Lauding an inexperienced Indian bowling set-up for its performance on the first day of the Gabba Test, legendary opener Sunil Gavaskar pointed out a problem that has been disturbing Indian bowlers for decades. After plucking first few wickets with ease, Indian bowlers haven't been able to clean up the last few wickets of the opposition, according to Gavaskar.
“The Indian bowlers get the first wickets but they struggle to get the last five wickets,” Gavaskar said on Sony Sports Network after the end of Day 1.
“India at least till tea time were controlling the game. If they got another couple of wickets then you could’ve said the day was India’s India had a really good chance of restricting Australia if they had got another wicket but this unbeaten partnership as taken it towards Australia,” Gavaskar said.
Gavaskar also showered praise on 'committed' Indian bowlers including debutant Washington Sundar. After electing to bat first, the Aussies were jolted with early blows in the form of David Warner and Marcus Harris. However, Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith steadied the innings with their 70-run stand before Sundar dismissed the latter to break the partnership.
Natarajan, also playing his first Test, removed centurion Labuschagne and brought India back into the game. The left-arm pacer also dismissed Matthew Wade to finish the day with figures of 2/63. At stumps, Australia were 274/5, with Cameron Green (28) and skipper Tim Paine (38) in the middle.
Pointing out the bowlers' struggles to take the final five wickets quickly, Gavaskar said that it's been happening in Indian cricket since 1932.
“Like it has happened since 1932 when India played their first game in England, they had England’s top five out for a low score and the last five added a lot of runs. So that has been the story of Indian cricket.
“I’m only hoping they don’t struggle as much as 1932 or subsequently and they restrict Australia to maybe 350 or thereabouts,” Gavaskar further said.