Great start to year 🙂
Pakistan outclassed India in virtually every area of the game – from the batting of Nasir Jamshed, who scored his second century in as many matches, to the pace bowling of Junaid Khan and Umar Gul, and the wily spin of Saeed Ajmal.
India must now beat Pakistan in the third and final match in Delhi on Sunday to avoid what would be a humiliating whitewash. A victory would restore a small measure of pride after Thursday’s thrashing, but there’s no denying that Indian cricket is going through a rough patch – in all formats.
The ODI defeat is the latest in a run of results that have pushed Indian cricket fans to despair. The World Cup triumph of 2011 and number one Test ranking are now distant memories.
This tour by Pakistan followed a heavy Test series defeat to a touring England side. That was the first time the English had won a Test series here since 1985, and capped off a poor year that started with a Test whitewash in Australia. Wins at home over New Zealand and, in late 2011, the West Indies, barely papered over the cracks. The failure to get to the late stages in the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka showed all was not well in the shortest format too.
Established players such as Rahul Dravid stepped down last year, leaving a gaping hole in the Test team. Even Sachin Tendulkar could be on his last legs, announcing his retirement from ODI cricket just ahead of this Pakistan tour. But it’s unlikely that the Little Master, who remains available for the Test team, would have rescued India in Kolkata given his troubled form.
The only man showing any real fight for India, at least in this ODI series against Pakistan, is the captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who scored a battling 54 not out Thursday.