Analysing why teams struggle away from home
Are teams these days just home-bullies? Has the standard of cricket deteriorated?
Come the away tours and every chink in the shining Indian armour seems so apparent. The team's utter dominance at home has been second to none, in fact, their record at home in the last two years is incredible, as incredible as the Australia of the 2000s.
But that team was no mug when it came to the away tours. For India to be compared to that side, they will have to win around the world. But is it that easy? No, of course not. In recent times, we've seen that home advantage, or the tendency for the home team to win, has grown immensely. Even the Ashes these days are basically a trophy toss up between Australia and England at their respective homes.
So, let's analyse the reasons why away series wins have become a rarity now?
Different Countries. Different Conditions. Different Problems.
Every country poses different challenges. So, teams find it hard to adjust accordingly. India and the other teams from the sub-continent find it difficult to adjust to the pace and bounce offered in South Africa and Australia, or the swing and seam offered in England. Likewise, South Africa, England and other non-Asian teams find it difficult to adjust to the spin and turn offered in Asian countries. These differences happen because of the combination of two things: pitches and weather conditions.
The pitches in Asia generally assist spin. This is because of the soil present there. Lots of Indian pitches are made up of red soil, which has low bounce and little carry.
The weather conditions in India are generally very hot and humid. This ensures the pitch breaks up easily, causing cracks that help the spinners to turn the ball.
Style of Play
To be successful, the player should play the ball as late as possible. He should be a good player off the backfoot. He should be well equipped with cut and sweep shots.