India on auto fight mode as rain brings early end to Day 4 at Gabba
Team India under Rahane seem to be fighting just a bit longer, that much stronger and harder; and the results are showing.
This Indian team under Ajinkya Rahane’s leadership is different in their mindset. That the players are talented and have quality was never in question, but post the first test debacle at Adelaide it’s as if the players have become supremely resilient. So what has changed? Is it the dressing room environment? Is it the failed disruption tactics of the opposition? Is it the belief that is being shown in each player now? Maybe it’s all of the above or maybe it’s something else all together, but if you are a well wisher of Indian cricket you will be happy and have zero complaints.
India’s third choice bowling attack skittles 20 Aussie wickets at the Gabba
India’s bowling attack in the fourth test, consisting of, Mohammed. Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Natarajan, Navdeep Saini, Washington Sundar, is possibly India’s third choice attack.
The pecking order you would have before them would be, Bhubaneswar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Md. Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Ravi Ashwin, Ravi Jadeja, and Kuldeep Yadav too, on a good day. But the way in which four of these five fought, injured Saini unfortunately out of count, was a surreal watch.
Mohammed Siraj the kid from the by lanes of Hyderabad, who recently lost his father, bowled his heart out in this series. Every single time he had the ball in his hand, he gave all he had. No matter the abuse, no matter the sledges, nothing affected his performance. So it wasn’t a surprise when Siraj got five in the second innings in this test. Siraj’s gallantry will inspire hundreds to take up the sport and bowl fast.
Next up, Shardul Thakur. The last time he played a test, he’d lasted just 11 balls. After that, in his own words, he had to go back to domestic cricket and face the grind. After the white ball series, he was asked to stay back by the team management. He got picked for this test and boy has he delivered, with 7 wickets in the match and a half century in the first innings, he might just be the all rounder that India was always looking for.
When Ravi Ashwin pulled out of the test due to back spasms, the Indian team management had to pick one between Kuldeep Yadav or Washington Sundar. India went with Sundar, and that raised quite a few eyebrows too. But the way Sundar delivered with both the bat and ball was outstanding. His technique, his temperament with both bat and ball were commendable too. It’s not certain when he will get another test shot, but Washington Sundar has done enough to make the selectors sit up, take notice and applaud.
T. Natarajan, another player who was asked to stay back as net bowler, got his chance and did well, picking up three crucial wickets in the first innings.
Australia at one point were 89/0. From there India fought back, and kept fighting back. Eventually getting the Australians, all out, for 294. From the Australian point of view, all got starts but no one scored a big one, with only Smith getting a fifty(55).
Set a target of 328 to win, India are at 4/0 at the end of Day 4. With chances of heavy showers on Day 5, Australia took too long to declare, and that might come back to haunt them.
At the moment all three results are possible, so all we can do is wait and watch.