Former skipper Sunil Gavaskar has said that the Indian team should not put undue pressure on themselves by trying to achieve a particular result. Instead, they should play on the merit of each delivery on the final day of the Sydney Test.
The Indian team finished Day 4 of the third Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy on a score of 98/2, still needing 309 more runs to take a 2-1 lead in the four-match series.
Sunil Gavaskar, who had scored a century in India's highest successful fourth-innings chase in Test cricket, was asked during an interaction on the Sony Sports network about the lessons he would like to share from the 1976 win.
He responded by saying that the Indian team should not think about the result beforehand but should approach it session by session.
"They should not think too far ahead but play session by session. There should not be any thinking of going for a win or a draw. They need to only think about how they need to play the next delivery and if they get a scoring opportunity to hit the boundaries or take the singles. They need to play every ball on its merit. If they think too far ahead, they will put pressure on themselves."
Sunil Gavaskar believes the Indian batsmen should play their natural game till tea time and then take the attack to the Australian bowlers if they are in a position to go for a win.
"In 1976, we had also got a good start. I think our team was 136/1 when the 4th day play had ended. The Indian team has lost two wickets now but still if they bat well, if they can score 200 or even 150 runs till tea time, they can score the runs after that as the Australian bowlers might be tired," added Gavaskar.
"It is good for you not to see the scoreboard in Test cricket" - Sunil Gavaskar
Mohammad Kaif asked Sunil Gavaskar if he kept an eye on the scoreboard while batting or he just played ball by ball as the pressure is less in that case.
The former opener responded he never played according to the score in the longest format of the game.
"When I used to play, I never used to look at the scoreboard. Yes, you do that in ODI cricket but it is good for you not to see the scoreboard in Test cricket because every batsman has his own playing style."
Gavaskar advised the Indian team to also follow the same approach. It would help them avoid going for unnecessary boundaries.
"If you keep targets of reaching a score, you might try to hit a boundary of a ball that is not there to be hit. That is why if you play session by session, you will not know the score and you will play according to the merit of the delivery," concluded Sunil Gavaskar.
As suggested by Sunil Gavaskar, the Indian batsmen should not take any undue risk and play as per the demands of the situation. But players like Ajinkya Rahane, Cheteshwar Pujara, and Hanuma Vihari should also not adopt an overly defensive approach like in the first innings as that will help the Aussies to gain the upper hand instantly.Published 10 Jan 2021, 16:22 IST