Thursday, January 12, 2012

Preview, Australia versus India, 3rd Test, Perth

The much anticipated Border/Gavasker series has descended into a disappointing farce due to the embarrassingly shameful display from India. It has resembled both Team threatening a real classic in the lead up, and then India saving the expected conflict within the encounters by offering to pick up Australia, drive them to the graveyard and dig a hole for them to bury them in. 

This 3rd Test might see the last rites administered to India, and duly lets look at it in further depth


Likely Team

The endless scutterbug over the pitch might see Australia fall for the three card trick and play 4 fast bowlers. If James Pattinson was not injured and it was Ryan Harris joining him in a 4 prong attack with Peter Siddle and Ben Hilfenhaus I would see the sense in it. For all are quality fast bowlers that are not only wicket taking options, but keep things real tight from a scoring sense. 

The likely inclusion of Mitchell Starc would be a huge mistake because at present he is nowhere near to being Test class. He lacks the consistency in quality as seen in one or two buffet balls he delivers every over that get out of form batmen into form..

Duly Nathan Lyon should be retained because he has only struggled by the fact that all spinners struggle against Indian batsmen.

This will fall on deaf ear with the Selectors picking Starc to leave the Team like this

Warner, Cowan, Marsh, Ponting, Clarke, Hussey, Haddin, Starc, Harris, Siddle, Hilfenhaus.

The Key for Australia to Win

The 2 Tests so far the Aussies have had their collective foots on Indian throats with this Test setting up a stage for them to deliver the killer blow.

They have overwhelmed them in every aspect of play with their bowling unit reducing the revered Indian batting unit to rubble. That unit has taken a blow with a foot injury meaning the exceptional James Pattinson to be out of the rest of the series, but his replacement Ryan Harris is arguably Australia's best bowler. Meaning the Team will not miss a beat.

On the other side of the game the batting has done the job and has improvement in it. Most notably in the top three that has scored 145 runs at an average of 16.11 in the series so far. As Michael Clarke alluded to in his interview today all three have proven themselves in the Test arena before and have the faith of the Team.

A lift from those three would be decisive in this Test in support of the excellent form of the written off veterans in Mike Hussey and Ricky Ponting. As well as Michael Clarke, who has been masterful with the willow in hand since assuming the Captaincy

The only other major concern in the Team is Brad Haddin, who has been below par behind the stumps and with the bat in hand. He will probably last this series out and then be replaced.


Likely Team

LOL- after watching the puerile rubbish that has performed under the Indian logo in the first two games of the series you could justify in sacking most of the Team. Only Zaheer Khan and Sachin Tendulkar would be safe.

In the lead up to this game most of the attention has been over 3 players in Virat Kohli, VVS Laxman and Rohit Sharma taking two spots in the batting. It is an easy choice in my eyes for Kohli is not a Test batsmans bootlace especially away from the road pitches of Asia and needs to go.

It seems Ravichandran Ashwin has been made one of the scapegoats for the Teams insipid displays with him likely to get the axe. Ar first Pragyan Ohja, the wily left arm spinner was touted to replace him, but India in the last few hours seems to be buying into the 4 paceman attack.

Leaving the Team like this

Gambhir, Sehwag, Dravid, Tendulkar, Laxman, Rohit, Dhoni, Zaheer, Ishant, Yadav, Vinay Kumar

The Keys For India to Win

Sport is full of remarkable comebacks and indeed India pulled off one at this same venue in 2008 after another Sydney disaster.

Though the situation in that series is very different to the current malaise of the Team.

That on the evidence of how beaten and bowed they were in Sydney are fractured beyond repair.

We have to give respect to the chances of miracles happening. Meaning a few things must happen to facilitate an Indian come back in this Test.

The first and foremost is the Team to come together in a group resembling the tightness of a clenched fist in support of each other. Especially amid reports of dissension in the ranks that were hastily dismissed by all associated with the Team, but where their is smoke there is fire and duly blazes are burning in Team India at present.

Ideally, M.S.Dhoni falling down a bottomless pit on the way to the game freeing the Team of his sincere incompetence as Captain would greatly aide in spirits being lifted. For he has taken much of the credit for the Teams recent successes, but in the Teams times of crisis as seen in this series and in England. He has resembled a waterproof teabag in his ability to foster any positive vibe in his troops

Outside of a much needed attitudinal shift in the minds of the player. Further redemption needs to be facilitated by the batsmen viewed as legends actually performing.

All of Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, and even Sachin Tendulkar have been measured on a scale from the true rubbish of Sehwag to the barely average of Dravid and Laxman. Then the good, but nowhere near the standard expected of Sachin, who has teased throughout the series without ever fully delivering.

I also forgot Gautam Gambhir, who fits in between rubbish and barely average so far in this series.

When you include the batting bunnies Virat Kohli and M.S.Dhoni in the Aussie conditions to the struggles of these aforementioned greats. You can understand why the batting has gone down like a deck of cards.

In the face of the batting struggles, the bowling that at times has been accomplished and big hearted has been withered away in the mind as well as the body.

If the batting can lift it will provide a much needed boost to the bowling unit through the support of runs on the board and the associated pressures it allows.

All these things happening would prompt the renaissance that India so needs to come back in this series through a miracle win here.

The Legendary WACA Pitch

Legendary is the perfect term for this pitch giving homage to its blistering fast and bouncy demeanour....

That was the past tense of it.... for we have not seen a 'traditional WACA' pitch that so created its legend in the 1970's since the late 80's.

It will have bounce and pace, but not to the lethal levels that the Media tries to whip up a frenzy over on a annual basis. Making the reality of it being a very good batting track that gives real value for shots with the super quick outfield.

400 in a day batting in Perth is a logical goal if you get in with how the ball comes perfectly onto the bat, the trueness of the bounce, and the value you get for your shots

My Prediction

After fuming over India's shameful display in Sydney, I would not back them to beat an Australian School girls Team.

So they will not get within a bulls roar of this Australian Team.

Sadly, they might completely implode with an innings loss


  1. I have been reading your blogs regularly. You can delete my comment if you don't like but I feel you elevate teams to the moon if they do well, and mercilessly scuff them if they don't; esp India. A good critic will also discuss why things have gone wrong in addition to what are they. Anyways, this was my opinion. Nevertheless, your blogs are good to read.

    1. Why would I delete it Amrut- it is valuable feedback. Though I think India deserves merciless criticism for how bad they have been for many viewed this series as their best chance to win in Australia. Also I thought I gave the reason for most of their ills in regards to Dhoni's abject leadership and the batting that is so revered being rubbish