however there's a distinct sharpness missing in your writings for abt the last year or so. This is just an apt example of it....second wind??? I mean comeon....u can discuss much better issues or express opinions about many other things...but to ask whether this innings is an indicator of a possibility of a second wind for dravid is utterly useless. Add to that, there's a mundane tone to the entire article and a needless reference to bernoulli & obama ( The "show-off & hype" writing style imminent in India currently wasn't expected from you). Like you too much to say anything more than that....Wish you a Happy Diwali Harsha....Looking forward to your writings :)

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 17:43 GMT

    this comment on Dravid was not required, As an analyst you can tell so many things, that average in lean patch is better than some many Indian players.you did not do this comment when tendulkar was in lean patch, now you are opening your mouth. So keep your mouth shout when commenting about player like dravid.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 17:41 GMT

    Hopefully this starts the beginning of a purple patch for Dravid...My heart says Yes...but the brain says No....I have a strong feeling that SA series will be the last one for this legend....no matter how well he performs...Being an ardent Dravid fan i would love to see him go out on a high...and hopefully he provides some more cherished memories before he signs off...i will never love to see him dumped out of the Test Team in the same way he was dropped from the ODI team....

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 17:39 GMT

    I am really sad to read this article Harsha. I have always urged Sunil Gavaskar & Ravi Shastri to retire from commentary and let the 'young blood' take their place. I always admired you , but I hope you have not lost the plot. I don't understand people calling for Dravid's head continuously. Now that he has performed, people want him to 'retire with grace' after SA tour. Give me a break. And let these youngsters earn their place by displacing the stalwarts by their performances and not taking what is served to them in a golden platter. Dravid himself made his Test debut when he was 24/25 and there were many batsmen of lower quality than him in the team then. If a would be great like Dravid could wait for his place till that age, Pujaras and Vijays can wait. (BTW these names are floating after only one Test match ..lol . i can't believe it)

  • POSTED BY gopi_29 on | November 5, 2010, 17:37 GMT

    i dont know why people are criticising dravid even when he performs.he was always under someones shade right through his carrier with sachin,dada.....Even sachin had the same lack of form during 2003 even he dint cros double figures for most innings.but dravid fails in only few and all are pointing on tat.if any player who needs to be scrapped for not performing then it should be one and only MR.DHONI . he has not performed up to his level.......

  • POSTED BY amit.agarwal on | November 5, 2010, 17:26 GMT

    Mr. "jayapras"... thank you thank you thank you :-) nice to feel the bond we share for DRAVID.

    all others who are yet to admire the person named rahul dravid (profession: cricketer) just think for a moment... would anybody from the current lot of (political) players dare involve in administration as confirmed a day or two ago, by kumble, regarding KSCA polls. would anybody be ready to play at any position "for the team" and at any pitch? i mean think of somebody asking raina | pujaras | vijays to open the innings in perth [lolzz].. ask dravid and he shall be ever ready even if that means getting out and facing criticism.

    for me; rahul would always be the MONK who played CRICKET

  • POSTED BY pvenka_99 on | November 5, 2010, 17:25 GMT

    No matter what, we are all saying the same thing! Rahul will go down in the annals of Indian cricket as the second greatest batsman ever and in World cricket as one of the top five of his generation. It is a testament to his fan following, performances and sacrifices for Indian cricket that each one of us in this conversation chain is so eager to see him excel for many more years to come. Hats off Rahul! You will always remain in my playing XI in all forms of the game. Would like to see you end your career with more test hundreds than Ponting and second only to Sachin.

  • POSTED BY madhured on | November 5, 2010, 17:25 GMT

    I hope people understand harshas beautiful article, I found interesting every time people write articles once in a while about greats, their mind behind in doing things,All people who donot know what to take out of this article, atleast take that its not easy to do things even you are proficient in cricket. Respect every retired or playing or budding young cricketers for their hard work they put in for us to enjoy it .

  • POSTED BY Razor88 on | November 5, 2010, 17:13 GMT

    @ bkraks21 - oh really ?? Dig into Stats and you will see the difference.... Yea accepted Pujara is a good player,especially Fresh Mind set.... Come on badri has been Scoring Season after Season... he scored better than vijay... especially after Dada's Retirement I can't really understand Y he has not been selected... there is nothing like Tamilnadu or Delhi or Mumbai... I would have said the same if he had been from some other State.... Next after Badri is Ajinkya rahane.... 3 years down the line,if he dose not get to play... i will be Worried the same way... Ppl like you is enuf to Advertise State Difference... thanks a Load Mate!!!...

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 17:05 GMT

    I think it's the time for harshas second wind? at least u should rewrite u r article after the performances of sachin, laxman(strike rate wise) on day.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 16:59 GMT

    I cant understand how on earth could this article be termed as criticism of Rahul...I think Harsha, as always is the case, has made a fair enough point about Rahul's thinking process as of now..Grow up guys..stop behaving like kids every time someone put his views forward

  • POSTED BY vishalb on | November 5, 2010, 16:44 GMT

    I THINK ITS A LITTLE TOO EARLY TO DISCUSS ABOUT A SECOND WIN HARSHA. But I like the way you write these articles. Has a touch of artistry, which is rare among cricket commentators filled with cliches and words that are sweet in phonic sense, but not much substance with them. A real cricket critic unlike the "mirror on the wall types" who eat their words. There are very few like Harsha in modern cricket. Hope the IPL will not spoil Harsha too. Like it did with the double dees and marvel of technology!

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 16:33 GMT

    Harsha, I strongly believe that they (who work on the ground) know the pain and stress than guys like you sitting in AC rooms and commenting. What I understand is that players need to play accordingly but you guys can talk as you wish... I suggest you go find your second wind where people accept you...here we accept only the likes of sachins and dravids...not harshas and sanjays

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 15:59 GMT

    DRAVID should RETIRE or be dropped once and for all. Cheteshwar Pujara should be promoted. Dravid is now 38. People stop becoming emotional, sensitive and fanatic. Dravid is a Legend and now deserves a place in bed-time stories of Indian Cricket. Dravid should retire and stop thinking that he is enjoying his game and pave the way for Cheteshwar Pujara. Same applies for Sachin Tendulkar. India is proud of these 2 jewels but its time for them to go. In the name of gradual transition, you are blocking 2 youngster's place. India should not be in a place like Australia is today where there is a huge gap which is evident all the time.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 15:58 GMT

    Rahul's slowish ton is as much a tribute to his concentration,determination and persevearence as to his Supreme fitness!Given he has ton on the First innings of a series one supects he will cash in on the runs given his experience..Given the time on the circuit i dont think he would not be too concerned about competetion from younger mates etc for he would ave relied on a time tested preparation process to bail him out and most importantly run his own race.

    his Truest test yet would against Proteas later this year and if he survives a year by choice or by sheer form , Australia Late 2011 could well be his swansong..couldnt help but to think about Geoffery Boycott /Graham Gooch /Gordon Greenidge,and their mental fortitude , batting skills n Countering the mighty tearaways of yesteryears when pushing 40!Now thats Something Rahul would be proud to emulate Come Australia-2011 as he nears 40 then!

  • POSTED BY N.Sundararajan on | November 5, 2010, 15:56 GMT

    Harsha,

    I normally appreciate your thoughts and comments very much---but this time you got it quite wrong ! Just see what happened today---India collapsed from 389 for 2 to 419 for 8---in no time. That places in context the knock of Dravid in proper perspective. When Sehwag was going great, and the innings run-rate was around 4, there was no need for Dravid to play heroics--especially when he was re-discovering his form. But if he had not tenaciously stayed put, where would INdia have been today?

    That is experience and temperament, combined with class ! And you have been uncharitable----never mind Dravid's great sacrifices for the Team as a total team-man---but for this innings of 104, India would bhe in no advantage by second day tea time !

    Please Harsha, rediscover YOUR FORM !

  • POSTED BY bhanuks on | November 5, 2010, 15:55 GMT

    All this talk about Dravid being slow, etc should be seen from the perspective of the "master blaster" Sachin having scored his first 20 in 74 balls... and VVS Laxman's strike rate this morning!

    People who are baying for Dravid's blood - please look at other blasters (Dhoni) and the new star Raina struggle on the same pitch!

    Dravid is still the best in business for tests, agreed, he has not hit a purple patch yet again. India still does not have the quality batsmen of Dravid's class in its benches. Virat, Raina, Pujara have a lot to learn and learn from Dravid.

  • POSTED BY D.Sharma on | November 5, 2010, 15:47 GMT

    And we have another clown in Graeme_Swanns_Cat. If you saw his innings he did dominate after lunch scoring 80 odd from 120, SR 66.67.

  • POSTED BY Arvind3 on | November 5, 2010, 15:45 GMT

    Picking up a comment made by one of the commentators during the course of the game and writing an article about it is just cheap work. Get real and stop placing question marks after Dravid's name.

  • POSTED BY Arvind3 on | November 5, 2010, 15:44 GMT

    Picking up a comment made by one of the commentators during the course of the game and writing an article about it is just cheap work. Get real and stop placing question marks after Dravid's name.

  • POSTED BY siddharth_WC2011 on | November 5, 2010, 15:29 GMT

    Seriously people, stop commenting just because you want to bash Dravid's fans or Tendulkar's fans. Dravid and Tendulkar are both great cricketers and that should be left at that. This article by Harsha is a good piece and he is in no way undermining what Dravid has done for Indian cricket. So stop saying things out of context.

  • POSTED BY asadkum on | November 5, 2010, 15:14 GMT

    Mohammad Asad from USA...................................................................

    Harsha !!!! This is not a good one from you............................................... He has scored 100 on Day 1 . that's it ......... He is Dravid ... he does not need to prove anything.... he is a talent -- already proven !!!!!!!!!!!!

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 15:13 GMT

    Second post...Same year Dravid played Lanka at home and with back to back centuries his comeback, for lack of a better word, were sealed. However 2010 has been dry and with the inevitable around the corner, 2 years I hear you say, we want India's greatest student to retire high and not dry. Our heart's go out when he, who made school coach's task easy,struggles to spot a slow ball or reaches almost 4 ft away from his body, leaning forward to drive and fails. Statistically, utterly disappointing is his 2nd and 4th inning scores over the past 3 years. Ramachandra Guha mentions About "Good Guys finishing first", more apt I can't be for Dravid - although Guha himself left out Dravid in that list. Heroism deserves Dravid and not the other way round.

  • POSTED BY Nampally on | November 5, 2010, 15:13 GMT

    In Sehwag, Tendulkar, Dravid and Laxman India has 4 greatest batsmen of all time playing together. Each has a different style and between them cover the whole range of strokes. Reverse sweep may have been played for the first time by someone like Bradman but it was popularized by Tendulkar & Sehwag.Dravid got his 30th century while Sachin is aiming for his 50th. But Sehwag will reach the 35 centuries in his lifetime if he continues to play as long as Dravid or Sachin. Dravid is like vijay Hazare - blocks up one end. Sehwag destroys any attack in the world while Sachin is a mixture of both and VVS is a poetry in motion.Dravid played his typical innings at the average strike rate for him. He may have accelerated further if his innings continued. Sachin played below his test strike rate of 55 as did Laxman. Again these 2 batsmen accelerate as the innings goes on - which unfortunately ended at 40.Hopefully Dravid will be in the World XI for India this year to carry India to victory.

  • POSTED BY waspsting on | November 5, 2010, 15:08 GMT

    I haven't seen Dravid's run of bad form - so can't speak with authority. Generally speaking, however... it is the technically correct players who score well in their later years, while it is the brilliant players who score well when they're young (Tendulkar is both, thus accounting for his longetivity). Dravid is correct, bowling theses days (especially fast bowling) isn't too hot. (its fast bowling you tend to lose the ability to play as you get older).

    I reckon its confidence that's Dravid's problem, and if he can get it back - even against Bangladesh or New Zealand on flat wickets - and if he still has the motivation to keep going, he CAN CERTAINLY STILL PUT RUNS ON THE BOARD.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 15:08 GMT

    The sad part is The wall has to keep prooving himself, cricket is a funny game few bad scores and there are talks about retirement and hell what . Form is temporary and class is permanent this is what a lot of people dont seem to realize. Dravid , Sachin and laxman should be left on their own to decide when they want to call it a day. All this speculation of who should play or not fit to play should be kept to rest. This is the best pedigree of cricketers we have ,so enjoy it as along as it lasts

  • POSTED BY shashank.gujale on | November 5, 2010, 15:04 GMT

    Bernoulli's Principle eh?...Harsha's chemical engg. roots coming to fore...

    Analysis cannot go on eternally, can it? After so many years in international cricket...Dravid must score faster....if he could adapt in one-days why not in tests???

  • POSTED BY madsXI on | November 5, 2010, 14:56 GMT

    Harsha .. its time for u apologise or Quit ... Dont behave like a loud speaker for SG, RS & Co....I hope these 60 odd comments are enough for you realise that u have gone wrong this time

  • POSTED BY TestOfTime on | November 5, 2010, 14:56 GMT

    Harsha,you were a good writer with good insights of the game. But this article is just too disappointing. Dravid scored a century- not a duck. Why do u have a disappointing picture of him in the article? Pujara scored a 70 in the second innings, does that mean he can replace Dravid? Defies logic, eh? Sachin struggled at a strike rate of 35 today, i dont see anyone asking for his head. Laxman scored as slowly as Sachin, i dont see anyone asking for his head. Dhoni hasnt performed in more than 2 years as a batsman, how come no one has asked him to leave? Journalists should leave out their bias in writing.

  • POSTED BY jayapras on | November 5, 2010, 14:52 GMT

    Post Greg Chappell period, the feeling one gets is that Rahul Dravid is pretty much a loner in the team. Sachin, Dhoni, Zaheer, Gambhir, Harbhajan and to some extent even Sehwag seem to have distanced themselves from Rahul. Noting Rahul's good performances are sort of cursory. Let me take one example. Last year, both Sehwag and Gambhir were injured and did not play in the Sri Lanka One Day Series. The quintessential team player that Rahul is, he volunteered to open with Sachin. In the all important final, they added 95 odd and India went on to win the match and the series. Sachin praised all other performances without even once mentioning Rahul. Rahul has batted in all positions, incuding opening in tests. Remember the 410 run opening stand with Sehwag in Pakistan? He has kept wickets in World Cup '03. None of the other player have sacrificed even ten percent as much as Rahul. I hope this welcome return to form will silence everyone.

  • POSTED BY iamHari51 on | November 5, 2010, 14:50 GMT

    I think that kind of hundred can only scroed by dravid..no one can show the patience..and temperament whan you score just 17 facing 100 odd balls..hats off to his determination..

  • POSTED BY Wall_Master_Specialist on | November 5, 2010, 14:44 GMT

    Sam Prasad....well said....In this match Rahul batted better than it looks...

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 14:43 GMT

    In all off 2007, he hadn't scored a single match winning knock in ODI-hardly a fifty. He got dropped off the national captaincy and, surprisingly, the ODI team. Vengsarkar chose the 1st T20 WC team's heroics over backing an illustrious career. Dravid himself experimented, bravely as they suggest, to open the innings in Australia, his real muse. While his fans were utterly disappointed with his form, no one ever doubted his class. Then came the Mendis moment - unfortunately for Dravid once again wrong timing in the scheme of things. In 2008, India played the most number of test matches, I have observed, - 15 where Dravid's average fell from 56.5 [above Sachin's] to 52. His partisans from then on got so little on field cricket time of their legend that the expectations only, and naturally so, grew each time he made an appearance. 2009, Bhogle's "second wind" for Dravid did come when India traveled to NZ albeit the show stealer was Gambhir all through the calendar year. TBC...

  • POSTED BY AtlOcean on | November 5, 2010, 14:36 GMT

    After all Dravid scores a century and a huge partnership with Sehwag and he gets crictised for that??? Tell this to Vijay/Pujara/Any young players and they will take this 100 any time. Harsha you are Criticizing/ Underestimating a Test Century with this article. A dumb article.

  • POSTED BY MuraliBhat on | November 5, 2010, 14:30 GMT

    Dont worry Harsha.. people like you forced greats like Kumble ( look in to his performance in IPLs) and Dada out.. do we have any one who can fill shoe yet... answer is resounding no.. look at where is Australia today.. I think they will get beaten by gully cricketers now.. Days are not far away when India will be there as all these Rainas, Pujaras can not hold fort and keep ranking hard earned by these Old gentlemen (Like you and its time for you to retire). Lets have them as long as they can play in Tests and give Chaddi cricket like 2020 and 5050 to ur favorite youngsters

  • POSTED BY Venkie on | November 5, 2010, 14:22 GMT

    Great one, Harsha! Exactly what Dravid fans feel about the whole thing associated with the supposed 'loss of form'. Dravid, unlike Tendulkar got several raw deals during his career...was dropped and had to make a comeback; had to keep wickets to retain his place in the ODI side and so on and so forth....I believe that greatness achieved by surmounting hurdles is more laudable than that achieved without having to; even though, of course, one would still need to work hard enough for both.

  • POSTED BY MuraliBhat on | November 5, 2010, 14:16 GMT

    Harsha, your commentary & writing was so good, calm and fun to read, but you are like dried up river now. Time for you to retire. For all those who commented on Dravids run rate, pls check Sachin and Lax today. Both are great batsman. Each one of these four Shewag, Dravid, Sachin and Lax know how to play and pace their innings. And commentators like Harsha and useless cricinfo staff write nonsense day by day.. so pls commentators, self styled experts, retire and make way for young blood.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 14:11 GMT

    Dear Harsha This is an article where or you are more conscious of your diction than the cricket proceedings. The pitch as admitted by Sewag himself was not conducive for drive or stroke play in second or third session. What is wrong if he takes some time in building an innings like great artists take initially much time for painting a few hues. It is the final value of the product that counts. In that way it is as worthy contribution of signifiacance. you dont have to let loose your imagination. Pl. check up how many balls Sachin took to score 15 runs or even the aggressive Ross taylor consumed--The only cricket reason I could conceive was that the ball was not coming on to the bat. Of those analysis or reasoning or beyond the overrated analysts like you whose comments are often personality oriented. My only request is that you must spare veterans like Rahul, Laxman and Sachin from your advice or knee jerk reactions--They are best thinkers to study pitch or situation

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 14:10 GMT

    all hail RD. i wish he comes back to ODIs as well. Indian team needs his services to even dream for world cup ....

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 14:08 GMT

    gaithersburgma!!!

    That a great comment! Loved it

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 13:58 GMT

    Finally, a decent article on Dravid, paying tribute to a great cricketer while also analyzing why older star cricketers tend to feel less confident when aging.. The fact that Harsha brought out Sachin's figures in the mid2000s shows that he has not only done his homework, but also tried to be unbiased.

  • POSTED BY kulera on | November 5, 2010, 13:56 GMT

    jimbond

    i am totally amused at the fact you are taking a ride on harsha's article. comeon he is a great man, analyst and knows very well about the game. He has seen players playing for our country for more than a decade. You can't say like this easily !!!.. No harms anyway he knows much better than us...

  • POSTED BY Arvind3 on | November 5, 2010, 13:45 GMT

    Respectfully judging someone doesn't make what you are doing right. Leave the man alone. He clearly knows what he is doing. Indian cricket is what it is now because of players like Dravid.

    Time and time again, when a series is about to be played in the bouncy tracks of South Africa, its Dravid that comes to the rescue. I am sure its gonna be the case this time as well. I can't believe we are even analyzing his performance when all we got to do is watch, learn and admire his cricket.

  • POSTED BY Graeme_Swanns_Cat on | November 5, 2010, 13:38 GMT

    I know that Indians tend to overrate their players but the hype around Dravid on these boards is ridiculous. Greatest number 3 of all time? You're having a laugh. Bradman anyone? I've heard people calling him the best of all time. On what basis? He isn't even close to Ponting, let alone those on the all-time 11. Slowest player to 30 hundreds i'm guessing.

    Bhogle: It is not about young or old. I'm what you'd call old and don't rate defensive players when it comes to all time middle order greats. Scoring 100 in 280 balls when the ball is ziping around would be appreciated by all, including your younger audience but not on a 1st day wicket vs a poor attack. That is mediocrity. There are days when batsman just can't get it away and that is fair enough. However, it is a pattern with Dravid. He can't dominate attacks and hasn't at any time in 15 years. All his recent scores have been in easy conditions/vs lesser teams. Aus had him for lunch in '08 and '10, eng, sl and sa away as well.

  • POSTED BY SumitSahai on | November 5, 2010, 13:33 GMT

    RD's not a fashionable cricketer, admired when he does well, but never hero worshipped like Viru/SRT. Doesn't smile much, just puts his head down and does his job. Often, he is unjustly singled out for struggling while surrounded by geniuses who make it look so easy.Harsha's right that you need team/selectors' support during the lull if you are to get the 2nd wind. Rewind to Steve Waugh's last test in Sydney, as SRT played himself back into form from a long woeful lull with a slow joyless 200. Even after crossing 150, SRT didn't step up gears, unlike RD yesterday.Yet, there was no criticism, only admiration for his monk-like self denial (wow, no cover drives!). No one questioned that had SRT scored faster once past 150, we might have had an extra hour to bowl Oz out & win a historic series. But when someone like RD digs deep to recover the batsman lost within, we find it hard to be equally generous. Says more about us as fans than about RD & SRT, both equally irreplaceable jewels.

  • POSTED BY avis1001 on | November 5, 2010, 13:28 GMT

    Harsha - Do not write anything without purpose - Let the players play their own game and not get influenced by the journals.

  • POSTED BY arun_39 on | November 5, 2010, 13:20 GMT

    Heartening to see the kind of support Dravid is getting in most comments. Unwarranted scrutiny about him as always when he performs below his OWN HIGH STANDARDS. So what if he has averaged 39.00 in thje last 3 years? Are we confident that the available replacements (BTW all are very talented, nothing against them) will average even that much on all types of wickets against a host of countries? I don't think so. He is the kind of #3 that is needed when you have an opener like Sehwag.

  • POSTED BY sameer997 on | November 5, 2010, 13:10 GMT

    I hope dravid gets a second wind like sachin has and if this happens.There is a good chance for India to win almost every series in and out india in Test cricket.Nice analysis by Harsha and great thinking about what Dravid can do.

  • POSTED BY amit.agarwal on | November 5, 2010, 12:50 GMT

    what dravid has done yesterday: 1. shown that there are two gears in his armor 2. If he decides to wear out the attack; then GOD save the bowlers.

    hail dravid... vamos, good luck

  • POSTED BY indianxpres on | November 5, 2010, 12:47 GMT

    i don't say this is RD best 100, but considering his age and role #3 he did his job well on 1st day with a 230+ partnership with Sehwag.. i thing i can't understand is why RD strugle to find gaps & placements well and rotate the strike. waching dravid for so many years "as wall" i feel he is now strugling to find his rytham 100%.

  • POSTED BY Navillus on | November 5, 2010, 12:39 GMT

    Dravid - even when not at his best - is a difficult man to dislodge. He puts a price on his wicket - has been doing it ever since his debut. His talent is limited in comparison to the other big names of the team, but his determination to succeed, cricketing intelligence keeps him going - at the peak to the position of the best batsman in the world, and in uncertain times, a dependable player in the least. Indians are not used to efficient but not phenomenally talented heroes as has been metioned here http://senantixtwentytwoyards.blogspot.com/2010/10/i-like-whatever-has-been-posted-on-this.html . They like superstars. Dravid's strongpoint is knowing his limitations, playing within them, and slowly taking his game higher by notches. He will find a way out of whatever patch he gets into. Have faith.

  • POSTED BY jimbond on | November 5, 2010, 12:36 GMT

    Nothing is wrong with Dravid. I think Harsha is struggling for ideas, time for Harsha to call it a day. Once upon a time his fluency as a commentrator was a joy to watch. Now he seems to be labouring with his words. Bye bye harsha

  • POSTED BY bbpp on | November 5, 2010, 12:33 GMT

    Dravid is one of India's greatest bastmen ever, more critical even than Sachin in determining outcomes of a number of matches, especially overseas. It would be sad, though, to see him pushed rather than leave on his own terms.

    What about Sachin though? Can you imagine Ponting or Lara or Viv playing for the number 1 team in the world going out to bat with the score at 300 for 2 and scoring 40 off 130 balls against one of the weakest teams in world cricket? That is my only issue with Sachin as one of the greatest ever....his failure to take a game completely away from the opposition consistently......

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 12:22 GMT

    South African series will be the decider...and I fear he will be exposed

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 12:22 GMT

    lol, this is such a stupid article!!! Seriously! Did Dravid not just score a 100 in a game in the 1st innings?

    As a Pakistani, feel free to send him our way if you guys dont want a batsman who can score a 100 on day 1.

    Last time I checked, you dont have a RRR on day 1 in a test match.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 12:17 GMT

    If you have noticed, Dravid's first few runs in most of his innings will come in singles. He is not the kind of batsmen who can find the boundary right from the word go. But yesterday Sehwag wasn't responding to quick singles like he usually does due to his discomfort, that is one of the reasons for his slow strike rate and today we saw how SRT and VVS found it difficult too. If Pujara deserves a place for the innings he played in Blore, RD deserves to be in the team for another decade after this innings. We should wait for SRT, RD and VVS to call it quits by themselves!! No one in India, as of now, is capable of replacing even one of them.....DOT

  • POSTED BY gaithersburgman on | November 5, 2010, 12:17 GMT

    India is in an enviable position of being No: 1 in Test cricket. They did not get there by accident. The Team was built around stalwarts like Dravid, Kumble, Ganguly, Tendulkar, Laxman etc. These stalwarts provided the foundation and its stability, so that others like Sehwag, Gambhir, Dhoni, Harbhajan, Zaheer could grow & provide the zest and the zeal to make the Team complete. The coaches and the managers had a lot to do with India's success. Perhaps as a fan with a very short memory, cannot fathom or analyze how India got there, tend to talk more about strike-rates and averages of just the past 12 months. You cannot ascend the mountain in 12 months, but certainly can fall to its depths in minutes. Just look at the neighbors. Harsha you quoted a very important fact: Its not the skills, but the confidence that wanes. We must revere the likes of Dravid, not after they are gone, but while they can help the younger cast of players to grow. We must talk about them respectfully.

  • POSTED BY tuk-tuk-11 on | November 5, 2010, 11:56 GMT

    i don't understand this bias towards Dravid he has been there for long enough and proved to the world what he is, u don judge a test cricketer based on his strike rate and so much said about the next generation of indian cricketers how many will stand up and deliver in the tracks outside india rather than the flat tracks of the subcontinent? spare Dravid he has worked hard enough and let him bow out when he desires.

  • POSTED BY kulera on | November 5, 2010, 11:42 GMT

    Dravid should make way for youngsters. As a player no one can question hjis commitment to present structure. But still there are so many waiting at the footsteps in indian international cricket. Sachin's case is different given his present form, he can happily go for a one year free-flow ride. Despite his century he lacked confidence. Everything will become clear once the world cup gets over. It's time for the likes of Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane amongst others to get their due.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 11:20 GMT

    I am amzed by the bias of the Indian media towards a great player like Dravid. Sorry to say Mr. Bhogle, I did not expect this from you. I have been a great fan of Dravid, for his work ethics, attitude, dedication and team spirit. He is a very good batsman who has been troubled more by the press (Indian) than any other bowler in this world. Media likes Tendulkar for reviving the Indian cricket and most of the rest for providing more spicy news than their cricket contributions. Dravid did not provide any spicy news to the press people, no controversial statements, no arguments, did not point fingers at others, never showed his disappointments openly (even when he gave up his captaincy). So may be the media got so frustrated by not getting what they wanted and showing it this way. Yesterday every one jumped on to critisize Dravid. Today look at the scoreboard. Your beloved Tendulakar's strike rate is nearly 30/100 balls. So where are your fingers now?

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 11:01 GMT

    Its true what Ganguly said about cricketers to an extent but for media persons it apply 100% that when they pass 40 they loss their memory and belive in more sensational stories otherwise no body will litsen to them or read them. Same happenning with Harsha. God bless you Harsha.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 10:57 GMT

    Most of the times, as far as RDs batting is concerned, its all about building good partnership, that has been his main focus thought his career. I see no reason why RDs approach today was as bad as made out to be, especially when Sehwag was going great at other end..I'm sure person of RD stature wud put team interest first than his own. Guess many a times RD didn't care his ODI batting position that too when he was Captaining side.

  • POSTED BY ZA77 on | November 5, 2010, 10:56 GMT

    It is very difficult to judge the actual difference between Tendulkar and Dravid. Dravid runs per inning is 46.8 as compare to Tendulkar 50.8 in test cricket so actual difference is only four but Dravid is proving himself at most crucial position that is no. 3. Dravid AVERAGE is better at overseas than homeland is another advantage to him. I think he is blocker plus anchor in batting like 82 times century partnerships then 15 time double hundred partnerships as he has ability to build inning in favour of team. Dravid average is 70 in America and in Eurpe 65.35, amazing! Dravid also has another advantage atleast batting average 45 in all continents Asia 49.7, Africa 46.6 and Oceania 54.3 which is not case of Tendulkar as his average in Africa is less than 40 but in Asia more than 60. Else Tendulkar maintained batting average 60.6 as compare him 41.1 against Australia. I think Dravid is underrated batsman as I think he is atleast better than Ponting, unable to play spinners Asia.

  • POSTED BY rahulvnair on | November 5, 2010, 10:54 GMT

    whao, where was our young and talented middle order today . way to go Dravid, Love to see u kill the ball and the bowler's heart with that defence. U are the only 'Mr Dependable' no matter this so called form is there or not

  • POSTED BY bkraks21 on | November 5, 2010, 10:45 GMT

    @shrikanthk - all records are meant to be broken too.

  • POSTED BY bkraks21 on | November 5, 2010, 10:43 GMT

    @Razor88 - I think ppl from tamilnadu are promoting Badri like he is a god of batting. Pujara is much better batsman.

  • POSTED BY Paddle_Sweep on | November 5, 2010, 10:16 GMT

    Well..well..well, lemme take you to a flashback article.

    http://www.cricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/444039.html?comments=all#comments

    Revisit your future 11 and let us know how many of these are still worthy of presence in that 11. You seem to have a very short memory.

    Cheers

  • POSTED BY Emancipator007 on | November 5, 2010, 9:04 GMT

    2.are rarely gifted and that's where he is struggling to help his team, despite the 100. I was the happiest when Pujara (no one is attempting to compare a talented greenhorn at this stage with proven stalwarts in the same way no one dared to equate Tendulkar to Gavaskar despite the obvious potential of Tend and Pujara at respective stages of their early careers- of course SRT was a world-beating prodigious talent) came to bat at no. 3 in Bangalore as a typical Dravid innings of recent vintage might have led to a Mohali-like nail-biting victory. Gavaskar and Lara were still at their best when they retired whereas Viv Richards, Dilip Vengsarkar, Hayden, Gilchrist's games had clearly deteriorated by the time they were ousted/forced out. 3 years back I had mentioned that Sehwag along with Tendulkar and Dravid had earned the right to retire from Tests on his own volition so high impact and overwhelming has been his value. 3rd comment published earlier due to some issues with cricinfo

  • POSTED BY ABP235 on | November 5, 2010, 9:03 GMT

    Harsha, you said a few things too early. If you had waited for a day more, you would have seen how the '3 meter wide' bat of Sachin struggled or how the great wrists of Laxman failed, ending with a strike rate lower than Dravid. Dravid gets low ratings for his dour play, mainly because he bats around super strikers like Sehwag. The fact that is ignored is how Dravid comes out of his trough and converts some difficulties into glories, as he did with a century yesterday. People also ignore the big partnerships that he builds with his solidity on one end that gives assurance to the stroke players on the other. Yes i do agree that Dravid may be aware, or may have been told by the Board, that he will have to hang his boots early in 2011, soon after the SA tour. I made this assessment after seeing him struggle in the Bangalore test against Aussies. The board may want to give him a formal send off than suddenly dropping him from the team. However, he is still highly valuable for Team India.

  • POSTED BY Emancipator007 on | November 5, 2010, 9:02 GMT

    1. Precisely what I have been saying for the past three years about RD's value-less runs for the Test cause. Due to his near watertight technique (chinks are visible though against better quality attacks ready to hustle and probe) and utmost determination bordering on cussedness, Dravid can still last all 100 overs in 2 ODI innings in a day and for hours in any Test (even till the age of 40 if need be). But at what value in terms of impact (and decisiveness in ODIs) to the team cause. Manjrekar was playing in much the same manner on the 1991-92 OZ tour. Chris Tavare spent almost his entire career playing like that. Decades ago Boycott was dropped for just staying at the crease at the cost of runs. Sehwag was CLEARLY on course to reach 250 plus for the day which would have totally swung the match India's way but was denied the strike regularly and lost momentum quite often. It's not that Dravid is not in form as his recent IPL/CL league returns would attest, just that Test runs CONTD.

  • POSTED BY leslie_alo on | November 5, 2010, 8:58 GMT

    I would not say Harsha analyzed his game to a nicety. What Dravid has done yesterday is that he has gone back to the basics, played the game session by session, played like a number 3 who wears the shine off the ball, wore off the bowlers, until when he cut down his shots. The mettle and calibre of players like Dravid come to the fore when India plays in spongy wickets - we will the players who flourish in sub-continent wickets horning their skills in fishing. If somebody spent some time to analyze the root cause, it is anybody's guess that Dravid is equipped with too many shots in his anvil due to his involvement in T20s which makes him fish for balls which he used to comfortable leave. Now he is playing too much T20 that he is too tempted to leave. To avoid all this dont we need to introduce a system wherein we tell some players like Dravids and Pujaras that they're to play the longer version only - and they will stick to that provided returns from the game are equally tempting!

  • POSTED BY Razor88 on | November 5, 2010, 8:47 GMT

    Harsha.... love the Passage,especially the second Half.... But you are Forgetting someone who has been in thick of things like Dravid,and that would be Badri :D. Though he is just a Domestic player,the wind seems to blow only in one Direction,which is "Runs" :D plz give an article,i think no one has given importance to him :|

  • POSTED BY shrikanthk on | November 5, 2010, 8:34 GMT

    Few batsmen are as prolific once past their mid thirties as they were at the peak of their careers. Even if they do manage to score heavily, they probably do so by cutting down on their range of strokes and being more circumspect. Even Bradman is not an exception to this rule. So why do we expect Dravid to be an exception.

    Nice piece. Though I find your analogy between the 4minute mile and Bradman's 29 centuries somewhat misplaced. The 4 minute mile was always a record meant to be broken, given that modern athletes train harder and probably ruminate more on breaking records than athletes of yesteryear.

    Bradman's 29 centuries is a record that cannot possibly be broken. It can be broken only if someone can pass that figure in 80 Test match innings. Truly a freakish career in the history of ballgames.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 8:20 GMT

    For those who commented about the strike rate of Dravid in his innings, plz check the strike rates of Tendulkar and VVS today. That suggets the pitch and conditions in the early hrs of the game.. Learn to appreciate the class acts.. Keep goin Rahul.. U rock..

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 8:17 GMT

    dravid should be apart of the world cup team

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 8:12 GMT

    Well..not sure whether this century is the beginning of the purple patch harsha is talking about..but like millions of indians i would love to see him scoring like the way he did till 2007...!! he is a true legend..in form <<tendulkar+sehwag+dravid+laxman>>...beat this indian team if you can.

  • POSTED BY kabe_ag7 on | November 5, 2010, 8:12 GMT

    His body language also seems as if he is tense and thinking about performing alone all the time. While that shows his determination, yet it really isn't a pretty sight. But today's middle order collapse should once again prove the value of his work. His detractors yesterday, for his slow scoring initially, can perhaps put things in perspective now and realise the value.

  • POSTED BY Iftekharul_Hasan_Siam on | November 5, 2010, 8:07 GMT

    i don't expect rahul dravid to have another ranaissance like sachin. what i want from him is, to return in form & regularly score runs. moreover, i will love to see him batting the way he batted last year, much aggresively.

  • POSTED BY NagarajaG on | November 5, 2010, 7:55 GMT

    Four points in favour of Dravid - 1. Dravid is a must for the world cup ODI squad - look at freak batting and bowling performances in the recent SA-Pak and Aus-SL series! Anybody can produce a quality bowling attack on his day and our batsmen should be capable of facing such quality bowling attack! 2. Don't jump into conclusion about emerging players based on short-term performances! Learn lessons from what happened to Kumble! We were ready to drop him in favour of Amit Misra based on one performance and forced him to retire hurriedly! Going by his IPL performances, even today, Kumble could have contributed greatly towards winning the world cup. 3. Dravid has fought like a warrior for the Indian cricket team and must get recognition and the treatment that a great player deserves. Don't put him under scanner in every innings and question him even when he succeeds. 4. Transition from Dravid to younger generation has to happen smoothly, with the new generation learning from him.

  • POSTED BY CricketAbhimani on | November 5, 2010, 7:55 GMT

    I agree that Dravid took a long time to settle down. I feel he is perfectly justified in doing that. And why not? Anybody in any field would look for a long career in the office. So's Dravid! He knew he's going thro' a lean patch, so he stuck to his task, saved his wicket first, and then went about getting runs. He's a lot like Tendulkar, who looks at the big picture, the overall picture. So what Dravid would like people to see is the his strike-rate when he got out was 45. Tendulkar's rate is 30 and Laxman's is 38 for this innings. Dravid knows he'll stay in the team if he's contributing, so he planned his innings very professionally - which is just right. Don't look at Sehwag's innings, who's just too aggressive and different and to whom the pitch, the conditions or the opposition doesn't matter! Dravid may be the key player when we play SA in their backyard. People give up their postions for youngsters when they are over the hill. So will he, but for now, let him play!

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 7:28 GMT

    Dravid is always a true champion. He is just in a phase where he started to believe in himself that he is far more better then many youngsters. Everyone goes through this phase. As a champion he knows how to come out of it. The Great Wall of India cannot be breached.

  • POSTED BY passion4indiancric on | November 5, 2010, 7:02 GMT

    Thanks Harsha, unlike others whose main purpose in life seemed like Dravid bashing. Today Sachin, Lakshman and Raina got out in a jiffy and not that Sachin and Lax were scoring like Sehwag. Agreed Dravid had 2 lives and Sehwag 3, but if those 2 had not played like they played yesterday, India would have been in the same position NZ was against Bangladesh. Yes, it has always been everyone else who hogs the limelight, except Dravid all these years, but guys remember Ganguly would not have been successful without Dravid being his best on all occasions. I still remember Vengsarkar went to England to spoil whatever happiness Dravid had till then. Allow Dravid to be himself instead of baying for his blood, you kicked him out of ODI's and brought in guys who did not know how to play a rising ball. You have toyed with him as a Keeper, opener to low down, what more do you want a silent chap to do, would you dare do the same to Sachin. No way he is so well supported by Pawars and Vengsarkars

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 6:54 GMT

    Awesome piece Harsha....Well said!!/...The winds of change are about to blow!!..The Insurmountable,rock solid,Great-Indian Wall is Back in Business ,Back in action and Back in charge...That artistic piece of mastery which he used to wield in his Masterful days,Those dancing legs which moved relentlessly when he cut and pull,Those venerable eyes ever soo keen,ever taking guard...they are back...This means Big Runs and Bigger Victories for India,,,,......only one thing to say...THE WALL IS BACK!!!!!!!!!!

  • POSTED BY SupernDutta on | November 5, 2010, 6:53 GMT

    Dravid is among the TOP 3 world class Test playing batsman.His temperament is simply mindblowing.He is just like tiger..He makes the bowlers tired to hell and then he attacks just the way a tiger catches his pray..30 TON's proves his class.

  • POSTED BY mesh123 on | November 5, 2010, 6:52 GMT

    the stat of this game

    runs score vs strike rate

    R Dravid 104 45.81 SR Tendulkar 40 30.07 VVS Laxman 40 38.09 SK Raina 3 15.78

    the in form batsmen, tendulkar and laxman are struggling to score runs in batting pitch, then you can't doubt about the dravid's SR. he is better and score more than them, and came on position 3, and faced the pressure of bowlers when team were 70 runs.

    sachin and laxman came when the team already reached 300, with less pressure on team.

  • POSTED BY hoipolloi on | November 5, 2010, 6:49 GMT

    Looks like all the folks who were calling for Dravid's head earlier are going be eating humble pie stuffed with crow and a big side of sorry. Dravid came up with a gritty knock. Yes, he took 100 balls for the first 20, but he took charge after that, especially crucial when Sehwag was getting tired. And now look at the score. Tendulkar, Raina, Laxman all back in the pavillion. And if Dhoni doesn't make runs no one will say a word. Because he's a wicketkeeper and a captain. And you know he must have really strained himself winning the toss. Gambhir has been out of sorts also, but I don't see the folks at Cricinfo dissecting him. And mind you, Tendulkar made 26 runs in 100 balls, but no one is pointing fingers at him. I'm not asking people to take a go at Gambhir or Tendulkar; I'm just asking people to stop criticizing Dravid so much. It's getting old. Those "younger, more irreverent, observers...calling for his head" don't deserve a mention and Dravid doesn't need to answer to them.

  • POSTED BY Cricket__sri on | November 5, 2010, 6:40 GMT

    Dravid is such a gr8 player and yes he has been thro a puple patch n tht doesn't make him any less ..nd now he's bck

  • POSTED BY NagarajaG on | November 5, 2010, 6:39 GMT

    Watch the strike rates of Tendulkar, Laxman and Raina today and all questions about Dravid's batting will be answered. As one viewer sent a comment to Cricinfo's live commentary, don't judge a pitch based on how Sehwag bats on it!!

  • POSTED BY Emancipator007 on | November 5, 2010, 6:37 GMT

    But if India's second greatest ODI player Ganguly was not allowed to retire from ODIs on his own terms by Dhoni (because of the perceived lack of value of the volume of runs scored by him in the latter half of 2007), then the same can be said about the 3rd greatest Indian Test batsman after Gavaskar and Tendulkar -about RD's place in the Test team till maybe after the SA tour.

  • POSTED BY rohanahuja on | November 5, 2010, 6:34 GMT

    Dravid was slow,but,who cares as long as he got a century!Super in the end though!From 16 of 100 deliveries he made 104 and ended with a strike rate of 45!This means from a strike rate of 16 it went 45!

  • POSTED BY TATTUs on | November 5, 2010, 6:27 GMT

    Harsha, these days your articles are like 'jumping the gun'. Quality is not the same.

  • POSTED BY HarishVS on | November 5, 2010, 6:25 GMT

    As we saw in the first session of the play today, pitch was too slow and unsuitable for bang bang cricket or such. It is a flat track and NZ bowling is not as threatening as some Marshall or Saqlain Mushtaq running in to decimate Indian Batsmen. Even Tendulkar and Laxman and others took a while to get into double figures and strike rates of any were not better than 30 run mark. I think too much is written about Dravid for his retirement taking the strike rate in this ground. Sehwag is totally a different batsman and I would say he is an All Time great opening batsman in the World XI for any era, past, present or future! Taking the parameter of run rate or anything such of Sehwag's with Dravid's and phrase out retirement plans of Dravid is totally foolish. 392/6 at lunch, Dravid's century (of course the World's All Time best opening batsman Sehwag's) is just enough to show the class of Dravid and his commitment to Indian cricket for ever! He knows when to quit! Hasha please wait!

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 6:17 GMT

    Moreover ,Dravid hasnt changed his style a bit. Look at the current test. Dravid allowed Shewag to play his natural game and wasnt carried away with the firework at the other end. Lot of people felt he is so slow but he made it up when shewag was getting tired. This simple logic of playing for the team is not emulated by many and the result.. look at the current situation we may not get to 500.

  • POSTED BY akmforfun on | November 5, 2010, 6:17 GMT

    Harsha, although I am great fan of your writing but your article is ahead of time. Judge Dravid after South Africa Series. So called wonderful new talent will be blown away by african winds of Steyn and Morkel. Tendulkar and laxman scored at the strike rate of 30 and 38 respectively. I suggest cricinfo stat team to publish stat of fab 4 batting contribution in Test match win, draw and for loosing cause. The Issue who helped India win more matches will be clear.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 6:16 GMT

    a beautiful article i guess u r right harsha....it's tht age which brings in fear cos if u see against sl dravid was out 2 times to the lbw decision where he angled his pad trying to cross hit a ball ....and against aus it was the wide off side deliveries so i suppose it's all in the mind so once he sorts tht out bet he'll be the one to be feared yet again then....his 100 yesterday was pure test class style building his innings and then once he got in he strted accelerating so tht was a pure treat to see....unlucky he got out bu thnks to an inside edge which won't be harming him much in his mind so lets hope he continues from this 100 to much better things always with u dravid forever :)

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 6:13 GMT

    Looking at the strike rate and success of the others on this slow track, it puts both these centuries in perspective. Sehwag makes a minefield look like a paradise, and Rahul makes runs on minefields and paradises in a similar way. I never like to comment on innings mid-way thru a match. Let us wait and see how the rest of the batsman fare and we will know what significance this innings has on his career (and match)

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 6:13 GMT

    I think India has a good substitute of Dravid i.e Pujara.... and India should give him chance ahead of Dravid so that he could play with Sachin and gain valueable tips while at the middle of wicket... un like Pakistan who kick out all their senior players once at all and no one is available to guide youngestar.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 6:11 GMT

    Nice piece of thought by Harsha.All players are aware of their mortality @ one stage of their career.Dravid is trying hard to safeguard himself and by doing that he is giving opportunity to the opposition to attack @ him. The point I would emphasize is he is not enjoying the game at all rather too much thinking is taking him away from the joy of playing. I hope this ton boosts his morale and made him enjoy the game. @@@@ Happy Diwali to all readers

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 5:51 GMT

    Dravid has been the unsung hero...the most reliable in the Indian team...he earned the name "THE WALL" not by any slice of luck...His play stayed the same, if compared to his entry to international arena...that Dravid we saw over the 96 is the same one we are seeing now....the only matter in the recent past is, he being in two minds..whether to go and attack..or play his natural game might appear him to be more prone to get out. But not very long ago he played a gem to save India from blushes of 32/4 to a formidable total with his 177. He was and certainly India's crisis man...

    Who will you wish to be in crease for..when they have to bat out 4 sessions to save a test match or chase 600.. The WALL or some flamboyent batsmen? Its obviously Dravid, Mr.Dependable

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 5:48 GMT

    I agree completely. I really hope the second wind does stir for Dravid, the way it did for Sachin. For that would give us the privilege of witnessing an artist in test cricket for a year or two more.

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 5:32 GMT

    (contd...) Average is something which we consider only a considerable time, a considerable number of innings. In this case, I would tell, any assessment must be done not before the end of the series. (At the best, two more innings and at the worst, four more) for Dravid as well as the rest of the team, will tell how good or bad Dravid's form is currently. Let's wait until then (Fans, watchers and observers too need temperament and patience.. This is TEST CRICKET :-) )

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 5:28 GMT

    As always, very well written. Agree with the point conveyed about over doing the analysis part. But But But. I just wish you waited for the test match to end , or at least waited for a day more. But being in IT, I could empathize with you Harsha. You have deadlines to meet too :-). Nevertheless, on a serious note,the pitch is getting really difficult to bat on. For Sehwag though, he always bats on a different pitch. Apart from the self developed weakness for Left arm fast/fast medium bowlers of late - may be because of intensive self-analysis - I do not see any kind of problem with THE WALL. A look at the way Sachin and Laxman - people who have better strike rates than Rahul - are scoring today tells us how the pitch has really been behaving, slow and really low.. So low that a Ducking Dravid got hit on shoulder first before the getting it on the grill of the helmet. (to be contd...)

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 5:23 GMT

    Well written Harsha, as always :) Surprising to hear so many ppl baying for his removal coz of a lean patch of 6 matches. Kolkata (twice), Adelaide, Rawalpindi, Leeds, Jamaica, Johannesburg. All da greatest test victories of da last decade were scripted by him. He opened, kept wickets, stood at short-leg in tests wen even Sachin, Saurav, Laxman refused to do it. Da greatest team-man n selfless cricketer India has ever produced

  • POSTED BY itzvinay on | November 5, 2010, 5:00 GMT

    Bernoulli's Principle...lol...nice one..

  • POSTED BY Analytical_Sathya on | November 5, 2010, 5:00 GMT

    No Harsha, Dravid's style has always been to take some time initially to get used to the conditions and then accelerating.But if he gets any balls he hits them,even if it is the first ball that he is facing.He is a master in building the innings,playing according to the situations and playing the waiting game.I'm sure if all the batsmen decide not to go for the arial shot then Rahul Dravid has the best chance of outscoring everyone interms of strike rate mainly because the margin of error for a bowler is minimum when bowling to him.It is mainly because he is a flexible allround batsman with every stroke perfectly in his book.

  • POSTED BY madsXI on | November 5, 2010, 4:55 GMT

    Harsha.. We know you like this great cricketer. But are you playing for the gallery. I heard a news reader on a news channel commenting that even Dravid managed a century. That is for there living. But Harsha Bhogle we know understands cricket. Give the man his space yaar. His century would have become a masterpiece if any of the Sehwag's short had landed in the feilders hand. Today Sachin is also very cautious. But you will call it an innings to guide India to Win-Win zone.

    The only mistake on Dravid's part is that he has been playing for a country where Melodrama pays more than the deed. And he plays in front of "experts' who feel that great cricketers can originate only from a particular region and one of them praises Sachin to such an height so that the people will brand the particular expert as the next best. His deeds have been exposed.. please wait many more skeltons will roll out. At that hour India will recognise the real hero.

  • POSTED BY AndyVine on | November 5, 2010, 4:55 GMT

    for all the dravid bashers, without slightest of slightest offence to sachin, there is not much difference as to how dravid batted yesterday & sachin is batting today (first 100 balls)... why all that hoopla abt dravid's head for someone else???

  • POSTED BY Cricket__sri on | November 5, 2010, 4:45 GMT

    Dravid is such a gr8 player and yes he has been thro a puple patch n tht doesn't make him any less ..Hope Dravid utilises diz b4

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 4:26 GMT

    I sincerely hope that Rahul follows suit with Tendulkar's amazing rebirth. He has been a genuine pleasure to watch for many years and hopefully many more.

  • POSTED BY Narbavi on | November 5, 2010, 4:25 GMT

    he is back at his best and he played a typical rahul dravid innings....a test 100 off 220 deliveries....if he is fit enough then probably he should play in the world cup....if sachin can play at 37 so can the great wall of indian cricket...

  • POSTED BY Nayeem_Kohir on | November 5, 2010, 4:13 GMT

    It is pity to see Dravid struggle for the past two years. He is a great test batsman, but of late he has become a liability rather than an asset he was to the test team. I do not know how can his place be justified in the team. He should quit gracefully after the South Africa series. Tendulkar should also retire after the World cup, but as he is playing for records, I do not know what milestones he is having in mind. I think Dravid is following the footsteps of Tendulkar who is playing only for records and do not miss the series against the minnows like Bangladesh. It is a high time someone like Pujara, Rohit Sharma, Kaif, or even Wasim Jaffer should be drafted in for Dravid. Rohit Sharma should also be given a chance in tests. He might have failed in some one day matches, but he is as much talented as any of these senior cricketers in the Indian team.

  • POSTED BY QingdaoXI on | November 5, 2010, 4:08 GMT

    I cant say it is a second wind, becuase he was never out of the first wind as he was still averaging 39.00 this year. as our indian tendency is that out star batsmen should always score a big runs but such patches are them for all yea to sachin, sehwag, ganguly, Zaheer and now it was turn of dravid, gambhir, bhajji. So dont bother the man again will be available for minimum next 20-25 test matches before annocing his super-annuation. Best of luck to dravid for present series of Nz and tours of South africa, West indies, England and australia. After whichever series happens in india, and dravid thinks it is a nice to annouce the super annuation than he can think but if he thinks in another way he should be give a chance to play because players like tendulkar and dravid Know very well when they have to go as Ganguly and Kumble.

  • POSTED BY sachinrt200 on | November 5, 2010, 4:08 GMT

    Yet again a very interesting article by Harsha! But, I personally do not agree to a few points in the article where a comparison is being made to Sachin Tendulkar. Sachin's form dipped for about three years and this was mainly attributed to injuries more than anything else. Even during his dip in form, he was winning an occasional match for India. If you see Dravid's statistics in the last three years, there is a lot of difference in his average with respect to the scoreboard when he comes into bat. He has miserably failed whenever he has come in to bat when the score card read less than 20. Sachin has proved to the world that it takes something to stay at the top even after 20 years. Sure, Dravid, Ganguly, Kumble and Laxman are legends of Indian criket. But in no way can be compared in any aspect to the immortal SACHIN RAMESH TENDULKAR!!

  • POSTED BY Rambaby on | November 5, 2010, 4:04 GMT

    I hate when people start questioning Dravid. Just coz he's been quiet and not boasting about how he is disgusted about being left alone, like Yuvraj did a few days back. Dravid has almost never got his share of appreciation may be because of his luck of being born around Sachin Tendulkar. If you watch Laxman he has not scored too many runs either. Just because he won us a test match with Ishant should not screen him from criticism, if Dravid is being questioned. Not everyone can be Sehwag and I suggest that we should give Dravid some time. We did that to Sachin during his lean period and look where he is now. If not in the one day team, (which i feel that Dravid shud be included coz the way our middle order plays, we wont even go through the 2nd round of the world cup), atleast givre him time in the Test Team. Support your Heroes. Dont force them out. Raina or for that matter no one can replace Dravid. Keeping in mind this fact one should let him be.

  • POSTED BY vaidyar on | November 5, 2010, 3:34 GMT

    Great article as always. Am with you on this. I hope its another wind. Might not give him a couple of years, but can at least let him go out on a high. Considering the amount of test cricket to be played next year by India, I doubt he'll hang on much. I hope he gets to 12000 runs and can call it quits on his terms, on a high. I would hate to be put through another bad patch hoping and praying he comes through good again!

  • POSTED BY Gulshan_Grover on | November 5, 2010, 3:29 GMT

    He is a great batsman and an Indian treasure we all love but he is way past his sell date....he should go now so we can induct younger players one by one, otherwise all the men of the golden generation will be gone at once in couple years time (Sachin, Laxman etc.) and we will be left holding the bucket just like Australia.

  • POSTED BY AndyVine on | November 5, 2010, 3:27 GMT

    there might have been cracks on the wall, still it is intact... but then again a concrete wall is bound to have some cracks after 14 years...

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  • POSTED BY AndyVine on | November 5, 2010, 3:27 GMT

    there might have been cracks on the wall, still it is intact... but then again a concrete wall is bound to have some cracks after 14 years...

  • POSTED BY Gulshan_Grover on | November 5, 2010, 3:29 GMT

    He is a great batsman and an Indian treasure we all love but he is way past his sell date....he should go now so we can induct younger players one by one, otherwise all the men of the golden generation will be gone at once in couple years time (Sachin, Laxman etc.) and we will be left holding the bucket just like Australia.

  • POSTED BY vaidyar on | November 5, 2010, 3:34 GMT

    Great article as always. Am with you on this. I hope its another wind. Might not give him a couple of years, but can at least let him go out on a high. Considering the amount of test cricket to be played next year by India, I doubt he'll hang on much. I hope he gets to 12000 runs and can call it quits on his terms, on a high. I would hate to be put through another bad patch hoping and praying he comes through good again!

  • POSTED BY Rambaby on | November 5, 2010, 4:04 GMT

    I hate when people start questioning Dravid. Just coz he's been quiet and not boasting about how he is disgusted about being left alone, like Yuvraj did a few days back. Dravid has almost never got his share of appreciation may be because of his luck of being born around Sachin Tendulkar. If you watch Laxman he has not scored too many runs either. Just because he won us a test match with Ishant should not screen him from criticism, if Dravid is being questioned. Not everyone can be Sehwag and I suggest that we should give Dravid some time. We did that to Sachin during his lean period and look where he is now. If not in the one day team, (which i feel that Dravid shud be included coz the way our middle order plays, we wont even go through the 2nd round of the world cup), atleast givre him time in the Test Team. Support your Heroes. Dont force them out. Raina or for that matter no one can replace Dravid. Keeping in mind this fact one should let him be.

  • POSTED BY sachinrt200 on | November 5, 2010, 4:08 GMT

    Yet again a very interesting article by Harsha! But, I personally do not agree to a few points in the article where a comparison is being made to Sachin Tendulkar. Sachin's form dipped for about three years and this was mainly attributed to injuries more than anything else. Even during his dip in form, he was winning an occasional match for India. If you see Dravid's statistics in the last three years, there is a lot of difference in his average with respect to the scoreboard when he comes into bat. He has miserably failed whenever he has come in to bat when the score card read less than 20. Sachin has proved to the world that it takes something to stay at the top even after 20 years. Sure, Dravid, Ganguly, Kumble and Laxman are legends of Indian criket. But in no way can be compared in any aspect to the immortal SACHIN RAMESH TENDULKAR!!

  • POSTED BY QingdaoXI on | November 5, 2010, 4:08 GMT

    I cant say it is a second wind, becuase he was never out of the first wind as he was still averaging 39.00 this year. as our indian tendency is that out star batsmen should always score a big runs but such patches are them for all yea to sachin, sehwag, ganguly, Zaheer and now it was turn of dravid, gambhir, bhajji. So dont bother the man again will be available for minimum next 20-25 test matches before annocing his super-annuation. Best of luck to dravid for present series of Nz and tours of South africa, West indies, England and australia. After whichever series happens in india, and dravid thinks it is a nice to annouce the super annuation than he can think but if he thinks in another way he should be give a chance to play because players like tendulkar and dravid Know very well when they have to go as Ganguly and Kumble.

  • POSTED BY Nayeem_Kohir on | November 5, 2010, 4:13 GMT

    It is pity to see Dravid struggle for the past two years. He is a great test batsman, but of late he has become a liability rather than an asset he was to the test team. I do not know how can his place be justified in the team. He should quit gracefully after the South Africa series. Tendulkar should also retire after the World cup, but as he is playing for records, I do not know what milestones he is having in mind. I think Dravid is following the footsteps of Tendulkar who is playing only for records and do not miss the series against the minnows like Bangladesh. It is a high time someone like Pujara, Rohit Sharma, Kaif, or even Wasim Jaffer should be drafted in for Dravid. Rohit Sharma should also be given a chance in tests. He might have failed in some one day matches, but he is as much talented as any of these senior cricketers in the Indian team.

  • POSTED BY Narbavi on | November 5, 2010, 4:25 GMT

    he is back at his best and he played a typical rahul dravid innings....a test 100 off 220 deliveries....if he is fit enough then probably he should play in the world cup....if sachin can play at 37 so can the great wall of indian cricket...

  • POSTED BY on | November 5, 2010, 4:26 GMT

    I sincerely hope that Rahul follows suit with Tendulkar's amazing rebirth. He has been a genuine pleasure to watch for many years and hopefully many more.

  • POSTED BY Cricket__sri on | November 5, 2010, 4:45 GMT

    Dravid is such a gr8 player and yes he has been thro a puple patch n tht doesn't make him any less ..Hope Dravid utilises diz b4