It happens to the best of teams.
A lot of questions have been raised and much has been analysed about this one inning against Australia. India was fully in control of the game and until then it looked like a matter of when. Australia would capitulate after India would ruthlessly grind out a bigger lead and then our famed world-class bowling attack would do the rest.
But no, Tim Paine had different ideas and went about reducing what the Indians thought would be a considerable lead by scoring 74 with the tail. Then the Aussie quicks came and reduced India to a humiliating 36 for nine, with Mohammed Shami injured and out of the series.
One bad session. One bad day.
One cannot put it down to that. There is a fatal flaw that is somewhere undetected within this team. Despite its talent and its belief that it can beat the best, a crack appears every now and then, that shows that somehow all is not well. Are we believing without looking really hard? Are we missing on certain aspects that need to be addressed to be a world-class team? Are we not as resilient and strong as we thought we are?
I feel the flaw is being missed. The team lacks resilience still. Not all players are able to contribute and it still relies on a couple, or at most times, only one in the batting and one a couple in the bowling. Until and unless the others can step up and close ranks when the biggies fail, we cannot call ourselves a world-class team. On our day yes, but world-class means that they win even when it is not their day. This I believe is what one must look at - the harsh realities that we can lose a match that is fully in our hands simply because we don't have the resilience. And resilience comes from gumption and belief. From a culture where each one feels he must die for the team.
I feel that intensity is missing. There is a complacency in the platitudes and cliches we hear from the team members. It is always about the next game and how we can learn from these mistakes. Learning must show. Learning must be intense and not complacent. With this team and this talent, the quicker they fix this fatal flaw the better. Then we will have far more wins and tropies in our hands.