Post-mortem into Indian cricket debacle begins

TONY EASTLEY: Indians love their cricket and they normally idolise their Test team.

But their patience has worn thin of late and after the humiliating loss to Australia in Perth, the cricket obsessed Indian public and its media are baying for blood.

The loss, the seventh in a row on foreign soil, has placed doubts over the careers of several senior players.

Michael Edwards has this report.

CRICKET COMMENTATOR: I Khaleel plays and edges through to Haddin. It's all over. Siddle takes the last wicket...

MICHAEL EDWARDS: India's tour of Australia has so far been a disaster.

Its batsmen have barely fired a shot and its bowlers have scarcely made a dent in the Australian line up.

And the pain on the pitch is now spreading to the public domain, with the Indian media examining the failure in minute detail.

INDIAN TV PRESENTER: The team that's been Down Under over the last three weeks has crashed the hopes of millions of fans in a cricket crazy country. So who are the men to blame for the debacle?

INDIAN TV PRESENTER 2: Not a single batsman has managed to score 100, while some bowlers have done a better job with the bat than with the ball. So here's a look back at some of the worst performances by Indian players on this Oz tour.

INDIAN TV PRESENTER 3: A team full of super stars and big players, yet India lost its seventh straight Test abroad. Here's a look at the men who have failed to get going.

MICHAEL EDWARDS: Toothless tigers, shambolic, gutless and the men who failed India are just some of the descriptions being used by the Indian media about the team.

MURALI KRISHNAN: India has a huge cricket loving population and this particular result has been met with both anger and astonishment.

MICHAEL EDWARDS: Murali Krishnan is a Delhi-based journalist and commentator.

MURALI KRISHNAN: Anger because the Indian team has lost seven tests in a row, which has not happened in many, many years. Astonishment because some of the most experienced players, the top three - VVS Laxman, Tendulkar as well as Dravid - between the three of them they have enough runs among, all together, to match any side in the world and they have simply not put up a spirited performance. In fact, they've not even notched up a century.

So therefore that's why the reaction has been extremely one of disbelief right now.

MICHAEL EDWARDS: MS Dhoni is under pressure to retain his captaincy.

He's got the dubious honour of captaining India to six innings defeats, the most of any Indian captain.

Not that he's had great support from his batsman - Rahul Dravid, Virender Sehwag and VVS Laxman have all failed at the crease. Their futures are now in limbo.

But India's selectors are defending their choices.

The chairman of selectors, former Test batsman Kris Srikkanth, maintains India took the right team to Australia.

The other question looming is the future of Sachin Tendulkar.

He's still making runs but experts say the clock is ticking on the 38-year-old's career.

Murali Krishnan believes it's unlikely he'll ever be dropped, but he says the "Little Master" might know when to retire.

MURALI KRISHNAN: Sachin Tendulkar is a good sportsman and he knows very well that there is enough of young talent going in India and that it's time right now to perhaps give way to them. And I think that he himself would take that call on that. 

I don't see the selectors putting pressure on him because he is god in this country, and I don't see the selectors putting the pressure on him to leave.

MICHAEL EDWARDS: It might have lost this series but India is already getting ready for the next time Australia travels to the sub-continent.

The president of Indian cricket's governing body, the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India), N Srinivasan says the result will reversed on Indian soil.