Birmingham, Aug 13: While England seems to be leap-frogging from strength to strength against India in the current series, the beleaguered visitors are steadily losing ground as well as their grip on the No. 1 ranked team in Test cricket. Records seem to be cascading before the very eyes of Team India as a ferocious England has reduced the visitors to the stature of a bunch of whipped puppies and near novices.
It appears that whenever an opposing team is running away with a match, India rather than make heated pursuit, shrivel up into a shell. The latest carnage unfolding at Edgbaston where discordant and disoriented Indian attack has allowed England to pile on 710/7, is exemplary of this worrying trend. The scenario also stirs up unsettling memories of the first Test of India's 1979 tour of England.
On that occasion, Srinivas Venkataraghavan's India could not impeded Mike Brearly's England from amassing a mammoth 633/5-declared. Geoffrey Boycott and David Gower flayed the Indian attack to notched up individual knocks of 155 and 200 respectively. The only real impediment that India could offer in that innings was a five-for from Indian seamer Kapil Dev.
But the most haunting and demoralising occurrence was in 1997 when Sri Lanka absolutely destroyed the Indian attack to compile the world record of 962/6 declared in their first innings. Sanath Jayasuriya, with 340, Roshan Mahanama, with 225 and Aravinda de Silva with 126, aided Lanka on its most famous round of run-plundering.