‘Pujara, Kohli difference between two sides’

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 01 Jan 2019 08:39:17




AUSTRALIAN coach Justin Langer has lamented a lack of world-class batsmen in his side’s line-up and pointed out that Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara have been the difference for the visitors in the on-going four-match Test series. India won the third Test at the MCG by 131 runs to take an unassailable 2-1 lead in the series. The fourth Test begins in Sydney Thursday.

“At this stage, the difference in the series is Pujara and Kohli, if we’re frank. Pujara averages 53 and Kohli has averaged 46 and got a duck in the second innings. The lesson we learn from that is he just absorbed all our pressure,” Langer said Monday.

“It’s the art of batting, isn’t it? It’s about absorbing pressure. You’ve got so much time in Test cricket, and I guess in the (T20) world we live in, everything is so instant and so quick and talk about strike rates. Our guys are learning that, or hopefully they’re learning that. If they don’t we’ll keep having performances like we’re having,” he said. Langer blamed the first innings batting flop-show —151 all out Australia’s defeat in the third Test.

“It was a really tough Test match. I’ve said from Day One it’s going to be a real arm wrestle the Test series and it feels like that. It has been tough, we probably got the worst of the conditions in this Test match and our first innings batting particularly was not up to the work we put into it. We feel disappointed and tired, but we are getting ready to refresh and get ready for the fourth one,” he added. Langer said relative inexperience of Australian batting line-up was starting to show as series heads towards its culmination.

New dad Rohit to miss Sydney Test



INDIA batsman Rohit Sharma will miss the fourth Test against Australia in Sydney to be with his wife, who gave birth to a baby girl in Mumbai on Sunday. Rohit has flown back from Melbourne and will rejoin the squad on January 8 ahead of the three-match ODI series beginning January 12.

“India batsman Rohit Sharma left for Mumbai on the 30th of December to attend to his wife who has delivered a baby girl. The BCCI congratulates Rohit on the beginning of a new chapter in his life,” BCCI said in a statement.

The Indian Cricket Board (BCCI), however, has not named any replacement for Rohit for the final Test beginning on January 3. India lead the four-match Test series 2-1 after winning the Melbourne Test by 137 runs.