Monday, October 18, 2004

Thud!

That was the predominant noise at Chepauk and elsewhere that fans felt coming crashing down to earth, after what promised to be a thriller of the Jeffrey Archer scale. The weather gods decided to play their own little game to deny either side a victory push. Each side surely believed they could win this thing on the last day, and with the pitch apparently easing out, India perhaps had the edge. Perhaps. The last time they chased a fourth innings total for a win against the Aussies in 2001, it was edge of the seat stuff as only some plucky late order batting by Samir Dighe and Harbhajan Singh saved the day and the series. And they were only chasing 160-odd. Anyhow, a golden opporunity to level the series was taken away. The nearest parallel would be Melbourne 1985 where India were cantering to victory and were stopped only by rain, almost cruelly. We're still waiting for a series win Down Under. It had been quite a build up thus far, with all those twists and turns. Ironically, the final twist was to be a rain marred test in Chennai - what were the odds on that, even in mid October? All those heroic performances did not mean anything in the end, and that must have been quite a let down for those who rose to the occasion. - NK

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