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The gloves are off for "The Payback Series"

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Adam Mountford | 15:04 UK time, Monday, 10 October 2011

The first thing I noticed when I opened my copy of the Hyderabad Times this morning was a full page advert promoting the forthcoming one-day series with England. The headline was "Time for Vengeance - The war between India and England resumes from 14 October."

This was accompanied by a picture of several members of the India side dressed in army combat gear holding bats and stumps as if they were guns and other weapons. The sponsors of the ODIs are describing the forthcoming matches as "the Payback Series".

I think you can safely say that the Indian public were hurt by what took place in England over the summer - and they are looking for revenge.

Several Indian players have been depicted as warriors

Captain Mahendra Dhoni (second right, wearing cap) will lead India into battle in the one-day series

Last night on one of the numerous Indian television channels dedicated to cricket, a discussion was taking place with the headline "the Grudge Matches". Former India captain Sourav Ganguly was the special guest and he was in typically combative form.

The topic of discussion was whether current captain Mahendra Dhoni should have been allowed to miss the England series after reportedly asking the selectors for a break from the game. Dhoni has apparently played 112 days of cricket over the last 12 months - all of them as captain, wicketkeeper and batsman. This does not include all the days he has been practising or training.

Anyway, the presenter asked Ganguly for his thoughts, arguing that perhaps England look after their players better by pointing out that James Anderson had been rested for this tour.

But Ganguly came straight back at the presenter. "I would say that Anderson has not been rested," he said, "more likely dropped. Did you see how badly he bowled in the World Cup over here? He's OK at the start if the innings when the ball is swinging, but during the death overs he goes all over the park. That is the real reason he is not here!"

As he showed throughout his career as a player, Ganguly is not a man worried about ruffling a few feathers. But it is another example of how it appears India want to be up for the fight over the next few weeks to show England why they won the World Cup in such thrilling style only a few months ago.

Talking about ruffling feathers, the main topic of conversation amongst the press pack at England training today centred around the revelations expected in the forthcoming serialisation of Graeme Swann's autobiography, The Breaks Are Off. We expect excerpts to reveal that Swann did not believe that Kevin Pietersen was the right choice as England captain and, unlike Andrew Strauss, is not a "natural leader of men". We also believe Swann will be critical of Pietersen's tactics during his short reign in charge.

However, an England team spokesman played down talk of any possible rift in the camp caused by the book, saying that the England management received a copy of the manuscript before publication and had no problems with it.

He added that Swann and Pietersen had been laughing and joking all tour with no problems. It was said that Swann is merely expressing an opinion - and he is a man with plenty of those!

From what I have seen, there is no evidence of any disharmony in the England squad. Instead, there seems a steely determination to succeed in the 50-over form of the game.

I spoke to Ravi Bopara, who began his tour with a crucial knock of 73 in England's first warm-up match. He said that he was excited by the "fierce competition for places" and that the team were focusing on trying to build a World Cup winning side.

He added: "We've won the World Twenty20, we are the number one Test side but the one thing we really want to get right now is the 50-over game. We have a fantastic opportunity to win the World Cup in 2015... probably our best chance in years."

Well, a good start to showing that 50-over focus would be by beating the current world champions in their own back yard. I'll have updates on BBC Radio 5 live and via Twitter @tmsproducer from England's final warm-up match on Tuesday. Then we will start our winter Test Match Special coverage from 0945 BST on Friday for the first of five one-day internationals, with commentary on BBC 5 live sports extra, BBC Radio 4 Long Wave and via the BBC Sport website in the UK.


  • Comment number 1.

    Very good battle this going to be between the world 50 over champions vs the 20 over champions. Indian team will definitely be looking for revenge after England beat them convincingly this summer despite India being injury prown, it did not hide the fact that England played top cricket through out the series. On Indian soil can England win, i do not see why not but it is going to be a tough ask. Different conditions, temperature and the crowd will play a big part. For me it will be even honours 2-2 and England will be a much happier team with this result.

  • Comment number 2.

    Woah, that ad! I think they're taking this a bit too seriously.

  • Comment number 3.

    Corey Pavin at Kiawah Island anyone? No need to turn sport into warfare, and this is exactly what the advert in The Hyderabad Times has done.

    Usually such a good read too.............

  • Comment number 4.

    I think the author is reading too much into an advert from a Tabloid newspaper. Indian media has never been representative of the Indian public. Yes, Ganguly can ruffle a few feathers but i think his comments on Anderson were fair.

  • Comment number 5.

    Interesting words from Bopara, although the ad in the Indian press would seem to suggest that India still take the 50 over stuff far more seriously than we do.

    Oh, and Ganguly is dead right about the Anderson selection!

  • Comment number 6.

    I get the feeling for the England side and management it's a tour that they would rather not have had; splitting up what could have been a well deserved long rest for players who have had a very long 12 months.

    "Last night on one of the numerous Indian television channels dedicated to cricket, a discussion was [taking play] with the headline "the Grudge Matches". Former India captain Sourav Ganguly was the special guest and he was in typically combative form."

    Guess that should read 'discussion taking place' ;)

  • Comment number 7.

    Two things

    Firstly. The picture is an Ad for the host broadcaster in an effort to lift their sagging ratings.

    Secondly. The nobody is even talking about it. Little or no media coverage so far. In the news media at least. Aside from the host broadcaster not too many people are taking any interest.

    Conclusion: Wonderfully researched article!

  • Comment number 8.

    #7 Davi
    "Conclusion: Wonderfully researched article."
    I came up with a different conclusion, India loves cricket when it wins, not so much when it loses.

  • Comment number 9.

    i think indian are good players but no offence pakistan is much better

  • Comment number 10.

    In answer to Davi. I would agree that for what I have seen coverage looking ahead to the India v England series has been overshadowed by the conclusion to the Champions League. But last night I still counted at least three TV stations discussing the series. Yes the advert is from the host broadcaster, but as I mentioned in the article other channels have used simaler language to discuss the matches ie "the grudge series". I am just trying to give a flavour of what I have seen and heard since arriving in Hyderabad, but I take on board your thoughts if you believe interest is not that high.
    Also noticed tonight that one TV advert looking promoting the series contained a disclaimer at the bottom of the screen "some players may be changed". Sign of the times with injury and squad rotation.
    And RJA post 6 - sorry yes it should have read taking place. Typing error. Many apologies.

  • Comment number 11.

    Even as an Indian I'm looking forward to Liverpool v United rather than the India-England series...

  • Comment number 12.

    This article is interesting, and the Indian advert is absolutely brilliant- will make great study material for a future social sciences/sport psychology undergrad somewhere!

    I wonder how all this hype looks when seen through the lens of the recent lurid revelations elsewhere on the BBC news today. I''ll pick my words carefully, in light of how modding on here seems to come down heavy on anything involving ongoing court cases, but do any other readers think perhaps some of the magic has gone out of international cricket of late?

    For me, an epic win seems less epic these days. A mid-order collapse seems less catastrophic.

    Just saying...

  • Comment number 13.

    @9 u say pakistan are better then India. No offence but do u even watch cricket? when did Pakistan last won 50 over world cup? where are they on the test rankings? ODI ranking? oh and just for your information did you watch the recent world cup, when India beat them in the semi finals hmmmmm

  • Comment number 14.

    Advert is way OTT...

  • Comment number 15.

    @9 Why does EVERY article which involves either India or Pakistan end up going off the subject and onto stupid arguments about who is better! It has nothing to do with this article.

  • Comment number 16.

    Looking forward to a proper contest this time having given Indian a proper beating over the summer. Liked the look of both sets of younger players last month during the 50 overs so this should be a belter! We need to win away to confirm our position as No.1 side in the world.

  • Comment number 17.

    Great advert, bring it on!!!!!

  • Comment number 18.

    What really hurt me during India's visit to England was (in order of irritation):

    1. English media and commentators banging on about DRS and BCCI's stand on it.
    BCCI were vindicated given how cold the "hot"spot was and the numerous
    times it took Dravid out! (DRS=Dravid Removal System). Well done to BCCI for
    taking a tough stance against a half-baked, faulty, unproven and unstandardised
    technology... it seems the frame rate used for Hawk Eye depends upon the local
    TV channel!. In summary... hotspot goes cold, hawk eye is subject to vagaries
    of local TV, snickometer might or might not be present... DRS? You'r havin' a

    2. There was not a single completed 50-50 overs match!

    3. Nasser Hussain and his bigoted comments.

  • Comment number 19.

    Billion plus what SHOULD irritate you is that the BCCI hasn't organised what every genuine cricket fan really wants a TEST MATCH in India to prove the series drubbing wasn't a fluke.

    Missed opportunity in terms of cricket & TV. Instead you will compete and may even win a few meaningless ODIs. So much for the powerful BCCI only when it suits them.

  • Comment number 20.

    Today morning i woke to see the same ad in The Times of India , and i was , for the lack of a better word , ashamed . As sum 1 has already posted , neo sports has done this ad to boost their sagging TRPs . People here aren't very fond of the channel as such , we prefer ESPN and STAR CRICKET to broadcast cricket . Either ways it is also true that we Indians do not bother much about the sport when we are losing this badly . Most of the average cricket fans like me are not bothered about grudge or anything as such , we seem to have accepted that your team is way better than ours , in all departments , especially the bowling . So at best we are hoping to win something in this series , and get sum semblance of our pride back, basically we r hoping the home conditions will make the series more competitive unlike what happened in England during the summer .
    And there is more to it , we fans are genuinely bored with excess of cricket . The world cup , immediately followed by the IPL , the West Indies tour , the devastation in England , and the just concluded cl t 20 , c'mon guys give it a rest . Yes its true , Liverpool versus Manchester United excites me more , and that too when i am a Gunner ( a Gunner and an Indian cricket fan , so you finally imagine how bad this summer must have been for me .

  • Comment number 21.

    Poor Dhoni... had to work 112 days in 365? How does he cope?

    If - a big if - playing 20/20 (as most of those days are) cricket, and playing Test cricket with minimal effort (as we saw in England) - is as tiring as he seems to think, maybe, just maybe, he could skip the IPL and focus on his country?

    Oh, wait. That's crazy talk. Top Indian player focusing on India? Hahaha.

  • Comment number 22.

    Re Dhoni and 112 days of cricket - does that include days when India are batting and he can rest in the dressing room, 20/20 which starts in the evening and goes for 3.5 hours. Wow! he must be EXHAUSTED! I need to return to work now (288 days per year with no breaks for rain or bad light)....

  • Comment number 23.

    Pathetic. I couldn't care less about this series, if you're looking for a definition of the term JAMODI prepare to see five with the first coming on Friday. That the Indian media are getting so excited about such an utterly irrelevant one day series might partially explain why their team is such an embarassment in Tests.

  • Comment number 24.

    What no helmets? Gambhir needs one for fielding at mid-off!

  • Comment number 25.

    In Indai there are obviously signs of a T20 overdose for players and fans alike.

    Is the IPL now the equivalent of the Packer days are these guys 'up for' international duty once they get used to the superstar life style. Without the grind of the international circuit?

    In the recent Babylon Fire film Richards talks about missing the atmosphere of West Indies cricket and returning to the national team. I am not so sure now that Gayle hasn't shown the senior players the way and that international cricket is now a place for younger players and those who favour the test arena?

  • Comment number 26.

    i find this whole article deeply insulting about sachin tendulkar

  • Comment number 27.

    Not looking forward to this series in the slightest. I don't see what England are going to gain by it apart from some sub-continent practice. If they loose even by one game they'll be told it was a fluke they won the Test-series 4-0 by the Indian fans as if somehow ODI form is a reflection on Test form. Almost like the other day when an Indian fan said IPL was a class between First-Class and Test Cricket. No it's not! If they win they'll have gained nothing most of the test selection aren't playing so it won't help for series against Pakistan or Sri Lanka. It will blood the young chaps a bit more but with the next World Cup in Australian/New Zealand do we really want to test them out in the completely wrong foreign conditions?

    On the whole Anderson thing yeah he's probably been dropped for not being effective in sub-continent conditions. So? I'm not going to select a player who's going to get batted about the park, no one is. Or is the suggestion England should select him just because he's brilliant in other conditions?

    On the hot-spot thing how are the BCCI vindicated? So hot-spot isn't 100% accurate no technology is or ever will be apart from the shoelace incident (which was incredibly unfortunate) are you honestly saying when hot-spot didn't show a mark that you wouldn't of given the player out had you not seen that? Hot-Spot like all the bits of tech are an aid to the third umpire not a deciding factor. Sometime it doesn't show a mark but the other bits of tech suggest otherwise, there are also times when it does but you can't go by sound as batsman clips his pad or something the mark would then be a clear bit of evidence of the edge.

  • Comment number 28.

    England have nothing to fear. The Indian team is well past its best and the Indian obsesssion with T20 at domestic level is begining to manifest itself in so far as new,young Indian talent is not emerging in any form of the game other than T20. 4-1 to England.

  • Comment number 29.

    The DRS system has been proven to improve the percentage of correct decisions, not by much as umpires got most of them right without technology but anything that assists the umpires in their role should be mandatory. I suspect the reason that Indian administrators and some Indian fans are opposed to DRS is that it has helped redress the balance between bat and ball and has frequently challenged the benefit of the doubt going to the batsman, as the Indian bowling is so puny they believe technology that favours the fielding side will work disproportionately against them.

  • Comment number 30.

    Média stunts like this one havé a tendancy to backfire. Ask R. Ponting, M. Clarke & B. Ben!

  • Comment number 31.

    Ok number one, there is virtually zero hype here for this series - and very little appetite for cricket in general - after the shambolic summer in England.

    Number two, this Indian team is past its best both in its batting and its bowling, but especially the bowling, and there no decent pace bowlers likely to come through in the near future.

    Number three, Ganguly is right when he says Anderson is rubbish in subcontinent conditions.

    Number four, Bopara saying England have "the best chance in years" to win the next World Cup - no you don't Ravi. If I'm not mistaken, the next World Cup is four years away and this England ODI team are nowhere near attaining world beater status.

  • Comment number 32.

    @26. Is your remark a kind of joke: e.g. irony? If not, what on earth are you talking about?

  • Comment number 33.

    21. At 03:43 11th Oct 2011, Spaced Invader wrote:
    Poor Dhoni... had to work 112 days in 365? How does he cope?

    If - a big if - playing 20/20 (as most of those days are) cricket, and playing Test cricket with minimal effort (as we saw in England) - is as tiring as he seems to think, maybe, just maybe, he could skip the IPL and focus on his country?

    Oh, wait. That's crazy talk. Top Indian player focusing on India? Hahaha.

    complain about this comment (comment number 21)

    Comment number 22. At 05:46 11th Oct 2011, Guy wrote:
    Re Dhoni and 112 days of cricket - does that include days when India are batting and he can rest in the dressing room, 20/20 which starts in the evening and goes for 3.5 hours. Wow! he must be EXHAUSTED! I need to return to work now (288 days per year with no breaks for rain or bad light)....

    Wow, two idiots who really believe that a cricketers work only involved the time rom entering the field to leaving it.

    You may turn up for 288 days a year but you do not have to deal with the pressure, travel, training, media, fitness work etc. I'd be surprised of Dhoni has had more than 20 days during the entire year where he has not worked in some shape or form for Indian cricket.

  • Comment number 34.

    re the picture: that has got to be the worst 50-overs-a-side strip yet!

  • Comment number 35.

    @#32 - Comment 26 is one of my favourite posts in a long time.

  • Comment number 36.

    Re. Dhoni's 112-day continuous stint:
    I used to think on the same lines as some others here that why do sportsmen complain about excessive games (same in Tennis as in Cricket) although they play only once in a while unlike us commoners who work almost every day.
    Recently I got a chance to play a "competetitive" Cricket league and all we played was 12-overs per innings of ODI cricket (and hence the word competitive in quotes :-)). I found that it is very enrvating with all the pressure and tension and I was not even the captain. So imagine the same as an Indian cricket captain (not any other country, except perhaps Pakistan) in tournaments like World Cup and then IPL where the sponsors and fans expect you to do well. You have to not only play, but also decide the strategy, attend meetings, charity shows, press interviews and if fortunately you get a break through all this your mind may still dwell on what is coming up next. Yes all this does affect the player. I realized it only after I've experienced it. It is not same as everyday job that most of us do.

    Regarding revenge series -- it is all hyped up. I think many Indians are feeling a bit overdose of cricket right now. A break for them will do immense good.

  • Comment number 37.

    I still believe that the review system should be used if the UMPIRE is not sure, and wants to double check. To be honest, I think it takes away some of the talking points of cricket when decisions are put in the hands of technology. Players should play the game, umpires should umpire the game. Simple as! :)

  • Comment number 38.

    @ncurd "sometime it doesn't show a mark but the other bits of tech suggest otherwise, there are also times when it does but you can't go by sound as batsman clips his pad or something the mark would then be a clear bit of evidence of the edge."

    Isn't that the reason the game has an umpire in the first place? What's the point in trying to move human errors to machine errors? Hotspot is a complete joke and even the company which owns it has acknowledged that... so stop bashing BCCI for taking the leadership and the right stand on this nuisance. It has to be tested independently (not by the people who fill ECB pockets!). As we speak.. it seems ICC has now said that DRS is no longer compulsory.. some common sense has emerged from the ICC (finally)!

    @hainba - Test series... ok so England has won something after decades that too in the backdrop of Indian injuries... well played.. not taking away anything.. but time to move on and show that you can actually hold that spot for 2/3 years?... else it will still be called a fluke :-)) how many world cups have you won? ZERO? thought so!!

  • Comment number 39.

    Cricket is a Gentleman's Game. Wishing the two sides joy and fun as they test their batting, bowling and fielding abilities and entertain our fans in Hyderabad, New Delhi, Mohali, Mumbai and Kolkata.

    Dr. Cajetan Coelho

  • Comment number 40.

    Billion_plus I agree we have a point to prove in terms of longevity but would rather play India in a test with a full strength side. With your strongest side I still think it would've been an England series win but far closer.

    Our priority: Test, T20 then ODI me thinks.

    Proving we can win away vs India, SL & Pakistan a good test in all versions of the game.

  • Comment number 41.

    it has just been announced that DRS is no longer compulsory . Do the ICC not realise F1 have worked long and hard to come up with a way of making overtaking possible . I wondered why the pitch had 2 lines ,the popping crease and the DRS activation zone I must say top speed over just 22yards not really a big issue and fitting an aero wing and double diffuser to your bat and helmet not really feasible ,but would explain those Indian batting collapses .........Oh and NO to Sky!!!!

  • Comment number 42.

    Strikes me that England's biggest problem on Friday is who to leave out. I see Bairstow and Borthwick left their calling cards today, so if cricket is war by other means in India, it's good to know we have some young guns.

  • Comment number 43.

    @billion_plus I have little argument to those who think the Umpires word should be final. However DRS is proven to decrease the amount of mistakes made overall in a test surely that's a good thing? We aren't moving the mistakes we're lowering them it's not going to make all errors go away and anyone thinks otherwise deluded.

    The company said it didn't perform as well as they would have liked, that isn't to say the technology is useless. If your trying to sell that kind of product you want it show all edges sadly it doesn't and its very clear it doesn't. However again if it does definitely show some knicks why not use it? Just be aware it doesn't definitively say there hasn't been an edge. Or change the advice to say it must show. You don't abandon tech because it doesn't work as you'd like you work its shortcomings.

    I'm not going to get to boards debate as frankly they're all a joke at times. The ECB haven't been DRS staunchest of allies I seam to remember a certain South African Captain not being given out under DRS because the Umpire was incompetent and didn't turn his volume up on his headphones. The English Captain, Coach and the head of the ECB all came down on it like a ton of bricks. The real fact is within the boards it's political tool and they are pro or against based on whether they think it gives their teams an advantage not whether its actually any or good or not.

    Like I said DRS has proven to decreased the amount of errors within a match and that's the only statistic that should count to whether its actually any good or not.

  • Comment number 44.

    The "pay back" should be a refund to Indian fans who watched them get smashed for 700, 540 and 590 in the summer.

  • Comment number 45.

    This is a disgusting and tasteless way to advertise a sporting contest, especially when both India and England have been victims of bloody terrorist attacks. It's a game of cricket for heavens sake. Nobody is supposed to get killed !! It reminds me of the equally unpalatable advertising the Americans ran for the Ryder Cup, in the wake of the first Iraq war - the so-called war on the shore.

  • Comment number 46.

    I do believe you have got this wrong. The advertisement you mention is nothing but a desperate attempt by the broadcaster (NEO) to drum up ad revenues and eyeballs. NEO has had no live cricket of note over the last several months ... during the same period, we have had an overdose of all types of cricket through other broadcasters. Even the other "discussions" you mention are only on 24 hour channels who are struggling to get new content to fill time slots. I see no major interest in the public on the ODI series. The continues absence of the "stars" like Sehwag, Tendulkar and Zaheer does not help either.

  • Comment number 47.

    Ok So Dhoni has played Cricket for 112 days this year big deal. lets not forget he gets paid zillions of pounds to do this by the way.

    also i once skippered my local club and i had to deal with team selection, comittee meetings, sorting out teas, tea servers, collecting subs, leaving changing rooms tidy, sweeping and rolling the wicket, opening and locking up the scorebox, phoning the score in, sending the score sheet to the league, dealing with people crossing off, running the raffle and various other annoying time consuming tasks. does Dhoni do this? no! he pokes his head in front of a camera now and then has a personal assistant and has everything else laid on for him. lets not lose focus this guy is privlidged which ever way you cut it.

  • Comment number 48.

    " Nasser Hussain and his bigoted comments."

    Is that a reference to Hussain's perfectly harmless and accurate 'donkey' comment?

  • Comment number 49.

    " Nasser Hussain and his bigoted comments."

    Is that a reference to Hussain's perfectly harmless and accurate 'donkey' comment?


    I assumed it was from an England fan disappointed at how often Nasser fawned over the Indian team.

  • Comment number 50.

    Interviewer: George Patel, you are the official spokesperson for the BCCI....

    Patel; Yes....yes, I am..... (God help me......)

    Int: I'm sorry?

    Patel: You're sorry.... ha, well, yes... what were you saying?

    Int: I was just going to ask if you could explain to our viewers why India is so opposed to the DRS?

    Patel: The what?

    Int: DRS...You know, Hotspot and Hawkeye and so on...

    Patel: Ah, yes, of course.... yes, DRS.... Well, we're against it because it isn't fair....

    Int: Not fair? In what way?

    Patel: To the umpires....

    Int: The umpires?

    Patel: Yes, of course. Well, let's face it, you just can't trust the system.... I mean, it's clearly flawed...

    Int: Flawed? How, exactly...? Could you....expand....?

    Patel: Well, for example.... Let's take the example of an Indian bowler hitting a batsman on the pad in front of the stumps. Now, historically, there would be an appeal, and the umpire would give it out....

    Int: (Hesitatingly): Ye-es....? Would he?

    Patel: Yes, of course. And that's quite fair, because umpires are there to do that job...

    Int: Quite... and isn't DRS there to help them?

    Patel: No, no, of course not... quite the reverse,the DRS is there to make them look foolish....

    Int: I don't quite see why....

    Patel: Well, it's obvious isn't it, that the broadcasters have a vested interest in making controversies out of molehills, and so whenever the umpire makes a decision that is referred, the little men inside the machines or whatever they are.... they just manipulate the picture so it shows the exact opposite of what the umpire decided.....

    Int: No, no.... I don't think you quite comprehend the system... There aren't any little men inside the machine... It's a computer....

    Patel: Well, that's even worse, computers bungle all sorts of things.... I got an email last Tuesday from a Liam Fox asking if I could arrange for a friend of his to visit India on a one-way ticket....

    Int: No, no... What I mean is, the computer can't alter the trajectory of the ball, it simply shows what would have happened if the ball hadn't hit the stumps...

    Patel: Well, there's another thing.... the ball DIDN'T hit the stumps, did it, so it would only be a guess anyway....

    Int: But surely, if the technology helps the umpire to come to the right decision...

    Patel: But it doesn't! It's just a ploy to stop India from winning test matches....!

    Int: I'm sorry?

    Patel: Clearly, this DRS is just a way of cheating India out of wickets....

    Int: But what about when India are batting?

    Patel: Well, then, the same thing applies... The little men just shift the Hawkeye thingy to show the ball hitting the stumps....

    Int: I must say, Mr Patel, this seems a little paranoid.... to suggest that the DRS is there specifically to be biased against India....

    Patel: Paranoid? Not at all.... I feel very positive about DRS, and I'm sure that with time it will be utilized very successfully....

    Int: (shocked) But a few minutes ago, you were saying how useless it was....

    Patel: Not at all! You must be mixing me up with someone else....

    Int: Well, if we replay the tape of our interview, you'll see that.....

    Patel: There you are! proof positive! I'm sure your little technicians have been busy fixing the tape to show I said something completely different.... I told you... you can't trust the technology! I rest my case!

    Int: George Patel, thank you very much indeed....

    Patel: Not at all....

    (with apologies to John Bird and John Fortune)

  • Comment number 51.

    This will be a very interesting and exciting ODI series. India are favourites and expected to win the series but I don't think it will be that easy for them. England are now a lot better and prepared for subcontinent conditions that have ever been before after being playing very good in their 3 warm-up matches and on similar subcontinent conditions at home this summer.


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