Tuesday, October 26

T3 D1

At 362/7, there is a lot of "even stevens" and "honours even" doing the rounds, but I'd definitely say Australia would be more satisfied than India. For India, the first session would have raised hopes to wrap up the Aussie innings, the second would have crashed them down. And while the third made things a whole lot better, Gillespie's infuriatingly resolute defense, Clarke's maturity, Patel's lapse and the innings run rate wil leave us feeling assuredly worse off.
90 overs were managed about 10 minutes short of the extra halfhour, while across the border Bangladesh have managed 92, despite all the leather chasing.

Stranger things have happened. Karthik is taking wickets (and bowling well!), and Mr Patel managed a sharp stumping to dismiss Warne.
Also, the Aussies have slumped (if you can say that) to 338 for 7.
The Lehmann wicket before tea seems to have pumped up Karthik. He looks a much better bowler- flighting the ball well, getting some good loop and dip. He still lacks the consistency, giving away a boundary-ball to often, but right now? - I aint complaining!

Tea. I wonder why Ajit bowled such a prolonged spell after lunch, and Zaheer came in much later. Our very own Murali still looks unimpressive. Crucial last session, where the Aussies could run away with the day… Has anyone ever watched the cricket on DD National? I have had the dubious pleasure of doing so today, thanks to no Cable transmission. Their ad spots are different, with some air time seemingly reserved for Social messages. I am all for that, but you have to see the quality of those ads (if you can call them that) to believe them. Astonishing, yet totally in keeping with DD’s propensity to unintentionally entertain as they broadcast. Consistent, if not anything else.

Talking of Chopras, there is no confidence around poor Roshni Chopra either, on Fourth Umpire- still worthy entertainment in the lunch break. (If you are starved of any laughs whatsoever in life, then). And poor ol’ Roshni- Charu Sharma can’t help but be a tad condescending now and then. Doordarshan, of course, even after two Tests, does not notice anything amiss with its telecast. In the middle of the session analysis, they decide to go into an ad break and not return. But starting off on DD’s antics again is the same old story, and a waste of cyberspace.

A good session. First hour to the batsmen , second to the fielding side. Even though there were many missed and close-ish calls in that first hour. Zaheer looks to be into his stride, after steadily improving since his return in Bangalore.
When the session began, I couldn’t believe we had the lost the toss, again. And I couldn’t believe that the jokers at the VCA had produced this pitch that Gilchrist called an Australian sort. All in the name of ‘sporting tracks’. Oh, well…
Lehmann looks all set to play his shots again. Hope the strategy fails like it has been till now- he has not really been looking convincing right through the series. And the danger men are still to come- Gilly and Clarke, fresh from Singapore visits and all.

Good to see SRT back on the field. He seemed, unsurprisingly, so glad to be back in the middle again. The joy, and the smiles on his face are still child-like. Refreshing, considering he has been playing the game at the highest level for 15 years now.

09:15, IST

Boy, this is a difficult start. Captain out. Star spinner out. Coin falls the wrong way, again. As soon as we have seen a bit of grass and a prospectively (relatively) pacer friendly track, we rush to get Chopra back in the fold. I, first of all, agree. A ‘specialist’ opener is always a good idea. But there needs to be some consistency in the thinking. If there was some confidence placed in Yuvi to begin with, then it should have been sustained. On the basis of that one opening innings in Chennai, he now seems, to the sme eyes, to be unfit for opening? And what about Aakash Chopra. Feeling perpetually like he has a rabid dog at his heels. Will he play the next game or not, there is no confidence surrounding anything Chopra.

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