Monday, December 29, 2014

Defensive Australia seeks safe total to declare on fifth day to draw the third test at MCG

Australia managed to take a handsome lead of 326 runs at the end of 4th days play, yet the side was not able to pose a fighting total and continued to play at a very slow pace and shows that Australia are on the defensive and do not want to provide any chance for the visitors to come back in the series.

It is a clear ploy that either they want to win or draw with no possibility of losing the match. It is not sporting for a side to play for five days and yet does not want to see any competitor in it's sights. It feels like Aussie doesn't want to see an entertainer but a series securing draw, so that it pleases their rankings and stats. And it wants India to chase a in-surmountable total in as many less overs as possible.

Strategy is in contrast to what Virat Kohli did at Adelaide and went on the chase a total and lost the match in pursuit of victory. If a side is chasing down a total at a net rate of 4 and more an over credit goes to the side that is doing it and not otherwise. 

The reason for this scenario developed as Indian bowlers managed to run through the Australia middle order and scalped four middle order batsmen from 131/2 to 202/6 with loss of Smith, Rogers, Burns and Haddin in the space of 70 odd runs. That slowed down Australia and they went on the defensive strategy.

Unlike the first Test at Adelaide that Mitchell Marsh played, and had clear instructions to go after the bowling, and he did that scoring very fast with Steve Smith at the other end, and Australia declared the innings that evening on the fourth day itself. 

With three wickets in hand Australia are playing defensive here at MCG to put up a more defensive total than a fighting one, it is eating up time in the match and would force the opposition to play for a draw instead of a result, that would make it a very boring contest in the end.

What would Australia do on a fifth day of a test match with three wickets still in hand, Why didn't it fast paced the innings and declare on fourth day, so that it could be a sporting contest?


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