India v Australia, 3rd ODI, Mohali October 19, 2013

'Attacking seamers was our only chance' - Faulkner

ESPNcricinfo staff

India's death-bowling problems are well documented, and Australia's batsmen seemed to know all about them, timing their late assault in Mohali to perfection to complete an improbable chase. James Faulkner, India's wrecker-in-chief on the night, said after the game he knew better than to go after offspinner R Ashwin, while Adam Voges, Australia's top scorer, said Faulkner had specifically looked to get after Ishant Sharma in an over that changed the game.

"I didn't feel I could get Ashwin over to the long boundary, with his carom balls. So I thought if I could just get seven or eight off him and target the other end … that was our only chance of winning, to take 20 runs each from the medium pacers," Faulkner said after his team chased down 304, needing 44 off the final three overs. Ashwin had bowled the 47th over and the pair of Voges and Faulkner took eight off it, with just one boundary. The next over, Ishant was thrown the ball and, according to Voges, Faulkner said: "This is it, I am going after this."

And go he did, slamming four sixes, a four and running a two to take 30 off Ishant and bring the equation down to a very manageable 14 off 12. Ashwin bowled the following over too, and again Faulkner and Voges sensibly knocked him around for five, before easing to victory off seamer Vinay Kumar.

While Faulkner's innings was "extraordinary", as his captain George Bailey termed it, Ishant did provide him with the opportunities to hit out. The pace bowler pitched short repeatedly, bowled length and delivered only one full ball, and even that delivery allowed Faulkner the room to have a swing.

Asked if the Indian seamers crumbled under pressure, Faulkner said, "There is always pressure to bowl at that stage, I know that as I have done that a few times for Australia. It's just a matter of if you can execute [your skills] or not. There are going to be days when you would look silly out there, and that has happened to me a lot of times. But there are other time when you might bowl a really good over and win it for the team."

Faulkner's late assault turned the game completely after 91 were required off the last nine overs when he arrived at the crease. He reached his half-century off 24 deliveries while Voges held the other end together with a solid 76.

"It was a very good innings from Vogsy," Faukner said. "It's clear that you struggle early in the innings, but to battle the way through like he did and help me out when I was struggling initially, I think he batted exceptionally well with a mature head."

Australia are ahead in the series with four matches to play and Faulkner expected it to be a close fight between the two top ODI teams.

"Both teams are ranked 1 and 2 for a reason and you have season how close the games have been," he said. "It was a kick in the guts, the second game in Jaipur. To score 360 and have them chase the total one down was really disappointing. We knew we had to bounce back with a good game tonight and now we are 2-1 up in the series. It's going to be a really tough contest for the next four games."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on October 21, 2013, 12:21 GMT

    I notice they getting big scores like the other night ,Aussie score 359 , India score 360 to win that game ! But because the runs they making on small grounds, who remember Australia score an amazing 434 then South Africa went to beat that score 434 as well, that was a little grounds as well ! If that was played at the MCG , there's no way they would score that many on that ground ! Let hope the Aussie take the series !

  • Dummy4 on October 21, 2013, 9:51 GMT

    aussies back on to their best ??????? without clarke lets hope they be the best again

  • Android on October 21, 2013, 8:52 GMT

    go aussies go....hit every indian bowler out of the park.

  • Dummy4 on October 21, 2013, 7:06 GMT

    Australia back in track again to rule the world of Cricket...........

  • Dummy4 on October 21, 2013, 5:32 GMT

    India think that they can win every match. They are very arrogant on the field too. It was the same with Aussies a few years ago. Then I was supporting any team against Aussies. Now I back any team against India. '

  • Dummy4 on October 21, 2013, 5:13 GMT

    Brad go take your views elsewhere

  • Shamalka on October 21, 2013, 3:18 GMT

    The biggest problem for India is that Dhoni believes in his luck & instinct too much which is backed by former Indian Cricketers, BCCI and the Indian public.

  • Dummy4 on October 20, 2013, 22:27 GMT

    Who cares? Another meaningless win in a meaningless series.

  • Advait on October 20, 2013, 21:28 GMT

    He called the bowlers medium pacers!! Wish it wasnt true though

  • Alex on October 20, 2013, 20:54 GMT

    Yorker is good if you have the curve on the ball and pace. If you are 140+ then yorker will be effective. Slow yorker will become overpitched deliveries easy to hit by batsman moving up few steps. So basically indian bowlers do not have pace.