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  1. #1
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    Dec 2009


    Default India needs to solve the number six dilemma

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    A moment that commenced with a guard of honour by the Australian squad, terminated immediately while Jason Krejza was ecstatic after pulling off a catch in his follow-through. Sourav Ganguly's last Test innings ended in a blob and though it will never acquire the historical weight and pathos of Sir Don Bradman's duck in his final outing, India will still look back at that moment in Nagpur during 2008, a touch wistfully.

    Strangely, India's much-acclaimed batting conveyor-belt has gone silent and no willow-wielder has yet sealed the spot left vacant by Ganguly.

    No easy task

    It is no easy task to step into the shoes of a batsman with 113 Tests and 7212 runs and who even in his last series, averaged 54.00 against Ricky Ponting's men. But it is a fact that a group of talented batsmen have failed to stake ownership to the only berth that is available in a high-class line-up.

    It did not seem that way when Yuvraj sparkled (85 n.o.) in a crucial match-winning chase against England at Chennai, while Sachin Tendulkar's unbeaten hundred dominated the match's discourse on the fifth day. It was the first Test in the post-Ganguly phase, but unfortunately Yuvraj failed to build on from there.

    Form woes and injuries combined to make his 36-Test career (1750 runs), a start-stop affair, though he is back in the playing eleven after a hiatus following a broken finger suffered against Tim Bresnan in England.

    During the first Test at Delhi, Yuvraj scored 23 and 18 and still has more ground to cover before he can nail that spot. In the interlude between Yuvraj's on and off appearance in whites, Suresh Raina (15 Tests, 710 runs), S. Badrinath (2, 63), Virat Kohli (3, 76) and Cheteshwar Pujara (3, 107) had brief stints.
    ...being a human...



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