Gabba strip will help Australian pacers: Curator
After a high-scoring first Test in Adelaide, which India lost by 48 runs to trail the five-match series, a green-top awaits the visitors at the Gabba, here starting December 17.
After off-spinner Nathan Lyon recorded a match-haul of 12-286, Gabba curator Kevin Mitchell now wants to give the home team’s pacers something to cheer about.
“It’s a well-grassed wicket,” Mitchell was quoted as saying by the Australian newspaper ‘Herald Sun’.
“We are aiming for a typical Gabba wicket - life, bounce and pace is always what we are trying to achieve. At this stage, we are tracking along well.”
India posted 444 in response to Australia’s 517 for seven declared in the first innings and then fell for 315 in their 364-run chase. In all the fours innings, the Indian and Australian pacers struggled to not only get wickets but also contain runs on a good batting deck.
If India’s pace spearhead Mohammed Shami bagged three wickets in all, then Australian ace Mitchell Johnson got four scalps in the first and second innings respectively.
But now Johnson will be pleased to learn that the Gabba strip looks almost identical in condition to the one on which his spring-loaded bouncers terrorised England for match figures of 9-103 as Australia romped to a 381-run win last season. Meanwhile Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is expected to return to the Indian team, taking over the leadership from the inspirational Virat Kohli, who scored centuries in both innings at the Adelaide Oval.