5 Jan 2012
SYDNEY CRICKET GROUND, Tea on Day 3. Australia skipper Michael Clarke put on a batting clinic to the delight of his home crowd, crossing 300 runs shortly after lunch to put the Aussies firmly in control of this Test match. Michael Hussey joined the runfest with his own century to go alongside Ricky Ponting’s 134 compiled over the first two days. With Australia declaring at 659/4 in response to India’s 191, the question now arises: Can Australia complete the double innings victory?
Before the match, India opener Virender Sehwag offered his thoughts on the attack they’d be facing after India were dispatched in the Boxing Day Test. “We are slow starters in overseas series. Now that we’ve got our feet under us, you will see, the Aussie bowlers are too ordinary to take 30 wickets.” If the Australians can bowl out India on day 4, they could certainly look to surpass their memorable victory on this ground four years ago by bowling out the Indians for a third time on day 5 before their cumulative score reached 659.
Clarke, however was unfazed by Sehwag’s defiant tone. “I spoke to the umpires, who in turn consulted with the MCC back in London. The MCC tells us that if we bowl India out on day 4, we could revolutionize the game if we bundled them out on day 5, too.” News of the MCC’s consent may come as a surprise to those who view ye olde Marylebone as staid keepers of the games traditions. The MCC, however, were astonished that India were losing by even bigger margins than on their latest tour of England, and welcomed the prospect of cricket’s first ever double innings victory.
“The Indian fans were quite incredibly full of it, continuing to blather on about #1 ranking this, Tendulkar that, how Zaheer would own Anderson, et cetera, et cetera,” stated MCC spokeswoman, Blair Smithfield. “We welcome the opportunity for utter humiliation of Test cricket’s most frugal fanbase, even if it’s the evil Australians applying the beatdown,” she concluded.