India’s England tour ended in misery as they lost the Test series 1-4 after the 1-2 loss in ODI series. However, the loss in the Tests would hurt Virat Kohli and co more than anything else. The batting barring Virat Kohli; and KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant in the last Test failed to come good.
Former Australia captain and legend Ian Chappell in his column in Hindustan Times has advised the changes Indian team should make in order to achieve success down under.
Chappell wrote, “The batting was disappointing and especially the way they played spin bowling at Southampton. A great opportunity went begging when their failure to be more pro-active against Moeen Ali meant a chance to level the series was squandered. Apart from Cheteshwar Pujara, no player was prepared to alter the off-spinner’s flight path by leaving his crease.”
He further added, “The series loss is even more of a wasted opportunity when you consider how well the visiting fast bowlers performed. India now have to rely on rehabilitating their reputation in the highly anticipated series against Australia but the batting inadequacies have to be addressed.”
Chappell said that the Australian bowling is still strong while the batting may struggle in absence of opener David Warner and former captain Steve Smith.
Chappell opined, “If Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Patrick Cummins and Nathan Lyon remain fit then the Indian batsmen will be in for a challenging time. In England, it was movement through the air and off the seam that created regular problems for the Indian batsmen -- apart from Virat Kohli -- but it will be the extra bounce in Australia that sorts the men from the boys.”
For Chappell, one batsman may be the answer for India’s batting woes to counter the bounce on the Australian wickets.
He said, “A confident and in-form Rohit Sharma would be an ideal player to bolster the batting in Australia. His authoritative horizontal bat shots are perfectly designed to cope with the testing extra bounce but sadly Sharma has never really come-to-grips with batting in Test cricket. His selection for the tour would be a gamble.”
(with inputs from Hindustan Times)