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Old 8th January 2018, 18:46   #121
cg3
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A very expected result at the conclusion of the First Test. To be fair, Pandya did rather well as did the bowlers in the second innings. The batsmen, as expected, came a cropper in seaming conditions and excellent bowling. I guess those net sessions in lieu of practice matches helped a lot. And playing infinite amount of matches with Sri Lanka. Certainly.

I'll say this- not knowing something is fine. But not knowing something and not knowing that you don't know something is a recipe for disaster.
Come on, we're kidding ourselves if we think they would have done any better playing a half baked warm up match on a slow pitch. It takes batsmen of rare ability to score runs against an SA attack on a pitch like this - someone like Steve Smith or Joe Root. India don't have a batsman of that class and it doesn't help matters that our captain doesn't understand the nuances of Test cricket, so he chooses to pick second rate flat track bullies over batsmen with proven records in conditions like this.

As I said, the SA batting wasn't really that impressive in this game either. Yes the counterattack was great and de Villiers was magnificent, but its a bit easier to counterattack when you're getting gifted half volleys. When the Indians tightened up in the 2nd innings the SA batting was just as ordinary as India's.
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Old 8th January 2018, 21:01   #122
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Come on, we're kidding ourselves if we think they would have done any better playing a half baked warm up match on a slow pitch. It takes batsmen of rare ability to score runs against an SA attack on a pitch like this - someone like Steve Smith or Joe Root. India don't have a batsman of that class and it doesn't help matters that our captain doesn't understand the nuances of Test cricket, so he chooses to pick second rate flat track bullies over batsmen with proven records in conditions like this.

As I said, the SA batting wasn't really that impressive in this game either. Yes the counterattack was great and de Villiers was magnificent, but its a bit easier to counterattack when you're getting gifted half volleys. When the Indians tightened up in the 2nd innings the SA batting was just as ordinary as India's.
I agree with a lot of this. India do not have the batsmen, and rarely have had, to be win series outside of Asia. That's just a reality and playing weakened sides in modern warm up games would not make a difference.

Having said that, the SA batting line up was only slightly better and as I said at the start of all this, it's a line up going through transition.
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Old 8th January 2018, 23:51   #123
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And probably many Australian fans after Trent Bridge in 2015, or any time in the sub-continent recently. Touring has not been a fruitful exercise in the past few years.

Still, two tests to go, it only takes an inspired spell of determined innings to get India back into the series.
We won the first test in India, and were a chance of drawing that series until the last 2 days, then lost, and won in Bangladesh. We've shown a lot more gumption on the subcontinent lately than England, that's for certain.
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Old 9th January 2018, 02:12   #124
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Originally Posted by aNarcHy2day View Post
A very expected result at the conclusion of the First Test. To be fair, Pandya did rather well as did the bowlers in the second innings. The batsmen, as expected, came a cropper in seaming conditions and excellent bowling. I guess those net sessions in lieu of practice matches helped a lot. And playing infinite amount of matches with Sri Lanka. Certainly.

I'll say this- not knowing something is fine. But not knowing something and not knowing that you don't know something is a recipe for disaster.
Maybe a good quote for your signature.
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Old 9th January 2018, 02:17   #125
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Bavuma made way for Du Plessis returning, having played against Zimbabwe. It's hard to see how he fits in a full strength team with Dr Villiers back. I assume Phelukwayo has more chance of replacing Steyn unless they go to Ngidi (who I'd never even heard of until this thread).

Ngidi and Olivier have been added to the squad for Centurion which appears to indicate they will choose a bowling replacement for Steyn rather than shoring up their batting.

The worrying thing for India perhaps is that the two highveld tests will be on pitches with more bounce and in this test, India easily had the better of the batting conditions in both innings. Can't imagine India would have posted a lot batting first on day one had Faf inserted them, or even early on day four after the pitch had sweated under the covers.

There was more movement in this match than there was for the whole of the Ashes series on our flat tracks. Only exception was Adelaide under lights.
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Old 9th January 2018, 06:03   #126
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Come on, we're kidding ourselves if we think they would have done any better playing a half baked warm up match on a slow pitch. It takes batsmen of rare ability to score runs against an SA attack on a pitch like this - someone like Steve Smith or Joe Root. India don't have a batsman of that class and it doesn't help matters that our captain doesn't understand the nuances of Test cricket, so he chooses to pick second rate flat track bullies over batsmen with proven records in conditions like this.

As I said, the SA batting wasn't really that impressive in this game either. Yes the counterattack was great and de Villiers was magnificent, but its a bit easier to counterattack when you're getting gifted half volleys. When the Indians tightened up in the 2nd innings the SA batting was just as ordinary as India's.
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I agree with a lot of this. India do not have the batsmen, and rarely have had, to be win series outside of Asia. That's just a reality and playing weakened sides in modern warm up games would not make a difference.

Having said that, the SA batting line up was only slightly better and as I said at the start of all this, it's a line up going through transition.
I will have to disagree with you guys on the limited point that practice in in-match conditions wouldn't have made any difference at all. If that were true, there wouldn't ever have been practice matches before tours. Even most recently, Australia had an intensive camp in Dubai before the Indian tour and there was a New Zealand A tour preceding the main teams and both I thought played significant part in the actual quality of the performance on the main tour.

But yes, you are right- 'A half baked warm-up match' wouldn't probably have helped. What I'm saying is- they ended the Sri Lanka series in the first week of December. Send an A-Team to South Africa by the next week that includes your Test specialists (Rahane, Pujara, Vijay, Ashwin, Jadeja, Ishant, Umesh among others) and play 3-4 Two-day and Three-day matches in different parts, preferably against the South Africa A side- I'm sure the BCCI has that much clout to make it happen. I mean, instead of arm twisting nations in ICC meetings, that's where I'd prefer the clout to be utilized.

And I don't think it's about the attack either- it's about getting used to pitch and surrounding conditions- the bounce on offer, what to leave and what not to etc.

Also, regarding ability of the batsmen, I strongly believe you guys are being unfair writing off any possibility of them adjusting to conditions. Especially the statement about India not having batsmen of class at all. I mean, sure, Steve Smith- probably De Villiers is the only batsman in his class playing the modern game- but Root (and I do love Root)? I don't think he's done enough yet to prove anything of that sort.

Lastly, how exactly is the South African line up going through any kind of transition? It's probably the most settled line up right now with the only issue being the opening partner for Elgar which Markram is trying to solve.
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Old 9th January 2018, 10:24   #127
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We won the first test in India, and were a chance of drawing that series until the last 2 days, then lost, and won in Bangladesh. We've shown a lot more gumption on the subcontinent lately than England, that's for certain.
Nope, you drew in Bangladesh and lost 3-0 in Sri Lanka. It's not really much more gumption.
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Old 9th January 2018, 10:40   #128
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I will have to disagree with you guys on the limited point that practice in in-match conditions wouldn't have made any difference at all. If that were true, there wouldn't ever have been practice matches before tours. Even most recently, Australia had an intensive camp in Dubai before the Indian tour and there was a New Zealand A tour preceding the main teams and both I thought played significant part in the actual quality of the performance on the main tour.

But yes, you are right- 'A half baked warm-up match' wouldn't probably have helped. What I'm saying is- they ended the Sri Lanka series in the first week of December. Send an A-Team to South Africa by the next week that includes your Test specialists (Rahane, Pujara, Vijay, Ashwin, Jadeja, Ishant, Umesh among others) and play 3-4 Two-day and Three-day matches in different parts, preferably against the South Africa A side- I'm sure the BCCI has that much clout to make it happen. I mean, instead of arm twisting nations in ICC meetings, that's where I'd prefer the clout to be utilized.

And I don't think it's about the attack either- it's about getting used to pitch and surrounding conditions- the bounce on offer, what to leave and what not to etc.

Also, regarding ability of the batsmen, I strongly believe you guys are being unfair writing off any possibility of them adjusting to conditions. Especially the statement about India not having batsmen of class at all. I mean, sure, Steve Smith- probably De Villiers is the only batsman in his class playing the modern game- but Root (and I do love Root)? I don't think he's done enough yet to prove anything of that sort.

Lastly, how exactly is the South African line up going through any kind of transition? It's probably the most settled line up right now with the only issue being the opening partner for Elgar which Markram is trying to solve.
If the warm up matches are the quality of what they used to be (up until part of the last decade, international teams would often play strong domestic sides, not the 3rd or 4th team) then I agree. Now, preparations in terms of conditions is a different kettle of fish. Australia used the academy in Dubai to bat on the turning pitches that are available over there. I'm not sure if they played any FC level sides while over there.

Yet none of that helped all that much as most of the batsmen looked lost at sea on one of the most turning pitches I've seen (including the Indians), but the difference was a truly stand out cricketer, and that's Smith.

So that's my point, I don't think India have the players, regardless of preparation, to win in SA. I mean, they can be and were, competitive but winning an entire test series is one of the toughest asks in all sports and to do it in a place like SA, you have to have one or two singular players that can make a difference. So, as much skill and class as Kohli, Pujara and co may have, they don't have enough of it to win here or Eng or Aus.

In terms of Root, he was very good in SA and just as good in his two tours of India. Smith is obviously better and Williamson is there abouts but Kohli has time and time again shown an ability to get out, or be got out, on pitches that aren't built for him. He was abysmal against good Aussie spin in his own home series, looked barely present in England and now this. His best foreign tour has been Australia, where he scored a lot of runs but on largely flat, brown, dry, boring wickets where plenty of other centuries were scored by other batters.

Now, all of this can change with the right mindset and work ethic...if India wish to do so.
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Old 9th January 2018, 10:52   #129
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Nope, you drew in Bangladesh and lost 3-0 in Sri Lanka. It's not really much more gumption.

Are you somewhat thick? I said we lost (the first test) and won (the second test) In Bangladesh, I didn't say we won the series. Compare Englands performance in India against Australia, and tell me your pitiful performance didn't pale incomparison to ours? I know you're hurting, but try to be honest for a change.
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Old 9th January 2018, 11:19   #130
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If the warm up matches are the quality of what they used to be (up until part of the last decade, international teams would often play strong domestic sides, not the 3rd or 4th team) then I agree. Now, preparations in terms of conditions is a different kettle of fish. Australia used the academy in Dubai to bat on the turning pitches that are available over there. I'm not sure if they played any FC level sides while over there.

Yet none of that helped all that much as most of the batsmen looked lost at sea on one of the most turning pitches I've seen (including the Indians), but the difference was a truly stand out cricketer, and that's Smith.

So that's my point, I don't think India have the players, regardless of preparation, to win in SA. I mean, they can be and were, competitive but winning an entire test series is one of the toughest asks in all sports and to do it in a place like SA, you have to have one or two singular players that can make a difference. So, as much skill and class as Kohli, Pujara and co may have, they don't have enough of it to win here or Eng or Aus.

In terms of Root, he was very good in SA and just as good in his two tours of India. Smith is obviously better and Williamson is there abouts but Kohli has time and time again shown an ability to get out, or be got out, on pitches that aren't built for him. He was abysmal against good Aussie spin in his own home series, looked barely present in England and now this. His best foreign tour has been Australia, where he scored a lot of runs but on largely flat, brown, dry, boring wickets where plenty of other centuries were scored by other batters.

Now, all of this can change with the right mindset and work ethic...if India wish to do so.
The best way would be to compare what Australia did six months prior in Sri Lanka. They lost 3-0 to a much weaker side and collapsed in a heap the moment there was any sign of turn. Against India, they gave a much much better account of themselves and actually managed to faulter on a seaming Dharamshala of all places. So, I actually do think the camp made a difference and a lot of the team credited it in consequent interviews.

As far as them not being good enough even with preparation, my point is- There was none. May be it would have helped. May be it wouldn't. But that is moot if there is no preparation in the first place?
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Old 9th January 2018, 11:23   #131
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Are you somewhat thick? I said we lost (the first test) and won (the second test) In Bangladesh, I didn't say we won the series. Compare Englands performance in India against Australia, and tell me your pitiful performance didn't pale incomparison to ours? I know you're hurting, but try to be honest for a change.
Could've sworn you wrote "We won the first test in India, and were a chance of drawing that series until the last 2 days, and won in Bangladesh."

Nice editing.......
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Old 9th January 2018, 12:47   #132
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If the warm up matches are the quality of what they used to be (up until part of the last decade, international teams would often play strong domestic sides, not the 3rd or 4th team) then I agree. Now, preparations in terms of conditions is a different kettle of fish. Australia used the academy in Dubai to bat on the turning pitches that are available over there. I'm not sure if they played any FC level sides while over there.

Yet none of that helped all that much as most of the batsmen looked lost at sea on one of the most turning pitches I've seen (including the Indians), but the difference was a truly stand out cricketer, and that's Smith.

So that's my point, I don't think India have the players, regardless of preparation, to win in SA. I mean, they can be and were, competitive but winning an entire test series is one of the toughest asks in all sports and to do it in a place like SA, you have to have one or two singular players that can make a difference. So, as much skill and class as Kohli, Pujara and co may have, they don't have enough of it to win here or Eng or Aus.

In terms of Root, he was very good in SA and just as good in his two tours of India. Smith is obviously better and Williamson is there abouts but Kohli has time and time again shown an ability to get out, or be got out, on pitches that aren't built for him. He was abysmal against good Aussie spin in his own home series, looked barely present in England and now this. His best foreign tour has been Australia, where he scored a lot of runs but on largely flat, brown, dry, boring wickets where plenty of other centuries were scored by other batters.

Now, all of this can change with the right mindset and work ethic...if India wish to do so.

Mind you even Smith in that innings required liberal doses of luck to survive. India seemed to determined not to hold on to their catches.
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Old 9th January 2018, 14:54   #133
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I don't know why Gibson wants to field 4 seamers in the future. I think 3 and Maharaj is fine. They are that good.

Steyn, Morkel, Philander and Rabada - impossible to think who you would leave out though.

Could be the same if you had Starc, Hazelwood, Cummins and Pattinson all fit together, but the three of them and Lyon all took 20+ wickets in the series.

For England 4 are needed and Stokes is an all-rounder. If we had a spinner like Maharaj or Lyon then only 3 fast bowlers would be needed.
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Old 9th January 2018, 16:22   #134
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I mean, instead of arm twisting nations in ICC meetings, that's where I'd prefer the clout to be utilized.
On this point I'm in complete agreement to you. A lot of the criticism of the Indian players is justified but there is no question they are hamstrung by the BCCI.
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Old 9th January 2018, 16:30   #135
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So that's my point, I don't think India have the players, regardless of preparation, to win in SA. I mean, they can be and were, competitive but winning an entire test series is one of the toughest asks in all sports and to do it in a place like SA, you have to have one or two singular players that can make a difference. So, as much skill and class as Kohli, Pujara and co may have, they don't have enough of it to win here or Eng or Aus.
And the one Indian batsman who has shown the potential to do this - Rahane - gets left out for a one-day slogger like Rohit Sharma, who will never score runs on challenging pitches in Test cricket in a million years.

Kohli makes some good decisions, some bad ones and some bizarre ones, but so do all captains to some degree. But this favoritism of Rohit, completely blind to the glaring evidence that he is not good enough for Test cricket away from home, is just frustrating beyond belief.
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Old 9th January 2018, 16:44   #136
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I don't know why Gibson wants to field 4 seamers in the future. I think 3 and Maharaj is fine. They are that good.

Steyn, Morkel, Philander and Rabada - impossible to think who you would leave out though.
The question will probably soon be moot though - Steyn, Philander & Morkel probably won't be around after 2 years and in that time its difficult to see all 3 of them being fit at once.

If they were a bit younger, seeing that quartet play consistently would have been a mouthwatering prospect (for everyone except the opposition batsmen of course!)
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Old 9th January 2018, 19:05   #137
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I don't know why Gibson wants to field 4 seamers in the future. I think 3 and Maharaj is fine. They are that good.

Steyn, Morkel, Philander and Rabada - impossible to think who you would leave out though.

Could be the same if you had Starc, Hazelwood, Cummins and Pattinson all fit together, but the three of them and Lyon all took 20+ wickets in the series.

For England 4 are needed and Stokes is an all-rounder. If we had a spinner like Maharaj or Lyon then only 3 fast bowlers would be needed.
Maybe we would if we picked a spinner. If SA had decided to play Duminy as their sole spinner forever then there would never have been room for Maharaj.
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Old 9th January 2018, 19:56   #138
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Did anyone some bizarre stat used at one point in this test? Apparently in the past year or something, analysis has shown that 32% of South African catches were "brilliant" while only 7% of Indian catches were "superb". I might have the numbers off, but the wording is right, yet I'm not sure what it is supposed to mean.
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Old 9th January 2018, 21:31   #139
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Did anyone some bizarre stat used at one point in this test? Apparently in the past year or something, analysis has shown that 32% of South African catches were "brilliant" while only 7% of Indian catches were "superb". I might have the numbers off, but the wording is right, yet I'm not sure what it is supposed to mean.
That we are crap at catching? Duh!
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Old 9th January 2018, 22:20   #140
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And the one Indian batsman who has shown the potential to do this - Rahane - gets left out for a one-day slogger like Rohit Sharma, who will never score runs on challenging pitches in Test cricket in a million years.

Kohli makes some good decisions, some bad ones and some bizarre ones, but so do all captains to some degree. But this favoritism of Rohit, completely blind to the glaring evidence that he is not good enough for Test cricket away from home, is just frustrating beyond belief.
Is Rahane really that good? he looked a bit lost in England and his SA stats are bloated, but hey, I do agree he is probably better than Sharma. Problem is, he is not of the quality of Smith or Root to change an away tour in the teams favour. Kohli is THAT guy but does not have the patience to avoid off stump line deliveries.

He should really take a leaf out of Tendulkar's book, a man he calls his hero and leave everything outside of off. Just tire the bowlers out, get them frustrated and bowling at him. It will take time, application and patience...those are required for truly great batsmen.
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