Harare/Edgbaston, Aug 15: After their absolute walloping at the hands of a rampaging England side in the current Test series, India has a task to get back to the drawing board. Part of a meticulous autopsy on their demise as the No. 1 ranked Test Team in the world should include an analysis of Zimbabwe's recent Test win against Bangladesh.
Granted, the minnows were playing a far less challenging side than Ole Blighty. But India's deplorable showing wherein the bowlers let the opposition's tail dominate for sessions on end and the batsmen couldn't put together even one century-stand, is a performance becoming of just such a lowly team. After all, would a Number One ranked side ever dream of coming off losses to the tune of 196 runs, 319 runs and an innings and 242 runs?
In stark contrast however, Zimbabwe followed Test cricket's demands to the letter, simply shrugging off the stigma of being on hiatus from the longer format of the game for 6 years. They marked their resurgence by playing as a fierce unit, exuding discipline, patience and concentration. How else would they have garnered beefy stands at the top and the middle of the order, which included a century opening partnership and epic tons from Hamilton Masakadza and Brendon Taylor?
Zimbabwe's bowling was equally impactful with Brian Vitori and Kyle Jarvis taking 4 wickets in separate innings. In fact, so forceful and focused was the attack that it even drew praise from South African bowling great Allan Donald!
In between the batting and bowling display, catches were taken and runs were stifled as Zimbabwe played their heart out for 5 days. Indeed, the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman can certainly take a leaf out of their less-celebrated counterparts' books while Vitori and Co would have a lesson or two to impart to the beleaguered Indian bowling attack. Will the dethroned World No. Ones take these mini-heroes up?