There is red-hot anger, bewilderment and embarrassment in our fans : Greg Chappell
New Delhi : Former Australia cricketer Greg Chappell stated that fans back home are extremely disappointed over the visitors losing the first two Tests of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy inside three days and has urged the side to showcase their usual grit and tenacity in the last two matches.
After losing the first Test by an innings and 132 runs in Nagpur inside three days, Australia lost the second Test to India by six wickets in New Delhi, which meant their chances of winning the Test series came to an end as India retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
“What can Australia do from here? Firstly, pick their best team and then play with the passion, tenacity and grit which is our hallmark. Australian fans know that it is tough in India.”
“They can accept getting beaten by a better side, but they won’t cop seeing an Australian team playing recklessly and bowled out in a session or two and turning its toes up inside three days.
There is red-hot anger, bewilderment and embarrassment in our fans,” wrote Chappell in his column for ‘The Sydney Morning Herald’ on Saturday. Australia will now play the remaining two Test matches in Indore and Ahmedabad from March 1-5 and March 9-13 respectively.
“The Australian public are rightly incensed that our team has shown so little fight in the series so far.” “Sights of a batsman being dismissed playing the reverse sweep first ball, and playing as though this series is not critical to the future, rankle.
Australian cricket must realise that playing against India is not a sideshow, but the big show on par with or bigger than The Ashes,” added Chappell, who coached India in the past.
He also thinks that Cameron Green and Mitchell Starc should play in the Indore Test after missing the first two matches due to recovering from their respective finger injuries.
“Starc and Green must be underdone but they must play. Starc is a match-winner on his day so he must be used in short, destructive bursts when a new batter comes to the crease.
Green and Boland will have to pick up the slack if the rhythm eludes him.” “Green will be the man in the spotlight. The Indian spinners will be pleased to see another rookie come to the crease, but it is to be hoped that he has learnt from watching the travails of his colleagues in the first two Tests and that he uses his extra reach judiciously.”
“Even though the first few overs are critical to surviving, Green must still look for the scoring opportunities. This doesn’t mean looking for big shots, he must just keep turning the strike over and building partnerships.”
Chappell signed off by saying Australia’s lower-order batting has to step up in Indore and Ahmedabad, something which has been a deciding factor in India’s victories in the first two matches.
At Nagpur and New Delhi, India’s lower order comprising their spinners Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel and Ravindra Jadeja have slammed decisive knocks which bailed the hosts out of tough situations.
“The Australian lower-order is not as gifted as their Indian counterparts, but they must work a lot harder than they have so far. Lower-order runs, as we have seen from the Indians, can break the opposition bowlers’ hearts and the opposition batsmen’s resolve.
The Indian lower order must not be allowed to bat comfortably on the front foot.” “The players inherited a proud legacy from Australian teams of the past; this is the time for them to stand up.
Australian cricket has had their collective noses bloodied in the first two Tests and everyone involved must take their share of the blame. If the team is to turn the tables in the series, it will help that the wounds are not self-inflicted from here on.”
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