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Indian Bowlers Look For Improved Outing Against Australia In Second T20I

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Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 25 (PTI) The young Indian bowling unit will have to push behind the timid show in the series opener and find its flow against a forceful Australian batting line-up in the second T20 here on Sunday.

India had won the first game at Visakhapatnam by two wickets to take a 1-0 lead in the five-match series, but their bowlers, except pacer Mukesh Kumar, looked incapable of stemming the run-flow.

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The pitch and conditions at the Greenfield International Stadium will not be massively different, and that makes it imperative for the Indian bowlers to fire collectively.

Despite that, the management might not look to shake the order for this match.

In the opening encounter, pacers Arshdeep Singh and Prasidh Krishna went for 10.25 and 12.50 runs per over while leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi were carted around for 13.50 runs per over.

In a format like T20, it is not an uncommon sight to see bowlers getting the stick, but those three bowlers lacked imagination and variety needed on such surfaces on that day.

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India’s ambition to double the series lead will depend a lot on them significantly improving their produce here.

It’s not an impossible task either as Mukesh showed. The pace bowler mixed up his deliveries well – the yorkers, bouncers, wide deliveries around off-stump and so on – to contain the Aussie batters.

So, the other frontline bowlers now have a route map to follow in the second match.

In their defence, one can say that many of them were playing top-level cricket after a gap, but such is the nature of schedule these days the players need to put their best foot forward in the first available opportunity.

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It is particularly true in the case of someone like Bishnoi, who has been talked about as one to look forward to as far as the white ball formats are concerned.

But he was vastly disappointing at Vizag and looked rudderless once Josh Inglis went on the offensive against him.

Bishnoi will have to realise that he cannot rely on a sequence of googlies to make an impact as it can lead to a sense of familiarity in batters, and he will require drastic course correction here.

Prasidh too was equally underwhelming, more so because he was a part of India’s 50-over World Cup squad recently and had a chance to work with the top-tier players and coaches at nets.

However, there was no trace of that effort in his bowling as his attempt to purchase bounce from the track was treated with disdain by Australian batters.

However, India will have not much to complain about in the batting department as skipper Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Rinku Singh and Yashasvi Jaiswal displayed fine touch against the Aussie bowlers, though a bit second string.

Suryakumar, Rinku and Jaiswal met the quick-scoring demands of a high chase effortlessly, though Kishan took a few overs to settle down before hitting the overdrive.

India will hope for a similar fire from them in the second match as well, and will bank on Kishan to reduce the number of dot balls during his tenure.

He was able to accelerate in the opening game after making 21 off 19 balls but the left-hander would not want an encore of that in this match.

Ruturaj Gaikwad, who was run out in the previous match, and Tilak Varma too will be eyeing some runs against their name as they are part of India’s journey into T20 future.

The Aussie camp, on the other hand, will be looking to build on a few nuggets of positives from the first match.

Inglis’ hundred, his first in top-flight cricket across formats, while coming in as an opener might have given them a breathing space on the road that leads to the T20 World Cup.

But the move to promote Steve Smith as opener might not have fetched the desired result in its entirety.

The veteran right-hander made a 52 off 41 balls, but he laboured to manufacture runs even on a smooth deck as Inglis’ daredevilry ably masked Smith’s struggles.

Like their Indian counterparts, the Aussie bowlers, except Jason Behrendorff, also could not apply the squeeze on the rampaging Suryakumar and company.

They will also be looking for a markedly improved outing in that department here and as part of that the Aussies might just give a go to leg-spinner Adam Zampa in place of Tanvir Sangha.

Squads: India: Suryakumar Yadav (captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad (vice-captain), Ishan Kishan, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Washington Sundar, Axar Patel, Shivam Dubey, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan, Mukesh Kumar.

Australia: Matthew Wade (captain), Aaron Hardie, Jason Behrendorff, Sean Abbott, Tim David, Nathan Ellis, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Glenn Maxwell, Tanveer Sangha, Matt Short, Steve Smith, Marcus Stoinis, Kane Richardson, Adam Zampa.

Match starts at 7 PM.

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The Hills Times
The Hills Timeshttps://www.thehillstimes.in/
The Hills Times, a largely circulated English daily published from Diphu and printed in Guwahati, having vast readership in hills districts of Assam, and neighbouring Nagaland, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur.
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