truly historic

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 08 Sep 2017 12:09:54

THE comprehensive victory scored by Indian cricket team in Sri Lanka should be termed as truly historic. Right from Day One, the Indian team dominated the scene totally without any shade of doubt, winning all the three campaigns -- the three Tests, the five One-Day Internationals, and the one-off T20 International. India dominated all the nine matches, leaving for the hosts no chance to recover. Very rarely is such an evidence of total domination of one team available in international sports. 

Of course, there were flashes of true brilliance from the Sri Lankans and they did give the visitors some anxious moments. But whenever such a moment came, it also brought along with it the likes of Mahendra Singh Dhoni to make possible a turn-around of fortunes through grit and gravitas. So, when the Sri Lankans started dreaming of victory, some Indian braveheart would upset their party.

That the Lankan tour catapulted the Indian team to the top of the world Test rankings, is a terrific enhancement in India’s prestige. In other forms, as well, the team’s performance has enhanced its rankings, giving a clear message to the world about India’s cricketing prowess. The Indian team has always been held in high esteem the world over for its collective virtuosity, let alone a few setbacks. But the Lankan tour did a lot of wonderful things to the overall position of the team globally.

The most critical gain on the Lankan tour is the boosting of the team’s overall morale. Every player realised the power of doggedness and unwavering faith in his capabilities. He also realised the importance of not giving up even though odds are heavily lined up against the team. This point came to fore when former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni came to bat when chips were down and the team stared in the face of defeat. And then came a great scripting of a dogged and well-planned innings that showed to the younger players that no match is lost until the team does not accept defeat. That turn-around can be rated as one of the best in the game’s recent history. That superlative display of batting abilities by Dhoni left the hosts shell-shocked.

Yet another master-class performance came quite expectedly from Captain Virat Kohli and batsman Virat Kohli. On both counts, Kohli acquitted himself very well and led the team from the front. His batting display left the rivals spell-bound. What makes Kohli different from many others is his emotional signature on the game. His passion was clearly visible through-out the tour. So was his personal commitment to excellence. As a world-class performer in the top bracket, Kohli naturally expects his colleagues also to perform similarly.

He has already scored 30 centuries in ODIs and has a great future waiting for him. In Tests also, he is occupying the top position in batting and the last match, the T20 International, proved once again what makes Virat Kohli the top contender to the position of batting’s uncrowned king. The fans have already begun talking of a moment when Kohli would surpass Sachin Tendulkar’s records.

The dream performance on the Lankan tour may not be possible all along. Every team is not as inexperienced as the Sri Lankan one. Yet, the promise India has created out of this showing will make a lot of difference to its future performances. Frankly speaking, it was pathetic to see the Sri Lankans struggle to come level with the Indians. They do not give even an inkling of their glorious past. It is difficult to believe, they were once the world beaters. Such lows are an integral part of any team’s journey. They do have talented players, but perhaps lack the ambience to convert the talent into credible performance. It is obvious, the Lankans have to travel a great distance to come to some respectable standing in world cricket.