Melbourne: Aware that letting Virender Sehwag play his free-flowing game could be perilous for them in the upcoming Test series, Australian pacer Mitchell Johnson has vowed to stop the explosive Indian opener by peppering him with short-balls.
The first Test of the two-match series will begin on October 1 in Mohali.
The left-arm quick feels Sehwag is vulnerable to short-pitched bowling.
When the Australians last played a Test series in India, Sehwag scored 351 runs at a strike rate of 82.39.
“Sehwag is someone we can bowl a lot of short balls to. I don’t think he’s too confident with the short ball early. Last time when we were over here we came out and he was hitting good balls for four or six. You look up at the scoreboard and he’s almost 50,” Johnson said.
The Aussie paceman their job would a lot more easy if they could dent the Indian top order.
“I think if we can get their top order out fairly cheaply, it puts a lot of pressure on their lower order like (MS) Dhoni, (Rahul) Dravid and those guys,” he was quoted as saying by the ‘Australian’.
All-rounder Shane Watson endorsed Johnson’s strategy.
“There are a few things we know we can make the most of with hopefully some of the Indian batsmen. I think with a few guys it doesn’t necessarily have to be raw pace, but getting a few short balls up a few of their top order batters is going to be really important, to set the tone of our bowling side.
“I think just about every team in the world is (vulnerable) to raw pace, no matter who you are, no one really enjoys the ball coming at your head at 150km/h,” he said.
The Australians will open their tour on Saturday by playing against Board’s President XI in Chandigarh.