July 21st, 2009
Strauss must be feeling *much* better after the awesome English victory in the second Ashes test. 74 years is a long time waiting, especially at Lords.
He would probably be the first one to accept that the declaration was but a bit premature. A declaration with a target of 580 or 600 just around lunch on 4th day would have been much better, as it would have put victory beyond the reach for Australia, putting them in a defensive mindset. Victory then might have come quicker, and the margin may have been nicer.
That of course needs to be weighed against the fact that there would have been lesser time to bowl Oz out, but 5 sessions really ought to be enough, really, if anything is.
July 20th, 2009
As the 4th day of the second Ashes test between England and Australia wraps up, Strauss must be wondering whether he made a mistake with his overnight declaration. Well, let me answer it for you Andrew: Yes! One of the cardinal rules of declaring is that the batting side must squarely see victory as an impossibility. Well, that is certainly not the case right now with 209 runs only left and an entire 5th day of cricket still left to play. Surely, Australia can lose from here, but also 209 with 5 wickets and 1 day left is not a mathematical impossibility.
August 13th, 2007
True, the 3rd test match between India and England is just heading for a draw, but full credit must be given to England for holding out three and half sessions. Too many teams have see the 4th inning fold out in less than a day when facing a task even less daunting than faced by England today.
Remember Australia in India, 2001, second test (that eternally belongs to VVS)?
There was a fair bit of talk for England chasing down 500, pushing for victory. That was a bit unrealistic, but then again, records do get broken, and dreams do come true. It is to England’s credit that such talk was popping up even in the post-lunch session.
The everlasting “better lose series 2-0 than lose 1-0 and not try” comments are always seen in similar situations in the 3rd test, but people tend to agree with them only until the team does lose 2-0. After that, losing 1-0 starts sounding much better. Remember South Africa vs. Australia, 2006, when Graeme Smith gifted the 3rd test to Australia by setting them a target of less than 300?
I do too.