SA in India--Test Matches

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SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Wed Nov 04, 2015 3:42 pm

as I said at the end of last test when many were getting worried......

India keep out Pujara again to accommodate Rohit?
OR
will Indian managment loose face and keep their pet Rohit out?

that Indians will find an explanation of convenience......and here it is from shastri...all set to show we will play 3 spinners, 1 seamer and 6 batsmen......including pujara and Rohit
and Rohit might bowll seam up posing to be the 2nd seamer if required.

Dhawan will play ahead of Rahul...understandable but everyone is on a short rope here with so well performing Rahul in the squad


Two days before the Test, team director Ravi Shastri spoke about a few of these issues. The number of bowlers, he said, depended on the conditions underfoot and overhead. Sri Lanka was oppressively hot so India needed that extra bowler there. It has cooled down in India's November now, and if the pitches turn as asked, India could beef up their batting and go with just four bowlers. The big question, then, is will this new leadership team of Virat Kohli and Shastri, who have shown an inclination towards pace, be okay with playing just the one quick?

"Tomorrow you can play four spinners if you give me a pitch that will turn on the first day," an emphatic Shastri said. "No rule that you have to play a fast bowler. West Indies played four fast bowlers in their time. No spinners. What stops a team from playing four spinners if you get a track of that kind?"

"Home conditions," Shastri added mischievously.


Last edited by KP_fan on Wed Nov 04, 2015 7:51 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Wed Nov 04, 2015 4:05 pm

If India choose a track which turns from Day one, then I'm all for it. Home conditions is right. They have every right to as well. It makes away victories all the more sweeter.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Wed Nov 04, 2015 7:01 pm

I do hope the track would turn and turn quick with bounce from day 1! Would make for interesting watching from the word go, and will be a test for all.
Shastri did talk up the 4 bowler theory, Kohli said something else today. He said 4 bowler strategy is very unlikely and he maintains that the 5 batsmen will have to take the responsibility and that the 5th bowler is so important to win games, batsman can draw games, you need bowlers to win games.......
So Kohli will get his 5 bowlers, and as a compromise, Shastri would make sure the Wonder would play ahead of Pujara yet again!
Wonderboy did get a few runs in the ODI series, and as he will be imposed on the test side, all that one can hope is that he'll score some meaningful test runs. Not 20s and 30s that we can talk up in desperate situations, but some substantial test knocks of substance and not style. If Rohit does something typically stupid to get out, you just can't justify it using his natural game theory, a player like a Virender Sehwag or a Kevin Pietersen can talk on those lines, they were players capable of playing defining test knocks at a very aggressive strike rate.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Wed Nov 04, 2015 7:56 pm

well msp....the aim is winning.....and although I don't think what you fear might happen...but even if it does.....and we win......then all is well.

we lost limited over games 5-2 ( inlc T20s)
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Thu Nov 05, 2015 7:38 am

India in a spot of bother at 102-4. Bit disconcerting to see Elgar being a threat. Worrying signs
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Thu Nov 05, 2015 7:41 am

111-5 now. Need to get them all out for less than 200 from here
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Thu Nov 05, 2015 7:50 am

India walk the walk......and go with 5 bowler....albeit not required in my view on a pitch where on D1 ........someone called Elgar averaging 52 as a SLA in FC cricket is "running through the Indian top order " as CI puts it

India missing the extra batting of Rohit.....who should have been in in place of Aaron......the latter may not be needed at all in the match.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Thu Nov 05, 2015 8:14 am

Harmer looks good...has an action similar to Bhajji and one from him took off a length and went over the WK.

Its one of those pitches where if you put in the right spot...pitch does the rest
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Thu Nov 05, 2015 8:26 am

kpf wrote:
Its one of those pitches where if you put in the right spot...pitch does the rest

and as Elgar gets his 4th wicket that theory above holds....I remember one time on a similar pitch in Mumbai Michael Clarke, bowling no better or worse than Elgar.... took 6-for nothing in India's second inning

200 won't be bad if Jadeja and Ashwin could score a few here, we will get there.....and in the context of game, Vijay's 75 is worth 150
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Thu Nov 05, 2015 10:46 am

10-2. This wicket is deep.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Thu Nov 05, 2015 11:20 am

pitch affording turn at unbeliavble angles...it's hard to survive and harder to score runs.
someone from SA has to take chances.......ABDV would have to be the one i guess

wasted selection of 2 seamers ...surely Ind could have done with one
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Thu Nov 05, 2015 5:46 pm

A challenging spinning wicket.
Fine contribution from Murali Vijay, that innings of 75. Jadeja's 38 is quite valuable too, already proving a far superior selection than that of Binny or even for that matter Rohit.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Thu Nov 05, 2015 7:14 pm

msp83 wrote:A challenging spinning wicket.
Fine contribution from Murali Vijay, that innings of 75. Jadeja's 38 is quite valuable too, already proving a far superior selection than that of Binny or even for that matter Rohit.

Instead of the above I rather expected you to acknowldege that the management and selectors are fair...they picked Pujara ahead of Rohit even with 5 specialist batters
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Thu Nov 05, 2015 8:01 pm

Pujara was rightly selected, perhaps Shastri is giving himself a bit of time to recover after the recent pitch related issue! But Pujara failed to convert yet another start, missing a straight ball yet again. Cheteshwar needs to work on this, and do it quickly, he's one batsman who wouldn't have a long rope as such. Shikhar Dhawan too, that just was a pretty poor stroke to get out.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Thu Nov 05, 2015 8:07 pm

Meanwhile, Rohit, Bhuvneshwar and Binny are released for domestic cricket, very good move I would say. Binny should always be made available to play domestic cricket, with his lucky opening to international cricket and the exposure it gave him, he can be a valuable guide to young Karnataka players some of whom have the potential to become quality players at the highest level, Nair, Gopal.......

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Fri Nov 06, 2015 7:20 am

South Africa 155-6. AB still there, and he's key for them getting a first innings lead here. He hasn't looked on top of his game for most of this knock, but he's beginning to look settled now and that is ominous signs for India. AB was earlier caught of Jadeja, only for the bowler to overstep.
BTW, the overrated Saha is proving ordinary as usual behind the stumps, the Jadeja no-ball was caught by Kohli of a Saha deflection, the keeper managed a lucky stumping when the ball bounced off his chest and hit the stumps. And he dropped Elgar early in his innings, of Amit Mishra.
The guy is a fighter with the bat but has not much class otherwise, and is at best is a number 7. So without wasting too much time, they should think of Ojha or even young Sanju Samson or Ankush Bains.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by The Loaded Dog on Fri Nov 06, 2015 7:29 am

115/6? Almost as bad as NZ on a decent batting wicket in Brisbane.
ABDV never struck me as the type to really excel when under pressure against tough opposition. India aren't Zimbabwe after all.
They'll probably end up with a similar total to India, or just under I'd suspect.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Fri Nov 06, 2015 8:01 am

I suppose having two hundreds in 400+ chases backs up that theory...

Played an important knock here, which means we are just about still in it even though we'll probably be behind on first innings. Tahir out, so we'll definitely be behind on first innings.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by The Loaded Dog on Fri Nov 06, 2015 9:11 am

Yeah, against an ailing Australian team with Cowpat and Hastings. A real mean feat.
The pinnacle of his career no doubt.

India cleaned up the tail as expected. SA will need Tahir and the mighty Elgar to spin their magic again.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by Mad for Chelsea on Fri Nov 06, 2015 9:51 am

going to side with KR here, ABDV is a terrific player full stop, who's scored plenty of "tough runs" in his time. He was more than a little fortunate here, umpire Dharmasena missed a (very) slight nick off Jadeja early on (maybe surprised Saha held onto one? Wink), and of course was "out" off a no-ball. Generally very very scratchy for the first dozen runs, but thereafter played well. Important knock that just about kept SA in touch, but they're struggling now, particularly with Steyn apparently out with a groin strain. Need the other bowlers to step up.

Agree with msp's assessment of Saha's keeping. Haven't seen him much, but it looks like he doesn't really cover the line of the ball well off the spinners, and therfore will struggle to deal with even fairly slight edges (e.g. the one he dropped to Kohli off the Jadeja no-ball, or the Amla stumping which deflected a bit off Amla's pad - though that one was difficult).

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Fri Nov 06, 2015 10:33 am

Pitch seems to have calmed down, which makes me think 250ish is attainable. Need wickets bad though. Don't completely understand why we've gone with five bowlers, but 6-1-4 has served us well since the loss of Kallis. Suspect (if we lose) we'll revert back to it for the next test. Think maybe JPD's injury caused a bit of confusion as he was probably going to be the second spinner. No one saw Elgar's four fer coming, so we went in with two spinners. Elgar has proven himself (in Asian and only Asian conditions) a passable second spinner, so I think Harmer and Tahir are going head to head for the one spinner role.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Fri Nov 06, 2015 12:26 pm

So India end the day at 125-2, ahead by 142. Shikhar Dhawan completed a pair and yet again got out to Vernon Philander. Philander doing well in spinning conditions, was always going to be a test for him, playing in these conditions. Of course Dhawan had recent test form, but his recent ODI form was patchy, and before coming back into the side in Bangladesh, he was rather terrible in tests. The management has gone in with Dhawan, so I suspect he'll get at least the next test, but he will have to deliver soon.
Relieved to see Pujara getting a substantial score, otherwise he would have been under pressure for the next game itself. And nice to see him batting at a fair clip, striking at 63, and even smashed a hit me ball from Tahir for 6 in the last over of the day!
Murali Vijay was among the runs yet again, but he would be disappointed that he failed to go on and make a big one in the 2nd innings too.

India look in control at the moment, and though they picked up only 2 wickets, South Africa aren't too far away from India's lower order that starts at 6. Saha can tough it out with the bat a bit, and Jadeja, Ashwin and Mishra can hold a bat, but Saha at 6 is not at all reassuring. So a couple of early wickets, SA can still roll India over for around 200. As the pitch seems to be easying just a bit, even 250 could be chasable, particularly if AB and Amla gets going.
SA would be hoping Dale Steyn would be able to bowl tomorrow, he's a bowler beyond conditions, and can be the man to provide that early blast that can open up the gates.......

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 6:11 am

India slipping from a comfortable 162-2 to 185-8. Will this be the hour that hands the test match to the South Africans? The SA spinners hurting India big, Tahir and Harmer both picking up 3 each. To add to the troubles, skipper Kohli got out to the partime slow medium of van Zyl.......

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 6:51 am

South Africa coming back superbly. India 9 down for 188, leading by 205. A chase of 206 will be challenging on this track, but if AB gets going, it is very much within their reach. Amla is a class act, and Elgar has shown he has it in him to tough it out. Faf we know, is always up for a 4th innings challenge. Think the madness in the hour before lunch from India has handed the game over to SA I am afraid

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 6:55 am

Saha is still out there though he had provided a bat-pad catch of Tahir, the umpire failing to see the edge. But the India wicketkeeper who is usually ordinary with the gloves, is just not able to get the score moving at all. Hopefully India would cut any further losses on that front and move on. Saha is capable of the odd fighting knock with the bat, but he doesn't have the technique or range of strokes for the international game, and I just never rated his keeping, just isn't safe behind the stumps, can't remember a single test wherein he hasn't missed a clear chance.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 7:23 am

South Africa need 218 to win as India were bowled out for 200.
Amla tried a bit of a fancy stuff, promoting Vernon Philander to open, but the experiment failed as Ravindra Jadeja, opening the bowling along with Ashwin, got him LBW with his first ball. SA 9-1.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by The Loaded Dog on Sat Nov 07, 2015 7:30 am

Well left by Amla. As the ball smashes into middle stump!
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Sat Nov 07, 2015 7:51 am

This pitch seems to be comfortable. Then not. Then a minefield.

Aargh ABDV is out, and with it all hopes of winning
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by The Loaded Dog on Sat Nov 07, 2015 8:22 am

Bizarre match, pitch not helping things.
Mark Boucher's doppelgänger, Elgar, falls victim this time as he skies one in an upward fashion.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Sat Nov 07, 2015 8:42 am

13 wickets falling for less than a 100 today. Don't know what's happening, but at least the spin bowlers got through some overs.

We can't crawl to the target. It's not that kinda pitch. We need someone to play a Chandimal type innings and Hopefully they really buzzsaw.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by The Loaded Dog on Sat Nov 07, 2015 8:51 am

That was a strange piece of captaincy to put Philander right up the order. Mind boggling in fact.
Can van Zyl do it, raf?
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:10 am

Can't understand it, myself. Can only assume the idea was that van Zyl isn't really an opener (although he bats at three which slightly ridicules my theory), so they figured it would be better to have a Moeen-esque basher at the top and hopefully get off to a flyer. To be fair, Philander has the talent to be a lower end top six batsman. Unfortunately, it worked as well for us as the Moeen experiment has worked for England. Doubly frustrating for me because my local Team's captain and opener, Stephen Cook, banged five tons on the bounce in our first class season, but can't get friggin call up, while Philander can be experimented with as an opener.

Stiaan has the talent, but I don't think he'll do it. With only five wickets in hand, he needs to accelerate anyway because we aren't going to crawl there with the tail. Unfortunately, SA cricket is still rather conservative, and we'll play by the numbers cricket even when the situation indicates that's basically really slow suicide.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:11 am

Another one down
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:20 am

Even now, if SA really go after the bowling, the bowlers can be put under some pressure. That is the only opening available for them, all be it a small one.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by The Loaded Dog on Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:21 am

Your captain sounds like a real talent!
Yeah, it was Moeen-like experiment which also failed.

Might watch a bit of Octopussy (nearly 8:30 here) since this should be just about wrapped up this evening. In two minds about watching the Warne v Tendulkar All Stars match... might record it.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:24 am

Yadav is being Yadav, producing a couple of good balls in between a load of rubbish that is all over the park. He did find van Zyl's edge only for Dhawan to drop the chance, but think Kohli needn't to prove his selection right, it was a wrong one at the start and it will be a wrong one at the end, but India are winning, and as KPF would say, that's what matters the most. By trying to prove himself right, Kohli might harming India's chances though that is a long shot.......

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:37 am

To Harmer's credit, he does have an average of 28 in FC cricket, which means he can bat. Give or take.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:52 am

At least we got to 100
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by The Loaded Dog on Sat Nov 07, 2015 10:16 am

Probably 10 more runs than Australia would have got! 20 if Watson was playing. Wink
What a rout. And I thought Mohali was the most passive of all Indian wickets.

Raf, on the plus side it is a relatively 'experimental' side with some newish players with good home form. They'll need to try and assert themselves more which ain't so easy to do on the subcontinent.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Sat Nov 07, 2015 10:37 am

There are positives, of course. Van Zyl played well. Elgar was gritty. The spinners were handy.

On the other hand
- Steyn is down. We're hopelessly over reliant on him.
- The senior batsmen failed. Reckon this was the ultimate difference. We matched India, give or take, every where else, but their 3,4,5 complement scored runs, ours didn't. We lost.

Can we come back? Sure, we came back well from that thrashing Auatalia gave us in Centurion last year. Came back well from that thrashing Pakistan gave us in 2013, so we can reset and improve, but we have some work which needs to be done. The absence of Smith and Kallis is being really felt at the moment. Even an Alviro Petersen who scored a hundred on debut in India. outside of Steyn, our Entire pace attack average about Ten tests between them. Our openers have about 20 Tests between them. Wicket Keeper is on his second Test. I'd take a series draw, or even a narrow loss to be honest.

What's really annoying is the lack of Tests we've played, it is an inexperienced side, but only because the ICC haven't deemed us worthy of playing a damn. Before this we'd only had one completed Test the whole year. Last year we'd only played eight Test matches, one of them against Zim. By contrast England as of now have played more Tests this year than we've played in the last two years. None of which they played against Zimbabwe or in monsoon season vs Bangladesh.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 10:41 am

Jadeja takes 5, Ashwin 3, both take 8 for the match. Amit Mishra got AB twice in the game, and Varun Aaron took a wicket for the seamers and Kohli.
Vijay and Pujara scored runs, half-centuries worth tons, and 30s and 40s of greater value. At the end of it all, India win by 108 runs, inside 3 days.
Both sides could have batted better on this track, it was a track that kept asking questions of the batsmen, but it wasn't a mindfield by any means. Both sets of batsmen were simply not up to it........
Good to see the pampered lot struggling as a collective when asked questions!

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by The Loaded Dog on Sat Nov 07, 2015 10:48 am

kingraf wrote:
What's really annoying is the lack of Tests we've played, it is an inexperienced side, but only because the ICC haven't deemed us worthy of playing a damn. Before this we'd only had one completed Test the whole year. Last year we'd only played eight Test matches, one of them against Zim. By contrast England as of now have played more Tests this year than we've played in the last two years. None of which they played against Zimbabwe or in monsoon season vs Bangladesh.

Yes, it's grossly unfair I know. Makes me feel more than a little sick actually. SA deserve to be treated a hell of a lot better.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by kingraf on Sat Nov 07, 2015 10:53 am

Ja, look, we'd probably have lost either way, and it's not to take credit at all from India, who played well and had a grip of conditions THAT much better, but it's been a gripe of mine for some time now. Little scared of the year that lies ahead, with this inexperienced bunch. India, England, NZ Aus. Seems our fixture list is feast or famine stuff, gonna need to get grips quickly or we could be in for a dark time in our history.
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Sat Nov 07, 2015 11:08 am

an easy win for India in the end.......what stood out for me:

--was Kohli's  un-flustered captaincy......even as his side put only 200 on the board.
was confident, aggressive and finds ways to get wickets....always at the opposition.....
and in the end wins with plenty to spare.

--SA lost it in their mind.....instead of trying to play hard sweat it out cricket......wanted to do the fancy.....they need to look back at how Cook played with super human patience last time a side beat India in India....and to top Cook's efforts they had the brilliant KP....who is matched by ABDV
But they need someone to do a Cook.


--Indian selectors and team management.....prompt , proactive and minus any agendas.....they dropped Jadeja, when he peformed in FC, got him back
Put Pujara in even as one of 5 batsmen.....released Binny, Bhuvi etal to play Ranji
In short....do what is required to be done to win....

--next game....India needs to bring in an additional batsman instead of aaron ...and so does SA too I guess.....winning the toss would also help SA be more competitive


Last edited by KP_fan on Sat Nov 07, 2015 11:11 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 11:09 am

There still are concerns for India though. It starts with Shikhar Dhawan. Dhawan did score tons against Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, but his form before that was terrible, and he was pretty poor in the ODI series against SA. There is KL Rahul in the side, there is the management favorite Rohit Sharma too. Rahul is an opener, and they can ask Rahane or Pujara to open to include Rohit. Considering Dhawan's medium term form in the past, and his recent form overall, think he will have to go, particularly as there are only 5 batsman.
Next concern is Saha. He is a massively overrated keeper. He can't catch or stump well consistently, and he kept giving away by runs too. As a batsman too, he is nowhere near good enough to bat top 6. Saha is good enough for the odd 50, but he's not consistent with gloves or bat, he's in his 30s, so no long term investment either and he's not going to improve much by playing FC cricket. so cut the losses, bring in the more attacking Ojha, or invest in young Samson or Bains. A leftfield choice would be Rahul at 6 and keeping wickets. He did keep well in Sri Lanka, and seemed safer than Saha.......
And if the pitch is similar, there is no point playing2nd seamer, particularly someone who can't hold a bat. Ishant will be available after his ban, he should provide better control than Yadav or Aaron, so he has to be back. And think they should play the additional batsman, or if they are going for the 2nd seamer, then use someone like Bhuvneshwar who can at least hold a bat and perhaps make 15-20 runs that might be important on challenging tracks. Now that the squad is picked for 2 tests, think they should give the gloves to Rahul in place of Saha, Bhuvi and Ishant for Umesh and Aaron.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 11:38 am

Think Pujara played because of his ton in the last test, and because of the Shastri-Sudhir Nayk conflict that seems to have prompted the director to take a backseat and his sharp mind that wanted to attract no unwanted attention towards him!.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by msp83 on Sat Nov 07, 2015 11:43 am

Jadeja the man of the match, for his 8 wickets and for his 1st innings 38 that held the innings together after Vijay got out. It indeed was a valuable contribution from Jadeja, but my man of the match would have been Murali Vijay. He has looked the best of all the batsmen who played the test and made runs in both innings on a challenging track.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by KP_fan on Sat Nov 07, 2015 11:54 am

I agree saha is sub-standard...but selectors follow principle of "fair run" and saha will get one more game atleast.
bear in mind he got two 50s in Lanka.

he will lose hsi place eventually to Ojha who although reputed to be a better batsman...is actually a far safer WK also.

Jadeja's batting has severe limitations.....he was "almost out" 6 times LBW to seamers before Philander actually got him LBW.

Dhawan will get one more game and Rohit will come in at No. 6


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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by Mad for Chelsea on Sat Nov 07, 2015 12:29 pm

Given it was a low scoring game, I would have been tempted to give MOTM to Vijay or Pujara - probably the former - on the basis that their innings shaped the result. Both looked by far the most accomplished players in these conditions on either side. However, Jadeja's all-round contribution (also fielded well) probably deserved the award.

Not convince by Saha at all, with bat or gloves. Also, if pitches are similar to this one, I think it's pretty pointless for India to pick two seamers, hard to see how one couldn't have done the job they both did here. Decide who's your best option out of the two (don't think there's much in it personally) and stick with him. This frees up a spot for an extra batsman, which would most likely be Rohit. Saha seems far too high at n°6, while Jadeja at Test level is more of a 7/8 batsman than a top 6 one, so the added depth would be welcome. They could also do with a return to form for Kohli.

For SA, the problem is their batsmen are inexperienced in these conditions (and in Test cricket in general for most of them). Duminy's a loss (injured?). Elgar strikes me as someone who'll "do a job" but not produce match winning knocks, while not sold on Van Zyl. Mostly though, they need Du Plessis, Amla and De Villiers to produce. Also would question their selection: Philander at 7 is a long tail, for all his ability he's more of a n°8 IMO.

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Re: SA in India--Test Matches

Post by ShankyCricket on Sat Nov 07, 2015 2:25 pm

I know everyone on the internet hates Rohit but surely he or any 6th batsman for that matter would add more than the 5th bowler (especially when its Varun Aaron or Umesh Yadav). I'd be really interested to hear Kohli's explanation for playing 5 bowlers on this dustbowl. To me, it was a case of his bloated ego having made a public hue and cry over the "aggressive" nature of cricket his team is gonna play and his public support for the 5 bowler theory, he refused to back down even on a pitch that demanded the extra batsman far more than an extra seamer. As of now, despite the results, his captaincy looks more "show off" than any rational thinking to me (picking Karn Sharma over Ashwin in Australia another case in point even though I admit I agreed with it at the time) Even if the extra batsman had made a pair, he would've added more to the team as it would've meant spinners would've bowled more overs in the first innings that Yadav and Aaron ended up bowling, which might have cost on another day. Honestly, India were better off with 3 bowlers in this game than 5. Of course, when Ishant comes back for the next game, he should play as the sole seamer alongside the 3 spinners. Playing 5 bowlers (2 seamers) on these pitches makes absolutely no sense to me. The 6th batsman is an absolute must. Rohit did well lower down the order in Sri Lanka (he was never a No.3, its not his fault he was pushed up there) and was amazing in his only Test series in India till date. His ODI record in India is currently unrivalled and his FC record is brilliant too (unlike say, Shikhar Dhawan who only averages in the mid 40s in the Ranji Trophy). There is absolutely no reason not to back him for the No.6 slot in Asian conditions. He was India's most consistent batsman in their last 2 wins in Sri Lanka.

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