Plucky Australia banish demons of 2016

Ronan O'Connell Columnist

By Ronan O'Connell, Ronan O'Connell is a Roar Expert

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173 Have your say

    The ‘old’ Australia would today be nursing their wounds after a routine capitulation under pressure in the third Test against India. But that flighty Australian team has not been sighted since the debacle at Hobart in November.

    That disgraceful innings defeat in the second Test against South Africa was Australia’s fifth loss on the trot and triggered sweeping changes to the Australian line-up.

    Five of the cricketers who played crucial roles in Australia’s rousing performance at Ranchi were not present at Hobart – young batsmen Peter Handscomb and Matt Renshaw, veteran Shaun Marsh, all-rounder Glenn Maxwell and pace prodigy Pat Cummins.

    Renshaw and Handscomb have quickly become key members of the top six as Australia have won five Tests and lost only one since Hobart. Maxwell set up Australia with a brilliant ton in the first innings at Ranchi before Marsh led them to a draw yesterday with a wonderfully calm and composed knock of 53 from 197 balls.

    Australia Test player Glenn Maxwell raises his bat

    In between that pair of fine innings, Cummins bowled with tremendous intensity, perseverance and skill, helping to ensure India’s batsmen could not sprint to a match-winning total. It was indicative of the impressive development of this Australian side since Hobart that they got pivotal contributions from a range of players.

    To scrap to a draw in India with minimal or no input from mainstays David Warner, Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon is a great sign for Australia. In salvaging this Test they provided further evidence of a new, steely resolve. Australia perfected the practice of the meek surrender during their five consecutive losses last year.

    That’s why, even after their fighting efforts in this series, it still came as a surprise that they managed to wrangle a draw under immense pressure yesterday. The Australians of old would barely have lasted past lunch. Instead, when Smith and Renshaw were dismissed just before the main break, the tourists didn’t waver.

    Handscomb and Marsh produced one of the most bloody-minded stands by an Australian pair in many years. The former had threatened all series to play such an influential knock. Handscomb had typically looked at ease in his first five innings but had not capitalised.

    Yesterday he underlined just why many Australian pundits and fans thought he could do well in India. Handscomb has a very good technique against spin, built around his swift and assured footwork.

    The 25-year-old is supremely confident in his ability to skip down to the spinners and get to the pitch of the ball. This assertive approach then earns him shorter deliveries as the spinner overcorrects their length. When Handscomb can’t get to the pitch of the ball or rock back to cut and pull, he stretches out to smother the spin from his crease.

    At the other end Marsh exhibited a similarly assertive approach against spin. Controversially picked ahead of in-form first drop Usman Khawaja due to his superior record in Asia, Marsh proved the selectors right yesterday.

    After finding form in the second Test, where he made a sublime 66 on a nightmare pitch, Marsh expertly countered India’s main threat, Ravi Jadeja. The star left arm spinner had a huge patch of rough outside Marsh’s off stump at which to aim.

    Being the remarkably accurate bowler that he is, Jadeja hit this area constantly when operating against Marsh. But the West Australian did not let the rough get into his mind and played each delivery on its merits. By the time Marsh was finally dismissed, after almost four hours at the crease, Australia had all but saved the Test.

    Quite incredibly, the last time Australia batted their way to a draw in such trying circumstances was way back in 2005 in England. Making their effort even more significant is the fact it is six years since a visiting team in India conceded a first innings deficit and then managed to force a draw without the help of bad weather.

    The Pune Test showed the Australians that they had the talent and temperament to win in Asian conditions. Yesterday’s plucky effort was almost as significant, banishing memories of their 2016 capitulations.

    It was nearly as good as a victory for Australia. The pressure has now shifted on to the home side who must win the fourth Test at Dharamsala in order to regain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

    Ronan O
    Ronan O'Connell

    Ronan O'Connell has been a journalist for well over 13 years, including nine at daily newspapers in WA. He now traverses the world as a travel photojournalist, contributing words and photography to more than 30 magazines and newspapers including CNN, BBC, The Toronto Star, The Guardian, The South China Morning Post, The Irish Examiner and The Australian Financial Review. Check out his work and follow him on Twitter @ronanoco

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    The Crowd Says (173)

    • Roar Rookie

      March 21st 2017 @ 5:17am
      El Loco said | March 21st 2017 @ 5:17am | ! Report

      That 2005 Ashes test was where my mind immediately went. This one was more convincing, only losing six wickets and having a lead, unlike Old Trafford where we ended up one wicket from defeat. We lost the next test in that series, but the resolve feels pretty strong this time round, hope our bowling stocks haven’t been overdone.

    • Roar Guru

      March 21st 2017 @ 6:01am
      Red Kev said | March 21st 2017 @ 6:01am | ! Report

      I picked that knock from Marsh like a dirty nose. The proof of the selectors’ alleged horses for courses approach will be the team for the first Ashes test…let’s just say I won’t believe it until I see it.

      • March 21st 2017 @ 7:03am
        Nudge said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:03am | ! Report

        Couldn’t help but think of you Red Kev when Marsh was playing that outstanding knock. I knew you would have been hurting. Hope your tv is ok. He really has had a big impact in 2 of the 3 tests and made a lot of people eat their words. He’s one of the best players of spin in the country and the selectors deserve a big pat in the back for his selection

        • Roar Guru

          March 21st 2017 @ 8:07am
          Red Kev said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:07am | ! Report

          I was referring to my comment yesterday that Marsh would bat long and save the test for us.
          He looked (or rather sounded as I was not watching but rather listening) nervous and scratchy against Yadav who has dismissed him 7 times, but once he survived that spell a match-saving knock was on the cards.

          • Roar Guru

            March 21st 2017 @ 10:03am
            Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:03am | ! Report

            Marsh is always scratchy when he starts too. His record has an inordinate number of single figures scores for a top-order batsman, but if he can get past that start he often goes on with it.

            • Roar Guru

              March 21st 2017 @ 11:13am
              Ryan H said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:13am | ! Report

              Absolutely spot on I think. God he looks awkward and shaky scratching around for his first 15 or 20, and you feel like he’ll get out almost every ball; however once he gets past that 20 or so mark it’s almost as if the shackles are released, and he starts to look much much better.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 1:38pm
                Sedivkaite said | March 21st 2017 @ 1:38pm | ! Report

                Just like Dean Jones!

        • March 21st 2017 @ 12:09pm
          Ozibatla said | March 21st 2017 @ 12:09pm | ! Report

          Hes averaging 24 for the series, I wouldnt have thought the selectors will be getting a pat on the back as yet. Yesterdays knock was exceĺlent for the team no doubt, but until Marsh gets rid of all those sub 20 scores, the axe will never swing too far from him.

      • March 21st 2017 @ 7:06am
        Rob JM said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:06am | ! Report

        If it comforts you they did drop Marsh after he scored a century when Khawaja returned from injury. He is a lock for the ashes at no3.

        • March 21st 2017 @ 7:56am
          Rock said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:56am | ! Report

          If horses for courses is the meal of the day, then the selectors really have no other choice then to order UK for the Ashes where he has certainly proved he is one of the premier batsmen on home soil and much better then SMarsh in Aus.

          • March 21st 2017 @ 8:08am
            Tim said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:08am | ! Report

            Considering smith doesn’t bowl maxwell, maybe marsh will bat at 6 in the ashes and rely on four bowlers.

            • March 21st 2017 @ 9:23am
              rock said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:23am | ! Report

              Possibly, another option say at the WACA is Maxwell in with 4 seamers.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 12:14pm
                timbo said | March 21st 2017 @ 12:14pm | ! Report

                They supposedly won’t be playing at the WACA…the new stadium.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 12:15pm
                Perry Bridge said | March 21st 2017 @ 12:15pm | ! Report


                That certainly opens up as a possibility.

                If the players can be properly managed – re their expectations and ‘team first’ approach – then you have a solid ‘squad’ of say 16 for the Ashes or whatever test/conditions :
                Maxwell/(M.Marsh?, Henriques?, Stoinis?)

                And structure up the side 2 suit – 2 top flight spinners requires a very different look to 4 quicks. And everything in between. The capacity of Starc, Cummins and Pattinson to bat a bit can be very important around the #6 position and whether it’s the sole domain for the ‘all-rounder’ role.

      • March 21st 2017 @ 9:47am
        Darren L said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:47am | ! Report

        I also feel for you when Australia do well I know it hurts you so much.

      • March 21st 2017 @ 11:16am
        qwetzen said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:16am | ! Report

        “…let’s just say I won’t believe it until I see it.”

        Speaking of “seeing it”, have you answered my 4 times asked question re; How many are there in your ideal India touring squad? Is it 11 or 15? If that’s a ‘Yes’, what was your answer?

        • Roar Guru

          March 21st 2017 @ 11:20am
          Red Kev said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:20am | ! Report

          One does not feed the trolls.

          • Columnist

            March 21st 2017 @ 11:46am
            Ronan O'Connell said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:46am | ! Report

            Then you must be starving.

            • Roar Guru

              March 21st 2017 @ 5:32pm
              Red Kev said | March 21st 2017 @ 5:32pm | ! Report

              Always nice to see constructive and thoughtful contributions from so called experts.

              • March 22nd 2017 @ 8:23am
                Matth said | March 22nd 2017 @ 8:23am | ! Report

                Come on that was funny, take it I the right spirit

              • March 22nd 2017 @ 11:18am
                qwetzen said | March 22nd 2017 @ 11:18am | ! Report

                Not as nice as seeing a so called Guru answering a simple question.
                Is it eleven or fifteen Kev?

          • March 21st 2017 @ 1:03pm
            qwetzen said | March 21st 2017 @ 1:03pm | ! Report

            How does asking you to clarify something you said qualify as “trolling”?
            Why won’t you answer the question?

            • March 21st 2017 @ 3:23pm
              ViratKohli said | March 21st 2017 @ 3:23pm | ! Report

            • March 21st 2017 @ 4:12pm
              Ben said | March 21st 2017 @ 4:12pm | ! Report

              Hey QWETZEN, nobody cares about your stupid little opinions other than your own deranged mind.

    • March 21st 2017 @ 6:52am
      Jameswm said | March 21st 2017 @ 6:52am | ! Report

      It’ll be interesting to see what sort of wicket is produced for the 4th test. You’d think a low slow type, that the Indians thrive on. They’d back themselves to outbat us. However, they do have to dismiss us twice, and after this test, they might be scratching their heads about that.

      In many ways our aim will be a massive 1st innings. I wonder after that test how much the toss will matter. That wicket wasn’t any worse to bat on on days 2 and 3.

      Or will India go for a turner? After what happened in the first test, I doubt it.

      • March 21st 2017 @ 6:56am
        Craig said | March 21st 2017 @ 6:56am | ! Report

        “In many ways our aim will be a massive first innings”. Isnt that the idea every 1st innings?

        Will be a cracking 4th test. I can’t wait.

        The indians really seem to have no idea how to dismiss Smith. They really seemed to lack ideas, even in the second innings.

        • March 21st 2017 @ 7:08am
          I hate pies said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:08am | ! Report

          The news are reporting that Smith left the ball in the second innings (or “shouldered arms” as they say now); for mine it looked like he was trying to pad it away but miscalculated the spin.

          • Roar Guru

            March 21st 2017 @ 10:07am
            Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:07am | ! Report

            I agree. I thought the same. It was just a really bad kick away attempt where his pad covered the line the ball would have gone if it hadn’t turned, but didn’t account for turn at all, and it turned past the bat. Still a complete misjudgement. He did fail to play a shot, just put his foot down and missed it with that. So the reports aren’t entirely wrong in that description, but yeah, he clealy was putting his pad there to let the pad hit it but didn’t cover up his stumps like he needed too with a big definite stride.

        • March 21st 2017 @ 9:20am
          Andrew said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:20am | ! Report

          India’s plan to get Australia out is to just give jadeja the ball and make him bowl rediculous amounts of overs and eventually Australia will crack.

        • March 21st 2017 @ 11:17am
          jameswm said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:17am | ! Report

          Yeah I guess. I mean if we bat 2nd, we need to try to do India what they did to England repeatedly.

          • Roar Guru

            March 21st 2017 @ 12:26pm
            Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 12:26pm | ! Report

            I actually think that in high scoring games where the pitch really plays pretty well right up to the end and only just starts to get a bit harder on day 5, often batting second gives you more chances to win. You have more of a chance of winning while only batting once when you bat second. The only way to do that batting first is to make the opposition follow on, which means bowlers bowling 2 innings in a row.

            If you have first innings scores for one team of 450 and the other of 650 and then the chance to roll the team that got 450 in the first innings for under 200 in the second innings, there’s much more chance of that batting second. Batting first if you get 650 and then the opposition gets 450, you aren’t likely to make them follow on and send your bowlers back out for more, meaning you need to take more time up batting and working out how much you need before being comfortable declaring and setting a target. While the same scores made with the higher score done batting second means they have rested bowlers able to come and bowl at the opposition with a chance to try and bowl them out for a total where you don’t have to bat again.

            You need to overcome some physical and psycological hurdles. Going out to bat after conceding a big first innings total can play on the mind, and it can mean the batsmen are more tired from spending all that time in the field. But if the openers can get past that start and give the other batsmen a chance to get refreshed a bit before they have to come out to bat it can work well.

            It’s a tough call to make though. Few captains would be willing to put the opposition in on a nice batting deck with the thought of hoping that whatever they get in their first innings, we can go past it in ours and hopefully only have to bat once. So you pretty much need to lose the toss for this to happen.

            • March 21st 2017 @ 2:03pm
              jameswm said | March 21st 2017 @ 2:03pm | ! Report

              Chris I’ve long thought your best chance of winning should be batting 2nd, esp in say Australia, England and SA. There is a bit in the deck in the first session or two. If you bowl them out in 4 sessions for 360, you then bat for 2 days and score 600.

              Works in theory. It seems however that runs on the board cannot be understated.

              • Roar Guru

                March 21st 2017 @ 3:43pm
                Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 3:43pm | ! Report

                I would be curious to actually see stats of wins batting first v batting second. I think sometimes in high scoring conditions the team batting second can suffer from the fact that they’ve been chasing leather for a while in the first innings before getting a bat and being more tired from that can effect concentration and give the bowlers more of a chance. Plus psychology is a big thing. A team with runs on the board go out to bowl with a lot of confidence and feel they can really attack the opposition etc. There are many reasons for it. But certainly batting second isn’t necessarily detrimental to your chances.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 11:57pm
                Nudge said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:57pm | ! Report

                It’s not the end of the world if you have to bat second on a half decent batting track. But geez it’s getting close

      • March 21st 2017 @ 7:04am
        Rob JM said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:04am | ! Report

        At this point they might be better off leaving the pitch up to the groundsman and recalling Shami. Ashwin is clearly exhausted and could use a spell.
        As for australia I think its bird for Lyon, apart from that one sublime day he has been outbowled by SOK. Although that being said he does better if there is bounce, which may be the case in the 4th test.

        • March 21st 2017 @ 8:03am
          Rock said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:03am | ! Report

          Really can’t agree with that.

          In the 1st test SOK got a bagful, but Lyon bowled outstandingly well with a few chances grassed as well.

          In the second Lyon got a bagful in the 1st innings, and even though got none in the 2nd bowled very good without luck. SOK also bowled well but wasn’t really troubling the Indians.

          In this test they were both absolutely toothless, as was everyone apart from Jadeja.

          • March 21st 2017 @ 8:16am
            Thunder Nation said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:16am | ! Report

            Rock, Lyon has a few nasty blisters that could keep him out of the 4th test

            Hence, bring in Agar or Swepson. the un known factors will bamboozle India and send Kohli into a tantrum/frenzy

            • Roar Guru

              March 21st 2017 @ 10:09am
              Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:09am | ! Report

              Yeah, Lyon’s finger “injury” could mean he needs to be rested. Smith bowled him a lot less than SOK in this match, likely because of a combination of the finger injury, and the fact he just couldn’t keep it as tight.

            • March 21st 2017 @ 5:25pm
              James Jackson said | March 21st 2017 @ 5:25pm | ! Report

              It’s tempting, but I worry that we would leak runs from that end – right now our bowling unit has no easy ride for the Indian batsmen. Which is amazing considering Cummins swooped in seamlessly and bowled 39 overs with 4 wickets at 2.7 an over. As a strike bowler, that’s quite sensational. That’s my tangent

          • March 21st 2017 @ 8:31am
            Basil said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:31am | ! Report

            To be fair, Ashwin (the no1 bowler in the world) was toothless also, the difference was that Ashwin had the rough to use while Lyon and SOK didn’t.

            • March 21st 2017 @ 9:20am
              rock said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:20am | ! Report

              I don’t disagree Basil, I was just making the point that both Lyon & SOK were toothless. As you said, either didn’t trouble the Indians same as Ashwin, and he had that rough to work with.

            • March 21st 2017 @ 11:25am
              jameswm said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:25am | ! Report

              Ashwin is only ranked no.1 because he only plays at home.

              In Australia he’s played 6 tests and taken 21 wickets at 55.

              In SA he’s played only the one test and went wicketless, conceding 100+ runs.

              He’s never played in NZ.

              In England, he’s taken 3 wickets in 2 tests (ave 34).

              So he’s toothless against any half decent team away from home.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 1:14pm
                ViratKohli said | March 21st 2017 @ 1:14pm | ! Report

                Spot on… I think he is toothless in India sometimes as well and India relies on Jadeja too much.
                He was dropped in the last adelaide test match – couldnt weave his so called magic with the Kookaburra or Duke.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 2:09pm
                jameswm said | March 21st 2017 @ 2:09pm | ! Report

                He’s taken 17 wickets at 29 this series – not exactly earth shattering.

                Jadeja 21 wickets @ 18.

                Lyon 14 wickets @ 26.

                SOK 18 wickets @ 19.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 10:22pm
                spruce moose said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:22pm | ! Report

                so on that logic james I hope I don’t catch you saying positive things about David Warner anytime soon.

              • March 23rd 2017 @ 3:06pm
                Sumit Roy said | March 23rd 2017 @ 3:06pm | ! Report

                so which non Australian spinner has taken a load buckets of wickets in OZ?
                Not too many. Overseas spinners allways struggle in OZ.
                An if you are judging his overseas record on basis of 3 other tests.. best of luck.
                His overall away average is 33.24 in 16 tests abroad. Not the best neither that many.

          • March 21st 2017 @ 8:41am
            Rob JM said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:41am | ! Report

            Obviously if the wicket looks like it will spin they will play both spinners. On reputation the pitch is supposed to be seam friendly which means 3 seamers, sok and maxwell is our best bet

            • March 21st 2017 @ 9:18am
              rock said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:18am | ! Report

              If the pitch is seam friendly, Lyon would be preferable as he can use those wicket conditions better then SOK (you just have to see what the bounce did to India in Bengaluru).

              • March 21st 2017 @ 9:28am
                Basil said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:28am | ! Report

                Yes, Lyons second innings was amazing….

              • Roar Guru

                March 21st 2017 @ 10:11am
                Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:11am | ! Report

                It may be a simple decision though if Lyon is still struggling with his fingers though. Could afford the risk when he’s one of two spinners, but if they are going to drop a spinner, you can’t afford to keep the one who is struggling with his fingers.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 10:43am
                Armchair Expert said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:43am | ! Report

                SOK’s batting should give SOK the edge, that 50 run partnership with Smith went a long way to avoiding a loss, Lyon has been a walking wicket when batting lately.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 11:25am
                rock said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:25am | ! Report

                Did you watch the 2nd innings in Bengaluru Basil, or just look at the figures? He had 4 chances put down (2 which were simple) and the Indian batsmen still were no where near playing him with conviction.

                Yeah, he bowled woefully in that innings…….

              • March 21st 2017 @ 7:59pm
                Basil said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:59pm | ! Report

                Yes I did watch it. You have your opinion, and I have mine.

              • March 22nd 2017 @ 8:34am
                Matth said | March 22nd 2017 @ 8:34am | ! Report

                The other aspect here is that we only need to draw to save the series. O’Keefe keeps the runs down more, which stretches the game out. Also if we need a third seamer, then Bird is not the world’s greatest bat, so it would make sense to keep O’Keefe for that reason as well.

                This is taking nothing away from Lyon, he has been very good in this series as well.

                It all depends on the pitch though, and look how good all of us Australians were at reading the Ranchi mud strip.

      • March 21st 2017 @ 9:17am
        Linphoma said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:17am | ! Report

        They would have to go the slow, low road and plan another bat-a-thon, but still scratching their heads over whether they can get the breaks and bowl Australia out twice; and if Kohli can continue to take the heat off his own poor scoring.

      • Roar Guru

        March 21st 2017 @ 10:05am
        Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:05am | ! Report

        It does potentially change things. India have to win that test. For Australia, they’d want to win the series, not just draw it, but a draw will retain the trophy. So therefore you’d think India would want to be careful to avoid a high scoring pitch that brings the draw very much into the equation.

        • March 21st 2017 @ 1:16pm
          ViratKohli said | March 21st 2017 @ 1:16pm | ! Report

          Gone is the generation when aussies were going for the outright win… these days even the supporters are happy with a draw… How times have changed.

          • Roar Guru

            March 21st 2017 @ 1:52pm
            Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 1:52pm | ! Report

            Not at all. The point is that you just don’t crumble in a heap when you are in a situation where there’s really no way to win the test from there. If the Aussies had managed to break the Pujara / Saha partnership early on and run through the tail they could have had a bit of a lead on the first innings with still plenty of time left in the test, but the more that they batted the more it got to the point where that wasn’t a possibility. So to make sure that in the absence of a possibility of winning you at least come away with the draw is a good thing, and something that the Aussie team hasn’t been great at in the past.

            They are still a team that would probably still see a chance to win a test past where many other teams wouldn’t. (eg Set 500 to win in 5 sessions some teams would just be thinking of trying to bat for 5 sessions to salvage a draw, while this Aussie side I reckon would still harbour the thoughts of getting those 500)..

    • Roar Rookie

      March 21st 2017 @ 7:20am
      Lancey5times said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:20am | ! Report

      Where are ya Thunder Nation? Got something negative to say about last nights performance?

      • Roar Rookie

        March 21st 2017 @ 7:26am
        Dan said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:26am | ! Report

        First thought Lancey – this site needs a “like” button.

      • March 21st 2017 @ 7:29am
        Peebo said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:29am | ! Report

        I spotted Thunder Nation on a bureau of Meteorology thread complaining about a couple of clouds spoiling a clear and sunny forecast.

      • March 21st 2017 @ 7:49am
        Ouch said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:49am | ! Report

        Consulting his crystal ball for the 4th test predictions. Probably should dust it off first this time.

        • March 21st 2017 @ 7:58am
          Thunder Nation said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:58am | ! Report

          Ouch ouch

          I predict a dusty wicket for the 4th test

          I predict India pulling out every trick in the book to win this test

          Aussie players, dont eat any food not prepared by your staff

          Dont drink the water

          Play eachball on its merit

          Go the Aussies and go for the draw it is all u need

          • March 21st 2017 @ 12:59pm
            Ouch said | March 21st 2017 @ 12:59pm | ! Report

            Sensible predictions TN.

        • Roar Rookie

          March 21st 2017 @ 8:21am
          Lancey5times said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:21am | ! Report

          His advice to me yesterday was to work on my novel and spend some time with my kids as this test was over. Maybe he could do the same during the 4th test.

          • March 21st 2017 @ 8:29am
            Thunder Nation said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:29am | ! Report

            Lancey who is your pick for the 4th Test matey?

            Lyon to snatch a bag of poles?

            Warner to make double figures?

            Renshaw to slug a double tonne

            • Roar Rookie

              March 21st 2017 @ 9:26am
              Lancey5times said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:26am | ! Report

              Lyon to not play.
              Warner to make 40 odd.
              Renshaw ton.

              But I reserve the right to change these predictions once we get a look at the wicket.

              Enjoy the fight last night?

              • March 21st 2017 @ 10:03am
                Thunder Nation said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:03am | ! Report

                Loved every ball of it matey

                Was behind em the whole way

                Wicket to be a dustbowl or a road?

              • Roar Rookie

                March 21st 2017 @ 12:36pm
                Lancey5times said | March 21st 2017 @ 12:36pm | ! Report

                I guess India will be making sure they don’t lose this series so expect a wicket with plenty of runs. They will back themselves to out bat us in much the same way they just did in Ranchi only have us struggle when batting a second time. So expect something similar to what we just saw. India were not far away from winning that test match. Personally I think they missed a trick when they didn’t put the foot down just before and just after tea on day 4. An extra 10 overs at us on Sunday may have been the difference

              • Roar Guru

                March 21st 2017 @ 10:14am
                Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:14am | ! Report

                Definitely need to see the wicket and how everyone pulls up from this test. All players on both sides will be pretty worn. Lyon’s got finger issues. If the pitch does make them consider the extra spinner, have to think Lyon would be the one to make way. Can risk him when you are playing two spinners, but if you are only playing the one main spinner, you can’t take the guy with the finger issues into the test.

              • March 21st 2017 @ 11:35am
                rock said | March 21st 2017 @ 11:35am | ! Report

                If he does have the issues still, which was evident in this test, then you would think he couldn;t play the 4th test.

                After the series so far & unless SOK has another 1st test blinder, my bet is Lyon still plays the 1st test in Brisbane as it currently stands with the selectors. Whether it is right or not, I’m just a pundit, but I would put money on that is the outcome.

              • Roar Guru

                March 21st 2017 @ 12:30pm
                Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 12:30pm | ! Report

                For the first test in Brisbane it’s a hard call to make. Smith may have a bit of influence there. He’s not a selector, but he can talk to the selectors about what he needs from his players, and having captained both of them through these tests, he may be in a position to say whether he’s more comfortable with a supposedly more attacking spinner who will give more runs away, or a more defensive one who doesn’t look like much but just keeps it tight and keeps picking up wickets. (Let’s face it, people talk about SOK in these sorts of spinning conditions, but his FC average of 22 has been achieved largely in Australian conditions where no other spinner has been able to prosper like that).

              • March 21st 2017 @ 8:04pm
                Basil said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:04pm | ! Report

                Funny how he’s more defensive yet takes more wickets.

    • March 21st 2017 @ 7:47am
      Thunder Nation said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:47am | ! Report

      Congrats to the XI 🙂

      I knew you guys could pull off that amazing draw!

      We will draw the final test and come home winners

      Interested to hear people’s XI for the final test?

      Dump Warner? Replace Lyon? Insert Swepson?

      • Roar Guru

        March 21st 2017 @ 10:14am
        Chris Kettlewell said | March 21st 2017 @ 10:14am | ! Report

        Who are you and what have you done with the real Thunder Nation? 🙂

        • March 21st 2017 @ 8:01pm
          doogs said | March 21st 2017 @ 8:01pm | ! Report

          Yeah. What the??? lol

      • March 21st 2017 @ 9:53pm
        AdrianK said | March 21st 2017 @ 9:53pm | ! Report

        How about stacking the batting:
        Warner (he’s due a few runs)
        Agar (can bat a bit)

        Ok, seems a silly team, but the thinking is, batting down to 10 is insurance. Also, bowlers in 3rd test bowled a lot of overs (India bowled 27 more overs, but had a two and a half day rest in between). Lyon hindered by finger. I hope we don’t put Cummins in – he was fantastic, but there is no way his bowling loads in the lead up were prep for a 40 over innings- let’s not risk him again – how good will he be for the Ashes. Hazlewood could also use a rest, and SOK was fantastic – but who remembers a bowler bowling 77 overs in an innings!

        Realistically, though – suspect same team for 4th test. Maybe if it looks a bit of a seamer, either Stoinis or Bird in for one of the spinners (probably Lyon)

    • Roar Pro

      March 21st 2017 @ 7:50am
      Andrew Young said | March 21st 2017 @ 7:50am | ! Report

      It sure was a plucky performance; a real show of backbone with bat and ball!

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