Sunday, July 21, 2024

“I knew AUS were in for a nightmare,” Ponting’s prediction on IND star came true in Nagpur


“I knew AUS were in for a nightmare,” Ponting’s prediction on IND star came true in Nagpur: India defeated Australia in the opening test of the four-match Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2023 at Nagpur. India soundly defeated Australia with an inning and 132 runs on a surface that was extremely helpful to spinners but still good to bat on, as India amassed 400 runs in the second innings on the same wicket.

As usual, there was too much discussion and debate about the pitch in the case of India, but the Indian batters replied strongly by setting an example of how to bat on such surfaces.

Ricky Ponting shines at making precise predictions because of his years of experience at the highest level and his achievements in international cricket as a player and captain. Ponting predicted which Indian player would become India’s “nightmare” a week early, but the current Australian team didn’t bother to look, which resulted in their humiliating loss by innings and 132 runs in Nagpur. The Australian folklore was right on all counts, as the Indian played an important role in the series’ first Test match.

READ: WTC Final: How can team India Qualify for World Test Championship 2021-23 Final?

The pitch and Ravichandran Ashwin were the two factors that the current Australian team was concerned about going into the Nagpur match. All of the Australian players were so concerned about Ashwin that they took a duplicate of Ashwin to practice sessions, but Ravindra Jadeja unexpectedly appeared out of the syllabus.

India confined Australia to 177 runs in the first innings, and Ravindra Jadeja claimed a fifer during the inning. Jadeja returned to cricket after being absent for more than five months due to an injury, and soon thereafter, he claimed his eleventh career five-wicket haul.

When Jadeja returned to first-class cricket in the last week of January, Ponting predicted in a statement for the ICC Review that he would turn into Australia’s “nightmare.” In Saurashtra’s Ranji Trophy encounter against Tamil Nadu, Jadeja picked up eight wickets, seven of which came in the second innings.

He said “I had seen his return to first-class cricket last week and he got some 11 wickets or something. As soon as I saw that I knew Aussies were in for a nightmare.”

He further added, “Because of how Jadeja bowls on those sorts of wickets – the pace that he bowls, the line that he bowls to right-handers in particular, where he is pitching the ball on the stumps all the time, and one would turn and one will slide on, like we saw, with the dismissal of Steven Smith today. I mean they’re two identical deliveries. One just happened to turn and the other one went straight on and went back through the gate and bowled him.”

The two-time World cup winning captain then also made a bold prediction on the all-rounder for the series as well. “As the series goes on, if his body holds up and he can get through the four Test matches, I think he could very well be the leading wicket-taker in this entire series,” he said.

READ: IND vs AUS 2nd Test: Australia likely to drop David Warner, Matthew Kuhnemann added to the Test squad

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Rahul Chaube
Rahul Chaube
Rahul, news editor and author at ICC Cricket Schedule, offers timely updates and engaging analysis, enriching the platform's coverage for cricket enthusiasts.

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