There was no surprise after India vs England five test match series came to an end. India won the series 4–0 and the only consolation for England was the draw test. Remember when England came to India in 2014; they not just beat India but dominated the whole series. Beating India on their own pitches was a great achievement. Joe Root was the biggest find for England. After a while India tour of 2015 to England was so embarrassing; this was the time when Virat Kohli had been a leading run scorer for India in all the cricketing formats. India did play limited over cricket during the champions trophy and did beat England on their turf, but that was a sidekick show and was hardly seen as an accomplishment at all.
But then 2015 tour was a mess for India and Virat Kohli. The swinging deliveries of James Anderson & Stuart Broad were unplayable. At times the awkward bounce generated by Steven Fin was the worst nightmare for the tail enders. All in all, Indian cricket and all of the pride associated with it took a heavy dent. I think, that when Indian bowlers were bowling on the English pitches they lacked the control & ferocity shown by the English bowlers. India did win the Lord’s test but it was more of England Batsmen losing the composure and in turn losing the test. After the Lords Test, India’s performance was below par for the players and fans alike. Adding insult to injury was Virat’s performance. Virat didn’t look half the batsman he is and miserably failed. Look this is part of the Sir Issac Newton, any object which goes up has to come down.
Indian test team was in cruise control during the year 2016. In this series Indians dropped twenty catches whereas England lost fifteen chances in the field. However, the average cost per drop for the home side was only 44.50 in comparison to 59.07 runs per drop for the visitors. Three of India’s batsmen scored more than 100 after getting a life while Jayant Yadav added 96 en route his maiden Test century in Mumbai. The cost paid by the visitors was significantly higher than that of home side. This very stat explains why playing at home is different from overseas and why it is an advantage for home side.
You know the conditions and can exploit the weakest link of a touring team. James Andeson was exploiting the English fast-paced pitches when India was playing in the English conditions. Anderson taking a dig at Kohli was inappropriate because he was as horrible as Virat Kohli was when Virat was touring England. Also, it was not just Virat Kohli who demolished the guest team bowling attack; it was the likes of Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravinder Jadeja, Jayant Yadav, Karun Nair and KL Rahul. These young boys challenged England with the willow as well with the cherry.
R Ashwin and R Jadeja used home conditions for not only taking wickets but scored crucial runs with the bat. So, does that make R Ashwin any less an all-rounder he is, I don’t think so. When Jimmy struggled to take wickets in India, does that make him a less lethal fast bowler; as he was in English conditions. I hope not. Virat Kohli will not be seen by his performance against England in England. The disappointment in the England tour will not define who Virat Kohli is. Nor the double hundreds scored against England in India will define him as a cricketer. It will just be a part of Virat Kohli story, but it can hardly be the complete story.
It’s not a matter of technique, banter or plain foolishness on James Anderson; it is much bigger than that. It’s the ego, which he cannot let go, knowing England won the test series in England. But he is ready to conveniently ignore the fact that same team has beaten England 4–0. You should be humble in defeat & then can learn from your mistakes. You have to be humbler in victory and respect your opponent for playing fair and square.
Unfortunately, James Anderson cannot learn this simple lesson and hence the trouble of pointing fingers.
Virat Kohli was the frontrunner in batting and dropping catches. Virat should work on his catching, especially his slip/close catching. Virat is a self-conscious, self-made man and I believe he is working on eliminating his weaknesses as I write this post. He is such a massive figure literally and as a leader. This new Indian team looks poised and ready to lock horns with whoever comes next.
The only disappointment from my point of view is Ajinkay Rahane as he failed to yield any runs. Players like Rahane needs just one good innings & that could be enough for starting his own purple patch.