Indian cricket team. (Source: ANI)
Former England captains Nasser Hussain and Eoin Morgan have spoken about how the Australians can stop the Indian juggernaut in the upcoming final of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 come Sunday. Led by Rohit Sharma, Team India are maintaining a winning streak in the tournament, winning all ten matches so far including the semi-finals. It will take some doing on part of the Australians to beat Indians.
Eoin Morgan, speaking with Sky Sports Cricket, said that mental preparation is what matters in the big matches. Morgan captained England in the last World Cup final that saw the Super Over being played.
“I think a lot of it is mental preparation…Australia are a side that have the genuine chance of overturning the force that India have been in this World Cup,” said Morgan.
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Morgan said that Australia would be hoping that India succumb a little bit to the level of expectations on their shoulders. India would be hoping to continue the aggressive nature, he added.
It is difficult to find a weakness in this Indian team. They have all bases covered. Even after injury to their star all-rounder Hardik Pandya, Indians did not lose momentum. Nasser feels that Aussies need to find a weakness in their bowling when they bat by targetting every bowler and if any of them crumbles, go after him.
“No sides have gone after Kuldeep Yadav in this tournament. New Zealand attacked Siraj. The thing with this Indian side is that when Siraj is hit, Shami comes back. Bumrah at death in quite brilliant….Australia will need to make Rohit do something different,” said Nasser.
Morgan concurred with this view and said that Autralia need to apply pressure on every Indian bowler and play aggresive style of cricket and see which of them flinches first. “If you find that one particular bowler is struggling, maybe be Mohammed Shami, whoever it is, you put more pressure on him,” said Morgan.
Both of the former captains agreed that Australia need to ensure Rohit does not just use five genuine bowlers that are their in the lineup. Unlike Australia, India do not have part-timers who can bowl some tight overs. Travis Head’s off-spin helped Australia dismiss two crucial batters in the semi-final of the World Cup while Glenn Maxwell bowled economical ten overs on the day Adam Zampa struggled.
India’s bowling options remain limited and if one of them has a bad day, that small weakness could be used to good effect by Australia.