Is Australia's dominance over? October 23, 2008

Down or out?

The defeat in Mohali has underlined that Australia are more vulnerable than ever. Does it mark the end of their decade and more of domination, though?

The mighty have fallen © Getty Images

Kim Hughes
former Australia captain
The challenge I feel is now for India to follow up this victory in the next two Tests. Australia played very well in Bangalore and could've won that game if the Indian tailenders had not played so well. To be the best you need to beat the opposition convincingly. To be No.1 you've to be the best for at least two years, and Australia have been for the last ten years at least. So for countries like India the reality is that a few of their own legends are going to retire soon.

Bishan Singh Bedi
former India captain
Let's not kid ourselves. After being on top for a very long time, one doesn't just vanish. It's all part of the game. They will plug the holes very quickly because they have a very strong system. I wouldn't hasten to judge the present situation. The Aussies have always performed consistenly over a longish period, and that is well established.

Mike Gatting
former England captain
Certainly, from what they were, when you lose world-class players like Glenn McGrath, Shane Warne and Adam Gilchrist, you just can't replace that at all. So one would say they aren't as strong as they were. I would say their dominance is likely to be challenged from all parts of the world. India obviously have shown they can do that. But England, South Africa, and even Sri Lanka at home will fancy their chances. Australia have come down towards the major pack again, and there'll be quite a bit of fight happening there.

Ray Jennings
former South Africa coach
Australian cricket still has the depth - probably not enough to dominate in the way they've dominated in the past but still to be in the top three. In sport you do have ways of dominance. I mean India have also dominated because of the quality players, the seniors, they've got. They'll have to start looking for new permutations. South Africa are in the same boat. But Australia's rebuilding phase will be a lot quicker than most countries because they've got the depth and they've got the experience of playing around the world.

Interviews by Nagraj Gollapudi

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Sripradha on October 25, 2008, 15:31 GMT

    To even speculate about the downfall of the Aussies seems childish.People talked a lot about 2007 World Cup being an open one.But what happened eventually?As an Indian, I am really very happy about the Indian drubbing of the Aussies.But I am always carefull in judging teams especially teams like Australia.They need just one criticism about their bad performance to kindle their spirits.They don't get discouraged by criticisms.You can take the World Cup 2007 as the best example.So as Indians, Please don't even utter a word against Aussies for they will come really hard at you and you'll regret all the talk!!!!!!

  • Darshan on October 25, 2008, 12:38 GMT

    There is absolutely no doubt that Australia is a good side. It was just one bad game so far, after years of dominance. This may just be an illusion. The mark of a great side is rising up from the dust to compete. We saw Aussie lose the Ashes, people were pointing fingers at Ponting, out of form players were dropped, and yet after that series Australia still dominated until now. I would not be suprised if they come hard and strong in the next game, just like India did in the second test against Sri Lanka (after being out played in the first). There is no doubt that the team from down under will miss the brilliance of Gilly, or the magic of Warne. However, it gives younger players the opportunity to make a name for themselves. Perhaps they may not be as good as Warne but you never know. For ex; Mendis has just come in and he is making Murali seem impotent at the moment anyway. Sure the younger players have a lot to learn, but Aussie still have the resources to defeat anyone on any day.

  • Kristan on October 25, 2008, 3:01 GMT

    I'd put my money on Australia being on top of the ICC test rankings without hesitation. India might play well against Australia, but they are pretty average against others - as shown in Sri Lanka series. It will be interesting to see how England fair against India, Sth Africa against Australia, all good series. Indians have lots of close to retirement players, maybe 1 or 2 years behind the Australian retirees. Enjoy the Indian performance (if it lasts longer than 1 series) whilst you can. Marsh, Pomersbach, Ronchi, Hilfenhaus, Tait are all waiting...

  • Lucky on October 25, 2008, 1:35 GMT

    No Doubt Australia Is Still A Very Good Side. The Loss To India Is Hugh Blow To Them. They May Lose Their No: 1 Slot, But They Can Maintain Their Stance In The Top 3 For Some Time. The Biggest Problem For The Aussies Is They Don't Have A Good Spinner Now In The Class Of Shane Warne. They Will Win Matches At Home, Because Of Their Pace Attack, But In The Asian Region They Will Continue To Perform Poorly, Unless They Find A Good Spinner To Some Standard. Australia Should 've Played A Extra Spinner Long Side Warne. Then By Now He Would Have Got The Experience. Sri Lanka Is A Very Good Example, They Have Found Ajantha Mendis While Muriali Is Playing. Also Their Batsman Don't Use Their Feet To The Spinners. Very Soon India Pakistan & Sri Lanka Will Be Top Teams In World Cricket. Good Luck To The Poor Aussies!

  • Nishant on October 24, 2008, 22:06 GMT

    I feel that once Symmo comes back and rookie Marsh hits his stride the Aussies will be head and shoulders above everyone else once more. Did anyone see how their A team handled india's A team before the tour started? Australia has very capable back ups and in a short while they will find their place in the line up.

  • Abhilash on October 24, 2008, 10:37 GMT

    I totally agree with Mr.Bedi. One doesn't stay on top of other teams just by fluke. They have a very strong system in place and more importantly the self-belief about whatever they carry out doing. They maybe challenged on more occasions but that does not bring down their level. The onus is now on India to sustain their momentum and be more consistent in different conditions. For that to happen, we need to prepare better pitches in India to assist the fast bowlers that we have at our disposal now. Australia will definitely have a rethink on its strategies with regard to bowling and field placements for the third test.

  • Satish on October 24, 2008, 10:07 GMT

    I do agree that it will take 2-3 years (or more) for Australia to be "back to the pack".

    But and thats a very big but for Australia to be considered weakened teams like South Africa and Sri Lanka have to beat them and till date we have seen only a lot of talking from the others when it comes to playing Australia.

    My whole point has been that India stands above the rest because of their ability to raise the game against Australia as compared to what the so-called "teams better than India" have managed.

  • Michael on October 24, 2008, 4:41 GMT

    I find it interesting that the definition of who is the best team seems to be circling around India's performances against Australia - holding Australia to a draw or getting the occasional win. To me, that doesn't sound like the best team in the world, it sounds like a team trying to convince other people. India (or any other team, for that matter) will be regarded as the best team when they regularly beat opposition from all over the globe, home and away, on a regular basis. Considering how they lost to Sri Lanka (being thumped in their 2 lossses), an impressive showing in this series isn't yet enough to dislodge Australia in my opinion. Australia certainly don't have the dominance they are used to over the last 10-15 years, and they are quickly coming back to the pack. But I believe it will take another 2-3 series losses before Australia's position is seriously challenged. The challenge for India is to maintain their standard when their current stars retire over the next year.

  • Ashwin on October 24, 2008, 3:55 GMT

    You're not just Australia for nothing, they're champions and will stay, they're just down but never out, watch them bounce back as they have previously done. It is inevitable. Australia shall dominate once again, it is sad but true. Hopefully India can change things and maybe this time make it permanent, say seal the deal with a kiss?

  • Cricinfouser on October 24, 2008, 3:05 GMT

    The current Australian team is definitely vulnerable at least in India. Having said that they are still a very aggressive team. Thanks to Sachin and Sourav for bailing out India from a demoralizing position at Mohali. What Indians achieved after finishing 1st innings was definitely special.

    Indian team has been doing well when it comes bowling for a long time now. However, they were never got a strong support from the batting line-up. Mohali stats (there were only 2 hundreds scored - Gambhir and Ganguly) clearly shows that Indians won because of contribution from every individual in the team. There was no big score from a single player.

    Australians have achieved this consistently since last 10yrs or even more I guess. They have always played as a team and thus their success rate is not surprising. If Indians focus on achieving a team performance (Rather than focusing on a single outstanding victory at Mohali) as they did in Mohali, they won't be far from becoming a champion either.

  • No featured comments at the moment.