Thursday, 15 November 2012

Mini-session Analysis, India vs England, Ahmedabad 2012/3

Here is the final mini-session analysis for the first test between India and England at Sardar Patel Stadium, Ahmedabad, India

A mini-session is (normally) half a session, either between the start of the session and the drinks break or the drinks break and the end of the session. Occasionally a long session will have 3 mini-sessions where it will be broken up with 2 drinks breaks.

Mini-SessionScoreWinner
1-1aIndia 61/0 off 13India
1-1bIndia 59/0 off 15India
1-2aIndia 70/1 off 15India
1-2bIndia 60/2 off 15England
1-3aIndia 32/0 off 17draw
1-3bIndia 41/1 off 15England
2-1aIndia 44/0 off 16India
2-1bIndia 43/0 off 15India
2-2aIndia 37/2 off 16England
2-2bIndia 55/0 off 15India
2-3aIndia 19/2 off 8England
2-3bEngland 41/3 off 18India
3-1aEngland 29/2 off 17India
3-1bEngland 40/2 off 17India
3-2aEngland 34/1 off 14.4India
3-2bEngland 47/2 off 7.4draw
3-3aEngland 53/0 off 18England
3-3bEngland 58/0 off 20England
4-1aEngland 32/1 off 16India
4-1bEngland 39/2 off 15India
4-2aEngland 42/2 off 14India
4-2bEngland 40/0 off 17England
4-3aEngland 49/0 off 15England
4-3bEngland 27/0 off 13England
5-1aEngland 25/2 off 13.3India
5-1bEngland 41/3 off 13India
5-2aIndia 80/1 off 15.3India

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First drinks, Day 1: India lead the mini-session count 1-0

India won the toss, and then took immediate advantage. Sehwag showed that he's not really in such bad form as people have said that he is.

Lunch, Day 1: India lead the mini-session count 2-0

If India's batting isn't enough of a worry for England (and it should be), the turn that Samit Patel and Graeme Swann have managed to get on the first day would be. While the turn is reasonably slow, it will get more and more tricky as the game continues.

India, on the other hand will be hoping for more Diwali foreworks from Sehwag and Gambhir.

Tea, Day 1: India lead the mini-session count 3-1

England finally have something go their way. Swann had a good battle with Gambhir. Gambhir was trying to cut, Swann was trying to cramp him. Eventually one slipped through and Swann had his man. Then Swann picked up two big scalps, Sehwag and Tendalkur.

There had been a train of thought that there was no point in bowling spin against India because thier batsmen had such good techniques against spin. Jeetan Patel proved that wrong in picking up 7 in the last series India played. Quality spin still gets out batsmen with a good technique against spin, and Graeme Swann is a quality spinner. India still hold the cards, but not as convincingly.

Final drinks, Day 1: India lead the mini-session count 3-1

Pretty much nothing happened in the last hour other than a dropped catch that Trott claimed.

Stumps, Day 1: India lead the mini-session count 3-2

England have done well to come back into the game, but they are still behind. India will be disappointed with some of the shot selection, but happy with the overall progress. It's good to see Yuvraj Singh back in the side, and looking good.

Stumps, Day 2: India lead the mini-session count 7-4

India win another day. It wasn't as comprehensive as the scorecard suggests, but it wasn't far off it. Nick Compton struggled to score against the spinners, and will seriously need to look at how he is going to turn over the strike if he wants to make it at international level. Ashwin and Ojha are good bowlers, but they turn into great bowlers if you allow them to settle in and dictate terms. Speaking from personal experience, even a bad spin bowler can become very effective against a one dimensional batsman who doesn't enforce their will, and just allows things to happen. Alastair Cook on the other hand was looking reasonably comfortable. Hardly any bad balls did not end up at the boundary, and he moved his feet well. Umesh Yadav must be wondering if he's actually playing this test, as he has yet to bat or bowl.

First drinks, Day 3: India lead the mini-session count 8-4

England's batsmen again managed to find out ways to get out to spin. Cook was lucky to survive an lbw appeal, in what seems to be Tony Hill's attempt to get India to embrace the DRS.

Lunch, Day 3: India lead the mini-session count 9-4

All over England people are waking up to the bad news that their team are in serious trouble. The ball is dominating the bat as much as the bat dominated the ball when India was batting.

Middle drinks, Day 3: India lead the mini-session count 10-4

A good partnership ends with a great delivery. England are going to have to have some big runs from the tail if they want to avoid the follow-on.

Stumps, Day 3: India lead the mini-session count 10-6

After India enforced the follow on, England's openers have negotiated the final session. Nick Compton is still too slow for my liking. I feel that rotating the strike is an important part of a solid defense. Dhoni made an interesting decision to open with Ojha and Yadav rather than Ashwin and Zaheer Khan. I'm not sure that Ojha is suited to bowling with the new ball as much as Ashwin is.

First drinks, Day 4: India lead the mini-session count 11-6

Cook continued to stand strong, but Compton continued to struggle to score. There's nothing wrong with a solid defence, but the object of batting is still scoring runs.

Lunch, Day 4: India lead the mini-session count 12-6

Apparently Kevin Pietersen wants us to believe that doesn't have a problem against left arm spin. Perhaps he would be more convincing if he stops getting out to left arm spinners in really bad ways.

Middle drinks, Day 4: India lead the mini-session count 13-6

Samit Patel will probably be thinking bad thoughts about Tony Hill. He's been given out to two terrible lbw decisions. He'll probably not remember the plumb one that Aleem Dar gave not out.

Tea, Day 4: India lead the mini-session count 13-7

Prior and Cook have batted well again. They were probably the two best in the first innings and they are again showing that they have the right technique and temperment to bat in India. It's probably too little too late however.

Final drinks, Day 4: India lead the mini-session count 13-8

Another good hour from Cook and Prior. Apparently Prior has gotten a new bat for this series with the weight lower than the one he normally uses, in order to counter the lower bounce on the pitches in India. If it's true then it's really good thinking.

Stumps, Day 4: India lead the mini-session count 13-9

This is a fantastic partnership. England now have a realistic chance of saving this match. They probably need another 200 runs tomorrow, but this parntership is going so well, and the tail is sufficiently strong, that it is not out of the realms of probability.

First drinks, Day 5: India lead the mini-session count 14-9

India have made the two crucial breakthroughs. Firstly Prior then Cook. England's tail is going to have to bat very well now to save the match.

Lunch, Day 5: India lead the mini-session count 15-9

India have had a good morning, and cleaned up the tail well. The question now is how quickly they can score the runs.

End of match India win the mini-session count 16-9

Cheteshwar Pujara has had a fantastic match, and it was appropriate that he was not out at the end. This time opening against one of the best new ball combinations in the world, and he didn't look even slightly troubled. It's easier batting with no scorebaord pressure, but you still need to score the runs.

Despite a good fightback from Cook and Prior, this was a decisive victory for India. The big question for them will be how their bowlers recover from such a big workload for the next test. England on the other hand have some serious questions to answer.

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