It’s becoming a pattern now: India collapsing in a heap. They lost seven wickets in a session at the Wankhede and nine in two sessions here. Home doesn’t give India warmth anymore.
Virender Sehwag tried to reason India’s batting failures in the series. He felt India lacked “patience”, something that’s usually not associated with him. “It’s Test cricket and if you show patience, you can score some runs on this wicket. Their batsmen showed more patience than ours. They batted really well. Our bowlers tried everything. They bowled slow, quick, flighted deliveries, they bowled flat, but England batted really well, I can say that,” Sehwag said after India ended Day Four of the third Test at 239 for nine.
However, barring Gautam Gambhir and Virat Kohli, who flashed their bats to deliveries they could have left alone, the other Indian batsmen were consumed close in. So, have India forgotten the art of playing long innings against high-quality Test attacks? Technical ineptness or lack of confidence — the answers elude India.
Sehwag reminded that India had raked up the runs in Ahmedabad. But didn’t England field an attack sans Monty Panesar and Steven Finn there? “We are very much disappointed,” Sehwag said. “This wicket was not bad to lose six wickets in a session. We have to work hard to bounce back in the next game. We can just hope that something happens tomorrow (on Sunday) and we’re able to draw the Test. Only God can help us.”
Referring to Cheteshwar Pujara, Sehwag said that India mustn’t hurry a judgement on the youngsters. “When (Cheteshwar) Pujara scored runs, a double hundred and a hundred, you guys (the media) only said we have found a replacement for Rahul Dravid,” Sehwag said. “You didn’t wait for a couple of matches. Now you are saying that because Rahul Dravid and (VVS) Laxman are not there we are losing. It is a transition period for us, you have to give time to the youngsters.”
Asked if he would consider returning to the middle-order (he started his career there), he said, “Yuvraj Singh has played 40 Tests, Virat Kohli has played 13. He has been playing international cricket for two to three years. He got that ICC Cricketer of the Year (award) and the BCCI award. He is mature enough. It’s not about new and young.”