Jonty Rhodes has an important piece of advice for India ahead of Australia tour
The first Test between the two sides gets underway on December 6 at The Gabba.
Updated - Oct 25, 2018 1:40 pm
South African fielding legend Jonty Rhodes had some valuable advice for the Indian Cricket Team as they prepare for an important tour of Australia that gets underway in November. After two overseas Test series losses against heavyweights South Africa and England, India have one last chance to prove themselves as a strong touring side when they travel Down Under for 3 T20Is, 4 Tests and 3 ODIs.
Head coach of the Indian Cricket Team Ravi Shastri had termed his men as the best travelling side from the country in the last decade or two, despite their humiliating 1-4 defeat against England in the 5-match Test series earlier this year. Although many have claimed that the scoreline did not paint the whole picture, India will definitely be aiming to bag a series win on foreign soil. Australia will be their final big test of the year, and with the hosts being sans Steve Smith and David Warner, this is probably their best chance.
Rhodes, therefore, suggested that it’s imperative that Virat Kohli and his team tighten up their game during key moments when they take on the Australians. Speaking at an event on Tuesday, he was all praises for India’s pace attack, who were surprisingly impressive in the England series, but also added that the seamers will need to adapt to the Australian conditions and the Kookaburra ball quickly if they wish to be successful.
Bowling the right length is key: Jonty Rhodes
“When India was in South Africa earlier this year, they lost the first two Tests, both close matches, within a session. In South Africa, the Indians bowled first at Cape Town and did not bowl the right length. It was only in the second innings they pitched the ball up and exploited the movement. By then it was too late,” he was quoted as saying to The Hindu.
“In Australia, where there can be some pace and bounce but less seam movement or swing than in England, the Indian pacemen have to bowl the in-between length on the fourth stump and create doubts in batsmen’s minds whether to go forward or back,” he explained.
Simultaneously, the former South African international said he’s eager to watch Prithvi Shaw bat Down Under. 18-year old Shaw has been a find for India in the longest format, who announced himself in style with a century on debut. Rhodes also mentioned that India captain Virat Kohli has been outstanding with the bat but he will certainly need support from his batsmen to win against Tim Paine’s side on home soil.
“The openers have to build a platform and I am waiting to see how Prithvi Shaw bats. Kohli has been outstanding with the bat but he cannot do it alone,” he concluded.
The India-Australia series kicks off with a T20I at The Gabba on November 21. The first of four Test matches will be held at the Adelaide Oval, beginning on December 6.