Run with Eric + Sport

Tendulkar still the little master; Pietersen still not

And so the non-weekly updated-as-and-when format begins...

Incredible - yet strangely inevitable.

Having dominated much of the first Test in Chennai, England faltered to defeat at the hands of India's batsmen. Tendulkar hit an unbeaten century, Yuvraj an unbeaten 85, Sehwag 83 and Gambhir 66. In all, India reached the 387 target - the fourth-highest successful run chase in Test history - for the loss of only four wickets.

In my mind, the result is proof of two things. You can never write off Sachin Tendulkar ('past it' my arse), and Pietersen does not have the nouse to be England captain.

The thing with Michael Vaughan leaving the team was that although it left a space for a better, or at least more in-form, batsman, it left a giant gaping hole where there once was a great captain. These days, when every bowler and wicketkeeper has to be able to bat a bit (theoretically at least) and having any weakness in your game is a droppable offence, you can't pick a captain on captaincy alone. Gone are the days of Mike Brearley being picked for his ability to win a match for his team with his head and not his hands (Test batting average: 29; games won as captain: 58%). While Pietersen remains captain, and while Panesar (0-105) lacks variety, England's problem in closing out a match will continue.

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Tendulkar still the little master; Pietersen still not + Sport