India and Australia are fighting it out in the four-Test series for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, as India earned a hard-fought draw in the third Test, in Sydney. Before the series moves to Brisbane's decider, we look at the crucial talking points the match presented.
India came up with a commendable performance to earn a hard-fought draw against Australia in the third Test, at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). Thus, the series will now be decided in the final Test, in Brisbane. But, before heading over, we analyse the top talking points presented in the match.
Shubman Gill- A star in the making: The Indian openers have not had the best of the series so far. Nonetheless, the one guy who has shone amidst the department's diversities is the young gun, Shubman Gill. He has scored 161 runs in four innings and has the third-best average in the series for the side, of 53.66. What is interesting to note is his ability to bat as per the situation demanded, besides attacking the loose deliveries. However, it would certainly be interesting to see how he fares in Brisbane, the venue which generates the second most bounce after Perth.
Rishabh Pant is on the rise: Ever since Pant made his debut with Team India, he has been slammed for his reckless hitting. While it might not have worked in the limited-overs so far, it has surprisingly worked in the longest format. Furthermore, it must be noted that it is his natural gameplay, as he has earned a name for the very same thing in the domestic circuit. He might not click always, but as long as it connects when it matters the most, it's all good. Same was the case in this Test, and man, he truly deserved a ton.
Smart Aussies used short balls effectively: It is painful to note that India has some injury concerns owing to the short balls being bowled by the Aussies pacers. Nonetheless, thinking from Australia's perspective, it was indeed a smart strategy applied by the host. There was no reason for the Aussies pacers to not use the short ball, with the pitch playing well. Also, the Indians were evidently struggling with the deliveries. Although Aussies did not mean to injure the Indians, the risk element indeed prevails, especially while playing in Australia. Tough luck!
Is it fair to sledge? Going back to the old debate, the Australians were yet again criticised for trying to get under the skin of the Indians, as the host struggled to get rid of the pair of Ravichandran Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari. But, can they really be blamed? Well, it might look frustrating from an Indian point of view. But, for once, let's put the Indians in the place of the Aussies and imagine the same. Sounds interesting, right? I'm not saying that it's fair to sledge. However, as long as it does not cross a line, there is no harm in it. All it tests is one's mental strength under pressure.
Lack of intent from the Indians? The Indians are being commended for their fighting spirit to salvage a draw. However, a few feel that the match could have easily been won and there was a lack of intent. Well, right in the sense that the Indians did not intend to win the game following the dismissal of Pant and Cheteshwar Pujara. But, can we really blame them? Had either Ashwin and Vihari been dismissed, Indians would have been compelled to bring in Ravindra Jadeja, who was already nursing a dislocated thumb. Furthermore, it would have put the other incoming batsmen at risk and India could have squandered the game. Thus, considering themselves as the last recognised pair, Ashwin-Vihari did the best thing. Better to be safe than sorry.
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Last Updated Jan 12, 2021, 6:23 PM IST