India are set to start their highly anticipated four-match Test series against hosts Australia from December 6 at the historic Adelaide Oval. With the absence of Australia's two best players - Steven Smith and David Warner - the visitors are fancying their chances for a historic maiden series victory Down Under. On the eve of the first Test, former India captain and IndiaTV cricket expert Sourav Ganguly said that it's not going to be easy for India to win unless they bat really well.
Dada also sees the tour as an opportunity for Virat Kohli to stamp his name among the greatest captains in the history of Indian cricket. He added that everyone has to contribute and we can't expect to win the series only based on Kohli's exploits with the bat.
"I always believe that outside the subcontinent unless you don't score above 400 in the first innings you can't win the game. We can't expect Kohli to score four centuries on every tour," said the former captain.
Ganguly also gave a rule of thumb to Virat Kohli and Co: win the toss, bat first!
"No matter what the conditions are or what the pitch looks like, if you win the toss in Australia, you have to bat first. That gives you the advantage of piling up the runs on the board and putting the weakened Australian batting under pressure," advised Ganguly.
India also named their twelve man squad ahead of the first Test with the team still undecided between Hanuma Vihari and Rohit Sharma for the crucial no. 6 spot. It will be interesting to see whether they go for Vihari who has proved himself in the recent past whenever he has got an opportunity or they choose Sharma who even after being a white-ball Goliath is yet to prove his Test credentials, especially outside the subcontinent. Ganguly on his part believes that Rohit Sharma would be the ideal candidate at least for the 1st Test as he has the game to succeed in Australian conditions.
With teenage opener, Prithvi Shaw out of the team due to injury, the responsibility of opening the batting has now fallen onto the seasoned Murali Vijay and the yet to be settled KL Rahul. The latter has come under a lot of scrutinies off late for his tendency to give away his wicket, even after getting settled in, a habit that he even displayed during the first innings of the tour match against Cricket Australia XI. When posed with the question of India's opening conundrum Ganguly advised Rahul to be watchful of the incoming delivery and make his starts count more often.
"Rahul should beware of the incoming deliveries as those are the ones which seem to get him out most of the times. Other than that he will have to make sure that if and whenever he manages to get a start he doesn't stop after scoring a 50 or 60 but goes on to make it big," opined the 113-Tests veteran.