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Need to bring in some aggression in your batting.

Related Link : India’s tour of England : First Test Scorecard

The Indian batting failed to impress all and sundry in the First Test at Lord’s. The skills of Indian batsmen have always come under scrutiny on foreign soils, but at Lord’s, the intent was missing. All of them were in the bubble of cautiousness which if pricked India could have amassed something out of the match. Defending good balls is a necessity but nobody tried to take the initiative to score quickly. Respecting bowlers is part of the art but giving too much leeway to the bowlers snatch your confidence and the will to impose your authority. If you look at the scoreboard of the Indian batting, runs per 100 deliveries were drastically low, it seems as if all of them were playing for their place in the side or too much pressure back at home to do well is making them apprehensive which is depriving them of their natural playing styles.

We all know and discussed it several times that it is an inexperienced English bowling which cannot sustain too much pressure if applied. Pressure can be built on the young players if rotation of strike or dealing loose deliveries with contempt brings into play whereas Indian batting was considering weather conditions too much.

Dravid came out in the 2nd innings with the vision to take the bowlers on, but his stay of 9 from 12 balls with two fours was shortened by an lbw decision. Ganguly also looked to stamp authority with his 40 from 65 balls in the same innings, but apart from that all looked leaden-footed and caged-minded, whereas three out of top four English batsmen made runs with a strike rate in excess of 50.00 in the 1st innings. Batsmen who took the game away from the Indian reach in the 2nd innings were Pietersen and Prior making their runs with the strike rate of 62.91 and 68.85 respectively.

One more thing that baffled all was the way the Indian batsmen handled Panesar. He is good, but he is not Shane Warne or Daniel Vettori. Panesar is a bowler, who loves challenges and contest, but then what do you say about VVS Laxman, Tendulkar, Ganguly or Dravid who tore Warne apart on Indian pitches. Considering the ability of Indian batsmen against spinners, they gave too much space to Panesar to let him dominate. After Sidebottom’s economy rate of 2.21, it was Panesar who restrained the Indians with an economy rate of 2.42 in the second innings. We are not saying that they should have started tonking him for fours and sixes all around the park, but they could have unnerved him through pinching singles here and there and could have looked to come down the track to disturb his game plan. On the other hand, England took Kumble on in the second innings and earned 70 runs in his 17 runs at the rate of 4.11, now kindly don’t tell me that Englishmen are confident players of leg-spinners.

At best, we can suggest to the Indian batsmen that with inhibition and tentativeness, you squeezed a draw so if you apply aggression then things could change other way round.


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