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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Proteas in commanding position at Newlands as India struggled to score runs

At the end of Day-2 of Newlands test match, I feel Proteas have upper hand as they are still 220 runs ahead and the way they are bowling they will get India out way before their score. Bowling is tight and runs are not coming easily and pitch is also every now and then creating problems and with India 2 down for 142, I feel India in trouble as both the batsmen Sachin Tendulkar and Gautam Gambhir got beaten and dropped many times and never looked comfortable against hostile bowling of Proteas.

At the start of Day-2 Sreesanth kept the hopes alive for Team India with his superb bowling but Kallis and tailenders in Morkel, Harris and Tsotsobe frustrated Team India for last few wickets and scored extra 90 runs and that extra 90 runs are crucial in this game. As I mentioned in yesterday's post that Kallis will get hundred that actually happened and Kallis scored big and brilliant 39th hundred of his career and pour the water on the hopes of Team India of bundling out proteas for small total. Kallis played great innings and  this innings of his gave the edge to Proteas. Kallis also equalled the record of 39 centuries of Ponting and now sharing the No.2 position with Ponting in terms of centuries. Kallis is really a great all-rounder. It is unforutnate that he picked up injury during the innings and now can't bowl or field anymore but he did his job for his team and given them position of winning.

Team India started poorly in response to Proteas mammoth score. Sehwag and Dravid got out before 29 runs on the board and it looked like yet another batting collapse on cards but somehow Gambhir and Tendulkar stabilized the Indian innings but both were never looked comfortable against hostile bowling of Steyn , Morkel and Tsotsobe. Rahul Dravid was unlucky to get run-out but his dismissal really a fantastic display of athleticism from DeVilliers. Proteas controlled the run flow and kept the Gambhir and Tendulkar under-pressure. Gambhir's innings was really very scratchy and he is lucky enough to survive the day. I feel, the way Proteas bowled yesterday, if they continue in same way then I feel they will be on top at the end of Day-3 and I believe they are looking good to win this test-match. Its advantage Proteas. I am sure, on Day-3 Team India will lose two-three wickets upfront in first session itself and will be bundled out cheaply.

The approach of Team India in this innings suggests that they are playing for survival because they never tried to dominate the bowling even after doing century partnership for 4th wicket. They also allowed Harris to bowl tightly and didn't show any intent of scoring runs atleast on the bowling of Paul Harris. This clearly suggests the mindset of Team India and I feel approach is not good. They are allowing Proteas to dominate the proceedings and increase pressure which will result into loss of wickets.

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