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Good that Dhoni backed himself

KP's double hundred, PK's five wickets. Things keep happening at Lord's. But the biggest talking point is definitely Mahendra Singh's role as a bowler on the second day of the first test match, says Sourav Ganguly.

india Updated: Jul 24, 2011 01:04 IST
Sourav Ganguly
Captain-and-wicketkeeper-MS-Dhoni-bowls-against-England-during-day-2-of-the-first-Test-match-at-Lord-s-cricket-ground-in-London
Captain-and-wicketkeeper-MS-Dhoni-bowls-against-England-during-day-2-of-the-first-Test-match-at-Lord-s-cricket-ground-in-London

KP's double hundred, PK's five wickets. Things keep happening at Lord's. But the biggest talking point is definitely Mahendra Singh's role as a bowler on the second day of the first test match. I expected criticism to fly thick and fast and my belief hasn't been proved wrong. Critics have gone to the extent of calling this a mockery of test cricket! I personally don't confirm to this theory, on the contrary would like to state very clearly that Dhoni did nothing wrong by bringing himself on as a bowler as he was left with the only option of Suresh Raina.

The young lad did bowl some overs, got a wicket but we saw how disdainfully he was treated by a Petersen. In the process of providing rest to regular bowlers a captain cannot give away easy runs to the opponent. So Dhoni took on the himself and I find no fault in his effort.

Zak's hamstring woes
Zaheer's hamstring is surely a bother for the Indian camp. But how quickly Zaheer recovers and how much, is the big question on every Indians lips. If India are to dominate England in their backyard than Zaheer has to play a big role in that. He did it in England in 2007, he has played a major hand in India's success in South Africa, in the world cup triumph and is sure to be Dhoni's trump card in England also.

Praveen steps up
Zaheer's absence was well-covered by Praveen Kumar on the second day and he has deservingly engraved his name on the Lord's credit board with a fifer. He worked hard, bowled within his limitation and varied his line, length and swing to keep the English batsmen guessing. I just have a feeling that Praveen could have stepped-up his steam a little more on the opening day in more helpful conditions. That would have been real backing-up of his captain's decision of winning the toss and fielding first. This five wicket haul will surely go a long way to make PK, as he is lovingly called , an even better bowler.