Australia have surprised many people with their brilliant show at the Old Trafford but it would be just fair to say that, Australia are’t as good as many are saying after the third test match. Australia did look a lot better in the third match but things are still far away from being satisfactory.
Many are blaming T20 cricket and particularly, Big Bash League ( BBL ) for the poor performance of Australian team in test cricket but, this comparison is as bizarre as it sounds. South Africa are the number one test side and many of their test players play T20 cricket and IPL regularly and this hasn’t had any kind of impact on their test cricket. Blaming BBL for the fall of test cricket in Australia is like, cops killing innocent people in a fake encounter to end a case which they were not able to solve otherwise. Putting the blame on a T20 league for the abysmal test cricket show is an easy way of getting away but this is surely not the right way forward.
IPL model has turned to be a great success for the Board Of Cricket Control In India, in terms of money and more importantly, it has helped in raising the level of cricket in India. Many domestic players, be it pure test cricketers or T20 specialist, have benefited from this T20 league. Ravindra Jadeja, who is now an important member of India team, is a good example how these glamorous leagues can help in grooming of a player. Jadeja has been a consistent performer at the Ranji Trophy level, off late and his good performances in IPL have helped him to get into that much needed “limelight”. Many young players have made use of IPL to get into FC cricket and contrary to the common belief, IPL has actually helped India in discovering some good “longer format” talent.
BBL is a very good cricket tournament and it’s success in Australia has been commendable. Australia have never been short of talent and with the advent of this “eye-catching” tournament, many young lads would make use of this great platform to showcase their talent early in their careers and this will be very beneficial for Australian cricket.
It is a myth that, playing T20 cricket can spoil test skills. Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel, Jacques Kallis, Graem Swann, Saeed Ajmal, Virat Kohli and many other top class cricketers play all three formats and it’s all about that little adjustment which one has to make while shifting from one format to the other.
Putting all the blame on BBL for the fall of test cricket in Australia shows the helplessness of the Australian journalists and supporters ( who are blaming) and this shows how desperately they are searching for an easy reason to blame.
Australian selectors have been making some horrendous selection calls off late and there have been a lot of “off the field” drama, as well, which has not been handled in the right way the Cricket Australia. Taking the argument of the selectors and their selection further, we have witnessed a changing trend in the selection policies and shockingly, there have been more “short-term” policies. These short-term approach, has led to too many changes in the team and we get to see a different Australian team in every series.
It’s a bit annoying that all the journalists are trying their best to humiliate Shane Watson for making some bad DRS calls but no or very less attention has been given to Australian think-tank’s absurd decision making and Michael Clark’s poor captaincy. In the first two matches of The Ashes 2013, Australia have made couple of changes in their playing XI and they have been making many desperate changes in the batting order, too.
It’s quiet clear that, Australia are under prepared for this series and their is still a big question mark on their ability to beat England in England.
Australian cricket team must focus only on their cricket and should play to best of their potential in the remaining of the two Ashes matches. As I mentioned in my last Ashes article, winning isn’t impossible for this Australian team but it would require discipline, self belief and confidence.