Aus WC loss shows shift in power in int`l cricket: Oz media
Melbourne: India are all set to become the new dominant Australia in international cricket and the shift in power was there to be seen in the way Mahendra Singh Dhoni`s men won the World Cup quarterfinals, the media Down Under said.
In an article headlined `No shame in loss that illustrates shift in power`, the `Sydney Morning Herald` declared that the cricket world should brace up for an Aussie-style dominance by India in the coming years.
"If you were to look at the match scorecards with everything but the scores blacked out, the team batting first produced what used to be a typical Indian performance: some squandered starts, held together by some individual brilliance," the newspaper`s cricket writer Jesse Hogan wrote.
"That the team batting second lacked a similarly dominant individual effort but made up for that with consistency through its specialist batting line-up would seem to be more an Australian-type performance," he added.
"In the new (cricket) world order, however, the team with the most depth was not the four-time champion from Australia but the emerging on- and off-field power of India."
The writer said the change in equation is in no way an insult to Australia but just goes to highlight India`s rise.
"That it is not a disgrace for Australia to have lost in the quarter-finals of the World Cup because of the opponent it drew, despite still holding the official No. 1 one-day international ranking, reinforces the shift in power.”
"It was not as if Australia was so comprehensively beaten that it never had a realistic chance of victory. It was the little things that sent India through to the World Cup semi-finals at the expense of Australia.”
"Yes, Australia`s fielding was still better than India`s but not to the extent that was expected, although that could have been different if a few early run-out opportunities were capitalised on," he said.
Noted cricket writer Peter Roebuck also felt that there was no shame in losing to a better team given that the Aussies played to the best of their ability in the match.
"In the end, Australia were not quite good enough. Defeat came but not dishonour. Ricky Ponting and his players scrapped hard and came within a wicket of putting their opponents under unbearable pressure. Instead, Yuvraj Singh, a cricketer at last living up to his reputation, and Suresh Raina stood firm to take their team to a pulsating victory," he wrote in his column.
"No matter how comfortable it might appear on paper, it was a close-run thing."
Roebuck lavished praised skipper Ricky Ponting, who shrugged off indifferent form of many months to come up with a fighting hundred that became the cornerstone of Australia`s innings in the five-wicket loss.