I had been wondering for the last couple of days about the English fan's reaction to the Lords Test 2007. Here's what I would have been thinking if I had brought the same emotions towards the English side as I have towards the Indian team
Day 1: 2 fifties and none could convert them into a century. Despite Andrew Strauss' let-off, we finished well behind thanks to the inability of our top batsmen to convert good starts into a really big one. BTW, Tremlett's inclusion ahead of Broad is baffling. Didn't Broad trouble the Indians in the tour game? With his confidence on a high, this was the right time to blood Broad.
Day 2: Pieterson and Collingwood are obviously overrated. Here, you had a nice cushion from where at least 500 was the minimum expected; our batting line-up just crumbled. Mercifully, our bowlers did a decent job and have got England back into the reckoning.
Day 3: A lead of almost 100; well it was time for our batsmen to rub it in. If the weather holds, and if our batsmen perform to their potential, we should have a good game in our hands.
Day 4: A target of 380 is a good 45-50 runs less than what was expected. But with time running out and the possibility of weather disrupting proceedings tomorrow, the English batsmen should have stepped on the accelerated in the first session itself; maybe after the first half-an-hour or 40 minutes. If weather has a say in the proceedings, our batsmen have just not given our bowlers sufficient time.
Day 5: Our team just didn't factor in the weather. The sight of Vaughan and Monty bowling in the end with the ball just 4-5 overs old was sickening. There was no need to take the new ball with Monty bowling so well. With the clouds looming, it was obvious that the new ball bowlers wouldn't get to bowl more than a couple of overs each. Despite this, Monty almost got the last mail, but the Indian batsman got the benefit of doubt.
Overall, its time KP buckled down and seriously considered his value to the team. KP's century yet again failed to win England this match. If KP has to be considered amongst the greatest batsmen along with other players of this era, he has to shoulder some more responsibility and take this England team to another plan. He has to start winning matches for his country.
:-) :-). Aren't the England team lucky they do not have fans / supporters like the Indians. In fact, one of the newspapers the next day proclaimed that the "England team were robbed of a deserving win.." by the weather and the umpires.