The last time India lost by 10 wickets at home was way back in March 2001 against Australia at Mumbai. And we all know what happened in Kolkata after that. Harbhajan Singh, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman combined to give India one of it’s most memorable Test wins.
In 2001, India had run into Adam Gilchrist. The Australian wicket-keeper had smashed 122 off 112 balls to rescue his side after they had been reduced to 99 for 5 and then the brittle Indian batting line-up did the rest.
Now, once again, the stage is set. India go into Kolkata — the second Test begins on December 5 — after a 10-wicket loss at Mumbai. So how will India respond? Will we see a repeat of the 2001 magic? Will India fight it’s way to glory once again?
“I think the team need to get balance back in the side— playing three spinners is a joke,” said senior cricket writer Ayaz Memon. ”There cannot be a bigger and a better wake up call than the Mumbai loss. This is like a slap in your face. You did everything to win the match— from the curator, from winning the toss, from batting first, from packing the side with spinners… what more? The loss means there is something fundamentally wrong. The problem is not with the pitch, the selectors, the BCCI or the fans— it’s in the dressing room and in the minds of the players and that’s what needs to be understood.”
There is talk once again that Dhoni wants a turner at Kolkata. Is it a defeatist attitude?
“You can’t go into the match thinking of a draw, because you’ll end up losing it. You have to go in thinking you’ll win the match and the series too. If you don’t have that frame of mind, then with all your mighty names you’re going to bite dust.”