Test cricket is the classic slow burn. Not for it the instant joys of limited-overs cricket. It is all about the gradual buildup, accumulating nerve-shredding tension over four days before it all explodes on the concluding day. And while shadows stretch, spectators turn their throats hoarse and nails are threatened, be it in the stands or the dressing rooms.

But not all Tests last five days, and with the proliferation of Twenty20s, willow-wielders tend to hustle, a trait which at times creeps into their Test batsmanship, too. Batting for time, the kind that Rahul Dravid symbolised or the one that Cheteshwar Pujara nurses, is a fading art. In this breathless rush to slip into fifth gear, runs cascade but wickets tumble too, and cricket’s longest format often shrivels within four days or even three.


IND vs AUS: Rahane says the result is as good as a win

 

But Tests can spring…

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