Sri Lanka v India, 1st Test, Galle, 4th day

Our shot-selection wasn't good - Sehwag

Sidharth Monga in Galle

July 21, 2010

Comments: 47 | Text size: A | A

VVS Laxman VVS Laxman works one to the leg side, Sri Lanka v India, 1st Test, Galle, 4th day, July 21, 2010
India will look for a big effort from VVS Laxman to save the Test © AFP
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Virender Sehwag, as economical with words as with his technique, is not looking for any excuses after his side lost 15 wickets in 124.3 overs and is still 63 runs behind Sri Lanka's first-innings total, with a full day's play to go. He said they were aware that their shot selection wasn't good, that they were now hoping for rain to go with the best efforts of VVS Laxman and MS Dhoni.

"Fantastic that we are getting a result even after losing one day's play," Sehwag said. "But it is bad for the Indian side. We are on the losing side unless VVS Laxman can play [well] tomorrow, and we are hopeful that after lunch or before tea, rain will come and the match gets washed out as a draw."

Asked about his shot to get out in the first innings, an attempted cut to a delivery that would have otherwise been called wide, with three fielders deep in the off side, Sehwag said: "That's my scoring shot. If you look at the 7000 runs that I have scored, more than 3000 runs have come through the cut shot. In coming matches too, I will play the same shot. Sometimes you get out, sometimes you score runs. Almost every time, I score runs with the cut shot."

But aren't India in the position because several batsmen played ill-advised shots? "Everybody is aware of that, but you can't control certain things," Sehwag said. "Sometimes you play that shot and you get away with that, sometimes you get out. That's Test cricket where everybody has played enough matches. They are experienced. It happens in cricket."

Sehwag conceded the pitch hadn't deteriorated enough to justify the scores and that it was "still a good track to bat on" which made him confident that India could still save the Test. "If you look at the last Test match that we played against South Africa, MS and VVS scored hundred-plus and remained not out and batted really well," he said. "So they can do that. Laxman and Dravid did that against Australia in 2001, so we have the hope. Still we have one more pair of batsmen, they will go tomorrow and try and their best."

Sidharth Monga is a staff writer at Cricinfo

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Posted by ushakiran on (July 23, 2010, 7:07 GMT)

guys this is the 1st real overseas match for india under dhobi cap.its not like we play in india.

Posted by Junbhais on (July 22, 2010, 7:00 GMT)

India played badly. Period. It happens to everyone. Not one of us can claim that we don't have bad days, be it whatever work we may do.

I also disagree with the point that a player should be out of the team simply because of age. That is called discrimination. If Dravid, Tendulkar and Lakshman are playing well, there is no basis to remove them from the team. We shouldn't lament on the lack of youth in the team. Youth doesn't equate to skill. These three are proven players with thousands of runs under their belt. If anything people who have not proven to be test class need to be considered for removal.

Players who lack the skills to play international test cricket well consistently are people to drop in place of other talent. Age should not be the criteria. So please people stop lamenting that somebody is 34, 35, 36, instead lament when you see a consistently average player playing in the team. A country as large as ours, there should be 11 more than average players in the team.

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 6:36 GMT)

When u play with fakers like Yuvraj, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and etc., you cannot expect the modest game. Especially Yuvraj surely thinks like that when every playing game for India.. "Oh.. India will win if I really batted well.. So I give worst performance as I can.. Otherwise Dhoni's ad Cost moved to another stage.."... A most worst person in Indian team...

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 6:23 GMT)

When u play with fakers like Yuvraj, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and etc., you cannot expect the modest game. Especially Yuvraj surely thinks like that when every playing game for India.. "Oh.. India will win if I really batted well.. So I give worst performance as I can.. Otherwise Dhoni's ad Cost moved to another stage.."... A most worst person in Indian team...

Posted by vinov_guy on (July 22, 2010, 6:22 GMT)

the indian team is in this position not completely b'coz of batsmen. The major share is for the bowlers who did nothing expect a few spells on third morning by Ishanth an mithun. minus that, its all absurd bowling.I think harbajan is satisfied by containing the batsmen so that his economy rate looks a still better. He refuses to attack. hope he is trying to market himself as a prospect bowler for IPL. A suggestion to BCCI: never get carried away by the success of players in IPL. get back to the domestic matches and the performance there should be the criteria for selection to National team. IPL as with BCCI itself is private, corporate sports. ther is no pride in winning an IPL for players its just party time for them. We never had problems with finding players(valuable) from domestic cricket and the replacements/ transition was not at all problem for INDIA. it can be back only when the board and selection committee stop getting carried away with IPL

Posted by TheOnlyEmperor on (July 22, 2010, 5:52 GMT)

More... Why is it that the Indians are unable to bowl yorkers? I didn't see Ishant Sharma bowl a single one to Malinga who was confortably flat batting and cross batting balls bowled short of length. And since when did they teach people to flick swinging yorkers bowled on the leg, instead of playing them deadpan with a straight bat? Gambhir, SRT - are you listening? Dhoni needs to figure out where his offstump is. He is clueless when you bowl to him in the channel. He crossbats himself out of the situation in ODIs/T20s but look at his Test record. He has been barely ably to face 50 balls in 2 innings. Yuvraj is a slogger. ODI material. You keep bowling across the line and you can stiffle him for runs just as you can stiffle Sehwag by giving him balls out of reach and drive him to desperately suicidal shots. The English used that trick against SRT quite successfully under Nasser. India is bottom of the heap in the bowling dept. No 1 Test team? Bah! Dream on!

Posted by TheOnlyEmperor on (July 22, 2010, 5:23 GMT)

contd... As we speak, today Laxman had faced 23 balls when Bhajji walked in. Bhajji was allowed to face 14 balls and Mithun has since faced 40 balls as of the moment. That's a total of 54 balls, while Laxman has faced only 32 balls in the interim. Laxman doesn't farm the strike with the tail and the Indian tail is the worst in the world in terms of displaying grit and character when needed in dire circumstances. They play as they do, because they panic. And they panic because they think you need "Dravidisque TECHNIQUE" to stay put at the wicket. And they think that, because the "stars" don't know how to rotate the strike and take the sting off the bowling and make things look easy for the tail. Is there any thinking at all going into these areas of play in the Indian team? If it is, who is doing it and what are they thinking WITH?

Posted by Jagan72 on (July 22, 2010, 5:11 GMT)

Why are people praying for rain. Lets accept the fact that we have played badly and the results are infront of us.

Posted by TheOnlyEmperor on (July 22, 2010, 5:10 GMT)

I think Bhajji and Afridi compete with each other on the maturity scale when it comes to playing Tests, excepting that Afridi has no pretentions about it. Sehwag's comment is unacceptable. This is a team game where you play in a manner to first secure your team from defeat and THEN exercise lattitude to play risky shots. Sehwag plays in a hurry - to get out. At the other end, SRT and Dravid dig themselves in a hole when things get tight. Dravid in particular daring the bowlers to get him out, while he keeps the score at a standstill. Foolhardiness! There's no balance and an effort to rotate the strike by taking singles. Can't these "stars" score 3/4 singles an over? Laxman needs to be dropped. He's physically unfit and doesn't know how to play with the tail. He rotates the strike and gives them more opportunities to face the bowling instead of shielding them. Isn't there anybody at all to do some straight talk to these fellows? Then, at least get them to read cricinfo!

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 4:45 GMT)

Bring in Badri in place of Yuvraj. Yuvraj cannot bat in tests. he has proved this time and again and why is Badri not in the team anyway. Someone needs to counsel Dravid that he cannot get run out anymore. And Pathan needs to come in to provide some lower order batting capability. Right now last 4 wickets are blown and with Dhoni and Gambhir failing it is really the 3 old men and Sehwag who bat and that is not enough ... With a rookie attack India is under pressure anyways. Only way India will come back in the series is if Sehwag hits a triple...in the next test. India is playing sport to give Murali a parting gift... But man what missiles Malinga...Awesome...

Posted by Joby_George on (July 22, 2010, 4:24 GMT)

Still i support indian batting. Pressure is obvious when team batting second chase 500 plus runs. India Immediately needs to find out some good fast bowlers. Srilankan scores should have been restricted to 350 - 375. Their tail enders changed this match by utilizing poor indian bowling.

Posted by Pathiyal on (July 22, 2010, 4:04 GMT)

going by the past, i dont think india can avoid a loss. its too un professional for him to hope for rain. i agree that you are at present the most devastating batsman in the world scene, but please have some class in your statements too or try not to speak out your mind. its about bad shot selection? so you want to take all credits away from malinga? murali?

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 3:33 GMT)

i'm a sri lankan who thinks we got lucky with sehwag if mahela didn't caught that that was a four and he wud make a Double in no time respect the guy he's a master class batsman powerhouse and a great attacking player India have ever produced

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 3:00 GMT)

The beauty of cricket is in the battle between ball and bat. The ball moves all 22 yards, give or take some inches, following a path dictated by its trajectory, spin, seam, movement of air, weight and several static and dynamic parameters. As it comes into impact with the bat, a flat willow surface, the parameters of force, angle at the time of impact, direction and so on dictate the path the ball is going to follow. It is a pure geometry lab with all mathematical, physics calculations thrown in. Then of course comes the aspect of field placement, individual effort of the fielder, ground slipperiness, etc. etc. A player like Sehwag has got to play his shots, the shots he likes to play and those which fetch the runs. If he starts getting inhibited by the situation, he can't score runs and on the other hand, will get himself out as well. Each player has to play according to his style and temperament. You cannot expect an oak to bend nor a reed to not sway in the wind.

Posted by Test_Match_Fan on (July 22, 2010, 2:59 GMT)

I am an Indian Test Match only fan. So allow me this comment: I'd like to see fresh blood in the Indian side. Tendulkar, Dravid, Yuvraj, Zaheer and Harbhajan are past their prime. We need new young players. Mithun looks good for example.

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 2:49 GMT)

It's time Laxman and Dravid moved on and retired from Test cricket...Yuvraj and Ishant Sharma shouldn't be in a Test team. Give young players like Murali Vijay, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Dinesh Karthik a chance to get their feet wet and build a solid young team. Laxman, Dravid and Tendulkar will most likely retire around the same time from test cricket..leaving a massive gap in the team. India needs to have a transition period where they drop one or two of those three and try out the younger players. It's sad when a Cricket board as powerful as the BCCI, does not have the spine to make changes and drop some big names out of the national side.

Posted by friendfromusa on (July 22, 2010, 2:20 GMT)

Guys, please leave Sehwag alone. We have won more matches, because of the way he bats. He scored a century with the same technique and shot selection. He has saved us blushes many a times. This time, he played in the hands of opposition. But that is game. How about failure of Gambhir, Dravid and Laxman?

Posted by thenkabail on (July 22, 2010, 2:15 GMT)

Selectors and Vision: Why is the #1 test team playing like No. 10?. It is not just the bowling. Where is commitment from our batsmen?. It is clear that Yuvraj has had his chances in tests and is certainly not a test material. Bring in Cheteswar Pujara in his place. Laxman is clearly past his prime. Bring in Rohit Sharma in his place. Do this right away. Dravid and Sachin are nearing 38 and will probably retire early next year. At that stage bring in, most promising batsmen (have to look at this with lots of thought; Kohli and Manish Pandey could be candidates; but others need to be looked into. These are serious replacements). Gambir and Shewag will be there for awhile. Like Yuvraj Raina is not a test material. Then look for a true allrounder (I see none now with Abhishek Nayar coming somewhat). Bowling (choose from): Mithun, Unadkat, Zaheer, Sreeshanth, Harbajan, Harmeet singh, Ishant Sharma. But look for real talent amongst spinners.

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 2:12 GMT)

i love how sehwag is always to the point no buttering up...lol hope murli gets @ least two wickets tomor vvs n dhoni would be a nice two anything else would jus be cherries on the cake

Posted by Chatz07 on (July 22, 2010, 1:54 GMT)

Why is everyone only blaming the indian batting. The srilankan bowling was amazingly good. And that they forced errors from the famed indian middle order is something to give the srilankans credit for. Best of Luck to the lions. Lets hope the rain stays away and srilanka get a deserved win

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 1:46 GMT)

India deserve to loose, if you want to number one in the world, you have to battle through in the bad times.

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 1:46 GMT)

India deserve to loose, if you want to number one in the world, you have to battle through in the bad times.

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 1:28 GMT)

sehwag sachin you need to put team india first

Posted by   on (July 22, 2010, 1:27 GMT)

VVS has to play well, thats the word. so that explains the confidence of team in MS Dhoni.

i dnt rate him as a test batsmen anyways and he will prove it again ..

all in all if they can delay the loss but cnt prevent it

all cheers to SL becuase they deserve it

Posted by Gizza on (July 22, 2010, 0:56 GMT)

At least Sehway scored a 100 in the first innings and Tendulkar 84 in the second. In Tests you can't expect the same player to stand up again and again. Batsmen like Gambhir and Yuvraj should take the blame for failing twice. Dravid also failed in runs but at least he puts a solid defensive effort as always. Laxman and Dhoni now have the responsibility to now fail for a second time. If they do (both score 70 each) India will be saved probably.

Posted by montys_muse on (July 21, 2010, 23:48 GMT)

It would be good for Yuvraj if he realises that he isnt good enough for test cricket, just like Afridi did. He is a class act in the shorter versions and he must quit playing test cricket to maintain his star value and confidence and most importantly, his fans' admiration!!

Posted by ut4me87 on (July 21, 2010, 21:58 GMT)

It is not the batting - it is he inept bowling attack that has caused us the match. We do require a fast bowler, not a bowler who starts fast and then fades away. Look at Pakistan, Australia 88 all out. Can we do that to any team? No.

Posted by MadeInIndia on (July 21, 2010, 21:41 GMT)

Sehwag is a GENIUS. He has shown the signs many a time making centuries when the whole team is struggling.

True mark of a genius. Keep going Sir.Sehwag

Posted by MunishOWN on (July 21, 2010, 21:06 GMT)

Well VVS is too old for repeating the heroics. I would like to see the stats of Dravid and VVS in recent past. That should tell us the story if they are capable of heroics anymore. Every time they come in to bat, commentators have long list of their records, but never mentions that those records were created when they were young with good reflexes. They should accept it, age is getting on to them. While fielding, they are lost in their own and drop easiest catches and batting is just horrible.

Posted by CricEshwar on (July 21, 2010, 18:47 GMT)

Sounds like a bollywood movie to me

Posted by 11Noobs on (July 21, 2010, 17:53 GMT)

Ahhh, just another day at the office for VVS Laxman. Only this time he doesn't have his partner in crime aka Rahul Dravid.

Posted by vibh_ch on (July 21, 2010, 17:19 GMT)

Sehwag is honest as always.He is a very simple man,which is reflected both in his batting and his talking.Its very rare that you find people with such attitude.Despite all the hype and the pressure that our immature media creates,he has managed to remain the same.He speaks his mind out.He never strives for media coverage.He is a gift to the game.As he himself says,he will play the same shot again.You will have to accept it.Who knows what is in store in the coming matches?Lets enjoy him as long as he plays.

Posted by Molu14 on (July 21, 2010, 16:51 GMT)

PLEEAASE we need rain...pray to the rain gods for a whole day wash-out (if you are Indian like me)

Posted by manasvi_lingam on (July 21, 2010, 16:44 GMT)

Sadly you can't rely on Laxman this time. He'll be peppered with short pitched deliveries and then fall. Dhoni might hang around for a 50. Bhajji and the tail lack spine. An innings defeat beckons or if not that, at least a 10 wicket win. And of course 800 wickets for the off-spin genius. India has become like the India of the early 90s with one world class batsman (Tendulkar then, Sehwag now) and two excellent batsmen (Sidhu and Azharuddin then, Tendulkar and Laxman now). gambhir and Dravid are out of form, and Yuvi isn't good enough at Test level.

Posted by archilion on (July 21, 2010, 16:21 GMT)

Mr. Sidharth, Its disappointing to see people like you criticizing Sehwag's techniques. Sehwag's is in the best form of his life. The only way for the bowler to get him out is just a hope that Sehwag will do some 'silly' mistake. Few balls earlier of his dismissal in the first inning, Sehwag had played a similar cut shot to the third-man boundary and commentators were all in praise of that fantastic techniques. But when he got out, just because of sheer bad luck, the same techniques are seemingly faulty? I dont get it!

Posted by   on (July 21, 2010, 16:21 GMT)

Viru I know you are disappointed because of the performance that you have put on but it was not your day, they trapped you into doing the same thing that you did in the 1st innings, just play that Laxman plays a Very Very Special knock tomorrow and so does rain.

Posted by natmastak_so-called on (July 21, 2010, 16:06 GMT)

Though i love sehwag ,i must say ' i- wil- play -that -shot' attitude costs u & ur team heavily . We r the witnesses to same attitude by punter for the pull shot & it has taken its toll on him. For a test match,u must hav PATIENCE.

Posted by vipin.chaudhary2325 on (July 21, 2010, 15:55 GMT)

yes.. sehwag is true, no excuses for such a stupid batting from what the whole world called great players.... I still want that defining TEST innings from Sachin Tendulkar in pressure situation, Yuvraj is like Afridi, don't have temperament for tests, Rohit sharma can replace yuvraj, coz Rohit looks like a test player, and can be successful in Tests because of his extra time he get to play his shots.

Posted by   on (July 21, 2010, 15:53 GMT)

exactly......i think yuvraj is most worst player india has ever produced.......

Posted by SnowSnake on (July 21, 2010, 15:49 GMT)

Seems like India may lose this one.

Posted by jayray999 on (July 21, 2010, 15:42 GMT)

How can the article be called, "Sehwag unhappy with Indian shot-selection" if the man himself is expressly stating that he is NOT unhappy with Indian shot selection. Now it is true that in the first passage you write, "He said they were aware that their shot selection wasn't good..." But this is reported (indirect) speech and is no more reliable than the title. All Sehwag's pronouncements in his own words seem to suggest that he does not regret any shots that were played.

Posted by   on (July 21, 2010, 15:24 GMT)

only rain can save india now

Posted by SureshAmsterdam on (July 21, 2010, 15:17 GMT)

BTW, the title of the article - "Sehwag unhappy with Indian shot-selection" - does not fit at all with his words, or the link which says "No excuses from Sehwag".

Posted by SachinIsTheGreatest on (July 21, 2010, 15:16 GMT)

It was unfortunate to see Dravid, Tendulkar and Laxman play poor cricket in the first innings. While Sehwag might also be blamed for his first innings dismissal the fact remains he did score a century by then. Anyway, the big worry remains what the Lankan bowlers extracted from the wicket and what the Indian bowlers did not. This series is looking very grim with limited bowling resources.

Posted by SureshAmsterdam on (July 21, 2010, 15:14 GMT)

Thank God for the master of no-bs. Its great to hear these things from someone who actually has to go out and play cricket at the highest level. Too many people on here have strong opinions - he should not played that shot then; or he should be replaced with my favorite candidate who's sure to do better - without ever having played any sport at a high enough level. More of these articles please!!!

Posted by   on (July 21, 2010, 15:08 GMT)

"Hopeful that after lunch or before tea, rain will come and the match gets washed out as a draw." LOL... He truly speaks out his mind... no twists.. thats everybody is hoping.. We need more ppl like sehwag in india...

Posted by VipulPatki on (July 21, 2010, 14:54 GMT)

All I can say is that if it indeed rains tomorrow, SL would be denied a most deserving win.

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