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India players 'happy' and 'satisfied' in a winless run overseas


Jaspreet Sahni,Cricketnext
Feb 06, 2014 at 09:38pm IST

Wonder if it's okay for the players to comment they are 'happy' or 'satisfied' with their performances when the end result is a steady decline in the team's performance.

Team India is in the exact position - winless in Tests on foreign soil since June 2011 but still players are happy commenting about their own performances, which is in poor taste when the team is continuing to struggle.

ALSO SEE I'm satisfied with how I'm bowling: Ashwin

Ishant Sharma began his spell in an incisive manner on the first morning of the Auckland Test. It reaped benefits as well - two wickets from him shook New Zealand's start after being asked to bat under a cloudy sky. It also brought up the milestone of 150 Test wickets for Ishant. But the Kiwi scorecard at the end of the day read 329 for 4.

India players 'happy' and 'satisfied' in a winless run overseas

India are winless in Tests on foreign soil since June 2011 but players are happy commenting about their own performances, which shows a struggling team in poor light.

A 200-plus stand between centurions Kane Williamson and Brendon McCullum pressed the undo button on India's efforts that reduced the hosts to 54 for 3 at lunch. En route, India grassed as many as four catches, allowing the Kiwis an escape route. That should hurt the team, hurt every member part of the touring party. But to come out in the press conference singing praises about yourself leaves a foul odor.

ALSO SEE Ishant Sharma 'happy' with his bowling

"I think I have been bowling well ... The way I am bowling at the moment, I am very happy," Ishant, who was dropped during the ODI series for failing to learn form his mistakes before returning to the eleven for the first Test, said after stumps on day one at Auckland's Eden Park.

Not that Ishant's comments were unjustified. He looked appreciably improved in Auckland on Thursday after disastrous last 6 to 8 months, but what needs to be put at the helm is team's performance. And if that's below par, it's best to avoid talking about individual performances, especially use words like 'happy and 'satisfied'.

R Ashwin did something similar during the ODI series. The team lost the five-match series 4-0, and Ashwin came out commenting "I am satisfied with how I am bowling." Again, that's in poor taste after a 4-0 thrashing. Ironically, Ashwin batted better than he bowled in the ODIs.

"This is probably the best frame of mind I have been in," Ashwin said, ignoring a lack of wickets in recent times. "I am satisfied with how I am bowling. I have sorted out what length and what kind of bowling needs to be done." Ashwin took just one wicket in five of those games and has been dropped for the first Test.

Aren't such statements best held back when the team is under a thick, winless gloom?

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