India in Australia 2011-12 November 30, 2011

India's Test specialists to leave early for Australia


The Test specialists of the Indian squad will leave early for Australia, even as the ODI team completes its home assignment against West Indies. A board official told ESPNcricinfo that Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, Ishant Sharma and Pragyan Ojha are likely to be on an early flight, the exact date for which is yet to be decided. They will leave either on December 8 or after the BCCI awards function on December 10. India's first tour game begins on December 15, eleven days prior to the Boxing Day Test.

Laxman, one of India's Tests-only players, welcomed the development. "Luckily for us we are going ahead this time, so we will get a lot of time and opportunity to get acclimatised to those conditions," Laxman told ESPNcricinfo. "I firmly believe that how much ever simulation you do in India, it's always important to get to Australia and get used to the conditions. The net practices and training sessions will be very critical for us to get used to the conditions as early as possible.

"Personally, because of past experiences, you know if you do certain kind of drills it will help you to get used to the bounce. But it is not the same as actually batting there." Laxman, though, didn't know when exactly he will be flying and who he will be flying with.

Unlike India's last tour of Australia, when the team left immediately after completing a Test series against Pakistan, this schedule allows the Tests specialists more flexibility in their preparations. The last time, the BCCI attracted flak for arranging only one warm-up game; this time, India will be playing two warm-up games before they face Australia in the first Test in Melbourne.

Last year as well, the Test specialists left early for the tour of South Africa, while the ODI side played against New Zealand at home.

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Shobhit on December 3, 2011, 10:00 GMT

    Dream Scenario-India wins test series 2-0,sachin is man of the series,completes 100th ton at the mcg,ponting is dropped forever after the series.Well this is what most Indians think judging by there comments.But the reality will be something like this.1.Australia winning 3-0,a draw at adelaide.2.Ponting is man of the series with 3 tons and 583 runs from 7 innings.3.Sachin scores 210 runs in 8 inns with 1 half-century.4.Yadav and Aaron are spanked all around the park.5.Dravid is highest scorer for India with 408 runs and 2 tons.6.Dhoni,Dravid,Laxman,Aaron and Ashwin are the 5 players who return fully fit back to India.Sorry to say all this but reality bites,i said the same before england tour and all Indians laughed.........

  • Kuldeep on December 3, 2011, 1:00 GMT

    How arriving early going to help the seniors? Climatise? How, your manager throwing tennis balls in 5 star hotel rooms balconies? It sounds like good holidays for the seniors accompanied by their manager. This is joke right? I see nothing in India's preparation which suggest that it is a well thought out tour, two practice matches (one of which is a two day match) against a Cricket Australia's Chairman X11 on a non test match/shield cricket venue. It is all disaster for India! Get ready for 4-0 white wash by Australia!

    To put the tour in perspective this will be like two practice matches for Australia in Ludhiana, Punjab!

    I would love to say the right words for BCCI tour planners but I can not say it on Cricinfo. I am a extremely disappointed Indian Cricket fan. We give ourselves no chance! I will be taking holdiays from watching India getting beaten not because they are a bad team but very poor planners.

  • Naresh on December 2, 2011, 22:04 GMT

    Ubiq: Praveen kumar thrives on great wrist position. With him its not about speed. Also sometimes bowling slower allows better swing - Praveen has this special ability and thus his success for India. He will be missed. Right now we have three - in Khan, Ishant, and YadavAaron is a waste of a slot in Indian team.

  • Shakti on December 2, 2011, 18:22 GMT

    Without Dravid and Tendulkar,India might struggle in the future.The only young batsmen that seem to have the technique to adapt away from the sub-continent are Ajinkya Rahane,Cheteshwar Pujara & Rohit Sharma.India are lacking an allrounder with ability to average higher than 40 with the bat and about 30 with the ball and manage to bat at 6.

  • Shakti on December 2, 2011, 18:13 GMT

    The senior players are doing the right thing by going to Australia early,with their age they need to get used to those conditions again.Indian batsmen have been very successful in Australia,their bowlers have struggled though.India will have to be very specific about their team selections for each test due to the differences of each pitch.At Perth they should consider four seam bowlers.

  • Shayesh on December 2, 2011, 17:36 GMT

    @LillianThomson - I completely agree that a neutral series vs Pakistan would have been a far superior preparation to that provided right now. However, the diplomatic tensions play a huge on role on fixtures, as we probably know. For me, as an Indian, it would be an intriguing prospect to see India play Pakistan in a neutral Test series.

  • Raj on December 2, 2011, 14:36 GMT

    @Paras Rishi Don't forget 2003 World Cup final & Ponting. Ripped indian bowling

  • Naresh on December 2, 2011, 12:56 GMT

    VARUN does not yet seem like a complete bowler. Maybe the selectors should have chosen IRFAN PATHAN ahead of him. I have just checked the player stats on him - he has taken a good 905 wickets in all formats of the game. The pace attack needs careful selection for Australia. Varun is still learning. Yadav is impressive, Khan and Ishant pick themselves, for experience and left arm variety I would definetly pick IRFAN - Sreesanth is good only in rare patches.

  • raj on December 2, 2011, 10:40 GMT

    Why not send the whole team a bit early to give them more time to acclimatise. Surely, the BCCI can afford it - would be like taking a bucket of water out of the ocean. It is a huge series, after all. No one needs more time to acclimatise than the opening batsmen - Sewhag & Gambhir's performance would be crucial to Team India's success down under. Furthermore, IRFAN PATHAN is a must for the Oz tour - no matter how talented a bowling line-up is, there is no substitute for experience - India's bowling is lacking experience! Pathan is not only talented and experienced but he is finding his form of old and he can play in Oz. Would not surprise me if India's new bowlers fail in their first test series in Oz.

  • Dummy4 on December 2, 2011, 9:58 GMT

    have India ever won a series in Test Australia? I know they have not recently, but what about a while back?

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