Many flaws emerged out of India’s embarassing loss to Australia in the first Test match of the series at Adelaide. Their batting and fielding were the main causes of concern. While the batsmen looked at sea against the bounce and movement generated by the Australian bowlers, the fielders dropped a number of catches to add to the woes as well.
However, former Australia wicketkeeper-batsman Adam Gilchrist believes that it was Prithvi Shaw’s early dismissal in both innings that put the team on the backfoot completely.
“In both innings, Prithvi Shaw’s early dismissal put the team on the back foot. Shaw was part of the team during the last India series here, and there has been plenty of hype and build-up around the youngster. This has also meant that his technique has been scrutinised and there was a clear plan to exploit the gap between his bat and pad that is a matter of concern for the youngster,” Gilchrist wrote in his column for Mid-Day.
Shaw was out for a duck in the first innings and for a score of just 4 in the second outing. Both of his dismissals were very similar and Gilchrist thinks it will be quite a tricky dismissal for the selectors to retain him for the MCG Test starting on December 26.
“Shaw has also been prone to expansive shots which might backfire in Australian conditions, because he will be liable to edging one to gully. While he is a talented youngster, his performance will put the selectors in a dilemma as they plan for the Boxing Day Test,” he added.
Gilchrist also thinks that Cheteshwar Pujara’s defensive batting approach in the first innings begged India down a lot. He scored just at a strike-rate of 26.88 but the Australian legend thinks India could have gone with the same approach in the second innings.
“Looking back at the first innings, I would think that the seemingly slow batting from Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli was, in fact superb defensive batting. That was what India failed to replicate in the second innings,” Gilchrist wrote.
“In the first innings it had seemed that India were not looking for scoring opportunities, but Kohli’s masterclass of concentration alongside Pujara and later Ajinkya Rahane is what ensured that India reached 244.”