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Adsy

I like "Side" or "Sidey" for Siddle. Personal preference.

Has Zaheer forgotten about some of the fearful hidings he recieved at the hands of the Aussies previously? 2003 World Cup Final? First over?

Siddle is a fairly safe bet. He'll run in all day and bang the ball in. If the pitch has anything in it you can be sure he'll get something out of it. In the first test Clark looked like he needed an absolute minefield to worry the Indians.

As for a prediction, I'll go India win the toss and bat and make 350, Australia will lose early wickets and require a saving innings by a M.Clarke or Hussey. Get up to around India's first innings. India sets a target later on in the match, say around 300-330, Australia either gets it easily to keep their status at the top of the pile or crumbles to be well short and condemmed by all media scribes to be in a downward spiral.

Adsy

Further to Zaheer's World Cup shenanigans

m0nty

CroquetInfo is reporting bad weather leading up to the match and the ground curator describing the pitch as "sluggish". Not conducive to a result, from the sounds of it.

SaggyGreen

Second Fiddle

Tony T

Kumble out. Mishra in. Dhoni Kebab won the toss and India will bat. Hope it was a good toss to lose.

m0nty

Given Siddle's history of winning woodchopping titles in his teens, I think Siddle's nickname has to be Chopper.

Vindicate

Predicting a draw for this one, same deal as the first test but with roles reversed.

Bloody good nut from Siddle first up.

Samir Chopra

Plenty of bounce in this pitch. At least for Siddle thus far.

nick

India will declare at tea on the first day with 500 at this rate. In all of our pre-series coffeehousing, we all assumed that Lee would be a gun in Indian conditions. Clark was just a monty to do well. Bugger.

m0nty

500 might not be enough at first glance. The pitch looks a lot harder and truer than advertised.

Homer

The wicket is under prepared..Good for the first two days but I wont be too surprised to see it turn square by day 4.

Cheers,

m0nty

Oh, what a fine example of mozzing by Glen Mitchell. Barely a minute after he's brought up Viru's record of scoring triple tons and suggesting that he's on course for another one, Shaywag gets strangled down the leg side by Johnson. Schiesse gets wickets.

rambler

trust dravid to block things up and suck away momentum - india plays two kinds of innings in the same inning these days - 5th gear when the openers are in, and 1st gear if a wicket falls

Russ

Have our fielders hit the stumps yet in this series? India have been unusually keen to take quick singles, yet I can't recall a single shy that's been on target.

Tony T

1/104 at lunch. Should have stayed in class. At least Ponting didn't send 'em in.

On run-outs. Echoing through my mind is Tony Greig's grating voice: "These Australians never miss!" What, so they always hit? It's about as stupid a thing to say as "These Aussies never drop catches."

Big Ramifcations

I once saw Zaheer Abbas leg glance a ball for six. Memory is obviously hazy, but I think it was the first ball of a day's play in a test match. Wasn't a horrible delivery, just a bit wide. Six. Thanks for coming. It was completely effortless.

Different Zaheer, alas.

Nick is a good name for someone who comments on cricket.

Big Ramifcations

Actually, that would be a good sledge. Innocently enquire if he's a Pakistani or call him Zaheer Abbas or derivations thereof. Only a racist would take offence.

nick

If only there had been more nicks in the first session...

rambler

ah, dravid feasting on some gimmes on leg - aussies allowing dravid to score freely with some poor bowling here.

Russ

rambler, except that, given we have five fielders on the on-side to Dravid, the problem appears to be the plan rather than the execution. It is like bowling bouncers to tail-enders. Yes, you might get them out, but at what cost?

rambler

why anyone would bowl to dravid on his legs is beyond me. bowl just outside off and he typically will leave it all day, until he finally nicks one. not that I am complaining - being a Dravid and India fan. Just that given Dravid's under pressure, can't understand Oz tactics.

Vindicate

Great mozz there rambler, thanks!

Tony T

Wall-D, gawn!

"Lee to Dravid, OUT, the legstump is disturbed!"

Not as disturbed as my sang froid.

Tony T

The Gambler, gawn!

Johnson to Gambhir, OUT, it's a double strike and Australia have suddenly seized the initiative, Johnson pitches it on a good length outside off and gets it to straighten, Gambhir shapes to push it down to the covers but manages a thin outside edge, Haddin knows it and so does Asad Rauf who raises the finger.

Beee-yoo-tee-full work, Rambler. Thanks.

rambler

double mozz at that! handing back inititive when they had Oz on the mat. Typical India eh?

m0nty

Johnson is turning into an excellent taker of garbage wickets.

rambler

so this was the plan? bowl on leg so batsmen get edges to the keeper when trying to flick to fine leg? ingenious!

rambler

India batting, Tendulkar on the verge of a world record. Opponents the best in the world. Lots of hype for the series - and a sparse crowd here. Test cricket struggling!

m0nty

Nice to hear they cooked some popcorn in the ABC box for the occasion.

m0nty

White on in the 62nd over... why is he in the team if that's how late he gets introduced? Surely it's not for his batting. Waiting until the over count was in the 40s was bad enough in Bengaluru, but the 60s is just taking the pee-one-double-ess.

Tony T

Just been down the pub to catch an hour or so on the telling-vision. (The Harp in East Kew, in case you are wondering. Dreadful, chromy, pokied affair.) My concerted opinion? The pitch is a blancmange. Will probably turn into a sand monster by Sunday. V-Slog and Wee Wee fell to a craftily constructed leg-side SGW trap. Wall-D fell to Lee's cunning short and wide off-side SGW trap. I could be wrong, but it actually looked as if Lee thought he had something to do with the dismissal. Surely not. Most bizarre, the Gambler got out to a proper ball. Forget what I wrote about Siddle/Clark. We miss Stuey's nag.

Mohali Mike is now talking up the Bolly fillum Lagaan. Think Bodyline (no Bollyline puns please), with singing and dancing.

Russ

I normally have a pretty high tolerance for umpiring mistakes, but this:

65.1 White to Ganguly, no run, stumping chance! He lunges forward to defend and Haddin whips off the bails as ganguly tries to drag his foot back, none of the umpires called for assistance despite the appeal, I'm afraid Ganguly's back foot was just in the air. That's an umpiring error.

Was a disgrace! There is no excuse not to call for a replay when a player is moving his back foot with his toe near the line. Could be very costly too.

Tony T

Spanky is talking about it. I missed it, but what the fark was Rudy on not going to the third ump?

Russ

The desperate Ponting is coming out again. More and more defensive in his fields, and less trusting of his bowling stocks. Why bring Lee on four overs before the new ball? Why bring White on at all if only to give him with a spread field? Not to mention how tediously slow the over-rate is (as usual).

nick

Mozztastic - but India have won the day.

Tony T

If Rudi had done his job correctly, rather than striving to make a point about umpiring autonomy (I know this because I read it in his beard), India would have been 6 down and we would have won the day.

Not that I'm whinging.

Tony T

How come Kebab needs a nightwatchman to look after him? Not very captain-like.

Russ

Not very captain-like at all. Sort of decision that deserves to see him stranded when the innings ends.

There is a bit of Jason Gillespie about Sharma isn't there? Very correct, not many shots, but careful and annoying for the opposition.

Honours even I'd say, again.

m0nty

If Sharma ever scores a Test double ton I'll eat my hat.

Brett Pee

Indian's Day, i'll give them that much. White is looking pretty ineffective though Tony- change your opinion on him ? Siddle ? On The Fiddle- remember that fillum ? With a young Sean Connery and Alfie somebody.

Bruce

India lead 2 sessions to 1. They've made good use of winning the toss. Although if I might go as far as 1.8 to 1.2

If Rudi weren't such a cock the honours might be even.

TLM has still got it. 19 years on and he still plays astonishingly good shots.

nick

Bowlers win matches and ours are not doing the job on Indian wickets. The tail will frustrate us again this morning, and India will score 400-450 at least. The Indians have been exploiting their conditions - in particular - banking on Aussie fatigue in the last session (which used to be when we turned the screws on teams). India will win this unless Australia bat very well.

Will Australia be clamouring for Rudi to be sent home? Fair play, the white man's burden.

Yobbo

Ganguly wasn't out - or at least the replay was too close to call, with the bail being completely removed between frames. So it didn't really cost us a wicket but it's still stupid to not call for a replay in those situations.

Tony T

The Shoe of the Fisherman

101.5 Harbhajan Singh to Symonds, no run, down leg, Dhoni appeals for a stumping but Umpire Bucknor, at square leg, didn't even think of claling for the third umpire, but replays show that it could be out - though it would be a close one, he just appeared to have some part of his foot grounded behind the line.

"There was only one umpire playing in the spirit of the technology, that's all I can say."

m0nty

That sounds like a Bolly line, Tony.

Tony T

Well, the way Raj and Kebab are going they will soon be singing and dancing at the crease.

m0nty

Par score looks about 700.

Adsy

So India's tactic for this series is obviously throw up two Princes Highway's followed by an Oodnadatta Track to win the series 1-0 with 2 draws?

Tony T

Care to speculate on a declaration? Kumble would bat on forever. Kebab's new. Boot on the other foot the Aussies would declare after tea, and Kebab might well do the same. Still, can't see 'em pulling the pin anywhere under 600.

Then, of course, it will be time to forget this easy pitch nonsense - 3/50 at stumps. Zac hooping it around. Instant getting the ball to zing. Rollerboy's doosra will be exploding off the pitch. And Mishra, ready for an ambush, will have the ball going sideways.

m0nty

Tony, I think you've been partaking of the magic Mishras.

Russ

And again... Zaheer Khan was what? 4 inches short of the crease then. How close does it need to be before you call for a replay? Good work from White though, took some stick but cramped Dhoni up and forced the poor run.

Tony T

469 = GOOJ. GOOG if you spell it that way.

Brett Pee

Shit, haydos gone. Broad Daylight between bat and pad. But i'm still not panicking.

Vindicate

Haydos is rapidly using up his nine lives, fair enough it was a good nut but having his feet nailed to the pitch like that did him no good at all.

Russ

Fair bet Haydos is pretty happy Jaques is going home with a back complaint. Not that we should be expecting much from him. When did he last have a decent hit? February?

m0nty

Injury list isn't looking good. McGain out for what is probably going to be forever given his age, and Jaques flown home clutching his back. Big international schedule of cricket coming up. Could we see a third consecutive Victorian debut with D. Hussey in the 3rd test?

nick

I reckon they would parachute Tait in if they were confident in him...

Bowlers win matches (Mr Cricket and Ashes 05 aside).

Without Haydos firing, and Roy out, I don't even think we can score fast enough to win a Test with our current bowling attack.

Brett Pee

For the first time in ages i'm genuinely concerned about that little urn.

nick

Hayden/Jaques Vaughan/Strauss
Katich Cook
Ponting Shah/Key/Collingwood
Hussey M KP
Clarke Bell
Symonds/HusseyD Flintoff
Haddin Wickie of the Week
White/Casson Broad/Sidearse
Lee Panesar
Johnson/Clark Anderson
Siddle/Tait Harmison

Not toooooo worrying - the Tests against South Africa will show us what we've got (and see if Haydos will make it to the Ashes).

nick

Not tooooo worrying for the Ashes - very worrying for this Test. Sharma and Zak bowling India to victory. We are a Hussey failure away from defeat.

m0nty

Spanky's early Ashes XI had four quicks and no spinners. Might not be a bad idea. Not entirely convinced that our fourth quick would be better than our best spinner... it's our biggest weakness either way.

Russ

No runs in front of the wicket in 8 overs since tea. This is going to be a long couple of days (or a depressingly short one).

Nick, S.Jones will likely be right for a comeback by then too.

Tony T

Dhoni must have been stuck thinking about his batting. That edge that went past him off Hussey was, to put it mildly, a sitter for a keeper.

Instant and Zak are two very, very good quicks.

nick

I can't see them going back to Jones with Anderson and Broad bowling well, but who knows what fortune may bring? Warnie might put on the creams? 8-)

nick

Katich - FAIL.

Australia to follow on and revisit the shite results of the 90s.

Deepak

Too many lefties in Aussie side ain't it. It pains to see the dearth of righties. Michael Clarkey is too preppy for my liking...Where is the next David Boon, Steve Waugh, Rickey Ponting.

Wish India had allrounders like White or Watson instead of the a full fledged dads army.

Good test shaping up wiht the 2 Michaels fighting with backs against the wall.

nick

Spanky's column tomorrow.

Checklist.

Australian arrogance.
End of hegemony.
Weak tie in with fall of capitalism.
Symonds dysfunctional heart of team.
Too old, too slow.
Segue to New Economy/Sharma and Bhaji.

Blah, blah, good for cricket...

Thankfully I'm at work and won't see the end.

Tony T

You forgot "burgeoning middle class".

Tony T

And "throwing off the shackles of Empire".

Tony T

Wordy Lament

Did anyone expect Straya to win this series? Or, more to the point, did anyone not expect India to win?

This Straya is still a pretty handy side, but it is our worst touring side since the eighties.

Since 2004, we are weaker and India are better. If you were a bookie framing a market on form, and that includes here last summer where India got better as the summer went on, you would be bonkers not to have India as a raging favourite.

No, as far as this series is concerned, I'd be staggered if we drew/won.

As my mate Chris said at the Melbourne vs. Richmond game - Why would we talk about footy? Hmmm? Hmmm? - "A loss will do us good." Not that I want to lose.

We'll get a much better handle on next year's Ashes by looking at our form against the Sorth Efricans. If Lee, Clark, Studs, Siddle (who I think will be an important long term Test player) and White (as a leggy, possibly the best bet against the Yarpie spin-bunnies, unless Nyce Bryce comes good) can knock over the Yarps enough to win the series we ought to be in good shape for the Ashes.

Still, our lack of incision since McGrath & Warne pulled the pin is a worry. It used to be said that the Windies didn't care how much the other side scored because their bowlers would knock the other side out for less. You had that feeling with the Aussies up until two years ago. Not so now. Sure, we try to bowl as a professional unit, but we just can't create enough chances. We look toothless against good batting on anything other than a greentop. I have no confidence our battery will batter through the opposition batters; especially in comparison to India whose bowlers know how to, if not exploit, then certainly to put the ball in the right spot to get wickets.

Batting wise? We bat deep, although I'd love another limpet. It might just come down to where England hide their mints.

Then there's the catching: Down Syndrome.

Of course, everything above is subject to the standard injury rider. We need continuity from our key players, and that depends on how banged up we get by the crowded schedule and the various Quicket tournaments.

By the way, it was refreshing to hear the Dick talking about RP and Zak killing England with swing last year. Who's not sick of hearing about how England's beat us in 2005. "Straya are weak against swing," drone the hard of thinking. I'll say it again: EVERYONE, from Don Bradman to Bhagwat Chandrasekhar, is susceptible to good swing bowling.

m0nty

WTF was that, Pup? I thought you were supposed to be a good player of spin bowling. Your technique against those last two deliveries was horrendous.

Tony T

Clarke out last ball of the day AGAIN. Past the scheduled close. To a first gamer. Someone is pulling my leg!

Tony T

Mont, did you see the way he reached for the ball two ball before he was out? Shouse!

Tony T

The instant the umps said "one more over" I knew we would lose a wicket.

Tony T

What's Troy Cooley been working on? His sun-tan? The Indian bowlers have been 100 times more dangerous.

Tony T

It's with a sense of great relief that I leave Mark Waugh's hair-do and turn over to Tremors 4: The Legend Begins.

Professor Rosseforp

Regarding Peter Roebuck's column tomorrow, I don't recall any mention of "pantheon of Indian gods" from Mr Roebuck or Mr Coward this season, so I suspect that it will appear soon -- possibly with a reference to Shiva the Destroyer.

pat

The follow on is 270 and Oz are currently at 102 which leaves a target of 168 for the last 6 wickets. If we can't get the target then Oz could lose but if we do then this game could get very interesting with Dhoni as Captain.

At this point a draw must be odds on with India the favourite for the win.

At this point in the series, Oz fans should feel reassured that even though we have fielded the worst team we have mustered for approx 30 years against the best team India has ever produced, Oz is even on points with India.

Oz has come back to the field, but the field is so rank that a popgun attack like ours can still have us in this game.

Get Roy back for Paper Cut and bring in Bracken for Siddle. Drop White and make Pup our spinner.

Take your pick to replace Pup (except Hodges).

Oz has performed far beyond expectations proving that for Oz the whole is always greater than its parts. India (and the media won't say it) are an embarrassment to their nation. 11 pearls that get trampled by Oz swine because for India, no matter how brilliant their parts may be, they cannot sum it up into a brilliant whole.

Any Oz team under Waugh would have got 600+ in that first Innings.

Tony T

Speaking of commentators.

Was just watching the Red Sox vs. Tampa Rays on Foxtel. Ron Darling, who sounds exactly like James Woods, called Kevin Youkilis "The Executionalist".

Tony T

Speaking of executionalism: Hussey's out.

Samir Chopra

Pat: Worst Aussie team in 30 years? Clearly, you've forgotten the mid-80s. And this is the best Indian team? I'd prefer one that had the SRT of 98, the Dravid of 2002, the Laxman of 2001 etc.

m0nty

Worst team in the last 20 is more accurate. Just in time for the 20th anniversary of the worst Ashes tourists ever in '89.

SaggyGreen

Yesterday, India played as the Straya of old. They made it look like a completely different pitch when bowling, and took a leaf from The Book of Warne with that last wicket. Two balls to go, come around the wicket and land a wrong'un perfectly. Oh, the theatre of it all!

Samir Chopra

Haddin gone. Well, I don't think I've seen such a classic off-spinner's dismissal in a long while. Bhajji should give up the darts and send down more of these flighted ones.

pat

Last 4 wickets for 116. Come on Oz!

Tendlya

If wishes were horses, beggars would ride.

>> Any Oz team under Waugh would have got 600+ in that first Innings.
>> Posted by pat on October 19, 2008 at 12:20

Tall claim, not quite borne out by facts. Not to take anything away from Waugh - a legend and all that, but the last Australian side to score 600+ runs against India in any test innings was under the Don, a while back ... in 1948. (http://stats.cricinfo.com/ci/content/records/283966.html)

Tony T

Not a flight of speculative fancy:

Then, of course, it will be time to forget this easy pitch nonsense - 3/50 at stumps. Zac hooping it around. Instant getting the ball to zing. Rollerboy's doosra will be exploding off the pitch. And Mishra, ready for an ambush, will have the ball going sideways.

Merely a realisation that India are, at the moment, clearly a better side. India have developed, Straya have lost players.

It's no surprise the roles have reversed. Although it seems to be to the ABC commentators: "If you'd have said two years ago that blah, blah..." But the turn-a-round was never better illustrated than Clarke getting out last ball. Again! Kebab and Mishra could easily have been Healy and Warne. Clarke could easily have been Chris Broad duped by Merv Hughes' leggy.

It's a karma thing. Clarke gets those last three wickets in Sydney, but he has now been dismissed three times off the last ball of the day. Twice here and also at Edgbaston in 2005.

Is he soft? Is he a hack? Will he still be in the side next Ashes? Just, you know, askin'.

Russ

It would probably be a gross failure, but I'd like to see the tail counter-attack right about now. The game needs turning or India will win. No point going quietly.

And let's not get too down on the team. At least we are not New VettoriZealand.

pat

TT those are interesting stats re Pup, and could be expanded upon by examining how often he's been out close to the end of a session. By my own (admittedly suspect memory) it would have to be almost into double figures by now.

Pup needs to be dropped or made our spinner. Whatever problem he's got (Bingle or something else) he doesn't cut the mustard when the shit gets going (just coined my own phrase there, email me for permission to use).

Tendlya, that's a good point but then also irrelevent as Tugger's lads never faced such a shouse attack as ours.

mOnT and Samir, I stand by my claim but will concede if pressed to the collective wisdom of the AGB and all who sail her. This Indian team is oozing talent and we are bleeding it. Your fast bowling is without qualification the best I've ever seen from India. The batting FFS, TLM is the fourth greatest batsman of all time after Capt Grumpy, Tugger, Punter and Sir Viv, wait a minute make that 5th.

Tony T

Russ, like I wrote yesterday, a loss here is not the end of the world. India are currently a very good side; we are currently shithou... I mean, rebuilding. With no bowlers suited to Indian conditions, we will get a better handle on our status against SA and then the Poms.

The way the Bangers are going in their second dig 4/49 with a lead of 123 runs - the Kiwis could still win.

Professor Rosseforp

Radio commentary time again -- occasionally the cricket is interrupting the discussions about the schoolchildren, their numbers, their cheering, the colour of uniforms, patkas, turbans, etc. I'm surprised Jim Maxwell and Mike Coward haven't started marking the roll, to check which of the kids have left early.

Tony T

Sadly, Prof, the radio commentary is still better than the dreary blather on Foxtel.

Samir Chopra

Wow, another googly dismissal. We finally have a real leggie in Mishra.

Deepak

I think the big difference between this team and teams of Waugh and Taylor is the mental toughness.

They seem to succumb more easily to the pressure perhaps?

Tony T

Samir, never in doubt:

Mishra, ready for an ambush, will have the ball going sideways.

While the ball is not going sideways, the ambush is very ambushy indeed.

Tony T

Deepak, I don't know about that. I think it's simply a case of Straya losing experienced players. Waugh and Taylor would struggle with the current Strayan side; especially with the bowlers at their disposal.

m0nty

In both games the toss was vital. The Aussies won it in Bengaluru and kept their noses in front all game. The Indians won it here and have had by far the best of the conditions. Still, it's no excuse for some of the Australian batting.

The Indians should be winning this series given the names they have in their line-up. This is their last hurrah, though: Gangles gawn after the series, Tendles and Dravles surely won't pad up for the next Australian tour at 38. This is not really a baton-passing moment like 1999 in the Windies.

David Barry

pat, this current Australian side is better than the one we had in India in 1998. That tour was absolutely diabolical for us - thrashed by Mumbai in a tour game, then thrashed twice by India (the second time by an innings and 200), before we got a consolation win in the dead rubber.

We had Paul Wilson opening the bowling with Kasper before he turned good. Warne recovering from a shoulder injury or surgery or something and getting smashed all over the park. Gavin Robertson also bowled a lot of overs. Our batsmen looked all right on paper but couldn't cope against Kumble and Raju.

Samir Chopra

DB: I agree. The Calcutta test really was the low point. I don't see this team going down like that at any point.

Monty: Good point about India needing to rebuild. The batting is going to take some replacing.

Tony T

Mont: spot on. In fact, I wonder if it is possible to organise Test series so that the toss is less important. Maybe, one toss at the start of a series to determine who gets to pick for the first Test, then after that it alternates.

Dave: I'd forgotten about 98. On purpose.

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