Australia at odds over bowling tactics against India at SCG in fourth Test
Australia’s coaching staff says there was “some confusion” between captain Tim Paine and his three fast bowlers about their tactics against India on day one of the fourth Test, admitting the team held “quite aggressive” talks after being dominated by the tourists at the SCG.
- Australia’s coaches expressed disappointment with the tactics of its bowlers
- Spinner Nathan Lyon said he “wasn’t too happy” with Australia’s approach on day one
- India only lost four wickets on day one, while scoring in excess of 300 runs
Australia’s three quicks — Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins — peppered the Indian battling line-up with short-pitched deliveries throughout the day, only to be left deflated as their opponents reached a total of 4-303 at stumps on day one.
Cheteshwar Pujara was particularly brutal in dispensing of the trio of fast bowlers, notching his third century of the four-Test series.
Australia’s bowling coach David Saker conceded the quicks and Paine had been at odds about what tactics to employ on a green-tinged SCG pitch on day one.
“I think the bowlers wanted one thing, Tim wanted one thing,” Saker told ABC Grandstand.
“That’s not been the case as the general rule but when you were watching from the sideline you could see there was some confusion.
It wasn’t great and it doesn’t always happen but we will work again.”
Saker said both he and head coach Justin Langer expressed their anger with Australia’s bowling attack, who had performed admirably in the opening three Tests of the series.
“Last night we talked quite heavily about the day, more because we thought it was a really disappointing day and we just wanted to get our point across,” he said.
“Some of it was quite aggressive and that’s not like me usually.
“I was quite animated, and I know I was not the only one. JL [Langer] wasn’t happy. The bowlers know that.”
Saker felt the Australians had bowled well in periods but lacked consistency.
“We had spells that were quite good but that’s not going to cut it,” he said.
Lyon ‘wasn’t happy’ with Aussie tactics
Spinner Nathan Lyon, who claimed the wicket of India batsman Hanuma Vihari on day one, was less than impressed with Australia’s strategy.
“I wasn’t too happy with that to be honest,” Lyon told Grandstand after stumps was called on day one.
“We missed out on using the moisture in the wicket. I thought we could have stuck there [full] longer, but the captain and the bowlers came up with a decent plan and unfortunately it didn’t work.”
Retired Australia one-day international fast bowler Dirk Nannes was among the observers who disagreed with the hosts’ approach.
“I don’t think as a coaching staff you can let a team go like Australia did yesterday, just bowling that short stuff for long periods,” Nannes said.
“You see it for a couple of overs [so] get a message out there. Clip them over the ears and get them to change their tack.”