India vs England, Chennai Test: XI conclusions

1. Let’s get the inevitable cliche out of the way first: cricket was the real winner in this contest. Sport 1, Terrorism 0. The fact India and England produced one of the most gripping tests of the 21st century… well, that’s a bonus. And how fitting that Mumbai boy Sachin Tendulkar should hit the winning runs.

2. Monty Panesar is not developing into a world-class spin bowler. He was one-dimensional in this match, infuriatingly so, and deserves to be dropped for the second Test. Someone needs to teach Monty the art of variation.

3. Graeme Swann, on the other hand, bowled like a Test veteran. His mature performance was a real plus for Kievin Pietersen.

4. You have to feel sorry for Andrew Strauss. Two centuries in two innings and he still ends up on the losing side, and with no man-of-the-match cheque – that went to Vireder Sehwag, for his explosive, game-changing knock in India’s second innings – to ease the pain.

5. Yuvraj is an absolute monster with the bat. But how does he pull off illusion of being a world-class spinner? Pietersen seems to think Yuvraj is Bishan Bedi.

6. Time for Ian Bell to stand down for Owais Shah.

7. Rahul Dravid’s time at the top is almost at an end, clearly.

8. How many more times does Andrew Flintoff have to carry England’s bowling attack? Ah, so that’s what his broad shoulders are for.

9. Yuvraj vs Freddie: now there’s a titanic contest to keep us warm over the next few seasons.

10. Steve Harmison: next time stay at home, please. You may have the physical gifts to be a top fast bowler, but what’s the use when you have yoghurt for brains and a heart that is clearly too small for your body.

11. A two-match Test series? Not enough. We want more.

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