Sunday, 17 January 2010

A Courageless Aussies captain

Well it was nice to see the Australians not compromising upon anything in the third test against Pakistan especially after the Aussies had to pay the price for taking the opposition lightly which saw Australia losing all ten wickets for a partly total of 127 on day 1 at Sydney. This was evident for the first day's play at Hobart where Australia declared at 519 for the loss of 7 wickets. This was followed by Pakistan getting all out for 301 runs that gave the Aussies a lead of more than 200 runs. Though the Aussies dominance is to be appreciated, some things need a rethinking.

Ricky Ponting, in addition to posting a mammoth total of 519 on the board, it looks like Ponting never has or had the courage to impose follow on. It would have been a better move by the Aussie captain had he imposed a follow on not only for Pakistan has proved to be an under rated team in test cricket but also owing to the fact that Australia lead the series 2-0 and a series loss for Australia is totally out of question. Moreover, as I mentioned, Pakistan have proved to be no match for Australia when they couldn't draw a win after bowling out the Aussies for 127 in the 1st innings of the Sydney test.

It has been almost a decade since Pakistan has last won a test match let alone a test series against Australia. And a loss in this test would mean a third consecutive whitewash for Pakistan against Australia. Previously, Australia was a world conquering side with the likes of Shane Warne, McGrath, Gilchrish, Hayden and others who could single handed tear apart any opposition. But, this time, it is not the case with Australia that is playing Pakistan. May be even Pakistan is not the team that it was a couple of years back when Australia canceled their tour to the country.

So, keeping the aforementioned factors in mind, it would not have been a wrong decision had Ricky Ponting gone in to impose a follow on on the Pakistani batsmen. Worst come, Australia might end up losing the match. But, what has the series got to do regarding the Aussies? In case Australia manage to bowl the opposition, it would be winning by an innings or settling for something less, Australia will have to bat again and chase a small total which is highly unlikely. Even on earlier tours, Australia have hardly imposed follow on against Pakistan, which finally saw Australia winning the match by 491 runs.

So, courage lies in taking such decisions rather than just sweep the series as though it is a mere formality.

No comments: