Test series: Will Indian batsmen get their act right in England?

Chennai: Team India went to England as No. 1 Test side. They lost the first of the series at Birmingham by 31 runs. They could manage only 274 and 162.

When a turnaround was expected in London, the second Test at Lords saw India surrender meekly as they were bundled out for 107 and 130 runs. The hosts won by an innings and 159 runs.

What went wrong? Critics said their batting performance has so far been irresponsible and they lack application.

Krishnamurthy, who runs a cricket academy in Chennai, said, “They have let themselves and their supporters down. The top-order batsmen lack application while trying to flick outswingers. The likes of Murali Vijay, K L Rahul and Ajinkya Rahane getting out behind the stumps shows they have never studied the English condition. Their mode of dismissals was worrying.”

An ardent cricket fan, Kannadasan, a resident of Madurvoyal, expressed his dismay at the way the players have performed so far in the series. “The top five get out in similar fashion, innings after innings. No matter what, they are not ready to learn from their mistakes. Murali VijayHardik Pandya and  Dinesh Karthik were pathetic and thoroughly exposed of their technique to play a simple outswinger.”

It clearly shows that Indian batsmen have not done their homework as the manner of dismissals indicate, he added.

“In dead flat tracks, our batsmen milk runs. The likes of Pujara and Rahane   have been handy in spin-friendly subcontinent wickets only. No matter what their struggle, to see such low scores is worrying,” says Kannadasan.

Blaming T20 for batsmen losing out on their footwork, James Krishnan, a cricket coach in T Nagar, said, ‘T20 glamour has blinded our eyes. They have lost patience. The more you have determination to stay in the wicket, the easier it would become and you will get runs. And for that you need sound  technique and good temperament.”

It clearly shows that they have not sat down, talked or practised in the nets, he added.

Stating that Team India deserves the thrashing they are getting, Gomathy  Naicken, a former division umpire, said, “These defeats will have a great impact on the minds of our players. We play next World Cup in England and, hence, they should knock more runs and at least try to get close to the total of England. It will give them the much-needed confidence.”

It would do them good to spend more time at the nets. Coach Ravi Shastri  should help the boys overcome mental blocks, if any, and ensure they stay fit and serve the cause, he added.