The Border-Gavaskar Trophy has started today with the first test match being played at Vidharbha Cricket Association Stadium, Nagpur, and Australia has decided to bat first after winning the toss.
The Australians may have been at the first position in the World Test Championship points tally but this series is pretty important for them as they are looking to win the BGT after losing it 3 times and they are also looking for their first series win in the last 19 years.
While majority of the former Aussie cricketers have backed Pat Cummins led team to win this series, still there are many who are cribbing about the pitches that the Australian team will get to play in Nagpur, Delhi, Ahmedabad and Dharamsala.
The Indian tracks are known for supporting spinners and the Australians are not as good players of spin as the Indians are but after considering the manner in which the Aussies have prepared for this series, it can easily be said that the visitors are absolutely ready for the turning tracks.
Lately, the former Australian cricketer Ian Healy has said that if India prepares unfair pitches, they will win but if they prepare fair pitches, then Australia will win. By unfair pitches, Ian Healy means pitches which turn early in the match and support spinners and by fair pitches, he refers to those pitches which are good for batting, which turn but start turning much later in the match.
Now the former Indian cricketer Sunil Gavaskar has responded on this issue in a column of a news daily and he has slammed the Aussies, saying that they don’t have any right to complain or crib as their own pitches have been scrutinized. The Little Master states that the Aussies are playing mind games by talking about the pitches on which they played last time in the BGT but the players of that country have no right to complain about the Indian pitches where a test matches gets over in 2 days.
By this, Sunil Gavaskar was referring to the Australia-South African clash which was played at the Gabba, Brisbane and got finished in 2 days.
The former Indian cricketer further writes that it is not just about a match finishing in 2 days but it is also about the kind of pitch that was prepared for the match. Sunil Gavaskar said that the Brisbane pitch was a dangerous one as the ball was flying all over the place and the life and limb of the batters were also at risk. He further says that on turning tracks, only the reputation of a batter is on stake and not life and limb.
Sunil Gavaskar went on to say that the Brisbane test match showed that even the best batsmen of both the teams were afraid of playing over there. He further wrote that though there were some Aussie mediapersons who were trying to defend the pitches by saying that as cricket is a batsmen game, the pitches like Brisbane give some support to the bowlers sometimes but then why they are cribbing about the Indian tracks which turn from day one. Sunil Gavaskar adds that playing spin not only test the skills and talent of a batter but also checks whether he knows how to use crease for nullifying the spin and this is why the batters who will score a hundred or more will be named as great batters.
In the Brisbane test match which was won by Australia, total 144 overs were bowled and 34 wickets were taken in 2 days. While South Africa scored 152 and 99 in its first and second innings, respectively, the hosts scored 218 and 35/4 in both the innings.
As far as the first test match between India and Australia is concerned, the Aussies have scored 174 runs at the loss of 8 wickets in 60 overs by the time this article was written and Ravindra Jadeja has made a superb comeback by dismissing 4 batters including Marnus Labuschagne (49 runs) and Steve Smith (37).
Will the Aussies crib more if they lose the Nagpur test match? What do you think? Let us know your views.