Amusing as it is to see the ECB hoist by their own petard, after pushing the "we're all pros now" line so vigorously over the past few months, the angle taken by most of the press this morning on India's win is unfair on the players - this was not a case of 'Pros Beaten By Ams' but more like 'Semi-Pros Beaten by Semi-Ams'.
Most of the England players are not 'full time professionals' in the sense we would generally understand it.
For starters, one of them (Sonia Odedra) is not a pro at all - she is not centrally contracted, and has a proper job.
The rest are centrally contracted, but many of them continue to work two days a week for Chance To Shine. This means that either they haven't had a weekend off for the past 4 months, or they are not training professionally 'full time' - which by any normal definition means '5 days a week'.
Overall, my understanding is that of the players who took the field on Saturday, just two are genuinely 'full time professionals' - able to fully and independently support themselves over the medium-to-long-term playing cricket; and not dependent upon shared housing, secondary sources of income or 'The Bank of Mum and Dad'. (Though to be fair, a couple of others are quite close and will be genuine full-time pros this time next year most likely.)
But what about India? Are they really 'amateurs'? Well, they are certainly not 'full time professionals' but most of them aren't quite amateurs either. For example, those who work for Indian Railways are employed partly as cricketers, not the "full-time ticket collectors" depicted by the press. In reality, Indian Railways is effectively acting as a sponsor of women's cricket, in the same way Chance To Shine did in England up until four months ago. It isn't an ideal situation, and many think the BCCI (which isn't exactly short of a few bob) should be doing this job; but genuine 'full time amateurs' the players are not.
So it isn't like England were beaten by a team of girls who hadn't picked up a ball for six months, because they'd been picking up tickets instead! They were beaten by a team of players who train several times a week, in decent facilities, with proper (albeit not 'full time') coaching/ medical support and so on - basically, the same situation that England were in not too long ago.
I guess none of this really matters - the press need An Angle and they found one. (As someone once said, the press always seen to write with accuracy and authority... except when they write about something I know about!) And one little post on one little blog probably isn't going to set the record straight, especially as it slightly contradicts the 'party line' from the ECB. But I do feel sorry for the players on this one - it is almost like the press are saying that they were expected to win this Test just because they are 'full time pros' and India are 'amateurs' - which would be unfair, even if they actually all were.