Ian Chappell warns India to not take Australia Test series lightly
Australia will be without two of their most prolific batsmen Steve Smith and David Warner.
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Former Australian cricketer Ian Chappell has warned the Indian Cricket Team to not take the upcoming Test series against Australia lightly. India has ended up on the losing side in two of their important overseas tours: they lost 2-1 to South Africa in early 2018 and suffered a heavy 4-1 defeat against England a few weeks ago. The number one Test side’s next overseas assignment will be against Australia, where they lost their last four-match series 2-0 in 2015.
Nevertheless, Australia will be without two of their most prolific batsmen Steve Smith and David Warner. The two cricketers, as well as opener Cameron Bancroft, were handed bans following their involvement in the ball-tampering scandal against South Africa. On paper, the Australian squad might look considerably weaker since their big guns will not be available. But Chappell has warned India to not take the Australian team lightly, even in the absence of Smith and Warner.
Despite being the no.1 Test side in the world, India has only won 2 of the last 8 Tests they have played overseas. Virat Kohli‘s boys have failed to assert their dominance away from home, which has been a weakness of the Indian team for several years now.
Positives from recent defeats
However, the series scorelines don’t paint the full picture of the current Indian team. India’s bowlers performed exceptionally well in English conditions. Moreover, the Indian skipper, who had a miserable tour of England in 2014, scored runs aplenty in the recently concluded series. As a unit, Kohli and his boys will take these positives forward as they prepare for an important tour Down Under. But India is still struggling to find batsmen who can stay at the crease so that the team doesn’t have to rely on Kohli as much.
In England it was movement through the air and off the seam that created regular problems for them – apart from Virat Kohli – but it will be the extra bounce in Australia that sorts the men from the boys: Ian Chappell
While Australia might look the weaker side on paper, Ian Chappell still believes that the Indians must not treat the tour casually and that they would still have a lot to do during the tour.
“India now have to look on rehabilitating their reputation in the highly anticipated series against Australia but the batting inadequacies have to be addressed. While Australia’s batting is questionable, with their two best players, Steven Smith and David Warner, missing through suspension, the bowling attack is still extremely strong,” Chappell wrote in his column for ESPNCricinfo.
“If Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Patrick Cummins and Nathan Lyon remain fit then the Indian batsmen will be in for a challenging time. In England it was movement through the air and off the seam that created regular problems for them – apart from Virat Kohli – but it will be the extra bounce in Australia that sorts the men from the boys,” he added.
The Indian team will begin their tour Down Under on November 21 with 3 T20Is. The all-important Test series will kick off at the Adelaide Oval on December 6. After playing four Tests, the two teams will also clash against each other in 3 ODIs in the new year.