The ICC World Test Championship (WTC) final between India and Australia at the Kennington Oval in London has seen former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting expressing his views on the performance of the Indian bowlers. Ponting believes that the Indian bowlers could have made better use of the conditions, particularly on Day 1 of the final.
According to Ponting, India let themselves down in the first hour of the match. He reminisced about the team’s performance over the first two days of the WTC final and noted that India allowed Australia to score 73/2 before lunch after winning the toss and electing to bowl first. Follow your favourite cricket team with attractive betting odds from Nextbet.
Australia has dominated the first two days of the World Test Championship final at The Oval. The team posted a commanding total of 469 runs, courtesy of centuries from Travis Head and Steve Smith. They further cemented their position with disciplined wicket-to-wicket bowling, leaving India at 151/5 by the end of day 2, trailing by 318 runs. Ponting believes that India’s struggles began when Rohit Sharma invited Australia to bat first, and he feels that the Indian team missed an opportunity to capitalize on the conditions during the initial hour on Wednesday.
Ponting, 48, suggested that India needed to have Australia four or five wickets down by lunch, which would have worked well for Rohit Sharma and his team. He stated that India’s downfall was in bowling too short during the first hour, despite the favorable pitch and overhead conditions. Ponting emphasized that they should have bowled fuller, encouraging the batsmen to drive the ball down the ground. However, India managed to dismiss only two Australian batsmen by lunch, which Ponting considered to be a decent result for Australia.
Addressing the decision to play four seamers and leave out Ravichandran Ashwin, Ponting stated that he witnessed Rohit Sharma and head coach Rahul Dravid discussing their plans if they won the toss. He acknowledged that the decision to field first was a bold one and, once made, playing four seamers became the only option.
Ponting acknowledged that while the captain often receives criticism for such decisions, it is not solely his responsibility. He mentioned observing a lengthy discussion between Rahul Dravid and Rohit Sharma on the morning of the match regarding their strategy at the toss. Ponting believed that if India chose to bowl first, they had to play four seamers. Although the decision may not have paid off so far, Ponting cautioned against hasty judgments, noting that there is still a long way to go in the match. Get all the latest updates from the world of cricket only on Nextbet Sports.