A ten-wicket victory over Team India helped England level the 4-Test series 1-1 at the Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium on Monday.
Riding on the backs of a gallant 186 (20×4, 4×6) by mercurial Kevin Pietersen and spinner Monty Panesar’s career best haul of 11 wickets, the English mesmerized M S Dhoni-led India.
After bundling out India for a meagre 142 in their second innings early on the fourth morning, England Captain Alastair Cook (18) and N Compton (30) finished off the required runs to win, scoring 58 for no loss.
“There are many reasons for India’s defeat and one of them is Indian spinners failing on turning wickets while another reason is poor form of many cricketers,” opined TV commentator Navjot Singh Sidhu.
Sidhu said question marks would be raised against master blaster Sachin Tendulkar’s inability to play like Kavin Pietersen to save India.
Praising Goutam Gambhir (65) for playing on the back foot, the Sardar pulled up other Indian batsmen for failing to imitate him as the ball was turning dangerously.
Taking a dig at Dhoni’s advice to the curator to make the pitch turning track right from Day one, Sidhu said Dhoni had told the curator for a turning pitch, which helped England spinners while three Indian spinners failed to take advantage.
Former India opener Arun Lal lauded England Captain Alistair Cook’s tactics, and lamented that the Indians could not learn from the opposing team’s tactics on the pitch to turn the tables. “Cook is better captain,” he argued.
Another cricketer Ravi Shastri termed Man-of-the-match Kevin Pietersen’s as one of the great entertainers of the world.
And Pietersen responded to Shastri in the post-match query saying, “Every day putting on England Jersey is a special day…Indian supporters have been brilliant,”
England: Ist Innings 413 all out (121.3 overs)
2nd Innings 58 for no loss (9.4 overs)
India: Ist Innings 327 all out (115.1 overs)
2nd Innings 142 all out (44.1 overs)