Australia vs India | 2nd Test | Sydney | 02/01/08

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Tape Ball Star
Nov 26, 2007
Post of the Week
Despite the pathetic surrender by the batsmen at MCG, the average indian fans are still expecting a decent performance from the Batsmen at SCG.They cannot afford to fail like they did in the first test.

This time, the sydney pitch is expected to provide more bounce and would help the seamers in the first 2 days and as usual help the spinners from 3rd day.

If the Indian batsmen cannot manage a decent score for the bowlers to bowl at, in case they bat first, there would not be any place to hide for the Batsmen because the next test is Perth and the series would be as good as lost before the final test begins at Adelaide.

If they bat second, they have to avoid follow on, going by their sub 200 scores in the last 2 innings. What use is so much of experience if they are not able to make it count when it is wanted most?

I expect Laxman, Ganguly( if fit), Dravid,Sachin , Jaffer, in this order to perform and show their value to the team. On aussie pitches Yuvraj and Dhoni can only do well if the top order some how manages to show the way and tire the bowlers.

The bowling was a pleasant surprise considering the injuries and lack of match practice of Both Zaheer and RPS.Harbhajan does not deserve a place ahead of Murali Karthik in the squad but unfortunately the indian selectors overlooked Vettori's performances against Aussies and ignored Murali for selecting an woefully out of form Harbhajan. He has completely lost his confidence and is bowling flat like an one day game.If RPS is rested and Ishant comes in, it would not be a bad idea as RPS did precious little, still not back to his best fitness. Kumble must use Yuvraj and Sachin more often and this would perhaps the last chance on the tour for Harbhajan to contribute for the team by taking off some burden off Kumble's bowling shoulder.

One can have a small allowance for atleast their batting collapse considering the fact that they hardly had any time to acclimatise to MCG bounce from the Bangalore dust bowl, but there cannot be any mercy for their lapses on the field. They simply gave away 60 runs each in both the innings by escorting the ball to the boundary instead of making diving stops even on the carpet like MCG outfield. aussies easily converted 3's from 2 's and 2 's from singles with out as much as even a small threat of getting run out.

On the other hand, Aussies fielded slightly better than what indians can even imagine in their wildest dreams.I just lost count of the number of times they saved certain boundaries with amazing commitment and athleticism. Along with their penetrative bowling, it was the unbreakable fielding ring that put paid to the Indian batsmen's hope of rotating the strike or breaking the shackles. it was simply a breathtaking performance that has to be a role model for any team to aspire for and emulate.

On paper, If Aussies do not include Tait for Johnson, India has a realistic hope of salvaging their reputation by hanging dearly for a draw by batting a total of 7-8 sessions out of the total 15 sessions.But it will call for a greater resolve from this team, something that has not been asked off them for the 6 months.

Let me hope that the New Year had brought the much needed positive attitude and self confidence to Indian team.
I could not understand why the Indians played two spinners in Aus. Surely the pitches are more conducive to three Pacers & Kumble.

Indians have a strong batting line up-they can sacrifice a specialist batsmen and play Pathan as an all-rounder. This will give the team more balance but will cause problems for dravid as he will have to open to accommodate Pathan.

IMO you can't just bat to beat Aus. You need five bowlers to bowl them out
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Zaheer Khan is doubtful for this 2nd test....
his same injury that troubled him during the series against Pakistan has once again cropped up..
India should play Shewag. Thats their best chance of winning. If he fires, he will take the attack to the aussie bowlers.
pakcricketfan said:
Zaheer Khan is doubtful for this 2nd test....
his same injury that troubled him during the series against Pakistan has once again cropped up..
Unfortunately i knew this would happen! What were the BCCI thinking? terrible scheduling
Good luck to the both sides :19: ! Which way it works I can´t predict :p .
The Indian batsman will be under immense pressure to perform well at the SCG. If the Aussies win this match then the series is pretty much over for India. If I was Kumble I woud bring in Sehwag (wildcard) and drop Yuvraj. I would continue with the 2 spin attack because Harbhajan is good for taking the wicket of Ponting. IMHO the Aussies will win this match because of heir superb bowling. It woud be interesting to see if Ponting brings in Tait because Tendulkar ripped Hogg at the MCG and the Indians struggled against the pacers.
If I were Ponting I woud play this team
1 Phil Jaques, 2 Matthew Hayden, 3 Ricky Ponting (capt), 4 Michael Hussey, 5 Michael Clarke, 6 Andrew Symonds, 7 Adam Gilchrist (wk), 8 Shaun Tait, 9 Brett Lee, 10 Mitchell Johnson, 11 Stuart Clark.
If I were Kumble I would pay this team
1 Wasim Jaffer, 2 Virender Sehwag, 3 Rahul Dravid, 4 Sachin Tendulkar, 5 Sourav Ganguly, 6 VVS Laxman, 7 Mahendra Singh Dhoni (wk), 8 Anil Kumble (capt), 9 Harbhajan Singh/Ishant Sharma, 10 Zaheer Khan/Irfan Pathan, 11 RP Singh.
India will be under pressure, they need to win this test to keep the series alive. India should look to bat first and post a score of around 500+ to put Australia under pressure and make them chase the game. India should play Sehwag, he is a postive player who can unsettle the Aussie bowlers, an opener which India lack at this stage. Dravid should bat at his normal position at number 3 or 6, just to get the pressure off him, he is India's trump card, he needs to fire.

This is my line up:

Pathan/Zaheer (Zaheer doubtful)
RP Singh
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Wasim Jaffer
Irfan Pathan
Rahul Dravid
Sachin Tendulkar
Saurav Ganguly
VVS Laxman
Yuvraj Singh
Mahendra Singh Dhoni+
Anil Kumble*
Rudra Pratap Singh
Harbhajan Singh

I'd promote Pathan to open in case Zaheer is out with injury. That way Dravid and Laxman can come in at their normal positions and Yuvraj/Dhoni come in at 7/8. Ideally, Pathan and Yuvraj would both be left out for Sehwag/Zaheer but selection blunders and injury mean that can not be possible.

Best possible team from the 13.
Australia won the toss and elected to bat first

Australia team
PA Jaques, ML Hayden, RT Ponting, MEK Hussey, MJ Clarke, A Symonds, AC Gilchrist, GB Hogg, B Lee, MG Johnson, SR Clark

India team
W Jaffer, R Dravid, VVS Laxman, SR Tendulkar, SC Ganguly, Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni, A Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, RP Singh, I Sharma

little bit of grass on pitch

Anthems next so it will be about 15 min to start
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10.00am Ricky Ponting has won the toss. "We're going to bat today, mate," he says, a rerun of the MCG. "The wicket looks pretty good, a bit of moisture this morning. We played well in Melbourne but that's all behind us now. We created momentum and hope to do the same. It was as good Test cricket as we've played in a long time."

Anil Kumble is quietly, calmly confident. "There'll be early juice in the wickets, I'm looking forward to a couple of early wickets."

yeah right :20:
Yuvraj is having a long knocking session with the bat (can't you get them pre-knocked in these days?...groan) - cricinfo

what was wrong with the bat from last test?
Tait not playing .... bOOOOOO ponting !!!

:12: :12: :12:

On the flip side Indian pact attack looks weak as hell..
Ishant puttar is playing in place of Zaheer. Damn he is gonna be smashed to all parts.
Players coming out.
A while ago Tony Greig was saying that Indian team requested to not water the outfield. Greig's opinion was that outfield was slow at MCB and they (Indian team) would rather see a boundary instead of chasing the ball
This setting may be too much for Ishant Sharma. The Aussies could really get stuck into him. In all likelihood Kumble will be fighting a lone battle again.
Wow, Australia one down without a run on the board! Good start.
first four for the Australians. drive to midd off by Hayden
Aus 14-1
Hayden out ct at 1st slip off RP Singh
Aus 27-2 after 8.4 overs
Taylor confirming that outfield will not be watered because Indian team doesn't want it watered. Is this not part of homefield advantage? Well 5 days of hot weather and no water will probably damage the grass
Surporising sart by Australia and even more surprising by India. Good start by RP Singh
How has Sharma looked today?
Ponting nick's it down the leg side and given not out

Ganguly to Ponting's leg side and Dhoni catches it. Loud appeal and umpire Benson??? says not out. There was a noise

Ponting was on 17 and Aus 45-2
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He got away with that one. He made contact with the ball. Missed by the umpire.
a life for ponting at SCG could prove costly he averages 80+ here over 15+ tests.
hmm..when yuvi nicked one and let off ,they made it in the next over .Will we get the same for Ponting ?
Dont worry you guys have Harbhjan who always seems to get this guy. Should be some battle between these two.
PlanetPakistan said:
ah that is a big miss by the umpire! Hopefully IND will get him soon.
Hope umpire miss such things when India comes to bat as well :(
Another edge from Hussey and this time it is a 4

siddharth said:
Hope umpire miss such things when India comes to bat as well :(

They already have, in the first test, when Yuvraj was given a life after being caught at bat pad. However he didn't make the most of it, nicking one to Gilchrist soon after. Tendulkar could have done with the extra life Yuvraj wasted.
Sharma bowl's a no-ball and Ponting hits it for 4

Ponting hits a brilliant 4 through the cover drive

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RT Ponting will get a 100 here. He gave one chance I don't think any more chances will be coming from him. 2 excellent boundaries!
Someone hop over to the SCG and tell Sharma that if he can't land his bouncer, it's a useless delivery.
Shout for LBW but the ball hit Ponting outside the line. Well worth a shout though.
Sharma becoming costly after being hit for 18 runs from his last two overs
Bhajji bamboozled Ponting in flight, drew him out of the crease, but Dhoni missed the stumping chance. That's 2 lives for Ponting, this is not the way you win matches!
Another let off for Ponting could of been stumped

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Stumping chance missed. POOR keeping by Dhoni. Something tells me the agile Kartik would have gobbled that one up.
Lunch .Even though india got two early break throughs ,Aussies won this session.
Woo hoo! Lunch break. No more Indians getting smashed to all parts for at least 35-40 mins.
Well if one more wicket falls then India will be on top again! But the batting line up of the Aussies in daunting! They love to bat the oppostion out of the game! I think Aussies will make around 350-400 here!

I think it was not a good idea to include Ishant Sharma, Irfan Pathan was a better option then Ishant and plus he can bat!

I still think Aussies will woop India here too! Look at the difference, Australia have lost two wickets and still are keeping a healthy run rate!
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