India will have to lift themselves up if they are to square the series in Ranchi today after the Mohali game ended in agony for Dhoni’s men. Having had the tie under wraps till that game changing 48th over, it was undoubtedly a very disappointing loss for the Indians.
To begin with, they recovered brilliantly with the bat to post a 300 plus total thanks largely to Dhoni and Ashwin, when at one stage it looked like they would struggle to reach even 200. Then, having restricted the Australian batsmen to a stage where the asking rate had mounted to nearly 15 runs an over, ideally you wouldn’t expect someone like James Faulkner to wrest such a commanding advantage away from you.
But that’s what happened and predictably, Ishant Sharma, who bowled that crucial 30-run over, has come under severe criticism ever since the game finished. In a way, by retaining him for the remainder of the series, the selectors would hopefully have injected a fresh dose of confidence in him.
However, Ishant knows he’s no longer a junior bowler; he’s been around the block for six years now, so he can’t be repeating the same mistakes of old. He has to understand when a match situation calls for him to vary his pace and his line and length. In the modern game, every bowler gets hit for runs, but to survive the onslaught, you’ve got to come up with a different strategy.
Dhoni couldn’t have been more spot on when he said the team which bowls slightly better will win most of the games. And by that admission, India have it all to do as in all three outings thus far, the opposition have scored 300 plus.
We’ll have to see if they shake things up a bit; perhaps it may well be worth considering someone like Amit Mishra. He’s been bowling really well and has a lot of variations, so he could offer the side something different.
Australia bounced back strongly from their own crushing defeat in Jaipur, so there’s no reason why India can’t do the same!
Professional Management Group