- Sinchan Saha | February 27, 2023 | 1:14 pm
Mark Taylor, a former Australian captain, has questioned the Australian batsmen’s execution on “Unique” Indian pitches as the Australian Test team enters the third Test match of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy at Indore trailing by 0-2. Taylor also described India’s pitches as unique, noting that Australia lost the first Test in Nagpur by an innings and 132 runs and lost the second Test in Delhi by six wickets.
“Yes, conditions in India are different. Yes, the Australian side goes there more often these days with the IPL. But the pitches there are unique. There is not a doubt about that. They are putting out slow low turners, which suit their type of play. And we are not used to playing on those types of pitches. We went over there with a mentality to be positive to take it on, be aggressive which is not a bad mentality to have. But you gotta have a technique for that. The execution was poor in the second Test,”said Taylor while speaking with Wide World of Sports.
Australia has left the four-Test series without captain Pat Cummins, leaving the team with a selection dilemma. Steve Smith will take over as captain of the team in his absence because the pacer has returned to Australia due to a family emergency. Taylor, who represented Australia in 104 Test matches and scored 7525 runs, recalled Australia’s 1998 comeback in the final match of the three-match series in India. The Australian team led by Taylor won the third Test match at Bangalore by eight wickets after losing the first match by 179 runs at Chennai and the second by 219 runs at Kolkata.
“I did not play a lot of Test matches in India. In 1998, we got beaten in the first test at Chennai in a pretty good game. Second Test, we played at Eden Gardens and got absolutely hammered. It’s not unique what has happened to the Australian team, it’s happened in the past too. We got beaten by an innings and 220 runs in Eden Gardens. It’s not too much fun. That’s what happened this time. All the sudden, you find the game moves ahead very quickly. As we saw with Australia on Day three in the last test match. All of a sudden, things start going in the wrong direction, it’s hard to stop the momentum. That’s happened with us in Eden Gardens. The good news for us was that we did turn it around in the final test in Bengaluru. We won on a much better even pitch. You can turn it around but it’s not easy when the pitches are as they are now,”said Taylor.
While Taylor has blamed the pitches, the former Australian captain praised the likes of Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja.
“Those pitches are unique as I said. They suit the two Ravis ( Ashwin and Jadeja) very well. You always bowl stump to stump and they are always challenging your front pad and stumps. That’s why the sweep and reverse sweep are dangerous. You miss the ball and you are going to be out. It’s a high risk shot,”said Taylor.
Additionally, according to Taylor, the Australian selector will make a decision regarding opener David Warner’s future. The Australian opener has stated that, despite the fact that he will be side lined for the remaining two Test matches in India due to an elbow injury, he intends to continue playing until 2024.
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“Dave has come out and said he wants to be around until 2024, so he wants to go to England later this year, he wants to play in Australia next summer. So he has really thrown the ball over to (selectors) George Bailey, Tony Dodemaide, (and captain) Pat Cummins, the selectors to say ‘OK what do you want to do?’.To me, the selectors have got to make a decision. Whether they take David Warner and one of probably Bancroft or Renshaw to England, Dave would be the first opener picked. Or they make a decision now and say righto, we’re going to take the two younger guys… we’re going to make a change right now,”said Taylor.