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Posts Tagged ‘Rahul Dravid’

India vs. Pakistan

Pakistan set India a target of 303, an asking rate of 6.06. India loses by 54 runs with Dravid top scoring with 76 of a 103 balls. The record books will show that Dravid was the best performer in the Indian batting line up but the other batsmen did not perform so India lost. But the truth cannot be far from this scorecard.

Why? That is the truth – Only Dravid scored, everyone else failed.

Dravid scored at a rate of 4.4 runs an over and he used up 17 overs. So effectively, the rest of the batsmen had to score 227 runs out of 33 overs – a required rate of 6.87.

But that is why he is in the team. He is to play the role of an anchor while others around him can score big.

True. He can be a sheet anchor to an extent. Like when he was in partnerships with Gambhir and Raina, he could afford to be the sheet anchor and hold fort at one end while the other batsman was blazing away. But when Yousuf Pathan came into bat, he was a big disappointment. Ideally since Pathan was new to the crease, any batsman who has been set for over an hour and scored 50 runs would be expected to change gears and ease the pressure by scoring a few boundaries while Pathan settles down at the other end. But Dravid continued to do the only thing he knows – take a single and get off the strike. The poor Pathan who had just come in had to start hitting shots without getting his eye in. And the obvious happened. He got out trying to go for a big hit.

What is an even bigger shame was that when after Pathan, Harbhajan came in, Dravid again continued to do the same – take a single and get off the strike. This is the best way to get off responsibility and keep your score inching ahead. This is quite evident from the fact that chasing a target of 303, Dravid could manage to hit only 4 boundaries in his 103 ball innings.

Usually when Dravid walks in to bat, everyone on the other end tries to up the scoring so as to ease the pressure on Dravid and allow him to get his eye in. But not Dravid. Coz. he has a limitation. He doesn’t know anything else other than take singles. Yes if you bowl on his pads, he’ll hit the occasional boundary but that’s it.

Add to that the fact that Dravid was clearly responsible for running Gambhir out. He called for a single and then stopped. Gambhir had to turn back and was short coz. of a direct hit. This happened at a time when Gambhir was looking dangerous.

But even Dhoni failed and so did Virat Kohli.

Yes, they did fail and this post is not about Dhoni or Virat Kohli. Their scorecards revealed that they failed and that is the truth. This post is about why the score-card that shows Dravid is a top performer, is nothing but a lie because he was pathetic – truly pathetic. For instance, when Pathan got out, India still needed some 70 odd runs from 10 overs. The top-scorer was still at the crease. If at that point say you had a Yuvaraj or a Dhoni or a Sehwag or a Gambhir or a Sachin or any other batsman, there would still be hope. But with Dravid on the crease, it never even looked remotely possible. He was still taking singles.

Why have a batsman in the side who is on the wrong side of his 30s, who is incapable of changing gears when the situation demands so, who is a below average fielder and his catching skills has also gone for a toss, who is definitely not in the scheme of the team’s future and who has a career scoring rate of only 4.27 per over. He does his own thing regardless of the target or the situation. He lets pressure eat up the rest of the batsmen and finally when it is beyond him, he gets out with the top score. Yes he scores runs but at his own pace. He is severely limited and the moment you have an asking rate of 6 an over, it is well and truly beyond him.

But all of this will be deemed just emotional because the scorecard will never reveal what happened yesterday. It will not show that Dravid did not take responsibility when he was well set; it won’t reveal that he took a single and got off strike instead of taking the strike and scoring some runs; it won’t reveal that he was on self-preservation mode. What it will show is that he was the top scorer but India lost because nobody else performed.

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