The opinions and discussions on the Indian team‘s performances outside India has been the talk of the town for last 4 years. Indian team’s performances in Test matches outside India has been pathetic to put it mildly. The dependable and best batsman like Pujara and Kohli have failed in the recently concluded England tour. The pace bowling does not meet the international standard by any strecth of imagination. Here we look SWOT analysis of Indian team ahead of Australian Test matches.
The Indian team has the potential to do well in the batting department. As we look at openers, we have Dhawan, Vijay, Rahane. Among four of them Shikhar Dhawan and Vijay are best equipped to do job on those pitches. In Test matches in batting order are Pujara, Kohli, Rohit and Raina. The sixth position is occupied by wicketkeeper/batsman MS Dhoni. The team misses a genuine all rounder like Kapil Dev. We have bits and pieces all rounders like Jadjea, Ashwin and Binny. Among the pace bowlers, India prefers playing with three fast bowlers. Out of Mohmmad Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron the musical chairs will continue depending on their form.
The Indian batting record in overseas in the past 1 year has been a disappointment. But for the second Test at Lords the batting failed misberably in other matches. Openers Dhawan/Gambhir-Vijay, Pujara and Kohli were exposed to some quality swing bowling which distrubed the rythm of batting again and again. No batsman was consisent though there were one or two good batting exhbitis from Rahane, Vijay and Dhoni each. They will face similar quality pace bowling in Australia. Over all our bowling lacks quality to get the opposite team out twice in Test matches outside India. We have one or two genuine fast bowlers. Our spinners especailly in Test cricket outside India are not successful as the pitches are not suitable for them. Dhoni’s capatincy outside India is also found wanting at times. The slip catching needs to improve if they have win Test matches in Australia.
The ongoing Duleep trophy matches provide the fringe players an oppournity to make a case for the series. The bowlers like Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Mohmmad Shami, Umesh Yadav can take the advantage of the bouncy pitches in Australia. The new support staff must plan to win matches to correct the dismal overseas record.
The Physio must work on intense training on fast bowlers like Bhuvneshwar kumar, Mohmmad Shami, Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron so that they can bowl fast. Our fast during the tour get injured or drop their pace for want of stamina. The Indian batsman will be really tested on fast bouncy pitches in Australia. The Indian team must safeguard against injuires.