Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting believes that the Indian team will have to lift their spirits up ahead of the boxing day Test against Australia after suffering a humiliating defeat in the Adelaide Test, however, the absence of Virat Kohli in the last three games will make things more difficult and complicated for the visiting nation.
Virat will not be participating in the Border Gavaskar Trophy against Australia further as he would be heading back to India on paternity leave to be with his wife Anushka Sharma during the birth of their first child. Adding to India’s misery, their pace spearhead Mohammed Shami has also been ruled out of the series after sustaining a fracture in his bowling arm.
Opening up on the changes India should make ahead of the second Test in Melbourne, starting from December 26, Ricky Ponting reckoned that to fill the absence of Kohli in the top-order, India needs a player like Rishabh Pant in the middle-order to strengthen that department.
Ricky Ponting opens up on the absence of Virat Kohli for the last three Tests
“With Kohli not being there as well, there’s almost no-one to pick them back up after a loss like that. They’ve got to make a couple of changes. Rishabh Pant has to be in that middle order. With Kohli not being there they’ve got to strengthen their batting, he’s got to come in,” Ponting told cricket.com.au.
“I am sure but there’s one thing to make selection changes there’s another to lift the spirits back up again and make sure they’re mentally right for the next challenge because the Australians are not going to go away now,” he added.
Pant was a vital cog in India’s success in the Border Gavaskar Trophy 2018-19 when they scripted history by winning the Test series for the first time by 2-1 on the Australian soil. Also, the young wicketkeeper-batsman had produced a scintillating century in the second practice game against Australia A to claim a spot for himself in the playing XI.
However, selectors showed faith in their experienced keeper, Wriddhiman Saha, for the first Test in Adelaide against Australia. But Saha failed to impress with both the gloves and willow in the Adelaide Test and it is speculated that he would be dropped from the team for the next game.
Source: The source of this content is our cricket news platform Crictracker.
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