'India needed the victory badly'

It was a morale-boosting win for India at Lord's. The 23-run win over England on Sunday also ended their winning drought.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:08 IST
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It was a morale-boosting win for India at Lord's. The 23-run win over England on Sunday also ended their winning drought. India lost the series, but the win came as a much-needed relief for all the team members. It only suggests how badly India needed a favourable result. The dysfunctions of the team that were discussed for over the last two months should now hopefully come to an end. Rigour and resilience The boys really applied themselves with rigour and resilience to get out of the rough patch. A victory always brings back the self-confidence among the players and they start looking at the game in a new light. The communication within the team also gets a lift, propagating positive feelings for one another. It was a great sight to watch Ashish Nehra running in with more purpose. As the new ball bowler, that's the kind of response expected from him. After his World Cup heroics against the same opponents, Ashish had not really inspired confidence. Under the present situation, it may be hard to leave him out of the team. But at the same time, it would be difficult for him to be the first choice for the final eleven. Three seamers needed Irfran Pathan is still the cardinal part of the Indian attack. The team should find the third bowler between Balaji and Ajit Agarkar. I strongly feel that India should go with three seamers. Harbhajan Singh is in scintillating form at the moment. The control with which he is bowling is truly world class, as one cannot remember him bowling a single bad ball in the last two matches. By breaking the huge seventh-wicket partnership between Ashley Giles and Michael Vaughan, he turned the match in India's favour. Great determination Rahul Dravid and Sourav Ganguly played with great determination. When it comes to returning to form, no one knows it better than Rahul. His knock was by no means up to his own standards, but the way he grinded the innings to spend more time at the centre was simply commendable. No matter how much time you spend at the nets or in front of the system, form always comes back under constant pressure at the centre. It is always important for the captains to perform and lead from the front. With a few runs behind him, Ganguly's body language, I have noticed, changes drastically on the field. Naturally, captains got to lead by example. But this strange phenomenon of getting run out after a mix-up is becoming very productive for the opponents. The top brass of the team should work together to eliminate such mistakes. The win will certainly lift the spirit of the team, though there are some areas, which still need to be ironed out. Winning breeds belief and that is the main ingredient to find form. (PTI)