Saturday, March 11, 2006

Handing it back

England have had an easy way in this series to keep India out of the game: just take Sehwag's wicket. For after that, whatever Jaffer and Dravid do, they certainly will not take the intiative. Shortly after tea on the third day of an already-shortened game, India are 82/1 off 29 or so overs, with the Jaffer-Dravid partnership making 64 runs off 155 deliveries. Given that India had done wonderfully well to dismiss England for 300, I would have thought that India's best chances to put England under any pressure whatsoever lay in scoring quickly to make England bat again on the last day while facing a sizeable lead. But the way these two are going, thats not going to happen. Slowly, but surely, India's innings is heading towards the kind of inconclusive shape that ensures draws. While this match was already hit hard by the rain, India's late burst of wickets put some life into it. This partnership is ensuring that Kumble's late burst of wickets is not going to do any more work in this test.

Oh, yes, I know, the two are rebuilding the innings. And in a short while, they'll be trying to ensure that they don't lose a wicket till stumps, right? When do they go about trying to put the squeeze on England? Any time for that?


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