Why Australia lost when England won Against India?
India is leading the test series 3-0 now and this is the worst performance by a touring Australia ever. Does this mean India played too well or Australia was too bad? When a team like England who had a very bad record in India was able to change their fortunes why Australians are not able to do? What was the real difference between the teams and was there any difference really? My answer will be yes. The main difference between the two teams in total is England looked well prepared for the challenge they were going to face while Australians were completely under prepared.
Coming to batting perspective, England batsmen believed in their technique and defense while Australian batsmen tried to overcome their defensive loophole by attacking .Biggest challenge for any touring side to India is playing Indian spinners in spinner friendly situations. England batsmen worked a lot on their defense against spin while Australians tried to attack the Indian spinners but that proved to be very costly mistake as they lost most of their wickets to spinners attacking. Most of the Australian players were playing in India for the first time, it was not much different for the England team but the player who had experience in India helped the young England batsmen to believe in their defense and asked them to be patient .Best example is Joe Root who made his debut in Indians tour who is known for his aggressive batting, played against his style and was able to score runs and save test match for his team. While Australian Senior players tried to play aggressively which made youngsters follow their path and ending up gifting wickets to Indian Spinners.
One more important difference is England learnt from their mistakes while Australians continued to make mistakes. England’s Kevin Peterson who gave away his wicket in both the innings of the first test to left arm spin which is considered as his weakness but he quickly learnt from the mistakes of playing rash shots and then played a match winning Innings in the next test match and was awarded Man Of The Match for his performance while Australian middle order batsmen Phil Hughes got out without scoring a run in spin bowling instead of learning from his mistakes he again gave his wickets away. One common factor between both the teams’ performances is their Skippers performance both Cook and Clarke tried to lead them by example .Cook being an opening batsman was able to give a strong batting platform while Clarke being middle order batsmen always had to stabilize the team from early wickets.
Major disappointment for Australia is the performance of their Vice Captain Shane Watson who was familiar with Indian Condition’s, he gave away his wicket after getting a decent start in almost all the innings while England batsmen tried to eliminate this by being patient . Main concern for any batsmen from England and Australia is the bounce. In their home conditions they can believe in the bounce of the track and play their shots but Indian tracks are known for their uneven bounce, England players tried to negotiate this by playing most of the deliveries on front foot while Australians tried to play on back foot. Shane Watson’s wicket in the bowling of Bhuvaneswar Kumar in the Second test is the best example for this.
Coming to bowling perspective England backed their bowlers even when the conditions are against them while Australians kept trying different combinations. England backed James Anderson even though he had just taken two wickets in the first two test matches and he performed well in the next two test matches with swinging the new ball and reversing the old ball but Australians sacked their premier spin bowler Nathon Lyon who went for runs in the first test, what can any bowler do if a batsman of Dhoni’s caliber is taking on them. England also started their test series backing their strengths and went with three pace bowlers and lost the match very badly but in the second test they changed their strategy and picked the team according to Indian Conditions and England spinners kept the things tight for Indian Batsmen by bowling line and length which troubled Indian Batsmen while Australians also changed the strategy and went in with two spinners but they dint they started with different spin bowlers who struggled to get into rhythm as they are not familiar with Indian Conditions. England have one of the best Spinners in the world at this point of time in their squad while Australians don’t have a quality spinner ,so that was the time they had to back the experienced spin bowler Lyon who had taken a five wicket haul on his debut in Srilanka where conditions are similar to Indian Conditions. As per me dropping Nathon Lyon in the Second test is the biggest mistake they have done. Australians started to think about Ashes even before completion of this series, I accept Ashes is an important series but that doesn’t mean team has to neglect the series they are playing now. Australians are 2-0 down and I saw a comment from Clarke on a website stating “this performance wont effect our performance in Ashes” , I was very shocked and annoyed by seeing this. As a captain you should try to figure this out but instead they are worried about a series that is about to happen which means they are not giving 100% in the current series by which they won’t deserve to win the series.
Indian batsmen have learnt from the mistakes they have done in the England Series. Dhoni’s batting in the second test match was the main reason for India’s victory; Dhoni backed his strength and played aggressively who played against his batting style in England tour. Murali Vijay who got his opportunity to represent India was not able to make the most of it in the first test match learnt from his mistake and scored two back to back centuries and Shikhar Dhawan who made his debut in the third test was the lone reason for India winning the test match which was reduced to a four day match due to rain on the first day. Dhawan never showed any nerves but started very confidently with driving the ball on the off side, his cover drives on the front foot and back foot were a treat to watch. His aggressive batting kept Australian bowling on back foot while which made sure India reached Australian score in a very short duration which made result a chance in rain reduced match.
Indian bowlers tried a lot of things rather than keeping it simple against England but they kept it very simple and tried to make the batsmen drive which yielded them a lot of wickets. Pace bowling was the one which made real difference youngster Kumar bowled really well and took the wickets while Ishant kept troubling the batsmen.