Well, after the second consecutive defeat in the second test despite a reasonably good start, there is not much left to say, but the Indian captain has tried to justify the situation after the fourth day’s play.
The action filled fourth day of the Brisbane Test was nothing short of one of the thunderstorms that the pitch is known for. It does not happen every day that we see 20 wickets fall for 281 runs. Although after the finish, team India found themselves hit the most.
Indians carelessly collapsed from 71 for 1 to 224 all-out in the first session. This does not happen to be not a big deal but the way almost all our key batsmen – having a lot of potential – had given up, it is not at all a positive sign for a team aspirant of being number one. Whatever combination we might try, our bowlers do not have that edge to get wickets in the first place. Many of the fans feel that this being the best possible squad, it will not be fair to expect much. But after seeing the recent performance of batsmen of team India, they have not proved their mettle either.
This is what Dhoni said, “It is disappointing and the most important thing is to reason out why it happened. Once you find that out, you can rectify the mistakes in the coming game. Today the first session was very crucial and I don’t think we handled it very well. Had we got a decent partnership going and taken the game on the fifth day, we could have exploited the conditions better. The morning session had a big impact on the game.”
Although Dhoni has pointed out certain issues, but on a personal note, not many of the supporters will be convinced. This is what Dhoni emphasized,
“We went for the morning practice and the wickets were not very good. Shikhar was batting, got hit and left. I had a hit as well and left early because we found the wicket to be uneven. By the time we came back to the dressing room, it was really close to the start of play. It’s then that we saw that Shikhar was not 100 per cent fit to bat. We could only give five-ten minutes to Virat to prepare. We didn’t handle it well because earlier we thought Shikhar was pretty okay to bat. This kind of thing creates a bit of unrest in the dressing room. One 20-25 minute partnership could have calmed things down but we couldn’t do it.”
Most of the fans do believe that the root cause happens to be the bare fact that our talented bowlers allowed Australia to add 258 runs for the last four wickets. However, Dhoni, while admitting the flaws on the part of the bowlers said, “Generally with a target of 120-130, the bowling team tends to throw in the towel. It was important that we fought until the last runs were scored. It was good to see the fast bowlers still running in, giving their 100 per cent and picking a few wickets.”
Hoping to do better in future he added,
“It will be a good learning curve for the team because they would realize that 80-90 extra runs really matter, especially in Australia. Here on the fifth day the wicket can really misbehave – the spinners get a bit of turn and a lot of bounce and the fast bowlers can get the ball to seam off the wicket.”
The Indian skipper also made it a point to elaborate he fact that unlike during their 0-4 loss Down Under in 2011, this time the team is putting up a much bigger and better fight. He emphasized,
“The exciting part is that we have competed, something we didn’t do the last time we were here. If you keep fighting, the game can change at any moment and you are suddenly back. With a bit more experience this team will do really well. The good thing is that the attitude of the boys has been really good. I hope we carry that on in the next two Tests as well.”
If one reviews that situation neutrally, while the fighting spirit of team India needs an encouragement but the hardcore realities are clearly indicating lack of a robust killing spirit – a necessary ingredient to get hold of any trophy.