Beneath a hole in the ozone layer created by excessive use of
CFCsIPLs and the carcenogenic consequences of exposure to intense T20 radiation, India were bowled out cheaply again in Test match conditions outside the sub-continent.
A cancer has set in leaving India all out for 191 in 59.3 overs at the Sydney Cricket Ground today. More importantly, it lays bare the realization that, with much of Test cricket’s DNA now damaged and mutated, this failure surprises very few.
The big matches over the last couple of months in South Africa and now in Australia had already brought into the light of day the damage done to the genetic code of almost all of the Test playing nations.
Those batsmen with greatest exposure to T20 and the least experience of Test cricket to fall back on are looking woeful. Add a lack of Test match practice and some drop in form among the old guard and the batting of these teams is looking sick.
Bravo to The Bowlers’ Club of Australia whose morale is sky high and still mounting.
Today the new boy Pattinson followed up his ‘fifer’ at the MCG with the wickets of four of present game’s top batsmen: Gambhir, Sehwag, Tendulka and Laxman. But his generous praise for Siddle and Hilfenhaus, when accepting MOTM in Melbourne, inspired his partners to three wickets each – a perfect outcome for the unit.
Then Zaheer Khan put Australia’s youngsters under the microscope, cruelly exposing first the specialized DNA of Warner – over and out for 8 in the first six balls with a strike rate of 133.33 and plenty of time ahead of him in the dressing room to give his mind a rest; secondly Marsh – first ball ‘nough said, and thirdly Cowan lbw for 16.
Then, Ponting and Clark, who learnt their game BT20 (Before Twenty20), took the score on from a sunburned 37 for 3 to a sunscreened 116 for 3.
Practice, practice, practice. Get it right and the best behaviour is engrained. But practice makes permanent – mistakes and mutations.
The following are all-too-easy questions to answer: What happens when the life-form is exposed to two very different environments? What happens if nurture alters nature, accelerating the adaptive process? And why should cricket worry about that?
England, the reigning champs of Test cricket, may have already become the fortunate beneficiaries of their northern niche which is less suited to exposure on the sun blest beaches of the IPL.
Excluded Pakistan, if they, their administrators and their politicians can rid themselves of their addiction to nefarious practices on and off the field, could become world beaters thanks to their life in the shadows.
In cricket, as in life, evolution produces specialization. And when nurture infects nature, the process is accelerated. Specialisation is a huge gamble.