India is all set to take on Australia in four-match Test series commencing from February 23. The Virat Kohli-led team has been on song in the longer format as they have thumped every opposition who has come in their way for past one and a half years. Recently, the Indian team’s form against Bangladesh and England has spread a shear message to the other oppositions of expecting a great competition.
“I think Starc is a brilliant bowler for the sub-continental conditions. He bowls at a genuine pace, can swing the new ball and is an excellent exponent of reverse swing. I am sure he will challenge Kohli throughout the series. It will, however, take a collective effort to stop Kohli, who has been phenomenal of late,” Hussey told PTI in an exclusive interview.
Hussey feels that Starc has the experience of playing and Indian conditions and he is somebody who can give hard time to Indian batsmen. ALSO READ ( ‘Spinners will have a major role in India’, says Mitchell Starc)
“He has experience of playing in India, which is important both in Tests and at the IPL. I feel he needs to show a lot of faith and patience with his spinners and get the field right, with a nice balance of attacking and defending,” observed Hussey, a veteran of 79 Test matches.
“There is always a lot of pressure on Warner and Steve Smith to score big runs for Australia. The good thing is that they are both very hungry for runs and love batting. India will be a huge challenge for both players but I am sure they are very determined to have an impact on the series.”
Australia’s this tour of India is being seen as a big competition and somewhere the pundits have written off the visiting side.
“This tour of India has been a big focus for Cricket Australia for some time now and the preparation has been meticulous. Whether that transcends into performance on the field remains to be seen but the preparation has certainly been thorough,” he said.
“Well it’s going to have to be. Each batsman must have very clear plans on how they want to play both spinners and then execute that plan in the middle. It will be tough as they are both very effective bowlers in Indian conditions. Ashwin obviously understands the home conditions really well and knows how to utilise them. Similarly, Lyon probably has a better record in Australia for the same reasons.”
Hailing India’s ability, Hussey added that India are a difficult side to play on home soil.
“Back your defence and have ways to get off strike. Be prepared to work very hard for long, long periods of time.” “Definitely, but India are a high quality team particularly at home and it will be a huge challenge for our team, but as long as they are prepared to play tough Test cricket for long, long periods of time then I think we have a chance.”