Sydney Test Third Day – Does India Plan to Crawl for Two Full Days

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Sydney Test Third Day – Does India Plan to Crawl for Two Full Days

Sydney Test Third Day – Does India Plan to Crawl for Two Full Days
Sydney Test Third Day – Does India Plan to Crawl for Two Full Days | Source

Sydney Test Third Day – Does India Plan to Crawl for Two Full Days

Delaying declaration may cost Clarke

That Australia will put up a mammoth total was expected. So there was no surprise in their total of above 650 on the third day of the match. The overnight batsmen Clarke and Hussey continued massacring the Indian bowlers all around. Clarke completed his triple century and Hussey his century. I thought that Australia would declare their innings once they cross the total of 600. I predicted that it would happen before lunch. But that was not to be. Clarke prolonged the innings to after lunch. If India is able to draw this test (which looks unlikely), the blame will have to be put on Clarke’s head for losing valuable time to bowl India out for the second time in the match.

Indian bowlers never looked like striking

That the Indian bowling looked innocuous and the bowlers seemed unfit to play cricket at the highest level will not distract the merits of Clarke’s triple century. He played confidently; timing his strokes well and was in total command of the situation. It looked that the Indian bowlers would get Clarke out only if he was prepared to throw his wicket for any reason. Thanks to Clarke, it did not happen and Australia was sailing smooth.

No runs for one hour

When Virender Sehwag was out cheaply, it looked all over again for India. The customary procession to the pavilion had started, so it seemed. When Rahul Dravid and Gautam Gambhir settled down, it looked as though the inevitable was only being postponed. Rahul Dravid’s dismissal confirmed the same. However, Sachin Tendulkar and Gautam Gambhir partnered and played coolly. For nearly an hour, not even a single run was scored. The two were together still at the draw of stumps.

Defensive tactic

So, what is in store for India on the fourth day at Sydney? It seems Sachin Tendulkar and Gautam Gambhir have decided to crawl on for as long as possible without taking any risk whatsoever. The two were not touching any ball that went outside the off stump or outside the leg stump. They played the balls that came straight to the stumps in a defensive manner without aiming to hit in the air.

Will this stonewalling tactic work for India?

Undoubtedly this is a safety tactic. Avoiding risky shots at this stage is understandable and appreciable. That is what for the players are paid huge sums – to protect the honour of their teams. But my doubt is that with two full days remaining, will this defensive tactic work for India? Will not the Australians device a strategy to counter this stonewalling of the Indian batsmen? In my opinion, the best strategy for the Australians is to bowl each and every ball aiming at the stumps, thereby forcing the Indian batsmen to play. Probability theory says that the batsman will commit a mistake while tackling one such ball and lose his wicket.

No tactic can save India now

Australia may bowl out the entire Indian batsmen on the fourth day itself to clinch the match by an innings. But if Indian stonewalling succeeds and at the end of the fourth day India manages to retain six or seven wickets in tact, then the pressure will shift to Australians on the final day. But even in such an eventuality, Australia will bowl out India on the final day and win comfortably. Therefore all seems to have been lost for India at the moment. Australia looks like taking a two tests lead in the series. Best wishes to Clarke & Co.


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