It is time to give India due credit

By Sanjay Manjrekar

Beating Australia 4-0 is no mean feat. No matter what the conditions, or the strength of the opposition, beating a mainstream international team four times in four Test matches and often well under five days is simply a terrific achievement.

But to bring up the overseas disasters of the recent past and judge this team on that, thereby denying them their due credit is simply unfair.

Why, even the members of this Indian team are vastly different from that Indian team that suffered overseas. For now, we must cheer the team on how well it’s played and importantly how well the young players have responded to the opportunities given.

Having said that, you can somewhat understand why this overseas factor keeps coming up in Indian cricket.

With India as a nation growing in confidence and starting to make a mark abroad too, the Indian cricket fan of today is a lot more demanding than he used to be.

Earlier a hundred in a losing cause from their favourite player was enough, then came the time when an Indian win more than individual glory was sought after.

Now, just an Indian win is not enough, being worthy opponents overseas along with it, is equally important for the Indian cricket fan.

So, let me address this thought – Does this performance at home promise a better performance overseas from this Indian team? This is the question in the mind of that evolved cricket fan. My answer to that is “I don’t know”.

How do you gauge a tennis player’s chances of winning the Wimbledon after he has won at Roland Garros?

Roland Garros and Wimbledon in tennis are like home and overseas cricket for India.

Although the sport remains the same, these are two completely different challenges, two different ball games. Success in one does not guarantee success in the other.

But what I do know is that when the time comes for this India team to go to South Africa, there will be more players in this team with self confidence, rather than self doubts, than that Indian team that was last overseas.

And for that you have to thank this home series.

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