Former captain Sunil Gavaskar today said if India were to win the ongoing five-match ODI series in Australia the visitor’s need to find a way to dismiss home team skipper Steven Smith early.
Chasing an imposing 310-run target, Australia rode on captain Smith’s fluent 149 to script a comfortable five-wicket victory over India in a high-scoring first cricket one-dayer to take a 1-0 lead at Perth today.
Smith again turned out to be India’s nemesis, pacing his innings to perfection. His sequence of scores against the ‘Men In Blue’ across formats now reads: 162 not out, 52 not out, 133, 28, 192, 14, 117, 71, 47, 105.
“309 was never an easy score to chase because you are required to chase more than six runs an over and they also lost two wickets pretty early,” Gavaskar said.
“India really need to find a way to get rid of Australian skipper Steven Smith. They have not found out an way to dismiss him last year and the first match of the new series suggests they are still struggling to find an way to get the Australian skipper out cheaply. Unless they do that the Australians are going to score big runs,” he said.
“He (Smith) really loves Indian bowling, he does not seem to get out to Indian bowlers. He is going to be very crucial to containing Australia,” he told NDTV.
Gavaskar lauded debutant Barinder Sran (3/56) who managed to create an impression with early breakthroughs and said the left-arm pacer can create trouble for Smith if he can add the late inswinging delivery to his armoury.
The former captain advised Sran to take legendary Wasim Akram and Ashish Nehra’s advise to further hone his skills.
“It does not matter how quick you are, you must be able to pick wickets and he (Sran) is getting wickets. I think if you can develop the ball that comes into the right-hander it would be great.
“Speak to Wasim (Akram) and try to pick his brains because I feel that is one ball which will create problems for Smith because he shuffles so much towards his off stump. The ball coming in late can trap him leg before or bowl him behind his legs. So that’s something he needs to develop.
“Maybe talk to Ashish Nehra because he has a terrific incoming delivery,” said the legendary batsman.