Kangaroos prefer to sweat it out and practices after the innings defeat against India
Not very often does one see a visiting team train on the main pitch immediately after being vanquished in a Test match. But that is what Michael Clarke’s Australians did after M.S. Dhoni’s Indians had scored a crushing innings victory in the second Test at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium in Hyderabad on Tuesday.
This was in striking contrast to the celebrations of the Indian team, which dashed off to the hotel after the presentation ceremony. With the hotel management putting up a cake-cutting ceremony on their arrival, Dhoni and his teammates basked in glory.
With security personnel manning the entire area, the Australians, under the watchful eyes of a disappointed Michael Clarke and coach Mickey Arthur, trained for close to an hour on the centre pitch. All with the hope of giving a better performance in the next two Tests.
There were moments to cherish for the die-hard 9,495 fans that thronged the venue. They had the immense satisfaction of watching a magnificent triumph, and they were witness to a piece of history, too, when Dhoni became the most successful Indian Test captain (22 wins), beating Sourav Ganguly’s record (21).
Interestingly, Hyderabad seems to have become the favourite venue for Chennai off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin who picked up his third five-wicket haul in the two Tests he played here.
But it was an irony of sorts for Hyderabadis when left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja, coming into the team in place of Pragyan Ojha, produced the ball of the match – cleaning up Michael Clarke with a beauty to knock back the off-stump.
Things can change fast in international cricket as Ojha was the most successful bowler against England only a few weeks ago. In the present series, he has not got a chance to play in the two Tests that have been played till now in the four-match series.
In a way, it was a Saurashtra show in this Test, with ‘man of the match’ Cheteshwara Pujara hitting 204, and then Ravindra Jadeja producing a decisive spell on the fourth morning of the Test.
HCA to refund tickets
The Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) has announced that it will refund the tickets sold for the fifth day (March 6) since the Test match ended one day early on Tuesday. All ticket-holders are advised to surrender the tickets purchased by them for the fifth day at the designated meeseva centres.
Tickets purchased online at bookmyshop.com will have to be surrendered at counters at Gymkhana.
These requests will be entertained only for one day — on Wednesday during office-hours.