New Delhi: Since the 2011 World Cup win, the Men in Blue have been feeling the blues. It's been a downhill journey with very few exceptions. India have failed to win a single Test abroad or a single major tournament abroad. Is the Indian team facing a new low?
On July 21, 2011, India began what was one of the most humiliating tours in their cricket history. MS Dhoni's side went down 0-4 to the English in the Test series. And that was followed by a loss in a one-off T20, and a 0-3 thrashing in the ODI series. It was a brown-wash as the No. 1 Test side in world cricket lost its numero uno spot. But most importantly the Indian team lost the respect it had gained after being crowned the World Champions in the 50-over format.
The only solace was the fact that the Dhoni's boys beat the English 5-0 in ODIs when they toured India. That was followed by an easy win in the Test and ODI series against a poor West Indies side. India won the Test series 2-0 and ODI series 4-1.
The real test though was to come in Australia. Some called it India's best chance to conquer its final frontier. But shockingly, India went down, Down Under too. In fact, it was worse than England. Dhoni's men lost all four Tests to make it eight away Test losses on the trot. India managed to tie the 2 T20s but failed to reach the final of the tri-nation tournament involving Sri Lanka.
Embarrassed India, returned for the Asia Cup, where they got the first bit of good news in a long time. Sachin Tendulkar finally scored his 100th 100. But the irony was that India lost the match to Bangladesh and failed to qualify for the Asia Cup finals.
After a long break, the new season began with convincing ODI and T20 series wins in familiar Sri Lanka. But that did little to exorcise the ghosts of the past year. India won the ODI series 4-1.
The same went for the Test series win against New Zealand that followed the Sri Lankan tour. Though there was a rude shock here as well, because the black caps robbed India of a win in Yuvraj Singh's comeback match, by winning the only T20.
And then came the ICC World T20, where India failed to make the semi-finals for a third straight edition. They won their must win match against South Africa but fell short of the required Net Run Rate. The former champions were ousted, but there was a silver lining - The form and consistency of Virat Kohli.