Former India batsman Gautam Gambhir believes that batting Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne, Australia’s batting is ‘fragile’. Gambhir’s comments, which were made on the eve of the Boxing Day Test, came true as
“With the kind of batting line-up that Australia have, they are very vulnerable at the top of the order. They are very fragile, apart from Labuschagne and Smith. Travis Head is very vulnerable. Cameron Green will probably be playing his second Test match,” Gambhir said on Sports Today on YouTube.
“Tim Paine, yes, he has done well in the previous game, but he has his own shortcomings as well, and then you are into the bowlers. So apart from two batters, No.3 and No.4 there is a lot of fragility. So, India can actually look to exploit that.”
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India exploit that to the fullest as Jasprit Bumrah’s menace was matched by Ravichandran Ashwin’s guile as an inspired India led by Ajinkya Rahane shot out Australia for a sub-par 195 to dominate the opening day of the second Test.
India then lost an out-of-form Mayank Agarwal (0) to Mitchell Starc but debutant Shubman Gill (28 batting) survived a hostile spell to hit some delectable boundaries in the day end score of 36 for 1 in 11 overs.Giving him company was the seasoned Cheteshwar Pujara (7 batting).
Gambhir cautioned India’s batsmen from aiming huge totals, and in fact, felt given the bowling attack India have, the first aim should be to get to somewhere around 275 and then aim forward.
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“When you have got people like Jasprit Bumrah who are world-class, when you have Ravichandran Ashwin, you have Umesh Yadav who has played over 35-40 Test matches. So you expect Indian bowling line-up to actually come good,” Gambhir said.
“It is for the batters to put runs on the board and don’t think about putting 400 on the board, look to get 275 and give something to your bowlers. Because you have these world class bowlers and 275 is good enough. You have got someone like Jasprit Bumrah who can probably win a game as well in his five-spell. Other bowlers need to complement him, they should not leak runs.”