Areas India need to improve on before touring Australia

By Chaitan Papnai | Last Updated: Aug 18, 2014, 11:28 AM IST

Zee Media Bureau/Chaitan Papnai

New Delhi: Another Indian team led by MS Dhoni bit the dust in an overseas tour. But this time Team India not only lost the five match Test series 3-1, but they literally surrendered. In the last three Tests, India were simple outplayed by the hosts in all departments.

In all three major departments – batting, bowling and fielding – India looked totally off-colour. In the last six Test innings, Indian batsmen looked hapless against the seam and swing bowling of Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad. And then the middle order threw away their wickets to part-time spinner Mooen Ali. Young Indian batsmen couldn`t manage to find a solution to their technical flaws and how to play in English conditions throughout the series.

Keeping the Lord`s Test aside, Indian bowlers never looked impressive in the series. Albeit a couple of spells by Varun Aaron, no Indian bowler managed to create doubts in the minds of English batsmen. Seamers and tweakers, both looked listless against the Englishmen who not only regained their lost form in the series but scored heavily as well.

Another area of concern which came out during the lengthy and tiring Test series was the sloppy Indian fielding. Especially, at the slip cordon, Indian fielders dropped many catches. At crucial junctures, India failed to hold on to catches, for which they had to pay heavy price. It also affected morale of Indian bowlers. It can be said that India missed their specialist slip fielders in Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman.

Indian batmen need to learn the art of playing outside sub-continent, where the ball seams, swings and bounces a bit more, if they don`t want to face such embarrassing defeats in future. Application was another factor which was completely missing.

Young Indian seamers need to learn the art of pitching the ball up to exploit the conditions to the fullest. James Anderson and Stuart Broad displayed how it should be done, during the series. India also need to have some genuine fielders for slip cordon to support their bowlers. Along with that skipper MS Dhoni should learn from his past mistakes and should understand the fact that Test cricket is all together a different ball game.

So before India fly to Australia for another crucial overseas tour, they have to overcome all these issues to avoid further lop-sided tours outside the sub-continent.