Former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir believes the current Australian batting line-up would have no chance to post a big score against a full-strength Indian pace attack. The visitors have had their injury woes, especially in the fast bowling department, with three of their four premier Test pacers not available.
Ishant Sharma had picked up an injury during the IPL 2020 season and was ruled out after playing just one game. Although he began his rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy (NCA), he couldn't recover in time to be available for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
Team India suffered another blow during the first Test at the Adelaide Oval when Mohammed Shami fractured his wrist while trying to tackle a short-ball from Pat Cummins. Things went from bad to worse for the visitors as Umesh Yadav too was ruled out of the remainder of the series, after having pulled his calf muscle during the Boxing Day Test.
Speaking to ANI, Gautam Gambhir explained how vulnerable the current Australian batting line-up was. With the quality that Ishant, Shami and Umesh bring to the Indian side, the 39-year-old is sure that the Aussie batsmen would have had no way back in the series.
“I haven’t seen this kind of Australian batting line-up in my life. So, vulnerability is there. They haven’t played India’s main attack. If Shami, Ishant, and Umesh Yadav were fit then there would have been no reply from the Australians. So, there is a big possibility and chance that we can win this series,” Gautam Gambhir said.
"I don't think this kind of vulnerability was ever seen in the hosts' batting line-up" - Gautam Gambhir
Despite notable absentees in Team India's fast bowling department, Australia have reached the 200-run mark just once so far in the series. Thus, Gautam Gambhir believes the visitors must take advantage of such a vulnerable batting line-up.
Although Team India are without the services of skipper Virat Kohli, Gambhir still feels the visitors have a great chance of winning their second consecutive Test series Down Under.
“We have a chance against Australia. If you look at the top four batting line-up of the world, I think it’s the weakest batting line-up. England is better than Australia, New Zealand is better than Australia and India is much better than Australia,” Gautam Gambhir said.
“It’s a big opportunity and chance for the Indian team to beat Australia in Australia again because I don’t think this kind of vulnerability was ever seen in the hosts’ batting line-up. They are under pressure,” Gautam Gambhir further added.
After the visitors' emphatic win in the Boxing Day Test, the hosts know that another defeat and Team India will retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Thus, Gautam Gambhir wants the visitors to not take their foot off the padel and apply as much pressure on the Aussies as possible.
Will the Australian batting stand up in the third Test? Will the hosts be able to make a strong comeback in the Test series? Only time will tell.Published 07 Jan 2021, 12:47 IST