India will start their tour by playing two practice games against a Cricket Australia XI in Adelaide ahead of the first Test. While these practice games have no bearing on the fortune of the teams, but they surely allow the touring games to get used to the conditions and adjustments to their game before the big test.
Former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly believes that playing on two 2-day practice matches before the first Test isn’t the ideal preparation for such a big and difficult tour.
“The key to doing well in places like Australia is the preparation before the Test series starts and not between the matches. I am not happy with India’s schedule of two two-day games ahead of first Test match,” Ganguly said during a panel discussion at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit.
The biggest challenge for Team India on this tour will be to bat well and score runs against the firing Australian attack that includes the likes of Mitchell Johnson, Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle. Now, the question that arises is- “Are two innings good enough for the Indian batsmen to get used to the conditions?”
Getting acclimatized to the conditions is the most important part of the overseas and tours, and this is what practice matches are for. The last time India toured Australia, they played two tour games and lost the series 4-0. This might not be the only reason behind their abysmal show down under in the last tour, but the lack of practice did hurt India as most of their batsmen were not able to adjust to the fast nature of the wickets in Australia.
Over the years, we have seen cricket pundits saying, play as many practice games as you can in the overseas conditions. But, India, for some reason, don’t believe in this theory and maybe this is the reason why they have struggled so much in the overseas conditions.
Sourav Ganguly, who’s India’s most successful captain in overseas Test matches, has always said that it is important for young team to get a decent time in the middle before the start of the series.
India have very young squad and many of their players don’t have the experience of playing in the Australian conditions, and if they don’t get enough time in the middle before the start of the series, they will find it tough to make the quick adjustments.
By The Cricket Lounge