Friday, January 13, 2006

Pakistan vs. India: T1D1

  1. The Ganguly saga continues - after Greg Chappell made it clear that two of the three openers selected to tour will play, pressure from above results in Ganguly being selected. They can't drop any of the middle order, so instead Ganguly is picked as the 2nd opener. But Mr Ego is having none of it, and argues with Dravid and Chappell in the centre of the stadium, insisting that it is wrong to make him open. What an embarrassment to the nation. The man would prefer to have the world's leading #3 batsman (sorry Ricky Ponting, but you can't claim that title with an average of 12 after 8 Tests in India) sacrifice himself. With every new incident, my desire to see the back of Ganguly in the distance is reinforced.
  2. The toss - that was really the end of that as far as India were concerned. There was nothing in the pitch, and even less in the bowling - particularly Ajit Agarkar, who for the 8th year in succession showed that he doesn't quite have what it takes. Was he even trying out there?
  3. The pitch - The Pakistanis batted well, no doubt, but the pitch is a belter, slow turn notwithstanding. So much for Inzamam's desire for a pitch that aided pacemen, spinners and batsmen alike. I suspect this Test will be decided by Shoaib's first couple of spells in India's first innings - he's the one man who brings something different to the table in the form of raw pace.
  4. Day Two - Expect Pakistan to push on to 600 and then have a couple of overs at India in the fading light. If Ganguly opens, expect the light to be begged for at the first opportunity.

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