Melbourne: Australia coach Justin Langer has all but confirmed his side will be unchanged for their second test against India which starts at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Saturday. Australia completed an eight-wicket victory over the tourists in the first test in Adelaide after they dismissed Virat Kohli’s team for a record low score of 36 in their second innings.\
“I’d be a pretty courageous man to change the XI for this test match after the last one,” Langer told reporters on Thursday.
“At this stage, unless something happens over the next few days – and things can happen in the world we live in – we’ll go in with the same XI, I’d say.”
Opening batsman David Warner, who missed the first test because of a groin injury, had already been ruled out of the match and was likely the only player to have been in contention to force his way into the side.
Meanwhile, all is not right within Team India, former skipper Sunil Gavaskar has hinted. He said that there are “different rules for different players", in the team and cited the examples of R Ashwin and T Natarajan. “For far too long Ashwin has suffered not for his bowling ability of which only the churlish will have doubts, but for his forthrightness and speaking his mind at meetings where most others just nod even if they don’t agree," Gavaskar wrote in his column for Sportstar.
“Any other country would welcome a bowler who has more than 350 Test wickets and not to forget four Test match centuries, too. However, if Ashwin doesn’t take heaps of wickets in one game he is invariably sidelined for the next one. That does not happen to established batsmen though. Even if they fail in one game they get another chance and another and another but for Ashwin the rules seem to be different," he added.
“Another player who will wonder about the rules but, of course, can’t make any noise about it as he is a newcomer. It is T. Natarajan. The left-arm yorker specialist who made an impressive debut in the T20 and had Hardik Pandya gallantly offering to share the man of the T20 series prize with him had become a father for the first time even as the IPL playoffs were going on. He was taken to Australia directly from the UAE and then looking at his brilliant performances, he was asked to stay on for the Test series but not as a part of the team but as a net bowler. Imagine that," wrote Gavaskar.