After India registered a historic win at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) against the Aussies, while retaining the Border- Gavaskar trophy, Sports Flashes engaged in a Q & A session with former Indian batsman and expert – Aakash Chopra who spoke about how things might pan out in the fourth and final Test in Sydney, and much more.
Q) Is this Indian team the best one to travel overseas?
Aakash Chopra - “I won’t say that this is the best team, but I will definitely say that this is the best bowling attack India has ever had in a long time. Team India have had their share of quality batsmen in the past, our spinners also used to be of the highest caliber, and there always was that one fast bowler who stood out the most. But things have changed now, and the current pack of Indian pacers – even if you include Umesh and Bhuvneshwar has become world class”
Q) Will India go with the same team, or will there be any changes in the combination?
Aakash Chopra - “ India will have to take a good look at the wicket and announce the team as per it’s appearance. The Sydney wicket is usually flat which provides some assistance to spinners. So, if there isn’t much deterioration and if the three fast bowlers don’t feel tiredness, then India could go with the same combination. If the wicket looks like it’s going to help the spinner, then they could opt for the two spinners.”
Q) Since Hanuma Vihari’s struggle with the short ball looks to be a problem, will India go with a different opening pair at the SCG?
Aakash Chopra - “ It’s quite clear now that Hanuma Vihari struggles with the new ball, but if India turn out to drop him, then that would be grave injustice. Though he could only score 8 in the first innings but he saw off the new ball, and also gave Rohit Sharma a place in the middle order. Let’s not forget that this was Vihari’s third Test and Team India should adopt the strategy of sending Rohit Sharma to open the innigs at Sydney, and Vihari should be back at the number 6 position.”
Q) Will Aswhin be back in the XI if he is announced fit for the fourth Test?
Aakash Chopra - “ If Ravi Aswhin does get fit for the finalTest, then I would question myself if he should be available in the team, because if I have to opt for one spinner, then I will have to go for Jadeja since he performed well at the MCG and it would be the wrong move to bench him. Ashwin did put up a decent performance at Adelaide but he didn’t pick up a fifer though, so I would definitely prefer Ravindra Jadeja.”
Q) How is the Sydney wicket likely to behave?
Aakash Chopra - “ Well if you hear it from the locals down there, then they would say that the wicket looks pretty flat throughout and also looks like it’s going to have some assistance from the spinners, but most of the time it can turn out to be a deception too, so that’s something which the captains have to be careful of."
About the Author
Comes from the United Arab Emirates, is a sports junkie and a journalist, who has been following cricket as well as football since childhood. Played cricket in academies, school, and university levels. A fanatic follower of one of Europe's biggest ever football clubs - Manchester United.