Australia news June 4, 2014

Australia want their own Indian soil

47

Cricket Australia has come up with a novel plan to improve the team's performance on Indian soil: import some of their own. Their 4-0 thrashing in India last year continued a recent trend of failures in sub-continental conditions and since they last toured Bangladesh in 2006, Australia have played 13 Tests in Asia for only one win, when they defeated Sri Lanka in Galle in 2011.

Their home clean-sweep in the Ashes helped propel Michael Clarke's men back up to No.1 in the Test rankings but staying there will require finding ways to win away from home. To that end, Cricket Australia intends to import soil from India and install Asian-style practice pitches at the National Cricket Centre in Brisbane, perhaps in the middle of a greyhound track nearby.

Australia's next Test series is in the UAE against Pakistan later this year and against an attack likely to include challenging spinners such as Saeed Ajmal, the batsmen will hardly have an easy time of it. Their struggles in turning conditions in Bangladesh for the World T20 earlier this year only highlighted the issue of handling quality spin.

"Our toughest challenge the last few years has been having success away from home," Clarke told reporters in Brisbane, where the Australians are at a training camp ahead of their tours of Zimbabwe and the UAE later this year. "We didn't play well in India. I don't know, but I am guessing the wickets in Dubai will be similar.

"I am guessing they will prepare wickets that spin and they will have two or three spinners in those teams. We have to find a way to get better. That is one of our great challenges as a Test team."

The Indian-style pitches in Brisbane will not be installed in time to prepare Clarke's men for their series against Pakistan, but Cricket Australia's general manager of team performance Pat Howard hoped they would be ready by the end of the coming summer. An indoor spinning surface is already part of the setup at the National Cricket Centre, but such outdoor pitches would provide a unique opportunity for batsmen ahead of subcontinental tours.

"A third of all our matches are in the subcontinent, so you've got to be able to deal with it," Howard said. "While we do practise here against spin ... we know it's not as real as being there. We're never going to make it exactly the same, but we're going to try to get as close as we can.

"The subcontinent [pitch] idea has been around for a long time and we're very much trying to make this a place where in the middle of winter guys can get themselves ready and prepared. Some players in our system are fantastic at using their feet and playing against spin, but our collective experience has got to get better."

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @brydoncoverdale

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • flickspin on June 6, 2014, 8:04 GMT

    another idea i have

    is to create a top end league consisting of cairns, darwin, alice springs and broome

    to be played in the dry season in the australian winter( march to september)

    for players who can not get i.p.l or english domectic cricket contracts, it also has players in constant form all year round( say that australia tours england and a batsmen gets injured, australia can fly over some one who has been playing cricket and is in form)

    australian can also host 4 match test series in the australian winter

    i would make admission free, with coaching clinics for the aboriginal communities

    it would cost over $1 million to run but i bet they could find sponsors

    the comp would consist of 4 day first class games and 20/20 games home and away

    20/20 games could be shown on tv, to help pay the cost

    cairns would be green with bounce

    darwin would be green with bounce

    alice springs would be dry and dusty similar to the sub continent

    broome would hard and dry with a strong breeze

  • flickspin on June 6, 2014, 7:42 GMT

    bringing indian soil to australia to help australian batsmen and bowlers is a great idea

    australia has the best pitch diversity in the world

    hobart, its green and seams and swings, a bit like new zealand and england

    sydney, great for batting until days 4 & 5 where it a spinners pitch

    melbourne, is a drop in pitch which slows every day and days 4 & 5 batsmen get caught in front of the wicket at cover or mid wicket, melbourne has some of the biggest boundries in the world

    adelaide, is a batsmen wicket untill day 4 & 5 where it spins, has short boundries square of the wicket

    brisbane, is green and bouncy

    perth is dry with bounce, apparently great for batting once your in, has the fremantle doctor which helps swing

    cricket australia is not short of money, they should buy 30-40 acres some where with heaps of space to create sub continent style pitches and everything that youngsters need to succeed right around world

    its better than creating a pitch on a greyhound track

  • Cricket_theBestGame on June 6, 2014, 0:07 GMT

    wouldn't it better to encourage more spinners in aust domestic cricket and make spinner friendly pitches in shield competition so it can get as close to the match condition?? what use its going to be have the indian soil when the weather condition isn't the same?

    maybe you can import some of indian spinners along with soil so they can give aus players hard time..otherwise this idea is flawed from the very beginning and waste of money!!

  • JJJake on June 5, 2014, 22:07 GMT

    Novel idea. Howard thinking outside the box.

  • VivGilchrist on June 5, 2014, 21:53 GMT

    @Masudkhan, Australia has many climates, Darwin and Cairns would give us Indian conditions, as would Broome and Alice Springs.

  • on June 5, 2014, 15:01 GMT

    Aussies have the SCG as a spin venue.If only they stop converting every pitch to a drop-in to accommodate Rugby and Soccer.As regards to India having fast pitches,Mohali and Bangalore do assist seamers early on and we do have the swing paradise of Dharmashala.If BCCI wishes they can re-create Gabba at Wankhade,Eden and MAC.Mumbai,Kolkata and Chennai have a similar climate to Brisbane.Hot and Humid with Coastal Breeze.

  • Masudkhan on June 5, 2014, 12:43 GMT

    CA may import the Indian soil to recreate the pitches but what about the Sub Continent conditions? Can they recreate it? The playing conditions also play a very import role. So this strategy may not be of much use i guess.

  • ramz30380 on June 5, 2014, 11:38 GMT

    @sarangsrk wrong mate! Aussies were bundled out every time in those 4 test matches to the spin of Ashwin and Jadeja. They cudnt score over 300 in any of the innings. Yes I agree Ind have always been a batting strong side, this isnt new but the reason tht the Aussies lost was because of their hapless batting in spinning conditions. The same was obvious in the T20 WC in BD.

    It is a good step tht CA has taken but without the likes of quality spinners in their ranks, their batsmen wont be able to enhance their skill on tacking spin bowling in subcontinent conditions.

    I suggest tht the BCCI, follow suit and get fast and bouncy tracks from Australia and develop some grounds in India for Indian batsmen to practice and learn. They shud camp at such grounds and practice.

  • Fast_Track_Bully on June 5, 2014, 11:03 GMT

    how its possible? The pitch will not be as dry as in India due to the weather conditions. There will be cracks everyday due to heat in India. And how its possible in Australia?

  • ygkd on June 5, 2014, 10:17 GMT

    Australian young guns are brought up on hard-wickets and, then, Australian turf pitches and against (usually young) Australian spinners. By the time they get to bat on this pitch they will settled into a style which is based on that. This pitch introduction is a step in the right direction, but it is only one very small step. The number of time one sees stiff-armed batting from young guns (wrists are not in vogue) doesn't really auger well for the success of this venture. The stiff-armed style only works where there's bounce. On low tracks you must use your wrists. This is a Catch 22 pitch. It's 22 yards of soil which would prove that some youngsters have what it takes for sub-continental batting, only they won't get that chance until they prove it elsewhere, which is hard because elsewhere rewards the more stiff-armed styles. Nothing much will change unless the batting attributes that suit this pitch are sought along the way. We need all youth state squads exposed to these conditions.

  • flickspin on June 6, 2014, 8:04 GMT

    another idea i have

    is to create a top end league consisting of cairns, darwin, alice springs and broome

    to be played in the dry season in the australian winter( march to september)

    for players who can not get i.p.l or english domectic cricket contracts, it also has players in constant form all year round( say that australia tours england and a batsmen gets injured, australia can fly over some one who has been playing cricket and is in form)

    australian can also host 4 match test series in the australian winter

    i would make admission free, with coaching clinics for the aboriginal communities

    it would cost over $1 million to run but i bet they could find sponsors

    the comp would consist of 4 day first class games and 20/20 games home and away

    20/20 games could be shown on tv, to help pay the cost

    cairns would be green with bounce

    darwin would be green with bounce

    alice springs would be dry and dusty similar to the sub continent

    broome would hard and dry with a strong breeze

  • flickspin on June 6, 2014, 7:42 GMT

    bringing indian soil to australia to help australian batsmen and bowlers is a great idea

    australia has the best pitch diversity in the world

    hobart, its green and seams and swings, a bit like new zealand and england

    sydney, great for batting until days 4 & 5 where it a spinners pitch

    melbourne, is a drop in pitch which slows every day and days 4 & 5 batsmen get caught in front of the wicket at cover or mid wicket, melbourne has some of the biggest boundries in the world

    adelaide, is a batsmen wicket untill day 4 & 5 where it spins, has short boundries square of the wicket

    brisbane, is green and bouncy

    perth is dry with bounce, apparently great for batting once your in, has the fremantle doctor which helps swing

    cricket australia is not short of money, they should buy 30-40 acres some where with heaps of space to create sub continent style pitches and everything that youngsters need to succeed right around world

    its better than creating a pitch on a greyhound track

  • Cricket_theBestGame on June 6, 2014, 0:07 GMT

    wouldn't it better to encourage more spinners in aust domestic cricket and make spinner friendly pitches in shield competition so it can get as close to the match condition?? what use its going to be have the indian soil when the weather condition isn't the same?

    maybe you can import some of indian spinners along with soil so they can give aus players hard time..otherwise this idea is flawed from the very beginning and waste of money!!

  • JJJake on June 5, 2014, 22:07 GMT

    Novel idea. Howard thinking outside the box.

  • VivGilchrist on June 5, 2014, 21:53 GMT

    @Masudkhan, Australia has many climates, Darwin and Cairns would give us Indian conditions, as would Broome and Alice Springs.

  • on June 5, 2014, 15:01 GMT

    Aussies have the SCG as a spin venue.If only they stop converting every pitch to a drop-in to accommodate Rugby and Soccer.As regards to India having fast pitches,Mohali and Bangalore do assist seamers early on and we do have the swing paradise of Dharmashala.If BCCI wishes they can re-create Gabba at Wankhade,Eden and MAC.Mumbai,Kolkata and Chennai have a similar climate to Brisbane.Hot and Humid with Coastal Breeze.

  • Masudkhan on June 5, 2014, 12:43 GMT

    CA may import the Indian soil to recreate the pitches but what about the Sub Continent conditions? Can they recreate it? The playing conditions also play a very import role. So this strategy may not be of much use i guess.

  • ramz30380 on June 5, 2014, 11:38 GMT

    @sarangsrk wrong mate! Aussies were bundled out every time in those 4 test matches to the spin of Ashwin and Jadeja. They cudnt score over 300 in any of the innings. Yes I agree Ind have always been a batting strong side, this isnt new but the reason tht the Aussies lost was because of their hapless batting in spinning conditions. The same was obvious in the T20 WC in BD.

    It is a good step tht CA has taken but without the likes of quality spinners in their ranks, their batsmen wont be able to enhance their skill on tacking spin bowling in subcontinent conditions.

    I suggest tht the BCCI, follow suit and get fast and bouncy tracks from Australia and develop some grounds in India for Indian batsmen to practice and learn. They shud camp at such grounds and practice.

  • Fast_Track_Bully on June 5, 2014, 11:03 GMT

    how its possible? The pitch will not be as dry as in India due to the weather conditions. There will be cracks everyday due to heat in India. And how its possible in Australia?

  • ygkd on June 5, 2014, 10:17 GMT

    Australian young guns are brought up on hard-wickets and, then, Australian turf pitches and against (usually young) Australian spinners. By the time they get to bat on this pitch they will settled into a style which is based on that. This pitch introduction is a step in the right direction, but it is only one very small step. The number of time one sees stiff-armed batting from young guns (wrists are not in vogue) doesn't really auger well for the success of this venture. The stiff-armed style only works where there's bounce. On low tracks you must use your wrists. This is a Catch 22 pitch. It's 22 yards of soil which would prove that some youngsters have what it takes for sub-continental batting, only they won't get that chance until they prove it elsewhere, which is hard because elsewhere rewards the more stiff-armed styles. Nothing much will change unless the batting attributes that suit this pitch are sought along the way. We need all youth state squads exposed to these conditions.

  • Sir_Francis on June 5, 2014, 10:15 GMT

    They should put this soil in Darwin as the indian heat plays it's part in making indian pitches

  • on June 5, 2014, 10:14 GMT

    wake up quarantine people...u dont let us bring dirt in our shoe...what about this....

  • Kumarjain88 on June 5, 2014, 9:52 GMT

    BCCI you kindly import Australian soil and make Indian players practice and play on pitches made of it.

  • on June 5, 2014, 9:50 GMT

    I am waiting for the Day when BCCI will follow the same thing for the preparation of CWC 2015. BCCI should import the soil from Perth and give their new talents a fair amount of environment . wake up BCCI

  • ultimatewarrior on June 5, 2014, 8:45 GMT

    Whether importing Indian Soil will improve the chances of winning Matches in Indian Subcontinent doesn't matter but the Motive(to improvise) itself is too good...This is very inspirational move from CA...I hope some other countries will also follow the suite...

  • Crossroads16 on June 5, 2014, 6:01 GMT

    You are all talking about lets put everything together i have been thinking this idea for quite some time know. Cricket Australia touched on it a while back.

    1. Each pitch in Australia needs to have it's own character as they used to. 2. the only place in Australia suitable for an indian pitch is Darwin, because the temperature and climate is similar. 3. there should be an expansion of teams in the Australian compettion, for the growth of the sport. In particular with a 7th team based in Darwin and an 8th team in either Sydney or Melbourne. 4.By expanding the league and playing on a variety of surfaces we will produce a generation of quality players who can play in a variety of conditions. 5.Dunger Bob touched on it no one creates an indian dust bowl like an indian curator, so we organise for one to come over and live in darwin.

    We have practised on Darwin before and the only problem is it that it didn't become the dustbowl that india has.

  • Chennai_Cricket on June 5, 2014, 4:04 GMT

    I think for IPL only they creating spinning tracks

  • on June 5, 2014, 3:31 GMT

    Steven_Scott - Steve Smith is a wonderful player of spin.

  • AjitNarayan on June 5, 2014, 2:15 GMT

    Green and bouncy track bullies. ;)

  • on June 5, 2014, 0:46 GMT

    but doesn't scg and Adelaide turn sharply on day4 and 5. So why do they need to import indian soil when these pitches aren't dissimilar to the ones in India. Even hobart at one point was just a Australian version of a subcontinent pitch. Or are the reasons more political - establish trade links with India.

  • dunger.bob on June 5, 2014, 0:13 GMT

    As so many other posters have quite rightly pointed out there seem to be a few holes in this plan. As well as the soil we could well be in need of an Indian curator to actually build it, some Indian weather to nurture it and some Indian spinners to make use of it. Among other things.

    However, I think that's all a bit trivial when you consider the big picture. We can't do anything about the weather but everything else can be acquired eventually. The really important point about all this is that it shows we are really serious about improving our performances in the sub-continent. Just sitting back and saying 'oh well, we'll get them when they come here' isn't good enough for us. Our team wants to be a force to be feared no matter where they play. To me THAT'S what matters here.

  • bobagorof on June 5, 2014, 0:12 GMT

    I remember Matt Hayden doing some intensive work in preparation for the tour to India in 2001 - he wasn't selected for the ODI series in January so had some spinning wickets made up and practiced on those. He went on to score 549 runs at 109.8 against Harbhajan Singh (in the series that made his career). If practicing on pitches made of Indian soil helps, then great. But preparing for vastly different conditions doesn't begin a week before you leave. Hayden had a month or so preparation before going on tour. I realise it's tough with today's schedules, but Cricket Australia need to think about how important it is to them.

  • on June 5, 2014, 0:11 GMT

    this is like importing Indian spices for Australian chefs. what a joke

  • wellrounded87 on June 4, 2014, 23:47 GMT

    @Posted by Steven_Scott on (June 4, 2014, 13:49 GMT)

    Steve Smith and George Bailey play spin pretty well. I was against Baileys selection for the Ashes but think he should get a run in India. With Smith, Clarke and Bailey at 4,5,6 that's a pretty solid middle order to take on the spinners. I also think Johnson and Harris will do a much better job than Siddle and Pattinson. Let's just hope they are fit for the series.

  • sammysam on June 4, 2014, 23:42 GMT

    India need to do the same and import australian style pitches to practice for upcoming tours in England and Australia or its going to be a repeat of the thrashing like last time around.

  • on June 4, 2014, 22:18 GMT

    Kids, juniors and other promising players Should be scholarshiped to spend seasons playing in leagues in India, England, West Indies etc. By the time they reach test level basic skills are deeply ingrained so it's much harder to adapt later on. Shield teams could spend winters in India etc playing Ranchi cup...

  • IndianInnerEdge on June 4, 2014, 22:14 GMT

    I feel is a novel initiative, at least CA has the willingness and the heart and off course the $$ to improve, to innovate and get better.In case of BCCI there is plenty of the first and very less/negligible of the other afore named factors. This step shoujld surely benefit their youngsters. Whereas in my country we play day in and day out on pathetic low bouncing dustbowls which was the bugbearfor not producing quick bowlers since ever india started playing cricket, and the way the hype of the IPL is growing in which only high scoring matches bring eyeballs and back sides to the TV and stadium-nothing gonna change. I wish for a change BCCI exibited some willingness to spend their megazillions on improving stadiums, practice facilities, and the P I T C H E S.....Cricinfo please publish

  • OttawaRocks on June 4, 2014, 20:11 GMT

    Not a bad idea. India should do the same for getting Aus and SA type pitches prepared in Indian academies.

  • Cpt.Meanster on June 4, 2014, 19:16 GMT

    This article clearly proves that the Australian captain and officials really don't have a clue. If you look at their 4-0 whitewash in India, it all came down to lack of quality spin bowlers on their side and their batsmen's inability to cope with Indian spinners on turning pitches. They can import all the soil they want but do Australians know that each region of India has different soil types ? For example, the soil up in the north is way different to the soil in the west, the east, and the south. So which soil are they importing LOL ? It's one thing to emulate something and another to actually go there and perform. No matter how many times they tour India, they are going to lose. They are not the same team that Adam Gilchrist brought with him in 2004. Keep trying Aussies, nothing is going to change the inevitable.

  • on June 4, 2014, 17:54 GMT

    good move Aussies. Although as many have pointed out, you need the spinners to have an impact. Get some subcontinent A teams to tour you regularly and vice versa. The subcontinent teams can get to play on green tracks against good quality fast bowling, (Aus always seem have a surplus of them) While you can get to play in dry turning pitches overseas in India/ Sri Lanka/UAE/Bangla against a higher quality spin attack. Also your prospective spinners can pick up tips on how to bowl on turning tracks, while promising young pacers from the subcontinent can bowl on helpful pitches against batsman who'll not crumble under movement or bounce off the pitch.

  • Amar_bw on June 4, 2014, 17:28 GMT

    You can have the Indian soil but you can not have an Indian spinners soul. :)

  • on June 4, 2014, 13:52 GMT

    Instead of preparing for practice let them prepare for practice games. As some one in the discussion said the best way to prepare for the India series is sending A teams than preparing slow wickets.... Then qualitiy of Australia wickets will come down....Ask few batsmen to specalize in spin... Otherwise this idea will be a draw back...

  • Steven_Scott on June 4, 2014, 13:49 GMT

    It is not just the tracks. Since there are no international quality spinners in our Aussie side (test/ODI/T20) let alone at the domestic level, facing the like of innocuous Lyon and X-man Doherty even on a minefiled will make the batsman feel at ease. This is in no way going to prepare them to face the greats like Ajmal or even the regular subcontinent spinners like Ashwin, Herath or Gazi. And of course when we fail miserably to put runs on board as we do every single time, it will be time for our fans to blame the "dustbowls" and "doctored pitches". Last but not the least you need quality batsmen who can play spin too. Other than Clarke, there is not one guy in the test team who can play spin. Where are we going to get them? From India? We tried getting one from Pakistan (Khawaja) but it hasn't worked so far.

  • on June 4, 2014, 13:00 GMT

    @Akshay kumar : they are preparing for their practice in to improve their spin playing ability for future tours to india nd those picthes are not used for any test matches between ind vs aus

  • on June 4, 2014, 12:25 GMT

    This is one of the blunders i am seeing. If India wants to do well on foreing soil like Aus and SA, will they prepare bouncy wickets? Certainly not... Otherwise they will be thrashed... Cleverly Dhoni prepared turning tracks and knocked Aus 4-0 at home...

    To be successful you need to play to your strength...Preparing slow wickets helps India, not Australia... For that you need to produce quality batsmen who can shine on slow wickets...

    Instead of preparing at internaional level, why dont you train the upcoming players by playing on spinning wickets in Sheffield Shield ???? Even I feel India also can do dat in Ranji Trophy...

  • PrasPunter on June 4, 2014, 12:07 GMT

    Al-right - more than 2 months since I posted anything. Nothing major has happened with the cricket world since our 2-1 victory against SA. So nothing to comment about. Nice to see us holding the mace though.

    On the topic of importing soil, wondering why we try to recreate geographies across continents. Rather, improve our skills by taking tours to the subcontinent. Send our A & B teams regularly and the results would improve for sure. Let's not fiddle with nature.

  • pvwadekar on June 4, 2014, 11:38 GMT

    Don't need the pitches .. you need the bowlers to practice against .. the Ajmals, Ashwins .. just like asian countries can get fast and bouncy pitches and a bowling machine but it is not the same as facing the real deal of Dale Steyn/ Mitchell Johnson

    It is better for for test cricket, that there are at least 2 or 3 first class games so that visiting teams can get some proper matches before the actual tests begin and the A level players can play against quality opposition.

  • on June 4, 2014, 11:31 GMT

    India have a good fast bowler in Varun Aaron, only problem is that he seems to do worse in India than outside India which may or may not be such a bad thing for India. Also I think the Pitches in UAE are more of mixed bag, one such pitch was very green and another supported spin better. Varun Aaron was significantly better in UAE than India during the IPL so Australia should't be too intimidated considering that there will be something in the pitches for Australia. Hopefully the CLT20 doesn't flatten the pitches too much if BCCI decide to host it there.

  • on June 4, 2014, 11:09 GMT

    Where will you Aussies go for supple Indian wrists and lightning Indian footwork and Indian flair for playing spin??? You will require more than just the pitches to learn to play on Indian dustbowls. Drop down pitches from other countries won't work, since the climatic conditions too need to be the same. Will a drop down pitch from Australia be good enough for Sri Lanka to produce batsman who can score hundreds in Perth? No way. If that was the case, it wouldnt have been about one century in Australia by a Sri Lankan in about a decade.Skills count as well. Sachin Tendulkar at the tender age of 18 scored a hundred on Perth, without playing in any other quick wicket against a quality pace attack. Virat too played beautifully in Australia recently. It is all about skill, whether playing spin or pace.

  • ladycricfan on June 4, 2014, 10:33 GMT

    Not only pitches aus need to hire some Indian spinners for the practice as well. There are surplus of Indian spinners at the moment.

  • rafe01 on June 4, 2014, 10:26 GMT

    I agree Chandramouli.G. And to develop those bowlers we need spin friendly conditions in at least some of our Shield games (maybe even in grade cricket?). So some token spinning pitches in the middle of a dog track probably won't be enough. At least its showing some determination to improve in those conditions.

  • balajik1968 on June 4, 2014, 10:25 GMT

    I don't know if this will work, there are other factors. Actually the Aussies have done well in Asia before, so I would say it is the players rather than the soil. The Aussies need to look to their players. Identify your players; the rest will fall in place. The dismal performance of the Aussies last year was because they played poorly. India may still have won, but fact is Australia played badly.

  • sarangsrk on June 4, 2014, 10:19 GMT

    I don't understand what is so different in Indian soil as opposed to SL or Pakistani soil. Why is that the Aus team could win in SL and Pak over the years but only so much to boast in India? The reason to me is simple. India's superior batting. When Indian batting is in form at home, the pitches and bowlers don't matter. What that in turn does is that it makes average Indian bowling attack look great. It is exactly opposite with SL and Pak team who do have much better bowling attacks but barring some exceptions (Mahela/Sanga from SL, Inzamam/Younis from Old Pak), their batting doesn't score enough and also, wilt under constant pressure that the Aussies apply. Indian batting has recovered them from desperate situations against Aussie bowling multiple times.

  • on June 4, 2014, 10:14 GMT

    I've been saying this for ages! And not only that, but countries like India should be getting Aussie and English pitches, not only for training, but for their domestic season if possible as well. Who knows, India might actually be able to develop a couple of world class fast bowlers.

  • Guna1979 on June 4, 2014, 10:08 GMT

    Well done Australia Also create situation like English pitches

  • Ozcricketwriter on June 4, 2014, 9:27 GMT

    Brilliant idea. Up there with Pakistan considering using England's Duke ball for their domestic competition (did that ever happen? does anyone know?) In the modern age, teams shouldn't have such huge home advantages as India and England currently have. Teams should be more like South Africa and Pakistan - just as good (or bad) at home as away. If we could get to that stage, where it is about the quality of the cricket, not where it is played, then cricket is all the better for it.

  • Chandramouli.G on June 4, 2014, 9:20 GMT

    Not only Australia, but also other countries are more keen of performing well and winning series outside their backyard. But in the case of Australia there is more pressure in the process of maintaining their grade as the No.1 test team. But I personally feel that this idea of creating sub-continent pitches in the academy for their practice, doesn't improve their individual performances outside. As you really need some exceptional spinners who can test you while practice. He cannot be an ordinary spinner who has only one stock ball, that goes only one way. He has to have some tricks or variations to get the better off the surface. You can't really use a bowling machine in those Practice pitches and perform!! Can You??

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  • Chandramouli.G on June 4, 2014, 9:20 GMT

    Not only Australia, but also other countries are more keen of performing well and winning series outside their backyard. But in the case of Australia there is more pressure in the process of maintaining their grade as the No.1 test team. But I personally feel that this idea of creating sub-continent pitches in the academy for their practice, doesn't improve their individual performances outside. As you really need some exceptional spinners who can test you while practice. He cannot be an ordinary spinner who has only one stock ball, that goes only one way. He has to have some tricks or variations to get the better off the surface. You can't really use a bowling machine in those Practice pitches and perform!! Can You??

  • Ozcricketwriter on June 4, 2014, 9:27 GMT

    Brilliant idea. Up there with Pakistan considering using England's Duke ball for their domestic competition (did that ever happen? does anyone know?) In the modern age, teams shouldn't have such huge home advantages as India and England currently have. Teams should be more like South Africa and Pakistan - just as good (or bad) at home as away. If we could get to that stage, where it is about the quality of the cricket, not where it is played, then cricket is all the better for it.

  • Guna1979 on June 4, 2014, 10:08 GMT

    Well done Australia Also create situation like English pitches

  • on June 4, 2014, 10:14 GMT

    I've been saying this for ages! And not only that, but countries like India should be getting Aussie and English pitches, not only for training, but for their domestic season if possible as well. Who knows, India might actually be able to develop a couple of world class fast bowlers.

  • sarangsrk on June 4, 2014, 10:19 GMT

    I don't understand what is so different in Indian soil as opposed to SL or Pakistani soil. Why is that the Aus team could win in SL and Pak over the years but only so much to boast in India? The reason to me is simple. India's superior batting. When Indian batting is in form at home, the pitches and bowlers don't matter. What that in turn does is that it makes average Indian bowling attack look great. It is exactly opposite with SL and Pak team who do have much better bowling attacks but barring some exceptions (Mahela/Sanga from SL, Inzamam/Younis from Old Pak), their batting doesn't score enough and also, wilt under constant pressure that the Aussies apply. Indian batting has recovered them from desperate situations against Aussie bowling multiple times.

  • balajik1968 on June 4, 2014, 10:25 GMT

    I don't know if this will work, there are other factors. Actually the Aussies have done well in Asia before, so I would say it is the players rather than the soil. The Aussies need to look to their players. Identify your players; the rest will fall in place. The dismal performance of the Aussies last year was because they played poorly. India may still have won, but fact is Australia played badly.

  • rafe01 on June 4, 2014, 10:26 GMT

    I agree Chandramouli.G. And to develop those bowlers we need spin friendly conditions in at least some of our Shield games (maybe even in grade cricket?). So some token spinning pitches in the middle of a dog track probably won't be enough. At least its showing some determination to improve in those conditions.

  • ladycricfan on June 4, 2014, 10:33 GMT

    Not only pitches aus need to hire some Indian spinners for the practice as well. There are surplus of Indian spinners at the moment.

  • on June 4, 2014, 11:09 GMT

    Where will you Aussies go for supple Indian wrists and lightning Indian footwork and Indian flair for playing spin??? You will require more than just the pitches to learn to play on Indian dustbowls. Drop down pitches from other countries won't work, since the climatic conditions too need to be the same. Will a drop down pitch from Australia be good enough for Sri Lanka to produce batsman who can score hundreds in Perth? No way. If that was the case, it wouldnt have been about one century in Australia by a Sri Lankan in about a decade.Skills count as well. Sachin Tendulkar at the tender age of 18 scored a hundred on Perth, without playing in any other quick wicket against a quality pace attack. Virat too played beautifully in Australia recently. It is all about skill, whether playing spin or pace.

  • on June 4, 2014, 11:31 GMT

    India have a good fast bowler in Varun Aaron, only problem is that he seems to do worse in India than outside India which may or may not be such a bad thing for India. Also I think the Pitches in UAE are more of mixed bag, one such pitch was very green and another supported spin better. Varun Aaron was significantly better in UAE than India during the IPL so Australia should't be too intimidated considering that there will be something in the pitches for Australia. Hopefully the CLT20 doesn't flatten the pitches too much if BCCI decide to host it there.