Posted by: tootingtrumpet | October 10, 2010

India vs Australia – Second Test Day Two

On target for once.

The final over of the day.

Ball One – Though the ability to make runs when under pressure from media, fans and selectors is a useful quality for an individual, is it good for the team? Fighters in the dressing room and on tour are good for morale, but a player who needs to save his career is probably a bit short on class. Marcus North, not for the first time, made a century under personal and team pressure – good for him, but is it good for the team that Marcus North keeps marching to the edge of the cliff before retreating?

Ball Two – Virender Sehwag has made the extraordinary commonplace, but hitting Mitchell Johnson over backward point for six is remarkable. There are batsmen who get on with it, but nobody plays like the Indian masterblaster. Even he needs to play the percentages a bit when there’s a man on the fence waiting for the catch.

Ball Three – Ben Hilfenhaus has worked hard on his batting and has shown the ability to biff quick runs and defend for his partner. Though never batting above Number 10, he has eight not outs in 18 innings. With Nathan Hauritz’s place under threat, Australia know they can select whichever bowler they feel best suited to the job, as the Number Nine position would be in good hands.

Ball Four – Rahul Dravid, all those years of service behind him, chases a very wide one from Mitchell Johnson and is caught at third slip. After his travails in Chandigarh, it’s hard to imagine a worse way for Dravid to go. It’s neither seemly nor advisable to write off an all-time great, but he can’t afford many more dismissals like that one – who can?

Ball Five – Can Australia play Mitchell Johnson and Nathan Hauritz in the same side? Neither seem able to bowl to plans nor build pressure and if the choice comes down to one or the other, surely Hauritz will be the one to go. But his replacement would be Steven Smith who, for all his potential with bat and ball, cannot be expected to keep is as tight as Punter would like. Would an attack of Hilfenhaus, Bollinger, Siddle and Hauritz do better than Hilfenhaus, Bollinger, Johnson and Smith? Or are other combinations available?

Ball Six – Is anyone coaching Mitchell Johnson, or is he uncoachable? That his faults are so persistent suggests that, after 38 Tests, he and Cricket Australia have accepted that MJ’s good, bad and the ugly bowling is the most they can get from their quickest bowler.

You can find the Tooting Trumpet at Testmatchsofa.com and on Twitter at @garynaylor999 and @Fakeadil.

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Responses

  1. Hello world can you hear me?

    • Dunno about the world but I can hear you Fred.

      • my posts are disappearing.

  2. !

  3. Fred – It’s nothing I’m doing, so maybe it’s your end?

    There are quite a few of yours I can see, but I obviously don’t know how much you have posted!

  4. I suspect MJ may indeed be uncoachable. Any plans he has obviously don’t translate into reality, so coaching may even endanger the odd killer ball that occasionally slips out. At this late age I think it’s too much to hope that he’ll ever develop a stock ball.

    The statement about North repeatedly marching to the cliff’s edge sums it up perfectly. I expect that’s his last decent knock til the wrong end of the Ashes.

    This Aus side lacks a bowler and a middle order. Hussey should’ve been dropped before the last Ashes tour, and Clarke has got to come out of hiding.

  5. Are you trying to create another Johnson domestic crisis with that photo? His mother will already be on the phone to him. Have you already decided this is your best chance to retain the Ashes? (God it hurts to say “retain the Ashes” to an Englishman).

  6. I’m not sure we should be playing a specialist spinner in the team, with a very strong attack with Siddle, Hilf, Johnson and Bollinger, and North, Clarke and Kat to provide support.

    Agree with comments about Hilfenhaus, good tail end batting, along with strong bowling. Australia has done remarkably well in India so far, I think they are rising again.

  7. Ah, I see the problem. I was complaining about crictime dot com and I think my post was blocked because I used a url.

  8. Kaminey, nice comment on the previous post, an Indian who respect Ponting, remarkable!

  9. Does anyone have a good internet feed, better than crictime which is very unstable?

  10. Most Englishmen are happier with MJ in the team I think.

    If Clarke and Kat could be relied on to bowl, the four seamers option looks good, but they seem too reluctant. How about North at Five, Haddin Six and Smith Seven and then the four seamers?

  11. My bowling attack against England would contain one certaintly at the moment, Hilfy. These guys are going to find it hard to bowl India out twice, but I’d be happy to be proven wrong.

  12. Looking like a draw now; the worry from an England perspective is that Aus seem to be making a habit of posting 1st innings totals in excess of 400, which means that England have to do likewise. Can they?

  13. That Tendulkar isn’t too shoddy, is he?


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