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Is Team India Giving Players Fake Confidence? Harbhajan Singh Explains WTC Final Loss

Is Team India Giving Players Fake Confidence? Harbhajan Singh Explains WTC Final Loss

After India lost the ICC World Test Championship final to Australia at The Oval, the famous spinner Harbhajan Singh questioned how India prepares for big games in pace-friendly conditions when the pitches are so good for spin. After beating India by 209 runs in the final of the ICC World Test Championship at The Oval, Australia became the first team ever to win all major ICC awards. Australia won their first World Test Championship 2023 title on Sunday at the Oval in London. They had dominated India for five days and won by a lot. India’s last man, Mohammad Shami, had a score of 13(8)* when they were all out at 234 after 63.3 overs. They were trying to get to 444.

Harbhajan said that India can’t fully prepare for big matches if they finish Test matches in just three days on spin-friendly Indian pitches. Instead, he said, they need to work hard for all five days and make it a habit. “You can’t give yourself a false sense of confidence just because you’ve won games on bad fields where the ball starts to spin from the first ball. For five days, you will have to get into the habit of working hard. Only then will you be better prepared for these important games. On these pitches, fast bowlers don’t get to bowl as much because spinners are used from the first over. “We need to fix a lot of things,” Harbhajan said on Star Sports after the match.

Three of the four Tests in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy against Australia at home this year ended in three days due to spin-friendly surfaces. Spinners Ravichandran Ashwin (25 wickets), Ravindra Jadeja (22), and Nathan Lyon (22) dominated the series. India opened day five of the ICC World Test Championship match at 164/3, with Virat Kohli (44*) and Ajinkya Rahane (20*) unbroken. India’s collapse began when Scott Boland trapped Virat for 49 and Ravindra Jadeja for a duck. Nathan Lyon dismissed Srikar Bharat (23) and Mitchell Starc dismissed Rahane for 46.

Australia won their first WTC as the Indian batting line-up collapsed for 234 runs in 63.3 overs. Australia’s best bowler, Lyon, took 4/41. Boland grabbed 3/46 and Starc took two wickets. Pat Cummins took one. On day four, Virat Kohli (44*) and Ajinkya Rahane (20*) were undefeated at 164/3. Captain Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill (18) started the team with a 41-run opening stand, but Cameron Green’s catch on Boland’s delivery terminated the partnership.

Rohit and Cheteshwar Pujara put up 51 runs together, which helped India move forward in the chase with an offensive mindset. India fell to 93/3 when Lyon got rid of Rohit for 43 and Cummins got rid of Pujara for 27. From there, Rahane and Virat worked together for 71 runs to end the fourth day on a strong note. Australia’s innings ended when they were 270/8, giving them a lead of 443 runs. At one point, Australia was down to 24/2, but Marnus Labuschagne (41) and Steve Smith (34 runs) got Australia back into the game. Later, middle-order and lower-middle-order players like Cameron Green (25), wicketkeeper-batter Alex Carey’s (60*) half-century, and his 93-run stand with Mitchell Starc (41) made Australia’s margin over India bigger.

Ravindra Jadeja was India’s best bowler, getting 3/58. Umesh Yadav (54 runs) and Mohammed Shami (39 runs) both took two wickets, and Mohammed Siraj took one. India was bowled out for 296 runs in its first innings. Australia had made 469 runs in their first game, which put them 173 runs behind India. In their first game, India’s top players did not do well. Rohit Sharma (15), Shubman Gill (13), Cheteshwar Pujara (14), and Virat Kohli (14) did not get high marks. After India was put down to 71/4, players like Ajinkya Rahane (89 in 129 balls with 11 fours and a six), Shardul Thakur (51 in 109 balls with six fours), and Ravindra Jadeja (48 in 51 balls with seven fours) helped them fight back. Australia lost wickets because of Pat Cummins (3/83), Nathan Lyon (2/19), Cameron Green (2/44), Scott Boland (2/59), and Mitchell Starc (2/71).

Travis Head (163 in 174 balls, 25 fours, and a six) and Steve Smith (121 in 268 balls, 19 fours) scored hundreds to lead Australia’s 469 first-innings runs. David Warner (43) and Marnus Labuschagne (26) contributed, but Australia fell to 76/3. Head and Smith then got centuries against Indian bowlers. Alex Carey’s 48 later in the inning also helped. Siraj (4/108) led India’s first-innings bowlers. Jadeja took one wicket, Shardul Thakur took two, and Mohammed Shami took two. Travis Head’s aggressive 163 earned him ‘Player of the Match’.

Australia: 469 and 270/8 (Alex Carey 60*, Marnus Labuschagne 41, Ravindra Jadeja 3/58) defeated India: 296 and 234 (Virat Kohli 49, Rohit Sharma 43, Nathan Lyon 4/41).


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