Not India’s fault that this Australian team was without David Warner and Steve Smith: Sunil Gavaskar
To make the matters worse, not a single Australian player could score a century in the series.
Updated - Jan 8, 2019 10:55 am
India, on Monday, scripted their first-ever Test series win in Australia after the fourth Test ended in a draw. Many feel that the absence of Australia’s batting stalwarts – Steve Smith and David Warner – was one of the reasons behind the defeat. However, former India skipper Sunil Gavaskar does not think on the same line.
Both Warner and Smith are currently serving their respective 12-month ban for their involvement in the ball-tampering scandal during the South Africa tour last year. Both the players were the batting mainstays of the Australian team especially in Tests and the hosts clearly struggled in their absence. In seven completed innings, Australia touched or crossed the 300-run mark just twice with the 326-run in the second Test being their highest total. They were also dismissed for less than 200 on two occasions.
To make the matters worse, not a single Australian player could score a century in the series with Marcus Harris’ in the fourth Test being the highest individual score. Consequently, India thoroughly dominated the series and walked away with the Border-Gavaskar series after returning home empty-handed in the past 11 attempts.
However, many feel that the result could have been different had Smith and Warner played. The last time India played a Test series in Australia, both the players had played important roles in their team’s 2-0 win. While Smith had top-scored in the series with a staggering 769 runs, Warner had amassed 427 runs. Smith had scored four centuries while Warner had scored three.
Gavaskar hits out at critics:
Gavaskar, however, has taken a shot at the critics, saying that India are not at fault for winning the series in Warner and Smith’s absence. The legendary skipper went on to hail the series win as ‘a great achievement’.
“It is not India’s fault that this Australian team was without David Warner and Steve Smith. Australia could have handed them shorter bans but obviously it was thought that one-year bans would be good for Australian cricket, that they needed to be made an example for anyone who brings the game into disrepute,” Gavaskar said during a post-match.
“India played the opposition they were presented with and it’s a great achievement for them,” the former Indian captain added.