India vs England: They Came, They Played, and They Conquered
Late in the 18th century, the British traders came to India and knew that they had to park right there. India was rich; India was diverse. The British used the "divide and rule" policy and conquered India.
Years have passed. India is in its 62nd year of independence. Every few years since then, the English still come to fight India but on a different battlefield—a cricket ground. India have always been strong at home. More or less the results were even.
As usual, a determined England team came back this year to conquer back the land they once ruled. They failed miserably in the ODIs. Then came the terror attacks. England were forced to leave India. The tests were uncertain and they were expected not to return. After all every human has the right to live.
India is a passionate land. Every team loved playing here. This time around, the ball was in the English court.
The England Cricket Board, along with its passionate captain took a brave decision. They decided to tour India—they were doing it for the love of the game, not money (why would they give half of their earnings for the terror victims, if they came for money).
The players took the braver decision. After all It was left to every individual’s choice. Pieterson was the influential man. He knew, to beat India he needed a full strength England team.
The England team came.
They played outstanding cricket for four full days. Well almost. Strauss silenced his critics with two well crafted hundreds; Collingwood found his touch; Swann got his prized wickets.
All in all England looked the better side for most of the test. But then, first Sehwag and later Tendulkar, in their own classic and contrasting styles, ensured that India won the test.
India chased a record total and showed the world that it truly is the emerging power. England didn’t play badly, its just that India played much better.
Before England lost the match, five days earlier, when Pieterson walked out to the centre for the toss, England had won the hearts of all the Indians. They had indeed conquered the land they once ruled.
Yes! “They came, they played, and they conquered.”
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