Though we became No. 1 in tests, we realized we anyway don’t play enough number of tests. So BCCI again pulled strings, revised schedules and packed more cricket to keep everyone happy!
We won the ones against mediocre opponents – against Sri Lanka, New Zealand and West Indies.
However, when a half-decent side visited us for a seven match series, we gave up in the sixth match. To call that Australian outfit a second-string side is actually according that team a fair amount of respect!
When it came to the world stage, we failed to make the cut. We never do well when we begin as favorites whether it’s the WorldTwenty20 or ICC Champions Trophy.
We made batting pitches that put Sri Lankan curators to shame.
Our selectors treated yet another senior cricketer with no respect. And yet again Rahul Dravid, from the non-striker’s end , saw all the big names fail with the Indian score at 32-4 on the first day of a test match. And yet again, he maintained composure and replied with a 177!
Virendra Sehwag ran up a triple and still seems our best bet to be the first to score a double century in one-dayers.
VVS Laxman saved us a test match abroad. This time at Napier and once again we forgot his solid contributions.
We still haven’t found our next best spinner after Harbhajan Singh and our next best fast bowler after Zaheer Khan.
As television audiences, our action replays were once again cut short by a barrage of advertisements. We were subjected to LS for one more year and once again we didn’t have a choice but to stay put.
Our grounds were still packed. As fans we still don’t understand the “too-much-cricket concept” because we love the game and we love our heroes. We still flocked to the stadiums. We even cheered for Sreesanth. Yet, towards the end of the year, the average Indian cricket fan was once again asked to leave the stadium because one of the richest sporting federations in the world couldn’t ensure a decent playing track. In 1997 at Indore, on Christmas Day, we first got to know what a dangerous pitch meant.
Exactly twelve years later, the BCCI still didn’t care!