Home > Features >

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test at Southampton: Reasons for India’s heavy defeat

MS Dhoni-led India crashed to a heavy defeat against England in the third Test at Southampton © Getty Images
MS Dhoni-led India were below par in the third Test against England at Southampton © Getty Images

India crashed to a crushing 266-run defeat at The Ageas Oval after scaling towering peaks at Lord’s. There were many reasons as to why India lost their way in the third Test. R Vishal analyses all the reasons as to why India succumbed to a soul-sapping defeat which would force them to go back to the drawing board for answers.

Line-up: MS Dhoni’s naysayers have often accused the Indian captain for sticking by his tried and tested brigade. In the past, he was slammed for sticking by Suresh Raina despite a poor run of scores. Dhoni also faced the wrath for persisting with Ravindra Jadeja, before the slow left-arm orthodox proved himself as a match winner. Despite a steely batting display in the first Test at Trent Bridge, Roger Binny was hardly tried out with the ball. He subsequently went on to lose his place in the side, and all looked rosy when India won the second Test at Lord’s. Here, Ravichandran Ashwin was yet again overlooked. Despite coming into the Test match with a lead in the series, India went in with an extra batsman in Rohit Sharma.

Catching: We would have well been singing a different tune now had Jadeja hung on to a straightforward chance from Alastair Cook at second slip. The English captain’s run of low scores would have continued and Pankaj Singh would have had a dream start to his career. What transpired was indeed cruel on Pankaj, who after waiting in the wings for an eternity got battered by the resurgent English batsmen. Shikhar Dhawan was also culpable related to a couple of regulation catches being dropped, and Dhoni missed an absolute lollypop of a stumping chance.

Body Language and field placements: While Cook, Ian Bell and Jos  Buttler gorged on the multiple lives they got, shades of India’s overseas woes in 2011 and 2012 looked like would haunt the visitors again. Defensive field placements, pedestrian bowling and drooping shoulders wore a bad colour on a team coming into the Test riding on a high. Yet again, a Dhoni team capitulated away from home after the opponents got to a massive first innings score.

Concentration lapses: India’s batting mainstays; Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli will bear a major brunt of batsmen failing to capitalise on starts. After solid starts, the duo threw their wickets away playing poor shots. Ajinkya Rahane once again showed what application and discipline at the crease can do during his fighting half-century in the second essay.

India’s appalling struggle against spin: Widely regarded as the best players of spin, it was indeed appalling to see top-order batsmen throwing their wickets away. Moeen Ali may now command more respect than what he started out after ending up with figures of his six for 67. Joe Root chipped in with the wicket of Dhawan in the second innings. The meek fifth day collapse in the first session is inexplicable for a team desperately looking to remove their blemishes from their wretched away record.

Losing ‘the’ match winner:

Not many times have we come across the following line: Ishant Sharma was sorely missed by India. Ishant would have likely been a threat on The Ageas Bowl wicket too and it was always going to be an uphill battle for a newcomer to replace someone, who had almost single-handedly won them the previous Test match.

Complete coverage of India’s tour of England 2014

(R Vishal is a journalist and an alumni of the Asian College of Journalism. He can be followed on Twitter @vishhell)

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 23, 2014 (08:50 IST)   at Sydney

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 23, 2014 (12:00 IST)   at Chittagong

India tour of Australia 2014, Practice matches

Nov 24, 2014 (05:29 IST)   at Glenelg, Adelaide

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 24, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Colombo

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Nov 26, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Sharjah

More

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 22, 2014  at Dambulla

Match abandoned without a ball being bowled

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 21, 2014  at Dambulla

Match abandoned without a ball being bowled

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 21, 2014  at Chittagong

Bangladesh won by 87 runs

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 21, 2014  at Melbourne

Australia won by 3 wkts

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 20, 2014  at Dambulla

Match abandoned without a ball being bowled(Match rescheduled to 21/11/2014)

Photos

Australia vs South Africa, 3rd ODI at Canberra

Videos

SL vs Eng: Buttler practices wicketkeeping in nets

PCB’s biggest challenge is to bring back international cricket to Pakistan: Subhan Ahmad

Tim Southee’s 50 Test sixes and related records

India vs Australia 2014: India may have heavy dose of pace in store in 1st Test

Ross Taylor’s crucial knock against Pakistan will boost his sub-par subcontinent record

Stuart Binny — can the all-rounder be a trump card for India in ODIs?

Australia Australia vs South Africa Australia vs South Africa 2014 India New Zealand New Zealand tour of UAE 2014 New Zealand vs Pakistan New Zealand vs Pakistan 2014 Pakistan Pakistan vs New Zealand Pakistan vs New Zealand 2014 South Africa South Africa tour of Australia 2014 South Africa vs Australia South Africa vs Australia 2014

India vs Australia 2014-15: Harry Conway replaces Gurinder Sandhu in CA XI squad

Pakistan vs New Zealand 2014: Ahmed Shehzad set to return for ODIs; Sohaib Maqsood ruled out

Australia vs India 2014: Shane Watson uninterested in captaining Australia

Pakistan vs New Zealand 2014: New Zealand’s overseas performances have impressed Mike Hesson

Moeen Ali: Would love to open for England again

Rohit Sharma: India are serious contenders

South Africa may lose momentum ahead of ICC World Cup 2015

Has Umesh Yadav cemented his place in India’s ICC World Cup 2015 squad?

The Melbourne Cricket Club is formed

Bangladesh vs Zimbabwe 2014: Sabbir Rahman fires explosive 44 on debut

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

681 Posts | 6 Fans

Video Highlights: Virat Kohli vs Australian cricketers

Faf du Plessis shows us what its like to face fast-bowling

Zee TV launches it’s newest show Satrangi Sasural!

5 smart tricks to make your grocery shopping healthy

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Manchester City vs Swansea Live Streaming and Score: Watch Live Telecast Online of MANC vs SWA Barclays Premier League 2014-15 Match

NGOs pursue education for all

Selfie stick listed in Time magazine’s best inventions list

PSN, 2K, and Windows Live hack claims by DerpTrolling are reportedly a hoax

How many calories do bananas have?

Naaigal Jaakirathai Movie Review: Entertaining, but beware of cliches

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here