Australia v India, 4th Test, Adelaide, 1st day January 24, 2012

Bowlers not carrying a mental block - Ashwin


It's déjà vu all over again for the Indian bowlers. They have had Australia down at 6 for 214 and 4 for 27 at the MCG, 3 for 37 at the SCG, and 3 for 84 here at the Adelaide Oval, only to let the game slip away. R Ashwin, who took two of those three early wickets today, admitted that the side rued letting Australia off the hook, but insisted it wasn't a block in their minds.

"I don't think as a bowling unit we have a psychological block towards that," Ashwin said. "But we were definitely telling each other and egging each other on in the second session that we had to be tight in that particular phase after lunch, which was quite crucial. Actually that's where we shelled the game a little bit.

"We gave quite a few easy runs to both of them, and they just took off from there. After that point it was quite easy to carry the momentum. So it's not like it is a block, but it has happened in two Tests now, once in Sydney, and now in Adelaide. (We will) probably look to get a couple of wickets tomorrow."

Ashwin, though, drew hope from the fact that things couldn't get far worse than they already are. "I think we have nothing to lose at this point of time," he said. "We are 3-0 down. I think it gives us a bit of license to be very carefree about it, and go out and play the natural game, which can be a real blessing in disguise for us. All that is important is to get those first 20-30 runs, and really stick it out. I think we'll have to try and look at those initial starts and capitalise on that."

Ashwin said seniors in the side were of the view that the game could change pretty quickly if they competed with the bat in the first innings. "There are a few seniors in the team who have already told us about how the first innings pans out at the Adelaide Oval, and how good it is to bat on, on the first three days of the game, and then it really changes," Ashwin said. "We are confident, and we are going to try to pick up two early wickets tomorrow."

Ashwin insisted, though, that they were not embarrassed by the performance in Australia. "Two teams play; one has to lose," he said. "It's fine. Nobody is embarrassed in the dressing room. Quite happy to keep coming out and keep trying again and again. Things will turn around some time. Nobody is embarrassed. Very sure about that."

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Kuldeep on January 25, 2012, 3:19 GMT

    This has to be one of th worst Indian cricket team of all time. This is even worse than the early 80's and 90's.

  • Dummy4 on January 25, 2012, 0:17 GMT

    LOL!!! Ashwin is gone crazy...if this is not embarrassing thn the defeats that Bangladesh had are way much better. Honestly after listening to his comments that too a player of the world champions team, I don't think I shud be EMBARRASSED whnever my team loses. Im wondering, will they take the test status of India now? :D

  • Dummy4 on January 25, 2012, 0:04 GMT

    In my mind this is a result of T20, IPL and all those T20 related events. Young players are interested in how much they can earn. They know that they can perform like some high school kids in test matches but go on to make millions in the shorter version of the game. There was a time when players killed (figuratively) to play for their respective countries and do their best to perform well in that stage. Sad to see that it has turn into a "who gets paid the most" game now. Chris Gayle is a perfect example for this.

  • Nathan on January 25, 2012, 0:02 GMT

    lol AidanFX, that's exactly what I was going to write. And if Aus do win in india, then we'll hear about how india will win next time, or how they won in the past, or anything other than addressing the current situation and maybe giving credit to the opposition. @IndnCrktfan - you're in denial. You keep talking about overseas form but you're ignoring that in recent months, Aus won a series in Sri Lanka, and drew their series in SA. Even the embarrasing 47 all out capitulation only resulted in an 8 wicket loss, not consecutive innings losses. It's idiotic to whine about double standards because the situations are not comparable ... I can guarantee that if Aus lost 7 or 8 tests in a row, several by an innings with giving a yelp, there would be A LOT written about it

  • Nikhil on January 24, 2012, 23:42 GMT

    With teams like NZ winning in Australia, and Pak against England, the problem with this Indian team is psychological. Teams like NZ and Pak are weaker than India. The gap between FC cricket in India and international is purely psychological. Similarly the home to overseas gap is mental in nature.

    The media, players and officials have always engaged in hyping up pitches to be quick and pace and bounce being a problem. But there were no demons in the pitch which shows that the mental aspect of becoming tentative affected the Indian top-order.

    The two main areas are, individual mental toughness and team dynamics. For a players personality, the form of the players, compusure, discipline, fear, motivation,positive thinking, self confidence and belief, temperament, focus, patience, will power, morale and anger control are personality issues composed in a team as a collective unit.

  • Steven on January 24, 2012, 23:22 GMT

    Why does Sachin never do press conferences ?

  • Rileen on January 24, 2012, 23:00 GMT

    Pathetic - any team which is not hurt or embarrassed after 7 consecutive losses abroad should not be playing. Anyone who thought Ashwin was the new Kumble an think again - Kumble would have been hurting bad. As I'm sure are Sachin, Dravid, and Laxman - we'll find out in the course of time.

    As for Aus, credit where due - but I think it's mainly their bowling which has improved, though it shall be better tested by a more patient batting unit. The Aussie batting remains brittle, it's just that India currently can't sustain the pressure for long - I wouldn't back the Aussie batting lineup against Eng, Pak or SA over a series. Their bowling will let them compete against anyone, but the days of dominance won't return with this level of batting.

  • Srikanth on January 24, 2012, 22:44 GMT

    @Koushik Yeluri, Yes, literally every school kid in India, from my personal experience, wants to play cricket only the T20 style and make it to IPL. Why? Because it's easy and no hard work or technique and become millionaires like STR, Dhoni, Bhajji, Yuvi and the gang. At least STR worked for it very hard and proved himself in every form of the game. Forget these big names, even yesterdays kids like the Kholis, Rainas, Ashwins have raked in enough money. For what?

  • Sanjiv on January 24, 2012, 22:27 GMT

    Ashwin has telegraphed that this India team has no fear of failure. Pathetic under-performance and under-motivation. I will now stop following this test match for the next 4 days.

  • Dummy4 on January 24, 2012, 22:08 GMT

    Learn to bend down properly and field the ball clean first. Talking big words does not hide you from on-field cameras. I think my 8-yr old can out-pace you in the field.

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