Trophy, pride and bragging rights on the line, as India takes on Australia at the Gabba

Auritro Ghosh
The Business of Sports
3 min readJan 14, 2021

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India looks to become the first team in 32 years to beat Australia at the Gabba.

The 4th and final test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy will be played at the Brisbane cricket ground. The ground is situated in the suburbs of Woolloongabba, or Gabba in popular culture, and the test match is called the ‘ Gabba Test.’

The ‘Gabba Test’

The ‘Gabba Test’

Australia has a fantastic record at the Gabba. They have played 55 times at that venue, won 33 times, drawn 13 times, tied 1 time and lost just 8 times. The last time Australia lost a test here was in the year 1988 and that was to an almighty West Indian team. The hero of that match was a fast bowler called Curley Ambrose, his 6 wickets earning him the man of the match award too.

Gabba, since 1988

Sourav Ganguly celebrates his century at Gabba

Since 1988 Australia have played 31 times at the Gabba, won 24 of them, drawn a mere 7, lost none. India on the other hand, have played thrice at Gabba since 1988.

Losing by 10 wickets, in 1991. Drawing the test in 2003, Sourav Ganguly scoring a masterful 144 in the first innings of the match. And losing by 4 wickets, in 2014 .

The Indian lineup for this test match (predicted)

On this tour, India had set a bold precedent. They had for the last 3 test matches announced their playing eleven a day before the test match. But they have broken that pattern and held back the eleven for this test, the decider if you may call it that.

The reason is simple, India has a lot of injuries in their ranks, and wants to give their players until the morning of the test match to recover. India will take a final call on the eleven before the match.

There will be two definite changes in the Indian eleven, Hanuma Vihari is out with a hamstring tear and Ravi Jadeja with a dislocated thumb.

Chances are that Mayank Agarwal will replace Vihari in the eleven, and Wriddhiman Saha will come in place of Ravi Jadeja. Mayank Agarwal though has a suspected hand injury, so if he doesn’t recover, Washington Sundar might take his place. Sundar is a top order bat for Tamil Nadu and a more than capable batsman at 6.

Rumour has it that Jasprit Bumrah is not fully fit for this match. Going by previous experiences on tour, India should never risk playing a fast bowler in the eleven unless he is more than 90% fit. T. Natarajan might get a look in if Bumrah doesn’t start. This left armer, will bring some variety to the Indian attack and will not be a bad selection.

India probable eleven:

Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Rishab Pant, Mayank Agarwal or Washington Sundar, Wriddhiman Saha, Ravi Ashwin, Navdeep Saini, Md. Siraj, T. Natarajan.

Australia has already announced its eleven:

David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Matthew Wade, Cameron Green, Tim Paine, Pat Cummins, Mitch Starc, Josh Hazelwood, Nathan Lyon.

Jubilant scenes from last test

India are on a high, but the ‘Gabba Test’ will test them. The Indian bowlers must find the right lengths to bowl and the Indian batters must exercise patience and attack the right balls.

This series has witnessed some great cricket, but unfortunately other issues have threatened to take the spotlight away from cricket. One would hope that this test match is remembered for its quality of cricket and nothing else.

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