The Funeral Pyre Is Out



For cricket lovers the death of Indian cricket at Test level has been lingering. The final rites were given today.

For twenty days the pyre has been slowly simmering fuelled by everyone. The ancient wood has slowly simmered away. But will their ashes be thrown out when the clean-up commences?

The Indians have shown that they are thinking of other cricket rather than the time-honoured Test cricket. If they have any G & D then the authorities in India need to take stock of “the game” and whether they want Test cricket to be still the heartbeat of the game.

The big question today is not about the 4-0 victory but what will the makeup be of the Australian team to West Indies. who will be the man-of-match and the man-of-the-series.

At 10.55am Here is my man-of-the-match:   Richard Ponting AO  (is Peter Siddle)

11.00am      Man-of-the-series (very hard for a bowler, given the criteria):  Peter Siddle (is Michael Clarke)

14 man squad for the Caribbean:.  Have not considered Patrick Cummins

M.Clarke (Capt),  D. Warner (V-Capt),  E.Cowan,R.Ponting, M.Hussey, U.Khurwaja, M.Wade,   N.Lyon, P.Siddle,  B.Hilfenhaus, J.Patterson, M.Starc, D.Christian  S.Watson or R.Harris (depending on fitness of either).  I would rather go for a fit young team and say keep Harris on ice for our summer and maybe Watson.  Outsiders: N.Maddison (for Cowan),  T.Cooper (for Hussey)

Wickets fall early with Sharma (2) and Saha (3) both nicking to Haddin. One each to Harris and Siddle.

Khan (15) lashes out and is caught by Warner of Hilfenhaus.  Only one stick to light. Ashwin plays a couple of fine strokes. Why he or Saha did not come in late yesterday is a very puzzling question.

The game is soon over with Yadav (1)  giving Haddin his third catch of the morning. Lyon 4/63 finished the game off.  Harris with 3/41 was the next best.  All out 201.  Australia win the game by 298 runs.

Attended the aftermath press conference of acting Indian captain V.Sehwag and was gobsmacked by his answers to what I regarded as run-of-the-mill questions. Not once did he offer any excuses for his team other than Australia was too good.

“We have trained very hard throughout the series” was his most quotable answer time after time. Not once did he even suggest that they look at team changes let alone offer any reason why their top players did not front the media throughout the tour.

From a public relations point of view the Indians have been disaster from go to whoa and has been suggested in many places that they were here on holidays.   To the cricket loving public of Australia and indeed their own country they owe an apology.

If they don’t feel they can play test cricket then give it away now.  Don’t get me wrong I want them to continue but we all want to see a competitive competition. My cynical answer is they can’t see past the rupee signs in their eyes

Australia on the other hand played great cricket to win every game well inside the time.  It was attack, attack, attack and the Indians did not have the ticker to fight back.

A review of the Australian team will show that the only real concern is the top order.  Warner good and bad, Cowan average and Marsh bad. Other than an average series by Haddin all other players deserve a tick.  Could it be that we might turn back to Simon Katich to give some G & D to the opening order?

So ends the series on the most beautiful of all cricket grounds.  An attendance of over 10,000 (free entry) on the last day took the total attendance to over 100,000.  Proving once again Australia’s’ love for the big game.

Pity about the opposition.




About Bob Utber

At 84 years of age Citrus Bob is doing what he has always done since growing up on a small farm at Lang Lang. Talking, watching and writing sport and in recent years writing books. He lives in Mildura with his very considerate wife (Jenny) and a groodle named 'Chloe on Flinders' and can be found at Deakin 27 every day.


  1. Hi Bob, an AMEN to all that. Australia played with the heart and skills, perhaps the Indians didn’t want to be here for the series but it was in all the main diaries so that had no choice. It will be interesting to see Australia play a team like England or South Africa and we can measure ourselves properly then, and if we keep getting the confidence and some practice into the newer guys, then we are looking to a better cricket future than we all imagined before the summer began.

    I have loved your postings and the insights into the finer details that they provide.


  2. Thanks Yvette
    Yes, South africa and England will be a different kettle of fish.
    Don’t know why we should send our A team to West indies as it will end up being a B grade competition, Should blood the likes of Mattisson,Cooper, Robertson et al just to see if they have the ticker to take the next step.

  3. Robertson?

  4. Dave Warner vice Captain??? What? are you his Dad?

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