In Chennai, Smith's ODI team got an early taste of what that can look like, albeit in circumstances that allowed some room for benefit of the doubt. A fiery opening spell from Nathan Coulter-Nile rattled the top-order and reduced the hosts to 87/5. Marcus Stoinis then followed up by "bashing the wicket" and coaxing out a couple victims of his own to cross-bat shots.
It brought Pandya and Dhoni together at the crease, and they dug India out of this huge hole. Manish Pandey too did not trouble the scorers as he was caught by Wade. "We've been facing our fast bowlers in the nets and other net bowlers as well", Smith said. Well, we had a good family and then things changed, father's health and all had a grave effect. "Hardik is a very good player", he added. They bowled very well to us.
"Anyone who can hit sixes against spin without using the feet will be an asset because the bowler doesn't have any inkling of the batsman's plan and can't adjust".
Depth in batting tests a bowling unit in this manner.
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"The ball was stopping a bit, and skidding on".
Similarly, India's total would have been much smaller had debutant Hilton Cartwright hit the stumps when Dhoni was stranded mid-pitch on eight, but his throw narrowly missed the woodwork. The lack of experience in India's middle and lower order has forced the veteran gloveman to adapt his game accordingly and the results there for all to see.
Coulter-Nile had contemplated giving up the longest format and turning into a T20 gun for hire last month, but he now says that playing for Australia is still the "dream". "They put on 120-odd and took them from 87 to 206". Its a healthy selection headache, one he will cherish having, but the decision could factor into the next match and the end result in a massive way.
Since the time the Baroda all-rounder burst onto the IPL scene with the noticeably heavy Caribbean accent, Pandya has been cut out for the new-age Team India. That's a positive for us.
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A lengthy rain delay saw the chase revised to 164 in 21 overs, with the tourists struggling to an underpowered 137 for nine.
After a frightful start, the Indian cricket team ended up with a highly respectable total of 281 with the loss of seven wickets.
It was the kind of aggressive batting by Pandya that brought back memories of a young Dhoni when he announced his arrival in worldwide cricket with a swashbuckling 148 against Pakistan in a one-day match in 2005. We lost too many wickets in the middle. "I'm confident I can get through for WA and just get my body into some sort of shape to play for Australia consistently". Batting for 20 overs is difficult when you're losing wickets and trying to go quite hard. It did not work out as we would have liked.
"They like the bat on ball they like to come hard at us", he said. "After talking to JL (Justin Langer) and a few blokes, I think it'd just be mad to give up the dream at 29".
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