Malcolm Conn has said in ‘The Australian’ that India’s day-3 tactics — in which Indian bowlers bowled outside off stump to an 8-1 off-side field — were negative and it was akin to a “Stake through the heart of Test cricket”!
How different is that though to “New Age Cricket” against FLAWSIs — fat, lazy, aging, weak and slow Indians — that Ricky Ponting propounded prior to the series start? Wasn’t that strategy also based on choking out runs and denying runs? Malcolm Conn hailed that strategy and eulogised the Australian captain in a manner that would suggest that the sun shone out through some part of Ricky Ponting’s anatomy!
As we have written already here, the strategists had failed at their own strategy.
Unlike Malcolm Conn, though, Simon Katich refused to criticise the Indian approachh. He said, as we did here, “It’s a good strategy if you can execute it. If you don’t get it right you can pay the price. They executed it well, that’s the bottom line.” His was a wise statement. Mainly because Hussey and Katich were conned — pun unintentional — by the tactics and were suckered in. Moreover, they could do nothing to counter a legitimate, albeit boring strategy! And more importantly, Australia had tried it on the tour before and a fellow left-hander, Gautam Gambhir, had countered it well!