A cricket-mad India reacted with shock and disbelief on Sunday after Virat Kohli’s men registered the country’s lowest test innings score in the opening day-night contest against Australia in Adelaide.
More than the eight-wicket defeat inside three days, it was the spectacular meltdown of India’s vaunted batting lineup in the second innings which dominated discussion in India.
A photo of Kohli with lowered head was printed on the front page of the Times of India newspaper, along with the 10 single-digit scores recorded by the Indian batsmen who were dismissed for 36.
“No this is not a phone number. It’s the score of the Indian line-up (in order of dismissal) in the 2nd innings at Adelaide,” the newspaper said.
Former test opener Virender Sehwag also listed the single-digit scores and suggested a cheeky way to banish the memory of this debacle.
“The OTP to forget this is 49204084041,” he tweeted.
The Indian Express printed the photo of the manual scoreboard at the Adelaide Oval on its front page reflecting India’s batting capitulation in the day-night test.
The daily called it a “Day & Nightmare Test” and devoted an entire page to mourn “The Great Indian Batting Collapse.”
Fans on social media wondered how the India team, sponsored by a learning app, could fail a test.
Some former players were more sympathetic though.
“With the way India batted & bowled in the 1st innings, they were in the driver’s seat, but the Aussies came back really hard…” tweeted batting great Sachin Tendulkar.
“That is the beauty of Test cricket. It’s NEVER over till it’s over. India was outclassed in the 2nd half. Congratulations to Australia!”
The four-test series continues with matches scheduled in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.