Monday, October 21, 2013

Cricket At Feroz Shah Kotla

Heading to the fourth and final test of our tour around India earlier this year, we could have been forgiven for wishing for the mercy rule. This was not a good tour for the Aussies, and for the Waving The Flag crew, the toll of traveling around India for as long as we had began to be felt. Irritations at our hotel as we checked in had not set the tone right, and the treatment of security at the cricket did nothing to dissipate any of that.

The match was played at Dehli's Feroz Shah Kotla, and the Aussie's lasted just three days before India claimed victory and a clean sweep of the series.

Day 1 had the Aussies batting, and whilst very slow run-making, we seemed to be showing signs of possibility. Ahhh, who am I kidding! Ending the day with a total of 231 with 8 wickets down, all our hopes were pinned on fast bowler Peter Siddle overnight.

We donned our Indian style Chick Pink for Day 2, and watched as the Aussies were bowled out, and then India made our 1st Innings total and then some by the close of the days play. One of the highlights of the day was watching the Little Master bat, and whilst making just 32 (and 1 in the 2nd innings), seeing Tendulkar play in front of his home crowd at our last opportunity was one of those priceless things on tour.

The distinctive stance, the grit and manner, and the fans adoration, was like nothing else. Rumours were all around during the test of when he would announce his retirement, and when it came last week, that he would play his last matches next month in India, it was no surprise. I feel so, so honoured to have seen him play at home in India, in front of his screaming fans! Such an experience.

The crowd did not really impress for this last test of the series, and Day 3 saw the match all wrapped up.

India made swift work of the Aussie's 2nd Innings, in and then all out halfway through the middle session. India set to the task for their 2nd Innings, they had the match won by 6 wickets by the end of the day.

A pretty sad and sorry tour for the Aussies, but nonetheless, the backbone of my 5 weeks of travelling around India. I met so many great people, who joined and became part of the Flag family on tour, and of course, got to tour with some of my favourite people from past tours.

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