It was probably the start of the semester. The discussion in the house was how BCCI is probably asking Sachin to retire. I being a strong supported wanted him to play forever. My roommates however thought different. They felt that India had a very promising young team and that there are better players than Sachin for the number four position. I always told them “when the ball starts moving, Indian youngsters have no clue how to tackle it.”
We had some horrible test results in England and Australia. White washed in both the series. Then what happened was a dream year for the Indian Cricket Team. We won almost everything. Gave the British what they gave us, with Australia we chased down 350 plus scores with ease and our Batsmen are currently considered the best. Then we came to the horrid Proteas and the very same batsmen were toyed around with. Poking at away swingers, not being able to keep down the pull shot, not judging the bounce and charging down the tracks when half the team is in Pavilion; Indian batsmen are a frustrated bunch right now.
India had lost its top position for tests after the 4-0 thrashing in England. The next series was again away against West-Indies which we won comfortably. We were defeated at home by England again and since then the only away test series (Except W/I) for India had been to Australia where we all know what happened. We are currently the second ranked team in Tests and the best in One day cricket (I do not consider T20’s as Cricket). Do we really deserve to be there!
Past two years we haven’t had any away test series except West-Indies. We have been thrashing oppositions at home but outside we struggle greatly. It reminds me of Mickey Goldman from Rocky III. He had made sure that Balboa got all easy matches so he can revel in his delusional excellence. The BCCI, to save the rankings has made sure that all the top teams play the Indian team only at our home.
We are a cricket worshipping nation and do not like to see our team lose. But is this protective behaviour really going to help us in the long run (Especially world cup in Australia)? I believe we missed a trick by not risking going away during the transition period. Players could have learnt a lot from the senior batsmen. We would have lost but at least would have grown. We need to play and win more more overseas. You can only be regarded as the world champions if you win everywhere in the world.
I hated the Australian series couple months back. At no point should scoring 350 be that easy in the game. They have bowlers in the game so that their talent matters as well. I had waited eagerly for the South African series, not because I derive sadistic pleasure of the sans Sachin team not winning, but because I like to see a fair match. Let’s hope we give a fight in the tests.