It is like being in a broken submarine at the bottom of the sea. England are the water.
England don’t hammer to get in. They just apply constant force. Every now and again, one of the Indian crew wonders whether they’ve somehow floated to the surface and opens the door a crack to have a look. The water is still there. Some of it gets in.
The water will always be there. Whether someone throws the door wide open straight away or whether people open it once a day for five days, it makes little difference. At no point will the water have gone away.
England won’t always be able to do this, but they’ve done it so frequently of late that we can say this is the best England side we’ve seen. It’s not the hat tricks or the batting counter attacks that make us say that, so much as the fact that at their worst they never fall too far behind, so they’re always THERE when the opposition slip up. They blather on about consistency interminably, but to be fair, they are delivering in that regard.
The second Test win was a case in point. It is ridiculous to concede a first-innings deficit, have your most consistent batsman get injured and then win by 310 runs. Just ridiculous. It is ‘give me half an hour and I will find you the Ark of the Covenant’ ridiculous.