As whole of India chants "Anna, Anna" these days, standing unanimously against curruption that's creeped into our systems, we wonder whether Indian cricketers will take a clue from countrymen back home and raise a voice against constant cricket they've been made to play by the BCCI. Probably not, cause they seemed happy as they conceeded whitewash to England today..
196 runs in 1st test, 319 runs in 2nd test, inning + 242 runs in 3rd test and now defeated following-on ~ Indian team just refused to stand upto the challenge in the series as England ravaged their pride. here's how the story of this Oval test unfolded :-
England 591 for 6 wkts dec.
India 300 allout & 283 allout.
Full scorecard : 4th test, Oval, 2011.
Flying in from Miami where he was on holiday with family, RP Singh bowled what Ian Botham termed as "worst first over he's ever seen" in a test match! Although Botham may have exaggerated little bit, that wayward over set the tone despite it being a trick decision to bat first by the home side. Andrew Strauss and Alastair Cook took England to lunch unseparated, negotiating some good deliveries from Ishant Sharma who even broke Strauss' helmet untill rain made sure no further play was possible on day 1.
Day 2 brought an early wicket for visitors, in first over as Sharma claimed Cook, driving forcefully wide outside offstump. Strauss didn't last too long either but he made sure Ian Bell was shielded early in this innings. Joined by Kevin Pietersen, Ian Bell slowly accelerated England's run rate as Indian new ball bowlers started to get tired and Amit Mishra was not allowed to settle down. Pietersen in perticular was severe on opposition attack, raising his half century from 62 balls, century from 148 balls and then 150 at 208th ball mark. Bell continued to collected classical runs from other end untill 350 run stand (new India v England record) was finally met it's end in the last hour.
Bell completed his maiden test double on day 3 and England were pushing for a declaration before rain came back and they were forced to invite India to bat after tea interval. Gautam Gambhir had hurt back of his head, sending in Rahul Dravid as opener for the second time in the series. Dravid kept his cool at one end but five of his mates departed one by one before stumps were called for.
15 wickets in hand with two day's play remaining, few expected below par Indians to save this game but Rahul Dravid's 35th century in first innings, Amit Mishra's resolute effort in both innings and Sachin Tendulkar's near hundreth hundred kept them in hunt till the middle of last day when Graeme Swann made crucial breakthroughs to wrap up the game.
This was only the 4th series of 4 or more tests in which India lost all, second time against England including 0-5 defeat in 1959 as well as 0-5 loss to West Indies in 1962 and 0-4 to Australia back in 1968. Note that all have been away series.
For England, this was 3rd whitewash they've achieved in a series of 4 tests or more, having beaten India in 1959 as mentioned earlier and 0-4 win over West Indies back in 2004. Everytime at home.
This was first test series loss for MS Dhoni, after 12 series he's lead India in since taking over the captainship from Anil Kumble back in April 2008. India now has won 8 test series under MS Dhoni, drawn 4 and lost once. Overall, Dhoni has captained India in 31 tests, won 15, drawn 9 and lost 7.