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    September 12, 2005

    The value of positive intent

    We started off fairly early with posts on the Ashes. Some of our earliest couple of posts were about the series (the gamut).

    We're obviously too *(@#ing frustrated at the way it has turned out, especially since Lord's. While Ganesh felt that the turning point of the series was McGrath trodding on the ball, I felt that Ponting's decision to bowl at Edgbaston was the key moment in the series. It was either a cocky one, or a decision taken in total haste.

    In any case, with a lead of 264 and 38 overs to be bowled today, this Oval test is all set to be a dull draw. As predicted last month, rain had a huge say in the matter. But you can't just blame rain! Australia had England on the ropes on quite a few occasions during the game. England were 300/7 on the first day and got to 373. If that wasn't so smart, Australia's batsmen outdid their bowlers on the third day by progressing, if that is the right word, from 250/1 looking at a total of 500, to conceding a lead of six runs!

    They even decided to go off when the umpires offered them the light, with the score at 112/0. This was a must-win test for Australia. Yet, they preferred the safety first approach. India faced a similar situation three years ago at Headingley. They had been thrashed at Lord's and outplayed for the most part at Trent Bridge. They had to win to stay in the series. This is what happened, from the Cricinfo commentary. The score was 495/3 in the 166th over with Tendulkar and Ganguly at the crease.
    165.4 Caddick to Ganguly, no run, quick one on the off, seaming away a
    bit, the ball slides past the edge to the keeper
    Light being offered to the batsmen. Sourav Ganguly tells the
    umpires "We'll play" and the game goes on
    Hussain immediately adjusts the field, sending two men to the fence
    on the on side. Get ready for some short stuff an angry Hussain
    seems to say

    The day's play ended at 584/4 with Ganguly's wicket in the 174th over. So in nine overs, they'd put on 90 runs! That is what positive intent can do! India went on to win the game and level the series.

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    Thus spake Jagadish @ 9:10 PM |
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