Australia and India will clash in November-December for a four-match Test series down under, and former Australia cricketer Simon Katich thinks it is India who has the upper hand. Things might have been different had Aussies not lost their two main players in Steve Smith and David Warner to bans after the sandpaper gate.
India has never won a Test series in Australia, but Katich thinks they deserve to be called favorites before the series. India had lost Test series against South Africa by 2-1. Though, they showed a good fight in the last game to win it eventually.
“India deserve to be favorites given the cricket they have played, the quality in their Test team at the moment and the way Virat Kohli is leading them,” said Katich, who is also Kolkata Knight Riders’ assistant coach.
The absence of Smith and Warner will make it tough for the Aussies to defeat India, believes Katich. But he added that it would also give some Australian batsmen to make their mark in the home conditions and that will also make the competition competitive.
“Certainly, it won’t be the best Australian team because then you would have had those three but we would still have good bowling attack and that the series is being played at home is a positive. I don’t think it will be a walkover for India because if the wickets suits Australian quicks and Nathan Lyon to an extent, then Australia will have a pretty good advantage in the series,” he said.
Katich, when asked about Australian public's support after the ball-tampering saga, said the public will back the team after Cricket Australia sent a message by strong action.
“Well, the Australian public is mindful of the fact that such behaviour is not on and I think Cricket Australia has sent the right message, mainly to the kids.
“But almost definitely they will back the team because the Australian public also loves the underdog and if it is their team, they will get right behind it. I look forward to a really good series,” said Katich.