Australia v India, Commonwealth Bank Series, Adelaide February 12, 2012

'Got to make sure we are concentrating' - Clarke

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Australia were not switched on tonight. There were fumbles, there were missed direct-hits, there were poor throws, and India - who at times batted equally sluggishly - were let off the hook. Michael Clarke, nursing a sore hamstring himself, called the fielding effort horrible and said that Australia will need to be much better if they are to win matches in the rest of the competition.

More than the others, there were three crucial moments where Australia slipped. Early on in MS Dhoni's innings, Ricky Ponting fumbled before hitting the stumps at the non-striker's end, allowing Dhoni ample time to make his ground. Then, with 29 to defend off 22 balls, Ravindra Jadeja was all but run out but for Ryan Harris's poor throw from point. In the next over Dhoni was dead again, only for Clarke to miss a direct hit from an arm's length.

"I think it's concentration more than anything," Clarke said. "If you look at myself, Ricky Ponting and also Dave Warner, we fumbled a few balls tonight, and we are better than that. You can't blame anyone else when you are not performing as well as you like. We just got to make sure we are concentrating, and we are ready for every ball. It [Adelaide Oval] is as nice a ground as anywhere in the world. It's a beautiful outfield, very flat. We have no excuses for our performance tonight. We just weren't good enough."

Clarke couldn't say if this lack in concentration could be put down to fatigue from a long season, but he said he was not queuing up to rest. "It's international cricket, another chance to play for Australia, and you want to perform every single time you do that," Clarke said. "Has it been a long summer? Well it has been a great summer for us so far. I can only talk about me personally: I feel like I am hitting the ball sweet, I feel I am training hard, and I am really keen to play every game at the moment.

"Like all the guys, no one wants to rest. It's just about managing the workloads, and making sure we are putting guys on the park that we think can help us win the game, [that ones that] give us the best chance of winning the game. If there is a time that we feel boys are a little tired, we would do that [rest players] as we have done with Michael Hussey. It's just about assessing the team."

Both of India's win against Australia this season have come in games where Matthew Wade has been pushed down the order. Clarke joked this was the last time it had happened. "I think Wadey can play in both areas," he said. "He is good against fast bowling and he is good at the top of the order, and he is good at the death and he has done that for Victoria. Just a bit of a change in the order. I thought we'd try something else tonight. Did it work? We did pretty well, we made 270, we could have made a few more runs. But that's the way it goes."

Clarke and Australia have a big day on Monday. Clarke will have his sore hamstring scanned, and they have to select the team for the next few games. "I'll probably have a scan tomorrow, and then we'll go from there. It's a little bit sore, I have just had some ice on it. Fingers crossed, hopefully everything is okay."

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on February 13, 2012, 11:25 GMT

    i think ponting should be the captain....for next game....ang ferguson should also be included

  • Rajiv007 on February 13, 2012, 8:34 GMT

    I think VVS wud had done better than some of the hyped Aussie fielders... :) We also outfeilded them during last T20... Retire Mr. Pointing !

  • sabee66 on February 13, 2012, 6:52 GMT

    I think Australia is TIRED of winning every game, Crowd and Sponsers want them to let India few games at least...................lol

  • a1234s on February 13, 2012, 6:48 GMT

    People forget that India put the aussies under pressure on the field.

    The fast running between the wickets created those fielding lapses.

    How I wish the Indians had shown this urgency in the tests.

  • joseyesu on February 13, 2012, 6:36 GMT

    Alright, you want to rotate teh players. But why do you switch the places.I can understand when somebody is not playing well, you can protect him and give another place to prove his talent. But why Wade, who is performing well in top position and moved to 7th. And both matches he did not scored well. I hope you will do it again to prove you are right as like dhoni.

  • trumpoz on February 13, 2012, 6:31 GMT

    there were three things that won the game for india....... and none of them include MS Dhoni becuase in all reality India should have win with 5 overs to spare. 1) The final 10 overs of the Australian batting. The Indian bowlers bowled brilliantly - gave nothing for the Aussies to really get after. 2) Australia's fielding..... enough said. 3) The age-old problem for Australia...... bowling at the death. YORKERS! YORKERS and more YORKERS!!! If you slightly overpitch, fine. You can set fields to that, it makes it hard for batsman to get under the ball. If a batsman wants to play a ramp or a scoop - good luck they are risking their wicket (and personal safety). Take note of what was being done in T20 - full, wide, yorkers. THe odd wide was called, but it is much harder to hit those for 4 than a predictable good length ball.

  • zenboomerang on February 13, 2012, 6:02 GMT

    We expect captains to lead by example & Clarke has lead the way in this series... lol... Clarke's captaincy in ODI's is becoming disgraceful - really poor against SL but just as bad against India... Dropping M Hussey for Ponting who is in another slump - again... Brainfade... Opening with Ponting while out of form - brainfade... Running out Warner - brainfade... Putting Harris at point - brainfade... Not bowling D Hussey more - brainfade... Poor use of bowlers in last 10 overs - brainfade... Forget about the poor fielding - complain about the poor captaincy by Clarke...

  • rust01 on February 13, 2012, 5:27 GMT

    Those Indians on here complaining about the Oz commentators must be listening to something different. I think you guys are writing this just so you can have a whinge about something. The commentators were full of praise for India, but don't let the truth get in the way of a whinge.

  • farkin on February 13, 2012, 5:00 GMT

    they should rest ponting for the rest of the Commonwealth Bank Series

  • on February 13, 2012, 3:31 GMT

    well both teams were under pressure..as an indian, i just looked at one side of coin that indian team is under pressure..but, forgot that even australia was under pressure...the team which would have handled the pressure better would have emerged victorious and last night, it was india..

  • on February 13, 2012, 11:25 GMT

    i think ponting should be the captain....for next game....ang ferguson should also be included

  • Rajiv007 on February 13, 2012, 8:34 GMT

    I think VVS wud had done better than some of the hyped Aussie fielders... :) We also outfeilded them during last T20... Retire Mr. Pointing !

  • sabee66 on February 13, 2012, 6:52 GMT

    I think Australia is TIRED of winning every game, Crowd and Sponsers want them to let India few games at least...................lol

  • a1234s on February 13, 2012, 6:48 GMT

    People forget that India put the aussies under pressure on the field.

    The fast running between the wickets created those fielding lapses.

    How I wish the Indians had shown this urgency in the tests.

  • joseyesu on February 13, 2012, 6:36 GMT

    Alright, you want to rotate teh players. But why do you switch the places.I can understand when somebody is not playing well, you can protect him and give another place to prove his talent. But why Wade, who is performing well in top position and moved to 7th. And both matches he did not scored well. I hope you will do it again to prove you are right as like dhoni.

  • trumpoz on February 13, 2012, 6:31 GMT

    there were three things that won the game for india....... and none of them include MS Dhoni becuase in all reality India should have win with 5 overs to spare. 1) The final 10 overs of the Australian batting. The Indian bowlers bowled brilliantly - gave nothing for the Aussies to really get after. 2) Australia's fielding..... enough said. 3) The age-old problem for Australia...... bowling at the death. YORKERS! YORKERS and more YORKERS!!! If you slightly overpitch, fine. You can set fields to that, it makes it hard for batsman to get under the ball. If a batsman wants to play a ramp or a scoop - good luck they are risking their wicket (and personal safety). Take note of what was being done in T20 - full, wide, yorkers. THe odd wide was called, but it is much harder to hit those for 4 than a predictable good length ball.

  • zenboomerang on February 13, 2012, 6:02 GMT

    We expect captains to lead by example & Clarke has lead the way in this series... lol... Clarke's captaincy in ODI's is becoming disgraceful - really poor against SL but just as bad against India... Dropping M Hussey for Ponting who is in another slump - again... Brainfade... Opening with Ponting while out of form - brainfade... Running out Warner - brainfade... Putting Harris at point - brainfade... Not bowling D Hussey more - brainfade... Poor use of bowlers in last 10 overs - brainfade... Forget about the poor fielding - complain about the poor captaincy by Clarke...

  • rust01 on February 13, 2012, 5:27 GMT

    Those Indians on here complaining about the Oz commentators must be listening to something different. I think you guys are writing this just so you can have a whinge about something. The commentators were full of praise for India, but don't let the truth get in the way of a whinge.

  • farkin on February 13, 2012, 5:00 GMT

    they should rest ponting for the rest of the Commonwealth Bank Series

  • on February 13, 2012, 3:31 GMT

    well both teams were under pressure..as an indian, i just looked at one side of coin that indian team is under pressure..but, forgot that even australia was under pressure...the team which would have handled the pressure better would have emerged victorious and last night, it was india..

  • satish619chandar on February 13, 2012, 2:55 GMT

    I would rather say this is a one off failure for Australia.. I can't bet on Australia to lose when in same situation in future.. Not sure why they made Punter to open the innings.. Wade was excellent especially against Indians.. He should have continued to open.. With Christian and David H in middle order, they always had the firepower to score in last few overs.. Wade should continue to open on current form..

  • on February 13, 2012, 2:29 GMT

    Death bowling looks like a problem to me. didnt Mckay bowl nice juicy deliveries. Ash McDermott is the best death bowler in australia, but i know he wont get picked.

  • ebbie-qld on February 13, 2012, 2:20 GMT

    TJ RAMADOSS , I don't know which commentary you were watching but the local (Channell Nine ) commentary team kept replaying that shot at least ten times and I think Mick Slater called it one of the best shots off the back foot that he had ever seen. Contrags Dhoni for a well paced innings. Lets hope for some more of these close matches.

  • bobagorof on February 13, 2012, 1:35 GMT

    I have no problem with Australia resting or rotating players to give them a game. It was great to see Peter Forrest come in and do well - much better than he had been doing when playing for NSW. But the fielding was atrocious. It's been many a year since I've seen a fielding performance that poor, from any side. With a better effort, Australia could have had at least 2 extra wickets and saved a handful of extra runs, which would have made a huge difference. But India played well. They batted calmly, Gambhir was in great touch and Dhoni in particular timed his acceleration perfectly. A great win from India.

  • on February 13, 2012, 1:24 GMT

    @Tj Ramadoss. Finally someone nailed it. The aussie commentators are boring. All they ever talk about is how good Australia is. Well there are other teams in the competition and it wouldnt hurt to say a couple of good things about them.

  • on February 13, 2012, 0:38 GMT

    The funniest part of the whole match was the Australian commentators who didn't have much to say after the six was hit in the last over.

  • Meety on February 12, 2012, 23:49 GMT

    That was easily the worst ODI fielding display I have seen from an Ozzy unit in years. Actually can't remember a worse performance. I have NEVER seen Warner misfield until last night & it happenned about FOUR times! Punter misfielded two or three times, a couple of poor back ups, not sure what Harris was doing at Point, that throw was woeful. Not a great effort, some of the luck (Ghambir's lbw to the side), went against Oz as some streaky shots evaded some finger tips, but a typical Ozzy fielding effort would of meant that India would of had to get around 20 off the last over. With Dhoni, that possibly would not of been a problem. My only complaint about Clarke's captaincy was that I think Starc should of bowled one of the last overs. I thought bringing Doherty on at the death was inspired, but I think McKay should of bowled his overs earlier. Harris bowled the worst I've seen him bowl in a while & Starc was unthreatening. Well done India.

  • on February 12, 2012, 22:53 GMT

    i think this is the time to show the aushies their real character. They were over confident which paid off for india. They were doing unnecesary changes which were not required...be carefull from india in next game.k

  • on February 12, 2012, 22:14 GMT

    Mentioning Clarke's throw in the article is a bit rough. He was nearly on the horizontal angle, it was a difficult throw and he very nearly made it. Ryan Harris' throw, on the other hand, was a mind-blowing aberration.

  • Cricket_theBestGame on February 12, 2012, 22:08 GMT

    mike hussey should never be rested period. only if he is injured or asking for rest himself. it seems to me selectors looking to phase him out. first from t20 he was omitted and he came out firing in the first odi. resting policy should be more applicable to fast bowlers than batsmen.

  • Wozza-CY on February 12, 2012, 21:47 GMT

    Australias fielding last night was as bad as I have seen it. Fumbles & Misfields. We don't seem to hit the stumps anymore & why oh why does Ryan Harris field at backward point? In the dying overs this is one of the most important positions in the game that's why this position has been owned by the best in the business J.Rhodes, P.Collingwood, R.Ponting etc. We need to work on our death bowling also.....Faulkner is very good at this.

  • Wasim_Wasamadroota on February 12, 2012, 20:10 GMT

    A below par final 10 overs from Australia, countless misfields, fumbles, a juicy half volley followed by a high no-ball, you could be excused for thinking Australia had backed against themselves in this one. Well done Dhoni, it should have been wrapped up earlier though.

  • on February 12, 2012, 18:44 GMT

    I see people saying Aussie bowling was bad - not sure it was so much about bowling....the real difference was the fielding. The fielding quality had changed sides at Adelaide...Australia fielded like traditional India & India, like traditional Australia....Dhoni took too much of a risk, almost batting India out of the match, but that's another story.

  • Unmesh_cric on February 12, 2012, 17:09 GMT

    I think there were two key factors in India's win today... India's good running between the wickets and Australia's average fielding. The running between the wickets was good right from the start, starting with Sehwag and Gambhir...and it continued till the end. There were a couple of risky runs taken, but Australia could not take advantage of those and there were a few overthrows too.

  • world.cricketer on February 12, 2012, 17:06 GMT

    For what reason Your are going to drop one of this Forrest/D.hussey/Dan Christan/M.hussey for Playing Ponting. Drop HIm and get Watson as an opener.

  • gkannuchamy on February 12, 2012, 16:53 GMT

    Where's Mr. Chappell? Thought he would put forth his views and call for Ponting's retirement. Well, how would he? For he keeps his calls limited only for the senior men in the Indian camp.

  • Nampally on February 12, 2012, 16:43 GMT

    Firstly congrats. to Dhoni & theIndian team for their first Win in ODI against the Aussies.For once all top batsmen got into double figures and Gambhir led the way. Dhoni for once played with both his planted and rooted on the ground. His 110 M SIX was just as great as the helicopter SIX off Finn. In defeat all Captains give excuses! The Aussies escaped by the scruff of their necks against SLonly couple of days back.If only Indian batting rose to its potential, India would have won easily the Test series too.I still stay with my earlier plea that Full season tour(4 month) of England, Australia & SA by all Asian visiting teams will yield a totally different result.The present format of a friendly followed by 4 tests puts the visitors at a great disadvantage to produce on totally different pitches to those in Indian sub continent.Once India get used to these conditions they would have whitewashed the Aussies easily & same for England too. BCCI: please eliminate frustrating mini tours.

  • on February 12, 2012, 15:27 GMT

    Lol.you were lucky to get the top 3 wickets. Really,fielding was only a part of it.

  • Brumby90 on February 12, 2012, 15:22 GMT

    Pathetic fielding and bowling display Australia. Hang your head in shame

  • on February 12, 2012, 15:21 GMT

    With all due respect to Ricky's past fielding, I think it's time for him to leave ODI cricket once and for all! While batting, he is back to thrusting his foot way forward. And his fielding today...my dear, Aus lost about 15-20 runs there and the game was gone solely with that. Ricky looked lost in the field and people don't want to remember him like that.

  • Brumby90 on February 12, 2012, 15:18 GMT

    Disgraceful display by Australia!! That was the worse fielding performance I have ever seen from an aussie team. The bowling was horrible and the last two overs from Mckay show he is not a death bowler. He needs to learn to stop bowling exactly the same ball every time. Dhoni was waiting for the same delivery when it went for six.

  • Lallubhai on February 12, 2012, 15:01 GMT

    Lack of concentration OR was it bad fielding due to the pressure exerted by India's batting ? Please be honest about this . A little bit of pressure in the last 2 games and the OZ team don't as good as THEY think they are .

  • on February 12, 2012, 14:54 GMT

    lastly india has won odi's agnest aus..

  • on February 12, 2012, 14:45 GMT

    wow wow wow!!!! at the end of the day, indian fielding outclass aussie fielding??? can u believe it??

  • dsig3 on February 12, 2012, 14:20 GMT

    Fielding cost us the game. Not many times you can genuinely say that about any loss but you can tonight. The entire team was poor. When Ponting is missing simple assignments and looking silly you know its going to be a tough night.

  • on February 12, 2012, 14:04 GMT

    why on this earth is pup making punter to open ? why not wade ? too much experimentation ...unjustifiable !!

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  • on February 12, 2012, 14:04 GMT

    why on this earth is pup making punter to open ? why not wade ? too much experimentation ...unjustifiable !!

  • dsig3 on February 12, 2012, 14:20 GMT

    Fielding cost us the game. Not many times you can genuinely say that about any loss but you can tonight. The entire team was poor. When Ponting is missing simple assignments and looking silly you know its going to be a tough night.

  • on February 12, 2012, 14:45 GMT

    wow wow wow!!!! at the end of the day, indian fielding outclass aussie fielding??? can u believe it??

  • on February 12, 2012, 14:54 GMT

    lastly india has won odi's agnest aus..

  • Lallubhai on February 12, 2012, 15:01 GMT

    Lack of concentration OR was it bad fielding due to the pressure exerted by India's batting ? Please be honest about this . A little bit of pressure in the last 2 games and the OZ team don't as good as THEY think they are .

  • Brumby90 on February 12, 2012, 15:18 GMT

    Disgraceful display by Australia!! That was the worse fielding performance I have ever seen from an aussie team. The bowling was horrible and the last two overs from Mckay show he is not a death bowler. He needs to learn to stop bowling exactly the same ball every time. Dhoni was waiting for the same delivery when it went for six.

  • on February 12, 2012, 15:21 GMT

    With all due respect to Ricky's past fielding, I think it's time for him to leave ODI cricket once and for all! While batting, he is back to thrusting his foot way forward. And his fielding today...my dear, Aus lost about 15-20 runs there and the game was gone solely with that. Ricky looked lost in the field and people don't want to remember him like that.

  • Brumby90 on February 12, 2012, 15:22 GMT

    Pathetic fielding and bowling display Australia. Hang your head in shame

  • on February 12, 2012, 15:27 GMT

    Lol.you were lucky to get the top 3 wickets. Really,fielding was only a part of it.

  • Nampally on February 12, 2012, 16:43 GMT

    Firstly congrats. to Dhoni & theIndian team for their first Win in ODI against the Aussies.For once all top batsmen got into double figures and Gambhir led the way. Dhoni for once played with both his planted and rooted on the ground. His 110 M SIX was just as great as the helicopter SIX off Finn. In defeat all Captains give excuses! The Aussies escaped by the scruff of their necks against SLonly couple of days back.If only Indian batting rose to its potential, India would have won easily the Test series too.I still stay with my earlier plea that Full season tour(4 month) of England, Australia & SA by all Asian visiting teams will yield a totally different result.The present format of a friendly followed by 4 tests puts the visitors at a great disadvantage to produce on totally different pitches to those in Indian sub continent.Once India get used to these conditions they would have whitewashed the Aussies easily & same for England too. BCCI: please eliminate frustrating mini tours.