Ricky Ponting has lauded the determination and fighting spirit shown by Team India on Sunday. The former captain also rued the lack of aggression from the Australian camp, especially in dominating positions.
Having scored 369 in the first innings, the Aussies had their tails up after sending India’s sixth batsman packing with just 186 on the board.
However, the visitors came back for the umpteenth time in the series as Shardul Thakur(67) and Washington Sundar(62) erected a record 123-run stand for the seventh wicket.
Interacting with cricket.com.au, Ricky Ponting praised Thakur and commended the excellent display of concentration from the Indian batting lineup.
“With India, we see that they just keep fighting. They’ve been up for the battle and the contest right the way through this series so far…The batsmanship has been a real standout and their application and concentration. They didn’t throw it away. Shardul at the end went for a shot that probably wasn’t quite on but before that, there weren’t many false shots at all played by either of them… Especially after Adelaide, they’ve been able to produce what they’ve needed to in big moments from there on in,” said Ricky Ponting.
On the backs of Thakur and Sundar’s maiden half-centuries, India ended the first innings at 336, just 33 short of the Australian target.
In response, the Aussie openers survived the first six overs and went to stumps with a lead of 54 runs.
“I don’t think the Aussies were aggressive enough” – Ricky Ponting
Ricky Ponting was disappointed with the Australian bowlers, who he thought let the visitors off the hook. He also lamented the lack of help from the Gabba wicket.
“I was a bit disappointed with the way the Australians went about it, to be honest. I don’t think they were aggressive enough, didn’t bowl enough short balls. They let the Indian batsmen be way too comfortable at the crease. They almost bowled the way those batsmen would have wanted them to bowl. It wasn’t until we saw a bit of a barrage from Starc and even when Shardul got out (bowled by Pat Cummins), it was no surprise it was a ball after a bouncer. I don’t think the Aussies were anywhere near aggressive enough,” said Ricky Ponting.
“I thought they could have gone out and set the tone really early on with some really good, hostile fast bowling just to let India know what they were going to be about for the day. It’s been a bit of a struggle for them, the wicket’s been flat, there hasn’t been any sideways movement and certainly no swing,” Ricky Ponting added.
If Brisbane’s rain doesn’t play spoilsport on Monday and Tuesday, Aussie bowlers will have another opportunity to have a crack at the opposition batsmen.
Till then, it’s the job of their batters to reach at least 250 in the second innings. Indian bowlers, on their part, will look to restrict them under 200.
Published 17 Jan 2021, 17:29 IST