After suffering a heavy defeat of 333 runs at the hands of Australia, Indian skipper Virat Kohli admitted that it was his team’s worst batting display in the last two years. But what led to this downfall is a matter of conjecture, whether it was sheer brilliance by the tourists or a bit of over confidence on the part of the hosts.
Prior to the Pune Test defeat, India had enjoyed a good home season in Test cricket and enjoyed an unbeaten run of 19 Tests. Going into the series India defeated New Zealand, England and Bangladesh and the side was brimming with confidence. While, Australia for the first time were considered the underdogs. Ultimately it was the underdog which turned the tables around and came up trumps against the firm favourites.
The current Australian squad is not as strong as their previous sides but they showed a lot of application in the middle. The Indians on the other hand played quite a few rash shots and also missed catches. Captain Virat Kohli himself was seen throwing his bat at a ball way outside off-stump in the first innings and ended up edging it. This reflected India’s mindset going into the game and perhaps they wanted to dominate Australia from the start but ultimately ended up playing into their hands. On a track which assisted spinners, it were the finger spinners of the visiting team who took more advantage than the Indian spinners. They did this by keeping this simple and doing the basics right.
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In last 14 months India has destroyed every team that has come in its path. But Pune turned out to be a completely different ball game and the same confident team buckled under pressure.
However, with the opening Test ending in just three days, Kohli and his team will have plenty of time to get their act together before the second Test in Bangalore, starting March 4. It does not seem like the Indian team was riding on over-confidence but now with this jolting defeat they will look to get back on track.