Ind vs Eng: Duncan Fletcher, Joe Dawes oversee Indian nets before ODI series
London: Two days ahead of their practice game versus Middlesex at Lord's, Team India regrouped with a net-session here with under-fire coach Duncan Fletcher and bowling coach Joe Dawes overseeing proceedings ahead of the five-match ODI series starting August 25.
Interestingly Dawes has been rested for the ODIs after India's 3-1 Test loss against England with fielding coach Trevor Penney also been given a break.
Though Dawes was making the bowlers go through their paces, Penney was just hanging around without too much involvement.
India's newly-appointed Team Director Ravi Shastri, who is also part of the Star Sports commentary team, was not around and even assistant coaches Sanjay Banagar, former India all-rounder, and ex-India pacer Bharat Arun are yet to join the Men in Blue and will probably be relieving Dawes and Penny of their duties on their arrival.
Team India though went through the customary drills with skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni watching on. The emphasis lay on batting and bowling but surprisingly the fielding aspect was given a miss. However, many pundits believe the slip-fielding issue needs to be tackled at the earliest.
Missed chances in the slips were one of the biggest reasons that India failed to make count their 1-0 advantage gained at Lord's. When England skipper Alastair Cook was dropped by Ravindra Jadeja at Southampton, it became the turning point of the series.
That chance was spilled at third slip and the following day, Dawes went on record saying that 'despite being the best slip-catcher ever, even Mark Waugh dropped a few'. It wasn't an apt statement to describe India's slip-fielding woes.
At the Oval, Penney had opined that 'this young unit has done very well in every department and the question of slip-fielding will find an answer sooner rather than later'.
A day later, two catches were dropped in slips. Two days later, India surrendered the five-Test series after losing the final Test by an innings and 244 runs.