Australia v India, 3rd Test, SCG, 2nd day

Ashwin hopes for turnaround

Sidharth Monga at the SCG

January 4, 2012

Comments: 160 | Text size: A | A

It is not often that India players get affected by what is being said in the media, the conventional one or the social variety. There is just too much around, and the players prefer to spend as little mental energy as possible on the media, which is understandable too. They usually go through their motions in press conferences, choosing to not say much. Like Duncan Fletcher did yesterday, after yet another failure of the batting line-up. R Ashwin, though, has said that all the talk of a possible whitewash, a repeat of what happened in England, is the "biggest detriment" for them.

After India conceded 366 runs on the second day for just one wicket, Ashwin was asked when and how he thought things might turn around. "Someone will have to stand up and ask themselves to be counted," Ashwin said. "It has to come from within. It's all fine when you sit together and give all those speeches. Those speeches are very good to watch on TV. It has to come from within. You have to deliver out there.

"It has happened before, and I know, I understand, where you are trying to get at. We lost 4-0 on an overseas tour before this. It really has to come from within. For all you know, people telling it's going to be another 4-0, another 2-0... For starters I don't know how it works with you guys. For us to just hear that repetitively, that itself is the biggest detriment for us. So I don't know. It has to come from someone. Maybe it will come from everyone in the next innings. Probably [Nos] 1 to 11 will get a fifty."

It was a slightly strange admission to make in the middle of a Test match. Ashwin was feistier when asked about the haste in going on to the defensive when in the field. "What else do you do with 190 in the pocket?" he asked back when the question was put forward. "You'll have to save every run possible. Supposing you get two or three wickets later on, and someone is having a good spell, we have those runs to play with later. That has got to be the only idea. It's common sense. Nothing else."

Sachin Tendulkar looks bemused as Australia plunder runs, Australia v India, 2nd Test, Sydney, 2nd day, January 4, 2012
India's batsmen will have to "stand up and be counted", R Ashwin has said © Getty Images

It was a fair call, in that there were only 191 runs to play with. India's batting has now gone past 300 only once in their last 17 away Test innings. Ashwin was left hoping the batting will come good in the second innings. "It's going to be a catch-up game from now on," Ashwin said. "We'll have to dig deep and bat long. One or two persons will have to stand up and really show how it is going to turn around from now on. If you need it to turn around, you need someone to stand up and make themselves counted."

Ashwin, who has been part of a pretty successful Indian ODI side, was asked if he didn't see the same kind in this beleaguered Test side. "It's easier to believe for 50 overs than for a lot of overs," he said. "Ninety [overs] into [times] five days. It's tougher to believe over that period of time. You will have to see everyone scale it up to then. Honestly nobody wants to come out and go down losing every time. Everybody wants to be there and do something.

"We haven't - the biggest thing is our catching has been quite good. Whatever has gone we have been picking up the catches so far. This is what the batsmen can contribute when they are standing on the field. Very frankly the wicket has flattened out today, and there was nothing on offer. People were going really hard today and bending their backs.

"As I said, you can't fault the efforts of the bowlers. They ran in hard. Ishant [Sharma] was clocking 140 in the final spell. That's all you can expect from the fast bowlers as of now."

About his own effort, Ashwin said, "I haven't landed anything short, I haven't delivered anything full. I haven't really bowled many bad balls. I have been bowling really well. The wicket column has to really reflect, [but] I am not someone who is going to read into that. Keep going on. There will be a spell where I can turn it around. Sure about that."

However, it is clear now that, for Ashwin to make a real impact, the batsmen will have to perform a miracle. "I am someone who is going to stay positive," Ashwin said. "If we can bat really well in the third innings and put something on the board on the final day, we will be good enough to work around and fight with that."

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by   on (January 7, 2012, 10:22 GMT)

Why many of the comments that I see here are highly biased against India. When India was ranked no 1 test team by the ICC NOT TOO LONG ago, comments were that the ranking was rubbish. Many Indians also believe what the biased critics say against India. When India looses 4-0 in England the critics say triumphantly I said so " India is not good enough" Their great batsmen are only flat trach bullies! The same comments are getting repeated in Australia. My dear critics: England won 4-0 in England and Australia is leading 2-0 in Australia. Neither Team has ever shown the quality to win against India in India. India is very good in India, so also England in England and Australia in Australia. Why Only rile Indians when they do not play as well as they do in India. If Indians are vulnerable to pace, swing and bounce, so are the Aussies and English terribly weak against spin not only in India and even in Srilanka. Even with Warne Australia lost in India twice and England was beaten 5-0.

Posted by GreenTeam-Elite on (January 5, 2012, 21:27 GMT)

After two test matches it's all Clear that Ashwin is an Indian Flat Pitch Bowler!!! He can't Perform well out side the India!!! I think Performances are better then Statements!!! Before Starting of test Series I have Posted that the Result will be 4-0 or 3-1 in Favour of Australia!!! Wait and watch!!!

Posted by   on (January 5, 2012, 4:56 GMT)

Its funny to think that before this series a lot of Indians were writing off Australia after being beaten by NZ in Hobart. Just goes to show that maybe NZ aren't the easy beats that most think they are and with a few more test matches each year id like to think they'd become a bit more consistent to. I think the NZ pace attack would be all over this Indian team as well

Posted by satish619chandar on (January 5, 2012, 3:16 GMT)

@Nsaharan : Its all happening when the players u mentioned are here.. Surely it will not get worse without them.. One ugly whitewash and one heading towards it.. Can it get any worse? The replacements will be good enough to score in home for sure.. They are playing domestic cricket and should be in decent touch..

Posted by   on (January 5, 2012, 2:15 GMT)

it will be repeat of england... no doubt...wait and watch...

Posted by TonyHancock on (January 5, 2012, 2:14 GMT)

Something has to change in the ranking system. It is absurd that India, following their absolute drubbing in England, are the number 2 ranked Test side. This side that visited England was one of the worst test teams I have ever seen, and nothing has really changed in Australia.

Posted by   on (January 5, 2012, 2:04 GMT)

Hello mandar_1978(posting on 4 th janury), it is too early to cry Shame!Shame! Let us wait & see!.Rain is a factor which contributes simultaneously as a factor of Adverse as well as Favourable to either Teams.Let us Hope,though in vain,for Rain God to help!Otherwise,you have enough time to cry later on. Any how it appears that the INEVITABLE is going to happen tomorrow or day after if not hastened to today itself Viz 5 th of January for Australians & Indians! What a New year Gift it is going to be for World Champions!!! The just one match India won was in 1978 January when the Great Spinner of Yesteryear CHANDRASEKHAR took 6 wickets each in both the innings of Aussies a total of 12 wickets in the Match!Here now in Melbourne too the Bowlers had brought India to a position where winning was possible!.But Batsmen including the Veteran Thrimurtys failed.Had we won the Melbourne Test,perhaps,this debar Cle here now could have been avoided as the Aussies would not have performed so well. MS

Posted by DebashisCalcutta on (January 5, 2012, 1:09 GMT)

When we talk about batsman scoring heavily in Australia in 2003/4 or 2007/8 (and "almost" winning the series), I guess the main 2 factors were 1. Australia were without MCGrath n Warne in 2003 2. CA , for some reason , produced batting beauties even in WACA.

Whenever there was pace/ bounce(I mean sporting pitches ,not green tops ) and bowlers to exploit "that something" in the pitch , our(Indian) batting greats have failed (there are a few exceptions here and there). And that has been the case for the last 20 years . So failure of the Indian batsmen is not new , just that our batsmen dont have the ability to handle those conditions on a consistent basis (again I say there were exceptions ). Now if we say certain GG is "out of form" , sorry , I dont agree to that . He just does not have the ability . Put these Indian batsmen in Indian dead pitches tomorrow,I am sure they will score loads of runs . So its not the loss of form affecting the players , its just that theyrnot capable enuf

Posted by Nsaharan on (January 5, 2012, 0:43 GMT)

I think we should all stop blaiming the pitch and take some responsinility for our atrocious display of the game. This is a warning signal for the selectors - what will happen once Dravid,Laxman,Sachin and Sehwag will retire ??? why are they being short sighted.....

Posted by alim730 on (January 5, 2012, 0:00 GMT)

i think he (@ Full-Blooded-Wallop) needs sound sleep for a month

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 23:56 GMT)

Aswin is the only player in Team India who gave a good impression.he was good with Bat& ball equally.But in Cricket,an element of luck too is required especially for Bowlers.The Spinners have the added advantage of confusing & making Batsmen committing mistakes,Generally in the world cricket,India& Pakistan are the better nations who can face Spinners successfully.Other Nations are average in this regard.that is how,Shane Warne& Muthaih Muralidharan got so many wickets in Test cricket.Muralidharan still holds the World Record. In fact only Test Match India won at SYDNEY in 1978 was due to the Spinner who claimed6 wickets in each innings.atonal of 12 in the Match Aswin was also lucky when he played against WI in Melbourne the test was in favour of India .but Batsmen failed miserably.had India wonteredebacle herewasunavoidable..Thanks to Aswin for his Magnanimity to skip Honeymoon for Cricket. His optimistic views a dds to his qualities.but India is facingDefeat Sreedharan

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 23:56 GMT)

Yes! give Indians a chance. There can be only a one winner. I think SL won the world cup in 1996 while hosting jointly with India and Pakistan. Indian fans and critics gave a really hard time to SL cricket team after loosing their first test to SA. Unfortunately now the shoe is on the other foot. Most Asian teams cannot play on bouncy, fast and seaming tracks,other than Pakistan because they always had good fast bowlers.Speeds below 135K do not worry modern day batsmen. This is Asia's biggest problem.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 23:26 GMT)

@Lillian Thomson:yeah,it's true but dont judge based on wat prejudiced people like @Amarnath79 say!Ashwin's record is there to see-be it the IPL,Ranji Trophy,ODI or Test cricket.This is the first bad match he is having and even the legendary Muralitharan found Aus Pitches a spinner's graveyard. @Amarnath79 :I didnt see you raise your voice when Harbhajan was underperforming for the past 2 years!!!

Posted by ravi_rajput2000 on (January 4, 2012, 22:49 GMT)

Every team struggles at some stage at some time. All those smart analyzers who think India is declining and should not be a test team anymore please remember that the same team with the same captain won us a world cup after nearly 30 years. Yes Dhoni takes decisions based on his gut feelings but who cares. It works 8 out of 10 times and i am happy with it. All those who whine about Sachin's form should know that he has scored most number of runs in test matches in last 2 years. If he doesn't deserve to play no one does. And to all those people who think India won the world cup because of the home advantage and its batting friendly out there. Let me tell you two things. Firstly, no country has ever won a world cup while hosting it. Secondly, if Indian pitches are batting friendly then does it means that no team has any decent batsman to bat on batting friendly pitches. I just don't understand this point. Give them a break. It's a game and someone has to win and someone has to lose.

Posted by LillianThomson on (January 4, 2012, 22:49 GMT)

Deep within this thread of comments is an observation by @Amarnath79 that Ashwin is from the same caste and state as the chief selector. I have no idea whether or not that is correct. But the Indian selectors have been behaving very erratically, in particular going to any lengths to avoid selecting Irfan Pathan, and Ashwin himself is clearly a One Day / T20 bowler who is utterly unequipped for away Tests against decent opposition. Similarly, Kohli seems to lead a charmed life with the selectors in comparison with Rohit Sharma. I'd be interested to hear from Indian supporters whether Amarnath79's comments have any merit.

Posted by RandyOZ on (January 4, 2012, 22:38 GMT)

Hahaha turnaround? No chance. Clarke could push Lara's record here.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 22:01 GMT)

the victories these days are really dhoni's magic or gary kristen's let gauti play some ranji and breed virat in between sachin and vvs not after all of them get out. still we have men to hope on in this test if veeru plays a day we can win the match if rahul plays a day we can make it draw or if sachin plays atleast many of indians are happy we can see his 100th 100

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 22:00 GMT)

bhaji is a legend ,,,, rohit is better than all of these

Posted by gothetaniwha on (January 4, 2012, 21:19 GMT)

Can,t understand how India are no 2 in the rankings getting thrashed by England and now getting thrashed by Aussie possibly 4/0 struggling to beat NZ and WI both 1/0 ,seems to me a new system needs to be put in place , seems to be slanted towards the big 4 who play anything from 12/15 test per year, after all NZ beat Aussie and drew series are ranked 8 , away wins should be worth double , don,t think anything will change though ,the good thing for the teams ranked 5/6/7/8/9 the top teams are and will be beaten touring in future , 20/20 has had more of an impact on there teams than the lower ranked teams through retirements players chasing the big money in IPL , BB , etc

Posted by clarky1958 on (January 4, 2012, 21:11 GMT)

@amarnath79 - When you suggest Harbhajan is India's best bowler against Australia you are ignoring his record in Australia - 4 tests, 9 wickets @ 73.22.

Off spinners are generally not effective in Australia - even Muralitharan 5 tests, 12 wickets @ 75.41.

India should have brought their best wrist spinner on the Aus tour as historically they are more effective. Remember Kumble 10 tests, 49 wickets @ 37

Posted by kasyapm on (January 4, 2012, 21:05 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen..excellent comment..we (Indian supporters) really respond in a harsh/negative manner. Guys speaking about being old/out of form of the BIG 3 (or 4 if u put Sehwag), let me tell you one thing. These guys did not walk into this series based on reputation. Laxman has a 150+ and 2 fifties in the WI series. Dravid was glorious against England and had a decent WI series. Sachin has not been in a slump and each of them scored well in the tour game! And guys making comments that we can't play on bouncy pitches, please - VVS, Sachin & Dravid have been to Aus at least 3 times and their records are pretty good. They are still our BEST batsmen. If they are not scoring, which though is disappointing, I would not put it to lack of intensity. Lets back them and hope that they put in some great performances.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 21:00 GMT)

This is heading towards an Innings defeat.

Posted by one-eyed-but-keepinitreal on (January 4, 2012, 20:59 GMT)

Tbere seems to be a few people who think the pitch conditions have altered considerably between day one and two. After seeing Ponting's dismissal late in the second session the only pitch factor, bounce, which lead to Indian dismissals was still there. In the first innings of the match the pitch produced little, or no, seam movement - it was not a green top. Pace, line, length, swing, team bowling, and some indifferent batting were the main contributers to India's low total and the first three Australian wickets. As the ball became softer the 'wicket' became flatter. India's bowling had slowed considerably by the second new ball. Dhoni made the right decision to bat first it was not backed up by application. In Australia, Between two even teams, Sydney and Adelaide are normally the 'win the toss, bat first, win match' wickets as they normally deteriorate late on the fourth day, but you have to make the runs in the first innings.

Posted by gunnerr4life on (January 4, 2012, 20:53 GMT)

India are on a verge of another 4-0 thrashing !

Posted by knan on (January 4, 2012, 20:44 GMT)

The bowling effort in Melbourne was either a flash in the pan or the SCG wicket has really eased out. Either way, Clarke Ponting and Hussey batted beautifully to take the game completely away from India. No excuses to offer like in England and a 4-0 whitewash is very much on the cards. Maybe the Indian supporters should stop following the game and get back to work . If nothing, at least the country's GDP will grow faster. For all you know, when there is too much of pessimism things start turning around on their own like in the case of the stock market. For India to score big, Sehwag has to fire at the top which seems unlikely to happen. So get ready for a 4-0 result and look forward to the tri-series.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 20:28 GMT)

By saying, "If we can bat really well in the third innings and put something on the board on the final day, we will be good enough to work around and fight with that.", is he implying that he thinks that India can still win this match? Is he serious???

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 20:19 GMT)

I think India after this series need to allow Laxman to retire as his has been in poor form in the past year. India really need to start looking to the future and let some of their youngsters get to play with Tendulkar and Dravid and learn the craft. Dohni needs to play 5 bowlers and allow Ohja and ashwin to play together.

My team for their next series would be...

Gambhir Sehwag Darvid Tendulkar Sharma Dohni(Wkt) Ashwin Sharma Zaheer Ohja Yadav

The Batting may look a bit weak but it will make the batsmen put a higher value on their wicket as they dont have the 6 batsman plus dohni who they can rely on. Ashwin would play at 7 as if you can make a test century at number 8 you can bat at number 7.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 20:19 GMT)

My question is - how on earth were India ever no.1 in the world? They got absolutely annihilated in England last summer, and excuses were trotted out about injuries and lack of rest between the WC and IPL. Fair enough, I thought, may be a blip. But now the team is playing a pretty average Aussie side (once which has already been bowled out for less than 50 by SA this season and lost to a decidedly average NZ side at home) and are almost certain to go 2 down, and unless there's a major turnaround, will probably lose 4-0 again. What has gone wrong?

Posted by Padmanan on (January 4, 2012, 20:12 GMT)

There are good players at home and capable to bat in Australian pitch longer than the current team without throwing away their wicket. SCG is good pitch for batsman those who are strong mental strength.

In the second innings, Dhoni should consider to open the innings with Sachin and Dravid. Any have India is going to lose this game as well. Need a experienced batsman to stand few hours in the pitch. Runs will come automatically.

Gambir - He is a good player and should not pressurize him. That will force him to do more mistakes. He should come down in the batting order and play with Virat.

There are discussion to open the innings with Ashwin. This is really a bad idea.

Don't know why Dhoni didn't try Sachin's bowling.

My sincere advise is follow Kirsten advice and score more. Don't expect bowlers to do miracle without scoring enough runs.

All the best for the rest of the games.

Posted by Ajay_Toronto_ on (January 4, 2012, 20:10 GMT)

looking at how Punter and Clarke batted, the Indian batsmen should be ashamed...all the talk about the great Indian batting line-up seems meaningless right many overseas Tests and series do we need to lose before we realize who is Test material and who not (and who is past their prime as well)...Gambhir has technical faults on bouncy wickets...Laxman clearly is short on reflexes...Dravid and Sachin seem to get starts but lack focus and application...Dhoni stands out as the worst captain ever to lead the footage of how Kapil and Saurav led their teams overseas (especially the way they set their fields and used their limited bowling resources) and you will know what Dhoni is doing wrong...not once did he set a field aimed at taking wickets...his bowling changes were predictable and without any strategy... Unforgivable batting...tolerable bowling...extremely poor field settings...captaincy without any motivation, strategy or aggression...perfect storm for India

Posted by nkoch on (January 4, 2012, 20:09 GMT)

Drawing a comparison, Indian batting has performed better than Aussie batting when facing quality bowling. At least India has not started scoring 48,98,120 yet, but such scores could be just around the corner.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 20:05 GMT)

Instead of hoping turnarounds, request him to turn the cricket ball period.

Posted by ssenthil on (January 4, 2012, 19:59 GMT)

I m really disappointed with Ashwin not for his bowling effort but for his defending of his defensive Captain. Die hard, not so lame since anyway you are going to die. You were gone 4 times in Eng doing the same Defensive, why don't you Once try the hard way? instead of lay down? There is nothing in for the Bowlers today but Tom after Tea it will became bowlers paradise that's when India will have to bat it's not becoz India batting but that's the way it goes. Poor Ashwin coming to press conference more often then Dhoni!!! Dhoni don't have any backbone? Surprise! Sack Laxman, Gambhir and Virat if they don't score in the 2nd Innings and bring in Rohit, Rahane and Vinay Kumar in place of them for Perth and Dhoni can Move to no.6 and Ashwin to No.7 and Vinay can bat at No.8. If Dhoni have any guts he will give only the next Innings to lax, Gauti and Virat. Else even his own captaincy will be lost. Ashwin don't say u haven't bowled Short, there were few but not many, good if there is none

Posted by JackJak on (January 4, 2012, 19:54 GMT)

they need a completely new team for test matches for sure with probably Wasim Jaffer as captain a guy with solid experience..until a guy like Pujara or Rohit Sharma can be the next captain. Jaffer was anyday a much better batsman than gambir for sure and was a good timer too. 1. Jaffer 2. Mukund (openers) 3. Pujara 4. Rohit Sharma 5.Yuvraj Singh(if fit) or Manoj Tiwari 6. Robin Uthappa(or) Rayudu (if they are serious about being wicketkeepers), otherwise Dhoni but not as test captain for sure 7.Stuart Binny, Abhishek Nayyar (or) Irfan pathan (as semi-decent allrounders) 8. Pradeep Sangwan or Manpreet Goni (who are pacebowlers who can also field and bat decent) 9. Umesh Yadav (or) Aaron 10. Rahul Sharma(looks the most accurate spinner around-sure pick for now in tests) 11. Sudeep Tyagi, Ishant Sharma or Pankaj Singh(tall 6 ft- 5in bowlers) Subs: Deepak Chahar (when its swinging around like in england).there might be other good batsmen too whom we have not seen, so here it is!

Posted by basusri133b on (January 4, 2012, 19:31 GMT)

Ashwin's comments speaks volumes about the morale of our Indian team. Yes, we are well and truely on the way to another 4-0 drubbing. The very fact that the junior most member of our Test side was answering the press, is a very troubling development. Apart from poor cricketing skills, the Captain and Team management do not have the balls to face the press. There is nothing more to say, other than Ashwin is a very very poor replacement for Harbajan.

Posted by Precioustar84 on (January 4, 2012, 19:24 GMT)

@Nampally - couldn't have agreed with you more!! Dhoni's useless defensive field setups can't be blamed completely as our players have needlessly thrown away their wickets in Day One. There is no excuse for Gambhir to be even included in the playing XI. If Dhoni who just scored his highest best in tests in Australia with 57 not out, there is simply no excuse for others to not put runs on the board, especially the "experienced" ones. Everyone seems to be selfish for something other than playing for nation and pride it seems. Ashwin may be hopeful but most of fans are not because we know we won't see miracles. cricinfo please publish

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 19:15 GMT)

3 days are remaining and they already got enough run (India did not pass 300 in their last 16 inning) very good fast bowler and still people says we can save the match?. are you kidding? looks like aswin watching dreams during day.. fifty from 1 to 11...enough now.. he proves that harbhajan is beeter than him

Posted by hhillbumper on (January 4, 2012, 19:14 GMT)

Did someone write on here that India will bat well and Aus will lose on last day.Another fan wrote about Caste in selection. For a modern forward thinking nation that won't have DRS and is still worrying about Caste there are no concerns. You ain't going to win abroad for a few years until you decide that test Cricket is the ultimate peak.No worries though IPL will be here soon and you can all go into a bout of self agrandisement.Looks like the only Indians getting tons this series will be the bowlers.

Posted by Fizzah on (January 4, 2012, 19:11 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen on (January 04 2012, 13:49 PM GMT): agree with u... really appreciate your comment.. from Pakistan

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 19:09 GMT)

Lets face it. India's golden Era was when our Sehwag, Sachin, dravid and laxman were scoring runs. All these guys are old now. Sachin is the only one looked like scoring. We will not win an away test in australia or south africa for sometime now.

Posted by andrew27994 on (January 4, 2012, 19:08 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen: You are absolutely spot on with your comment. There are many Indian supporters who think too negative about the team and some of the Indian players too must be thinking negatively. I think if we as Indian supporters think positively and continue to support them in good as well as bad times, the team will get the inspiration needed to perform well. Also I think there is unnecessary pressure on Dhoni and it is unfair to criticise him to no end. I can understand that some of his tactics were not good but aside from that he has been always under the scanner. People just need to relax and let the chap do his work. Just think positively and everything will be alright. That's why sometimes you get good luck or sometimes bad luck I also congratulate one of the best cricketers the world has produced Jacques Kallis on an outstanding 200+ runs. He has been one of the main reasons for South Africa's success and hope that he too would win a World Cup for SA like Sachin did recently

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (January 4, 2012, 19:03 GMT)

Ashwin is RIGHT... God someone in this team at least has some brains and it's coming from a Tamil Nadu player. YES the batsmen are SOLELY responsible for India's situation here now. Dhoni did the first correct thing by winning the toss. But the Indian batsmen didn't do good by holding fort. They LACKED the skills required to bat in Australian conditions. Even their so called LEGENDS lack skills needed to play in REAL and TRUE test match conditions. When the team is 80/5... it puts a hell of a lot of pressure on Dhoni and the rest of the lower order who are used to scoring big runs. The 'batsmen' have to BAT... and not the bowlers. Shame on the 3 GODs along with Gambir and Sehwag. 4-0 whitewash ALERT !!

Posted by andrew27994 on (January 4, 2012, 18:56 GMT)

I also think that this was a batting paradise. If even the in-form Zaheer Khan failed to trouble Australia and the man who is just getting himself back in form could score a century, then clearly it was extremely difficult to bowl. But take nothing away from Australia. They made the most of this opportunity and if they bat most of the time tomorrow, then their chances of winning would be even greater. Also wish Michael Clarke all the best in achieving a triple century. I like his character and personality and would certainly support him to get a 300 even though I'm an Indian supporter.

Posted by Khem on (January 4, 2012, 18:44 GMT)

Not taking Harbhajan to Australia was a selection blunder. You need technique and character to play in Australia. Ashwin still needs to hone his skills. Taking wickets against minnows does not mean you are set for a challenge like Australia.

Indian selectors should take a note. Aussies play mind games and even the Aussie media and commentators demean the people they fear most. Its part of the game.

Posted by LuvThyGame on (January 4, 2012, 18:39 GMT)

Its all in the mind.. the same batting lineup has demoralised the best of bowling attacks on numerous occasions, even overseas.. the real issue lately has been the poor form of gambhir and VVS .. who are at their lifetime lows on on self confidence .. the #6 batter , whether its Raina, Kohli, Yuvraj etc. are more nervous than confident of their spot.. That leaves us with Sehwag, Sachin and Dravid.. the former is unpredictable but a match winner and hence the entire batting has revolved around Dravid and Sachin, which puts further pressure on them... clearly the way Sachin has played so far in the series, he would have scored a hundred each time had he found an able partner... hopefully the team clears its mind in the second innings and plays with a free mind, without any fear of failure.. i am sure Sehwag will, but all of them need to take that approach.. not reckless aggression, but a free unfettered mind...

Posted by CandidIndian on (January 4, 2012, 18:38 GMT)

As hardcore Indian team fan I defended Indian cricket team many times here, but just like it happened in England not so long back,there is nothing to defend to be honest, all you can do is praise opposite team,give them credit for playing well and accept defeat gracefully.Indians fought hard in first test for three days, but surrendered on last day.When you give a good test team,Aus in this case, a chance like that, things are likely to get very difficult for you and that's what is happening.Like i mentioned in an article just before this match i would be very surprised if India manages to avoid a whitewash here.Dhoni who is brillant ODI skipper has little idea about how to play test cricket, both as a player and a captain, clear indications of this were evident when India struggled in SL and SA,but due to scoreline of 1-1 and winning ODI World cup after that,this serious issue was buried resulting into embarrassment in Eng and now in Aus too.

Posted by gazelle79 on (January 4, 2012, 18:36 GMT)

Today was a dispiriting day for all Indian fans but there's no reason to give up yet . This team is talented . Right now , they are mentally down but there are a few strong characters in this side and I feel they will bounce back . They have done it before as well : Kolkota springs to mind . However , Dhoni reallyneeds to give up his deep field placing once and for all . How can Ashwin justify it ? When a team is 115-3 at the beginning of a day needing 192 to get a lead , will they go for boundaries or will they try singles ? Keeping the field deep ensures easy singles for the batting side . On these large grounds , they become easy twos . Why would any batsmen take risks when he can get 4 to 5 runs each over through knocking the ball into big gaps in the infield . If anything , a team defending 191 has to have fielders crowding around the batsmen making him feel that a small mistake even while defending could cost him his wicket .

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 18:34 GMT)

This is very bad from Dhoni (Captain), Sehwag (Vice captain) and other senior players. These guys appear in media whenever India plays well and they sent the most junior guy from the team to answer media when India played very bad. I feel pity on Ashwin.....

Posted by Pritt32 on (January 4, 2012, 18:24 GMT)

I do not like to spill out the obvious as to the outcome of the match. India needs to seriously sit down and ponder down over key issues. Unless they do that, they should not play competitive test cricket and just leave Australia as it becoming one-sided and boring cricket. I know it is harsh to say this. It is frustrating and upsetting to see India play cricket that is very below International standards and like an associated member. It is not acceptable. Main issues: poor captaincy of Dhoni, batmen inability to play on bouncy and swinging conditions, poor form of batmen (Laxman, Gambhir, Kholi, Sachin. Dravid, Sehwag), the inconsistent bowling, the away form and the commitment of the team. India is capable of playing well but current form needs to be sorted out by introducing new changes.

Posted by cricket_pak419 on (January 4, 2012, 18:21 GMT)

India are not going to win. There will be another white wash. This is going to be another humilating lost for India. If India was playing at home they would have won the match. The only reason India won the world cup was because it was at home.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 18:20 GMT)

When Indians fail why so much noice. Cricket is a funny game of uncertainties .As Aswin expected things may turnaround. Ponting and Clarke were in awful bad nicks and now today they are sparkling stars. That is cricket. If any other country fails, there is not these much loud-speakers. Should India ask Australia to bat first, I wonder whether they reach 150 considering the spark in the wicket on day one. I fully appreciate the spirit of the Indian team thro Aswin and wish them to come out well.

Posted by Aspraso on (January 4, 2012, 18:19 GMT)

"Ashwin hopes for turn around" is as much a empty boast as Sehwag's boast on the 3rd day of the 1st Test " we are comfortable 300" !!

Posted by warez_manu1 on (January 4, 2012, 18:19 GMT)

guys relax .... i mean this is what had to happen after all what Mr srikanth wants is indian team to be CSK ... i mean guys perform good on home conditions and what u do drop the experience .... ppl saying that dravid laxman and sachin should retire i mean do u have ne idea what the score line would look like if those guys retire india would be done and out for 100 odd runs .... kz youngsters have the talent but to play in IPL and india thats about it .. i mean look at thie article from ashwin. "I haven't landed anything short, I haven't delivered anything full. I haven't really bowled many bad balls. I have been bowling really well. The wicket column has to really reflect i mean this guy is done and out.... ne ways i just hope and have a strong feeling that this match wud end up in a draw kz i am sure sehwag gambhir sachin dravid and laxman will step up ... mark my words .... please publish

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 18:14 GMT)

If pitch had to flatten out on day 2, why the heck they choose to bat first. Virat is enjoying tweeting and eating Aussie lunches, focus on the batting dude....!!!

Posted by Shan156 on (January 4, 2012, 18:08 GMT)

@Mill1, Kumble averaged 90 with the ball in his first series in Australia. And, he is a leggie. Leggies usually do well in Aus. It is the finger spinners who struggle there and Ashwin is one. Give him time. He will get better. I agree he is not a Kumble yet but he may well turn into one. For that, he needs encouragement. Very few finger spinners have done well in Australia. Even Swann didn't do great here.

Posted by Shan156 on (January 4, 2012, 18:06 GMT)

"The pitch has flattened out". Really, Ashwin? Let's see what happens when India bats. Even if Laxman does reasonably well in the next two tests, he should be asked to retire after this series. If he fails, he should be dropped. That is the only way for India to move forward. Even though I am an England fan and would love to see Laxman play against us later this year:-)

Posted by BravoBravo on (January 4, 2012, 17:55 GMT)

In first test match, it was big mouth Shewag (we can comfortably chase 300). And now it is Ashwin R. If anyone does, these guys certainly live in fool's paradise. @Valavan, I like the comment about Ashwin double century, very humorous and witty.

Posted by eyballfallenout on (January 4, 2012, 17:45 GMT)

@ Mayan, i agree 100% i have been seeing the indian supporters turn against the team. I am and Aussie supporter, look at our last 2 years. I never stopped supporting them even when it looked (mind you this is just 1 innings) like we would be great again. but it doesn't matter, these guys, aus ind sa, are all awesome cricketers they will always give there best. by the way Kallis is a legend..... first pick in my world team.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 17:45 GMT)

Forgive me for getting J. Kallis's score wrong in my earlier comment. His score was 224 (325) and not 240 as stated.

Posted by starvoyager on (January 4, 2012, 17:20 GMT)

I fully agree with what Mayan said. Imagine the pressure on the players in the field when 1 billion smart people think they know more about the game than the players out there. If we are Indian fans, support the team through victory and defeat alike. Look at how Arsenal fans backed their team when United beat em 8-2 a few months ago.People saying the the team should be called back, that 'it is clear to them the team will lose 4-0' etc. etc. If you think these guys are not good enough and you cannot tolerate their losing, don't watch them and do something else with your time. There is no credit in being a so-called fan only when the team is winning.

Posted by Nampally on (January 4, 2012, 17:08 GMT)

When India plays with an out of control opener like Gambhir, they are one down even before the innings starts. The team batting needs a huge shake up. The way Dhoni batted by leaving the moving away balls outside the off stump, he was frustrating the Aussie bowlers.He was punishing anything which got into his good areas! That is what is needed of all Indian batsmen.My approach in the second innings is to open with Dhoni & Sehwag. Let Gambhir go in place of Dhoni - #7.Dhoni should bat like he did in the first innings- played like an opener. Ashwin says if 2 guys stay to play long innings, they can save the game. After watching Ponting, Clarke, what have Indians learnt? Each batsman has to stay at the crease & NOT throw away his wicket. Why don't Indian batsmen watch their footage as to how they are getting out & rectify it? All the top 6 batsmen are just throwing away their wickets.They are making a steady Aussie bowling look superb by bone headed attitude. Use God given common sense!

Posted by Nev_19 on (January 4, 2012, 17:05 GMT)

@Sudeesksh: you cannot possibly be serious in blaming our bowlers as opposed to our batsman? Our bowlers did their bit when the wicket allowed them on the first evening. Also, don't forget their lion-hearted efforts in Melbourne. It is our famed batting (with a collective 55k Test run aggregate???) that has capitulated - confirming that some (if not a majority) of our batsmen are flat-track bullies.

Posted by Sakthiivel on (January 4, 2012, 16:56 GMT)

@ Mayan Viljoen : Indian Cricket fans are crazy,,, Just crazy for every thing.... Which Include me too.....that tells u everything mate....

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 16:56 GMT)

i think ashwin can open the innings with sehwag in the second innings and gambir can come at number 5. or else sehwag and gambir open and ashwin play number 5 ie after sachin. because the simple logic is, he is in a decent nick with atleast 100 runs in 3 innings now and also is not expected to hit centuries. if he sticks around a bit and plays off steaming fast bowlers , kohli, laxman can play a bit tired bowling unit. also bowlers tend to relax seeing a bowler..... it might work in our favour.... no other options guys.... i dont think the same batting order will deliver again.

Posted by Roykunal on (January 4, 2012, 16:56 GMT)

We do not have actual match winning bowlers.There are plenty of batsmen and if any one of them starts going on any day India will have a chance.But the problem is with bowlers.We do not have bowlers who can bowl in long spells or bowl well in both the innings to take 20 wickets.Bowlers are bowling good but in short spells and they lack the aggression.Ganguly had a weaker side on paper.He did not possessed Zaheer with 300 wickets or bowlers with regular 145kph speed or batsmen with 15k or 13k runs.Still his captaincy was so attacking and with the accuracy of Kumble and aggression of Bhajji he triumphed in swinging or fast pitches or in non bowler friendly conditions.What we really need is attacking bowlers and more importantly Attacking captain. Let us hope India manages a draw and hope for the best in next 2 matches.

Posted by upper_tier on (January 4, 2012, 16:55 GMT)

Dhoni - a wonderful ltd overs captain but a useless 5-day captain...loves to defend, and alas - the overs dont finish in tests...absolutely no strategy...cant rotate bowlers...cant ask them to bowl one side with 7-2 fields...match will b over tomorrow...ind vl score 150 in 2nd innings...

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 16:48 GMT)

well, at least you know who not to make a test captain once Dhoni's gone. When the aussies score at more than 4 an over all day and lose just one wicket, it speaks volumes of the Indian team management's "common sense" and the ability of the Indian bowlers.

Posted by Amar_bw on (January 4, 2012, 16:41 GMT)

There is no need to discuss about any hope. This is not a big deal. Most teams win Test matches at home and so does India. :)

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 16:39 GMT)

@ashwin real immature thoughts and clearly reflects that he is big fan of dhoni and his plans. I disagree him on two occasions one he said I bowled good that's wrong he has not bowled good but he just bowled some overs secondly he said its common sense to keep fielders out(it is also common sense that you need to take wickets in a test match). I am sure dhoni told this to fielders while sending them out on boundaries. he repeated same sentence. Dhoni you need to have good fast blowers to win test matches overseas but you are continuously denieing this thing because you want these blowers in ur team to praise you and want these old guns (sehwag, lazman and draivid) out of ur 11 side.

Posted by rapidchase88 on (January 4, 2012, 16:31 GMT)

Wow, very clever statements from Ashwin. Why only batsman has to standup and cover all the bowlers weakness, when Indian bowlers cover-up if batsman fail. If there is not much score on the board, it does not mean that bowlers have nothing on this pitch, if that is the case how their bowlers delivered, and why our bowlers failed. Well, Selectors will say we gave 30 odd overs to you, you have not taken a single wicket. Thats why BAJJI is out, you are in. If you do the same thing, you should know what is going to be happen. A real good bowler should take wickets in test matches, whatever may be the pitch conditions. Like bowling greats of Murali,Warne,Kapil, Akram etc. So forget about runs on the board, start taking wickets with proper planning then your job is done.

Posted by vineetkarthi on (January 4, 2012, 16:28 GMT)

Wonder why they send Ashwin to address the Press... He is so flexible he puts his foot in his mouth effortlessly. And talks such tripe. For a change, I am amused rather than irritated...

Posted by drnaveed on (January 4, 2012, 16:22 GMT)

yes, can any one in sydney ask mr sehwag now what he has to say, when he said earlier that this is the best indian bowling line up ,he has played with .. this indian bowling line up is doing such a great job finishing test matches in within four days,but in favour of the opposition(Australia).one should be realistic in what he says.most of the indian players and commentators (specially mr shastri) thinks that their side is performing out of this world, their feet should come down on earth now.see how much over confindent,proud mr shastri was for his team when he had exchange of words with mr nasser hussain live on television,yes india remained number 1 test side, but for a while, now they are coming down step by step.

Posted by Romenevans on (January 4, 2012, 16:11 GMT)

@ Mayan Viljoen - I do agree with whatever you are saying, however this is about intensity and desire to fight for the nation. You see Laxman in the field he almost dropped David warner (How could you do that after not scoring at all?) and then you can see him letting easy 1's and 2s on the field, just because he can not bend his back and move quicly. If his body isn't supporting his game anymore, why not retire with pride and let the other have their chances? isn't it unfair to other youngsters that they have to wait for 10-12 years just because these oldies aren't ready to retire? Yes we lost Wasim Jaffer, Badrinath's career ended before starting and so many of them which could have done great in test arena, didnt even get their chances. India won the recent world cup because it was a young team, which these oldies would have never done. While i do support wholeheartely even when they are getting thrashed, their intensity makes me feel sick and depressed.

Posted by rapidchase88 on (January 4, 2012, 16:05 GMT)

Well, host can't loose from here, India can draw or loose. What India should do is play 3rd innings completely, till end of the match. Pitch is going to be more flat so it would be more difficult to get all 10 wickets. If India can't bat out then it is their game for sure. If Indian openers fail again, then it would be pressure cooker and mountain climbing for middle order., can they do it again this time?., ha what a challenge, its going to be party time for aus. bowlers having score on the board.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 16:03 GMT)

The way Ashwin has spoken here some bright spark will prob mention him too be the next Indian captain.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 16:01 GMT)

Let india loose i dont care !! Fault goes entirely to batsmen who cant touch 400 in 717 innnings pathetic.just gud on flat tracks and against spinners .

Laxman biggest flat track bully useless overseas !! Sehwag gud for 50-100 not consistent. Dhoni - completely useless in tests Gambhir- only one word to him make him a captain his performances will be sky high or drop him now his magic is fading !! Only dravid and sachin deserve their respect honestly speaking !!

Kohli did a gud job atleast as a starter.mukund,rohit,manoj tiwary and rahane,pujara need to play consistently in the 11.

Ashwin rocks !! What a self confidence kudos to him he is a legend in making come 10 yrs later .he will last long !!

Posted by Vpx23 on (January 4, 2012, 15:53 GMT)


Posted by Vpx23 on (January 4, 2012, 15:48 GMT)


Posted by Powerpuffgirl on (January 4, 2012, 15:39 GMT)

India is playing just as predicted. Biggest problem India has is only one quality bowler to support mediocre (abroad only) batting line up. NZ had mediocre batting lineup but at least had bowlers who could support them. I think Ashwin and H singh are both equally bad. We need somebody like anil kumble desperately. I think the biggest problem Indian team has people expect too much out of them. They are not even half the quality players as they are rated (abroad, apart from a few). Currently Indian team is as good or as bad as West Indies team. I sincerely think Gambhir, Laxman, Virat, and Dhoni should be dropped from the team (temporarily) what say guys??

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (January 4, 2012, 15:23 GMT)

So much for this amazing spinner Ashwin that India have got..! A totally ineffective day for him to say the least. Is this really the best team they can put out at the moment?

Posted by swamistyle on (January 4, 2012, 15:11 GMT)

The flat track bullies have shown themselves again to be mice away from home. All smiles & high 5s when smashing the Windies B side on the flat lifeless dustbowls of the sub-continent but hop on a plane & play a good side on pitches with a bit of life in them & the true India reveals itself. 0-4 in England & heading the same way in Oz. India will never get a better chance of winning a series here with Aus going thru a rebuilding phase but 2 days into this test & all hope is gone. Pathetic batting on day 1 & chasing leather all round the SCG on day 2. Aus will bat most of day 3 & declare more than 500 runs ahead. Chappelli was spot on with Dhonis captaincy too. No slips, negative on-side fielders, silly gimmicks (like standing in front of stumps & flicking ball backwards) & not using DRS for childish reasons. I feel sorry for the bowlers who are trying their best but are so badly letdown by their clueless captain & dont have big enuf scores to defend coz of their over-exposed batsmen.

Posted by No_Excuses on (January 4, 2012, 15:09 GMT)

Memo to some Indian fans - the Calcutta Test in 2001 was 11 years ago. It was a once in a lifetime event and it was on Indian soil. It isn't going to happen on this tour especially given the poor form of most Indian batsmen. You should all be thankful that Pat Cummins is injured - he is a better bowler than Pattinson - taller, faster, generates more bounce and has a better out swinger.

Posted by Full-Blooded-Wallop on (January 4, 2012, 15:06 GMT)

Tomorrow Aussies will do the glaring mistake of declaring with a lead of 500.Then India will bat for 150 overs 777/5 declared. Sehwag- 223, gambhir-129, SRT- 177,Dravid- 67, vvs-71, kohli-50*, dhoni-35* Aussies crumbling on day 5 on 143.India winning by 134 runs. Ashwin 34/6 I have prayed to hanuman ji that even if it is draw, I will fast on next Tuesday :P And if we win, I would start getting up at 4am on non-match days also( atleast for a month :P)

Posted by Scube on (January 4, 2012, 14:47 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen: Thanks for the kind words. Very profound indeed! But the porblem with our (and all Asian) team is not with people on the field but with people supposedly running the show with absolutely no clue about the sport!

Posted by indianpunter on (January 4, 2012, 14:46 GMT)

I find it baffling that the team management sought it fit to send the junior most member of the team to face the media on a really hard day for the team. Not that it would have made a difference, but had laxman David or dhoni fronted the press, it would have shown some sense of responsibility for the hapless performance in the field. Bcci and team India needs to get its priorities right. 1.Is IPL the way forward or do they want India to be a good test team? 2. What's the plan for the seniors, if any? The last thing we need is the seniors to play the soft home tours ahead. Time to blood some youngsters and give them exposure. 3. Is money or mettle more important? 4. Cricket will not survive without public support. What's being done to keep the paying public interested and to continue to enjoy their goodwill. Bcci should remember that nothing lasts forever and if the paying public stays away, so will the sponsors

Posted by adis26 on (January 4, 2012, 14:44 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen I appreciate what you are saying but trust me - Indians are a very emotional bunch and these harsh words come only because we care. We back our Team India in Good Bad and Ugly....but like good parents , we will have a go at our team when they deserve it.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 14:43 GMT)

da prblm is selectors have put some "FAITH" on certain players and dey have given chances to da same way dey ignored certain players...kohli,raina,yuvi,vijay,dhoni never going to be proper test batsman..dey ignored jaffer,badrinath..and mukund ,,,where he scored a ton in a county match in england..den he was dropped...da line up shuld be..jaffer,mukund,sachin/dravid,badrinath,pujara,rohit/rahane,Dhoni,ojha/ashwin,ishanth,zaheer,umesh...

Posted by 777aditya on (January 4, 2012, 14:37 GMT)

keep playing IPL Ashwin - playing tests on foreign soil is not your cup of tea! - not that Harbhajan in his current form would have done any better - Ashwin fields like an old hag, wobbling bottom, cant bend down to pick up the ball, can hardly throw, diving around?! ha! Kumble did it better! - he is possibly the worst international fielder in his age group

Posted by Predic on (January 4, 2012, 14:34 GMT)

I think India should play Test matches only in India only. Expect another 4-0 it happened with england. It doesn't matter how many test matches they play in overseas, that will be whitewashes only.... Its better to ban india for playing in overseas. Plz post your Comments on this.....

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 14:33 GMT)

H Singh: 4 Matches 7 Innings 189 Overs 19 maidens 659 runs conceded @ 3.48 E Rate. 9 Wickets @ 73.22 Avg and 126 SR. BBI - 3/101, BBM - 4/200. ----------------------------------------- R Ashwin: 2* Matches 3* Innings 79 Overs 11 maidens 244 runs conceded @ 3.08 E Rate. 4 Wickets @ 61.00 Avg and 118.5 SR. BBI - 3/81, BBM - 4/141......... SO all in all Ashwin taken just one match and 1 Innings to better H Singh achieved in 2 tours.

Posted by AjitNarayan on (January 4, 2012, 14:29 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen..superb comment. INDIANS, stop critising everything and blaming players/conditions/management! Could you do better then our Indian cricketers? Obviously not, because we are sitting here commenting how "poorly" they are doing their jobs. We, the supporters, need to be India's 13th man. We need to back them up, and not kick them when they're already down. Ashwin has said it himself.."For us to just hear that repetitively, that itself is the biggest detriment for us."

Posted by AjaySridharan on (January 4, 2012, 14:20 GMT)

Why is Dhoni sending Ashwin for such press conferences! Poor guy, he was left fending really tough questions about a hopeless situation. Where is Fletcher?!

Posted by AjaySridharan on (January 4, 2012, 14:12 GMT)

All I want for the new year is for the boys to show some fight. I don't care if you win or lose, but show the intent, stay positive, go down fighting. You don't make millions of bucks and for a billion to watch you only for you to put up your hands and throw in the towel like the rest of the mere mortals!

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 14:11 GMT)

Looks like Sidharth Monga has a deepa hatred towards Ashwin.. What's up Sidd? Could not stand a Madarasi taking a sardar's place? Or, perhaps, the fear in you that, if Ashwin's press conferences are anything to go by, Ashwin might take your place after his retirement?

Posted by heathrf1974 on (January 4, 2012, 14:08 GMT)

Ashwin should be okay. The wicket is not offering much turn and is perfect for batting. Australia is just taking full advantage of favourable conditions. Indian batting lineup should be more concerned about their performance, especially the middle order (except Sachin).

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 14:05 GMT)

Indian team should draw this match. get your act together for next 2 tests.. get inspired.. this is your last chance to prove that you are not flat track bullies.. Seniors like sachin and dravid must talk to dhoni about field placings. If you really really really want to make a point, there is no stopping given the amount of experience and talent in the team. Just learn things quickly and All The Best. Make it 2-1.

Posted by aa61761 on (January 4, 2012, 14:04 GMT)

"What else do you do with 190 in the pocket?" You try to get the opposition out for 90, just look at South Africa vs. Australia match.

Posted by noplay on (January 4, 2012, 14:02 GMT)

Why should Ashwin admit he bowled badly? Isn't this the best bowling lineup Sehwag has ever played with?

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 14:02 GMT)

@Shanmughan, The fact is SRT do not want to bat at 3. Dravid and Lxman can bat for India at any place as happened in England. Dravid batted opener and Laxamn at 3. Even Dravid accepted to play in only T20 of his career as he was in form those days. But SRT not at all.

Posted by dharmadasa on (January 4, 2012, 14:02 GMT)

@Griffindoors, so Bowling on this batsmen's paradise is very difficult? You mean the same pitch where Aussie bowlers skittled India for 191? No-one believes the pitch has altered dramatically from day 1 to day 2. Pretty much same conditions throughout, as all informed commentators have said.

Posted by mandar_1978 on (January 4, 2012, 13:57 GMT)




Posted by Shantan on (January 4, 2012, 13:53 GMT)

@amarnath79... why did caste come into the equation? Please don't read too much into what the chief selector did.

Bhajji got enough chances to prove that his 32-wicket series wasn't a fluke. However, he just didn't have even half as good a series in almost 10 years. And he was struggling so badly in England just 4 months ago, so don't tell anyone that he's a better bowler. He was a better bowler a few years ago, but ODI and T20 spoiled him. He became more of a container than a wicket-taker. After he was dropped for this series, he visited a doctor and a pretty serious injury was diagnosed. Maybe, if he was selected, he may not have gone to the doctor and he might have caused India greater harm by breaking down during the series.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 13:49 GMT)

I am a South African and believe me when I say that you better have the strongest heart in the world to be a Protea supporter, but support them I do, through good times and bad times (of which there are many). The way that the Indian cricketing public generally speaking, malign their national team is terribly upsetting to me. It is so utterly obvious that every Indian player is doing his utter best on the field. Why shouldn't they?? Why? Tell me . . . Cricket is a marvelous but very unpredictable game and Australia will not be able to deny this incredibly talented Indian top order for too much longer. If you just cannot believe me . . . J. Kallis made 3 ducks (yes . . . 3 ducks) just prior to his 240 runs at Newlands today. Why not begin to truly support your team. Start today . . . Try NOT to judge them for struggling; just applaud them for even the tiniest thing they do right on (and even off) the field an you will see these magnificent men perform miracles before your eyes!

Posted by noplay on (January 4, 2012, 13:48 GMT)

Why should Ashwin admit he bowled badly? Isn't this the best bowling lineup Sehwag has ever played with?

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 13:40 GMT)

WI was a poor yardstick to judge the calibre of a spinner. Ashwin has learned that one.

Posted by Sudeeksh on (January 4, 2012, 13:39 GMT)

Stuff it boys.. A lot has been said and done about this dismal performance of India. I don't know why people even bother to comment when it's clear that India will loose 0-4. The series is gone.. Over, Finished. India will never be a great team abroad simply because we never had a pack of good bowlers. Lot has been said about the batting might but we fail to realize that it is the bowlers who win test matches by taking 20 wickets. If Australia would have scored 191 instead of India then their bowlers would have seen to it India would be all out within 150..

Posted by mhb1 on (January 4, 2012, 13:37 GMT)

& iam quite sure wickets will be cart wheeling in the indian innings

Posted by Valavan on (January 4, 2012, 13:36 GMT)

@Ashwin, i want you to make double century in bowling, you are already 103 not out, just 97 more to be leaked to score the first 200 in bowling. Its not Windies who are playing, i feel Australia clearly watched footages of different indian bowlers and playing with a plan, Wish Ozzies score another 180 in next 45 overs and declare with a lead around 475 to 500 and make sure they dont bat on a 5th day pitch. cricinfo please publish.

Posted by mhb1 on (January 4, 2012, 13:35 GMT)

i think mr dhoni is out of excuses for his team's awful performances away so he asked mr ashwin to do the honours LOL

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 13:34 GMT)

I expect an innings defeat and no less. But if in the process, Batsmen like Sachin, Dravid or Laxman hit their straps on a good Sydney wicket, then we can at least hope at Perth and Adelaide. How I would love to see a VVS-Dravid and a VVS-Sachin Partnership. Each and every one of those top 6 need to fire collectively in order to have any hope in this match. More importantly, India should still look to be positive.

Posted by ssenthil on (January 4, 2012, 13:32 GMT)

@Justin Starling, if you wonder why H Singh not in the Australia tour, here you can see. ---------------------------------------------------------------- H Singh: 4 Matches 7 Innings 189 Overs 19 maidens 659 runs conceded @ 3.48 E Rate. 9 Wickets @ 73.22 Avg and 126 SR. BBI - 3/101, BBM - 4/200. ----------------------------------------- R Ashwin: 2* Matches 3* Innings 79 Overs 11 maidens 244 runs conceded @ 3.08 E Rate. 4 Wickets @ 61.00 Avg and 118.5 SR. BBI - 3/81, BBM - 4/141......... SO all in all Ashwin taken just one match and 1 Innings to better H Singh achieved in 2 tours.

Posted by Bharath.Narasimhan on (January 4, 2012, 13:23 GMT)

Guys guys lets go easy on ashwin,the guy is only 5 matches old and has proved that he is a champion bowler,these are all learning curves for ashwin,he will become india's prime bowler oneday.Suppose if we drop ashwin and bring in ojha and what if he feels the same heat then who is the next best option harbhajan? i hope many would have noted the recent ranji trophy matches,harbhajan struggled to take wickets.So lets wait and see how he bowls.

Posted by amarnath79 on (January 4, 2012, 13:20 GMT)

India lost this series when Ashwin was picked instead of Harbhajan, arguably India's best bowler against Australia especially Ponting. Ashwin got a few wickets against West Indies at home and belongs to same caste and state as India's chief selector. Thats his credentials.

Posted by Raj12345 on (January 4, 2012, 13:08 GMT)

Ashwin, you should be careful with Media. When Sachin was scoring tons of runs during his early 20s, he didn't talk much to media. People might throw you away from team no matter where you are. That is indian cricket. No one will count current India 17 innings played outside home and 16 are produced <300 runs. No one will remember it, but if u bowl one bad match, then you are gone from now on. You are not Gambhir/VVS/Kohli to get 10 test match chances.

Posted by Griffindoors on (January 4, 2012, 13:05 GMT)

I completely agree with ashwin. Bowling on this batsmen's paradise is very difficult. as he said he has been really bowling well. the only way for indian batsmen is to stand up and deliver as they scored 705 in 2003.the top order has to deliver if india has to be alive in this series. it is really cruel to expect the bowlers to do anything from here onwards. it's just the mental side of indian batsmen. as pattinson said,aussie bowling is not intimidating,it's the worst bowling attack they have. once if the indian batting line-up makes a huge score, that'll be the beginning of good times.

Posted by rustin on (January 4, 2012, 13:05 GMT)

nothing in the pitch? did you pitch it up?!

Posted by Texmex on (January 4, 2012, 13:00 GMT)

Maybe Ashwin is saying this to support his captain. But commonsense is you attack and try and take wickets.

What has the defensive tactics gotten them. Aus is still going at 4+/over. If they had managed to them to 3/over with negative bowling and 7-2 fields then you can at least call that as a strategy. We need a captain who thinks.

Posted by PiyushD on (January 4, 2012, 12:59 GMT)

Sachin's pic in the article says it all.

Posted by Don_Simon on (January 4, 2012, 12:57 GMT)

It's certainly another 4-0.Don't worry, everything will be forgotten by time of next IPL. India's next foreign test assignment is in 2013, and all the batsmen will be in form by that time.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 12:53 GMT)

yea someone should turn it up cant watch the game

Posted by RohitSankaria on (January 4, 2012, 12:52 GMT)

India needs batting partnerships. Period.

Posted by satish619chandar on (January 4, 2012, 12:47 GMT)

34-3 converted to 325-3!! Only Indians can do this.. Ashwin - If u think u bowled well, i am sorry.. Not even a single beaten or beaten in flight leave alone a edge.. How can a bowler say he bowled well after such a day where only wicket to fall was out by himself playing a faulty shot.. If u r not realizing that u r making mistake, u can never correct it.. As Kapil pointed out, No coherence in the team.. Didnot see anyone walking to bowler with some advice or plan.. no setting up by any bowler.. Infact, no two bowlers bowled in partnership.. Just waste of energy running all the way and bowling at 140!! Instead, they could well followed Kohli and bowled with short run up and 100kmph.. Lots of energy could have been saved..

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 12:45 GMT)

Well, I can say that Wassim Jaffar should be brought ahead of Gauti and Subramanyam Badrinath for Kohli and without any second opinion India should go for a genuine all-rounder like Irfan Pathan atleast in the near future. And for that, K. Srikanth should keep away his ego aside and look into the benefit of the Indian test Cricket.

Posted by TRAM on (January 4, 2012, 12:41 GMT)

True pitch flattened out quickly. But still Dhoni should have attacked. That is the ONLY way of getting wkts. No bowler can take wkt if half the fielders are at boundary ! Many balls looped up close to batsmen but no fielder close to them. Obviously Ashwin can not talk against his captain's strategies otherwise he would loose his place in the XI.

Posted by chaitukash79 on (January 4, 2012, 12:40 GMT)

360+ runs in a day's play.. 3 bowlers going for "centuries".. and "you can't fault the bowlers"?! Running in hard isn't the only barometer of bowling.. even Ashwin should know that. India better accept that this is overall a shoddy performance. All departments failed miserably. The inability of Ishaant Sharma to hold on to a fairly simple chance of Clarke is totally contradictory to Ashwin's statement of "we caught well"! Come on guys.. own up.. move on.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 12:30 GMT)

It will be next to impossible for team India to comeback in this test and about the next 2 tests I guess we need to bring Rohit Sharma in place of Virat and also drop Gambhir in place of Mukund..

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 12:28 GMT)

"If we can bat really well in the third innings and put something on the board on the final day, we will be good enough to work around and fight with that."...... LOL!!!! Ashwin should be dropped from the team for making this statement. Lack of talent is one thing but Indian players also seem to live in their own parallel universe.

Posted by MandyBoy on (January 4, 2012, 12:20 GMT)

This is simply pathetic by R Ashwin. Irrespective of the batting failure the bowlers should give in their best! What lenght, variety, guile was Ashwin bowling!!!! There was absolutely no intent in his bowling. And not to mention about his superlative skills as a fielder. Mr. Ashwin stop the blame game and focus on what you are hired in the team for. "Taking Wickets"

Posted by Rags57 on (January 4, 2012, 12:19 GMT)

You obviously can't fault the bowlers in this situation. If I have to point to one thing that may have made some difference, it would have been Dhoni's decision on winning the toss. Given the terrible form his top order batting is in, he should have opted to bowl especially considering the life that was there in the pitch on day 1. The Indian batsmen may have done better batting second on an eased out wicket. Australia may have done better than India batting first but I would have still fancied getting them for under 350 which would have given India a good chance. All this is hindsight now. Dhoni is going through a terrible phase in his captaincy. Even when he wins tosses they don't seem to make a difference to India's fortunes.

Posted by andrew27994 on (January 4, 2012, 12:14 GMT)

Well, I don't see any chances of India winning this match. The least they can try to do is play for a draw. For that they need to bat 2 days at least to even have some chances of doing that. For that to happen, their openers need to perform, especially Gautam Gambhir. He needs to take a leaf out of Alastair Cook's book. Cook was unimpressive in 2010 and came back in form just at the close of 2010 in the Ashes where he was needed to save the Brisbane test and scored a double hundred. Gambhir has to come good or the Indian batsmen will fall one by one with Dravid left without partners.

Posted by tiby on (January 4, 2012, 12:11 GMT)

Its a big mistake from Team Management there @ Sydney to sent this stater in test cricket infront of media..Really demoralizing and like as all the guys said, the selction committe made a big mistake in avoiding Bhaji who was a performer @aussies..Plz call back Ashwin,vinay,mithun......and sent sree,bhaji if they free from injury..

Posted by Silverbails on (January 4, 2012, 12:06 GMT)

Well said, Ashwin. The problem is that I'm afraid that this Indian batting line - up won't last much beyond the third day, when the Aussies declare...I don't think that there'll be a fifth day, with something to chase for the Aussies, but I'm afraid it ain't looking that way, at all. This SCG pitch is probably the best one for batting on throughout the whole of Australia, particualrly after the first day. Anyway, here's praying for a miracle... And, as for Dhoni's defensive mindset and field settings - NO, what India needs is much more AGGRESSION, with vocal support for the bowlers and fielders; NOT quietly looking on. Come on, India, get the BODY LANGUAGE right, at least!! Maybe then, things CAN start to turn around, at least...

Posted by serious-am-i on (January 4, 2012, 12:02 GMT)

Love Ashwin's press conference at least he was honest to begin with and didn't start blaming fortune. Though, I highly doubt if even one of the Indian batsman get over 100 to begin with. As far I am concerned India is out of the match unless some one can get a Double century with others chipping in. Can't expect from Sehwag even if he does he will do it too quickly and there will be enough time for Aussies to chase the total down. LOL!!! It should come from Dravid or Gambhir they will use up time as well. It will be interesting to see if VVS is sent to open the innings instead of Gambhir. Why not experiment a bit when things are not going your way. heh!

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 12:01 GMT)

This test has left out of indian reach from day 1 onwards. Sachin is the only way to bring some cheers by getting the 100th hundred.But that too possible?. God only knows. How punter believe that india will give him the long waiting hundred? Sachin be carefull. He will overtake you. sachin Just kick start the compaign for 20 odd hundreds waiting in your life time. We dont expect the team victory but yours.

Posted by g.jeevan05 on (January 4, 2012, 11:53 GMT)

India should bat well and look at Kolkata and Adelaide for Inspiration!!!!!!!!

Posted by Mill1 on (January 4, 2012, 11:51 GMT)

How about this for an alternative team:

1. Abinhav Mukund 2. Cheteshwar Pujara 3. Rahul Dravid 4. Tendulkar 5. Rohit Sharma 6. S. Badrinath 7. D. Karthik 8. Irfan Pathan 9. Zaheer Khan 10. Yadav 11. Pragyan Ojha.

Reserves: M. Kaif; S. Ganguly; Wasim Jaffer; Ishant Sharma; Rahul Sharma. !!!!

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 11:46 GMT)

Why did they pick this bloke instead of Mr Harbajian, who has bowled well in Australia and against Australia for a long time. Maybe Ashwin can bat at 6!

Posted by sankar8000 on (January 4, 2012, 11:43 GMT)

In these sort of situation Dravid, Sehwag, Sachin or Vvs should have addressed the media and give confidence to Indian fans and players....

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 11:41 GMT)

Agony , pain ...battered...bruished...Instead Ashwin( India) is still arrogant. Ok Pitch flattend out.. isanth bowling 140...but India seemed confused & disoriented. No inspiring plan ...They have already given up. I am sure if Australia declare instantly tomorrow morning ..this game will be over by Tea on 3rd day itself. Innings loss is imminent.

Posted by Shanmughan on (January 4, 2012, 11:36 GMT)

Turn around in the 2nd innings..Even a die hard Indian fan like me do not expect it.This tour is taking the pattern of England tour.Indians seems to find reasons for their defeat.Most idiotic being poor starters when they lose the first test on each tour.Dhoni should be ashamed of himself for saying that after the first test.We could have accepted that if it was true.

The relentless English and Australian bowlers have given nothing away and has bowled nagging line and length to the free scoring Indians .Batsmen like Gambhir,Laxman doesnt seem to have a clue how to get around this.

This 2nd innings is gonna be the last chance for Gambhir.In Perth,Dravid will return as the opener with Rohith Sharma batting @ three most probably since India doesnt want to bat Dravid,Sachin and Laxman at 2,3,4 as in England.

Posted by subnys on (January 4, 2012, 11:34 GMT)

Maybe Ashwin what really meant was that: Gimme a break and get Ojha in the playing XI, so that will just TURNAROUND things for him.. But the fact is that no Turnarounds are gonna help coz you have a loooong summer ahead..

Posted by satish619chandar on (January 4, 2012, 11:33 GMT)

I dont think there is any turnaround possible.. Atleast, as of now.. Batting is now in a very big hole.. Scoring 300 will be celebrated like an achievement!! Frankly, i dont see this team bouncing back.. I would e very happy if they head to draw in one match atleast.. And, Everything is happening when the big three are around.. Atleast in England, we had some key players injured.. Now a full strength team struggles against somewhat rookie Aussie team(5 new players in the 11).. Lost interest in Indian cricket itself..

Posted by LillianThomson on (January 4, 2012, 11:29 GMT)

If Ashwin thinks "I have been bowling really well" then he really doesn't understand Test cricket at all. He has shown no ability to vary his flight or loop or spin other than his obvious doosra, which must be the most telegraphed one in world cricket. And he bowls to horrid defensive fields, but cannot slow the scoring rate. If he is India's best spinner then there is real trouble ahead for India.

Posted by hven84 on (January 4, 2012, 11:29 GMT)

Well, Ashwin's got one thing right - The self fulfilling prophecy. Its a matter of a few good moments and trying to persist with that. Good luck India!

Posted by truebleue_cricfan on (January 4, 2012, 11:27 GMT)

The problem is that they were in a similar situation in England as well, and no one really made it count. The last test match at the oval where we did not even last 2 sessions after lunch (Sachin and Mishra played out the first session, remember?)and many other such instances during the England tour makes it difficult to believe the Indians can last 2 days or close to 2 days. So much for all the bravado Ashwin is portraying.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 11:26 GMT)

BCCI needs to reschedule Cricket Calender till 2015 at least. Scrap all the series in SA, Australia and England. Replace it with Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and best NZ(since they don't have 150+bowlers). Time up for Laxman and Dravid and Sachin be given ultimatum. Let the talented young players come up and have some say in international arena....Please wake up otherwise we might have to bring Anna to fast for improvement in Indian cricket team...

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 11:24 GMT)

Way to go Ashwin. We indian believe you. There is nothing you guys cant turn around. Aussies played well. Now its your time to play better. Country is always with you. Forget the pressure & win the match.

Posted by sanjaykn on (January 4, 2012, 11:24 GMT)

in a row. This is a sad day for indian cricket and its fans and no body is learning! That is even more regrettable.

Posted by sanjaykn on (January 4, 2012, 11:23 GMT)

Even in gully cricket where bounce is much higer with a tennis ball than leather or cork ball. They will tell you if you cannot pull or hook you will be teased here! If bowlers balls middle and leg line he would be given mouthful by the captain. Where did srikanth learn to pull and hook? Did you see his innings in world championship? The australiain bowlers are given librety to ball this line. No body is standing wel outside the offstump and play outside the offstump or hoist the ball straight over the head of the bowler! The diminitive height of our batsman wit there heavy bats are also not helping!

light bat, good foot work, combat the swing, cover the offstump, hook and pull are the things needed to succeed in ausralia( has anybody seen innings of KP? AND viv?). Even dhoni had a proper plan and he played well! And tendulkar driving away from the body has not stopped and no wonder he is getting out! we have no hope in sight! no body has learnt even after staring at 6th straight

Posted by kbhatt on (January 4, 2012, 11:21 GMT)

It is easy for all the commoners to boo Indian team because Indian team is not a team but a conglomerate of individuals with conflicting goals. A decent analysis of Indian cricket is overdue and it has to come from the prominent figures in Cricket journalism. I do miss Dada. Only he was capable of converting the conglomerate of individuals with egos bigger than anything into a high performing 'Team'.

Posted by Samdanh on (January 4, 2012, 11:20 GMT)

Beware Australia: Do not hand your wickets away. Keep in mind that there are 3 full days more. Play all day again on 3rd day, if you can. Bat into a position from where you cannot lose. Do not provide scope for batting last on this pitch on the 5th day! Do not take Indian wickets for granted when they bat in the second innings. Keep up the good work and wish you all the best in this game

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 11:18 GMT)

I Like Ashwin's optimism!!! Quite Honest and straight on the face. I hope Gambhir & Sehwag can give a good start and Dravid, Tendulkar and Laxman can pull it off like Calcutta test. I am hoping for a miracle to get my faith back in my heroes, my team. I think that would be the only thing that would keep me and others interested in this series, otherwise, as Harsha Bhogle said, the series has been decided already and India have lost already in the first session of today.

Posted by Spuddinho on (January 4, 2012, 11:18 GMT)

There's three things in life you can be sure of - death, taxes, and India getting hammered away from home after bigging themselves up. Our friends on the sub-continent are finally realising it's not so easy to win a series in Australia. Maybe England's win there last year was an achievement after all, eh India...?

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 11:15 GMT)

Ashwin can be promoted to No:1 slot to make some difference.

Posted by sanjaykn on (January 4, 2012, 11:14 GMT)

I urge all the indian cricket fans who care about indian cricket to boycott watching all the matches till the bcci gets it right! No indian pitch should be bald. If the ball does not bounce above the waist, such pittches should be banned. They do not leave grass on bangalore, bombay, chennai, mohali, vidharba where there is plenty of bounce and carry! This is not helping indian cricket the way bcci has planned the show! We have not won in australia, south africa and england for god knows how long. only saravs bravado own us some matches. He cared about winning abroad unlike the present captain whose brain looks only fit for shorter format of the game. They should make shewag the captain as he will bat with much care and also aggressive when it comes to test cricket. Dhoni just hopping along aint helping! we are looking at 6 th straight defeat in a row abroad and today is probably the worst day for indian test cricket with just one wicket falling on a pitch where indian bowled out

Posted by wakaPAK on (January 4, 2012, 11:13 GMT)

We hope too that the end is like a bollywood movie!

Posted by Mill1 on (January 4, 2012, 11:13 GMT)

It strikes me and for some time now that Ashwin seems to have a bit of an attitude problem. He's nothing special, and he's certainly no Kumble who was more than effective on all surfaces including Australia. Regarding going on the defensive early in the field, he's got the wrong tactic there. India's only option was to attack. On the 2nd day morning Aussies were 116 odd for 3 wkts, India could have got back in the game if they had attacked and at least tried to get a few wickets instead of spreading the field. Regarding batsman who need to stand up, yes, all batsman have lean patches and the team carries them for a while. Dravid has had a huge year with big scores and he deserves to be carried if he's slightly out of form, he's the only one who contributed with big scores in England. I would get Mukund to Oz, he scored 100 in England in a county match then lost his place to Sehwag on return from injury. He should replace Gambhir (rahane is a waste on the tour). Sharma in for Kohli/VVS.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 11:11 GMT)

Very appropriate approach from Ashwin, all this talk of Australia winning, look what happened at Calculatta and Adelaide when Australia were in a winning position, only for the Indians to come back. Plus dream runs for the Australia bowlers will be much harder if the Indian bowlers only got one wicket. Besides Pattinsons first class games for Victoria are not as good as his test stats. Ask him to bowl on a bowlers graveyard and he'll struggle. He's lucky because he has bowled in friendly bowling conditions. If Clarke can score big, the Indians can score bigger.

Posted by sanjaykn on (January 4, 2012, 11:11 GMT)

totally one sided contest. The bowling sucked. The lines are all wrong! This will be a aussie wash of epic proportions. None of the indian batsman looks like even scoring a 25 here! It will be 500 runs lead, clarks world record of 410 not out. And india all out for 150 in second innngs! India has to surrender series and head back home! There is no sight of irfan pathan( even yusuf would have blasted way out of trouble). the indian batting order has been horribly out of touch. A inferior series with west indies on docile tracks is to be blamed! The pitches where domestic matches are played are terrible with bounce not going above knee height! The system is to be blamed for our debacle and horrible planning!

AT least one month time must have been given to prepare for the tour considering we have not own there forever and top priority was not given.

kallis, clark and amla can score at will on all tracks( this is clarks 3rd century in 6 test matches. So much for bouncy tracks!).

Posted by   on (January 4, 2012, 11:02 GMT)

probably the time has come to start building a new batting middle order... even though Sehwag and Gambhir havent fired on the tour so far they still r our best opening partnership and have lots of years left in them

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Tour Results
India v Sri Lanka at Hobart - Feb 28, 2012
India won by 7 wickets (with 80 balls remaining)
Australia v India at Sydney - Feb 26, 2012
Australia won by 87 runs
India v Sri Lanka at Brisbane - Feb 21, 2012
Sri Lanka won by 51 runs
Australia v India at Brisbane - Feb 19, 2012
Australia won by 110 runs
India v Sri Lanka at Adelaide - Feb 14, 2012
Match tied
More results »
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News | Features Last 3 days