The four match test series between India and Australia is currently levelled at 1-1 with both the hosts and the visitors having won one of the two matches in the series so far.
Former Indian cricketer and legend Sunil Gavaskar has issued a massive warning to the Indian team management, headed by skipper Virat Kohli and head coach Ravi Shastri. India has already lost two out of the three major overseas tours this year and in each of the series’ they started as the clearcut favourites. India made a promising start to the Border-Gavaskar Trophy by winning the first test emphatically only before losing to the hosts by a massive margin of 146 runs.
“We will know that [the difference between Kohli as captain and batsman] as we go forward. The Australia series is a good opportunity. If India don’t win the Test series, then we need to think what needs to change, change from the top. If we win, then it’s a different case, altogether,” Gavaskar said at Agenda Aaj Tak in New Delhi.
Gavaskar believes that the team management has made some blunders ever since the CT 2017 final, last year. The 69 year-old believes that the team selection hasn’t been right. Playing Rohit instead of Rahane in the middle-order, playing two spinners on a green surface in Lord’s and persisting with KL Rahul despite his regular failures could very well be the reason behind India’s losses against South Africa, England and Australia respectively. While the Australian series is very much alive, poor team selection can only turn the tide in the host’s favour.
“Because of the decision to field first in the Champions Trophy final, the omissions and selections in South Africa, the omissions and selections in England, and the selections and omissions in Australia. Someone has to take responsibility for all these decisions. Someone has to be held accountable,” he added.
“They have to look at the combination of their team, look at the hole that needs to be plugged and pick the men to. If they do that then they can certainly win the next two matches but if they don’t, and that too against this Australian team which does not have Steve Smith or David Warner, then the selectors need to think whether we are getting any benefit from this lot – the captain, coach and support staff,” Gavaskar mentioned.
“We have been seeing this – the selection blunders that have been committed since the tour of South Africa. It has cost the team because it has lost matches which could’ve been won if the proper selection had been made,” he added.
The Boxing Day Test will be a high pressure one for the Indians as should they fail to win it, their best chance of winning a Test series Down Under will go wasted. Sunil Gavaskar is of the opinion that the management should change at the highest level if India does lose this series.