In the end, it was just one wicket and New Zealand managed to save it. Kanpur test through the skin of their teeth. India has missed several big names, but those present at the Green Park Stadium in Kanpur gave a good example of a thorough team performance over five days and almost achieved an exciting victory. Almost everyone performed well, with the exceptions of opening batsman Mayank Agarwal and substitute captain Ajinkya Rahane. India’s number three, Cheteshwar Pujara, spent a lot of time in the middle, but his return was once again overwhelming. Rachin Ravindra, the Kiwi youngster named after Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid, displayed great application, skill and technique to deny the Indians.
Here is our report card of India playing XI for the Kanpur Test:
Mayank Agarwal – 3/10, Weak
To someone who made a name for himself at the beginning of his international career for his compact style and technique, Agarwal seems like a shadow of his past self. Getting out of the team after a few failures in Australia might have hurt his confidence, but it’s good batting conditions and he should make the most of the opportunity in the absence of both KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma.
Shubman Gill – 5/10, Average
He scored half a century in the first innings, but the youngster’s technique was questioned by former cricketers and he may have to work with head coach Rahul Dravid to iron out the frogs. Shubman scores runs but does not get the big scores and while he is young and has time in hand, opportunities do not last long in Indian cricket where competition is so high.
Cheteshwar Pujara – 4/10, below average
Scores 26 and 22 of India’s number three are, to say the least, an overwhelming yield. Pujara has saved himself with some important pushes in England, but he is not doing enough and it hurts the team. India were fortunate to receive decent contributions from the lower order, otherwise Pujara’s place would have been further explored. And that century is now for almost three years.
Ajinkya Rahane – 2/10, very weak
It’s just amazing how Ajinkya Rahane crumbled after that excellent battle in Melbourne. He is averaging under 20 in Tests in 2021 and the substitute captain must deliver before it is too late. He has the support of the new head coach and captain, but time is running out fast and he may just be blocking the way for impressive youngsters like Shreyas Iyer and the seasoned Suryakumar Yadav.
Shreyas Iyer – 10/10, Exceptional
To score a century with a debut and follow it up with a half century in the second innings when you were not even sure you were selected to play the match is nothing short of extraordinary. Shreyas has been waiting quietly in the wings for a long time and he has shown exactly why Dravid might have to usher in some important changes and soon. What was most impressive was Shreyas’ calmness, especially in the second innings, when he batted with the lower middle order with wickets falling around him and managed to create the stage for the bowlers to push for a victory, which unfortunately did not come. but a player of the match’s performance on debut is an encouraging start.
Wriddhiman Saha – 7/10, good
Wriddhiman Saha batted in the second innings despite a stiff neck, which kept him from doing his duties as a wicketkeeper, and helped save India from a difficult position. Saha showed a lot of heart and conviction during the innings and it shows very well to someone who knows his place in the team is not guaranteed for long as Rishabh Pant will return after this series.
Ravichandran Ashwin – 9/10, very good
India’s biggest match winner has almost won another Test on home soil with his exceptionally versatile skills. Two scores in the thirties that were worth their weight in gold helped India in both innings past the track and its 6 wickets in the match almost took India home.
Ravindra Jadeja – 7/10, Good
Jadeja played with the bat in the first innings, scored 50 important runs and engaged in a good partnership with Shreyas Iyer, and with the ball in the second innings, bagged four wickets. But that was not enough to take India to victory. He did not make much of an impact with the ball in the first innings and will want to do better in the next Test in Mumbai.
Axar Patel – 7/10, Good
Axar Patel was influential in giving India a lead in the first innings as he scored another five, but he will be disappointed as he was only able to pass one wicket in the second innings when India needed him to ‘ had to give a little more. He was good with the bat in the sequence as his unbeaten 28 in the second innings helped India set a big target.
Umesh Yadav – 5/10, Average
Umesh grabbed the key wickets from captain Kane Williamson in the first innings and William Sommerville in the second and was impressive with his line, length and pace. He did what he could on a field like this. Could have attacked a bit more with bouncers.
Ishant Sharma – 3/10, below average
He was accurate but could not pick up any wickets in any innings. Need to attack more with the older ball.
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