The second India-England test match starts on November 23. After India's comprehensive victory in the First Test, it might seem an uphill task for England to make a contest of the series. And so it is, a task up the slopes of Mount Everest. Most people feel that England has no hope of avoiding the inevitable in the coming matches.
But England has 5 solid days of play behind them, and there must be something they can learn from the First Test, right? Here are the lessons England could have learnt from their defeat:
1. You're going to be whitewashed. Payback's a bitch
2. If Swann somehow gets injured, it would be wise to book any kind of ticket – flight, ship or train – back to England
3. Cheteshwar Pujara is Rahul Dravid reborn. He is a Wall bristling with machine gun turrets, with holes through which boiling oil regularly showers opposition teams
4. India ke bees wicket lena mushkil hi nahi, namumkin hai
5. It would probably make sense for Anderson, Broad and Bresnan to learn how to become spin bowlers. Is there a PP Ojha DVD doing the rounds of the black markets in Mumbai?
6. Lagaan was all wrong. There's no way an English team could get 322 runs in the first innings on an Indian pitch
7. Yes You Can Win. If they discover cloning tonight and decide to test it on Cook, Prior and Swann first. And the cloned offspring grow 25 years overnight. Otherwise...no
8. Every pitch in India grows up to be a slow turner. Maybe they're told that being a slow turner is good (like engineering and medicine)
9. Sachin didn't score in this match. That means there's a century by him in your future. But you probably knew that already. If you’re an opposition team, you’re going to witness a Sachin century every so often
10. Only 3 matches left; only 6 five wicket hauls by Ojha to go!
11. Take baby steps; you don't have to win the next test match. Just avoiding a follow on or an innings defeat or a two day finish will be an achievement. After that, you can move on to taking at least ten Indian wickets
12. Not playing Monty Panesar was a mistake comparable to the big one you realize you've made just after you exit an exam hall
13. Don't worry about things like the toss or the weather. They will have no bearing on the outcome of the match
14. Pujara is probably going to end the series without a batting average; with a star next to his name in every innings (which is lucky, because it seems like it's censoring what you think about him)
15. Please continue your appeals at every opportunity, including LBW shouts when the ball pitches a foot outside leg. Some day, the umpires might think they’re cries for help, and rule in your favour
16. Your batsmen need to focus on getting more runs than the extras at the end of the innings
17. If you win any of the following test matches, every bookie in India is going to be on the streets with a begging bowl
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