Australian coach Tim Nielsen remains steadfastly behind his team but
admits he will look forward to the week’s break between the second and
third Tests to re-assess an approach that has failed miserably in
Nielsen said it was fashionable for pundits to “make-up
reasons” whenever Australia had a poor match, and said today’s collapse
of 5-9 either side of tea was at least partly due to the excellence of
India’s varied attack.
“I think when you tend to have a day
that’s not as successful as you’d like people start looking for reasons
or making up reasons and today we had a couple of blokes who just got
bowled out,” Nielsen said.
“Sharma bowled very well to get
Ponting, we had them under pressure initially and unfortunately Matthew
couldn’t quite get outside the line from a sweep shot and to lose two
wickets in an over really took the wind out of our sails.
“So it’s not so much plan A, B or C, we played quite well under similar plans in Bangalore.”
The Australians will have four days off after tomorrow’s fifth day,
re-convening to prepare for the third Test in Delhi at the beginning of
Nielsen is unlikely to do much sightseeing in the
interim, instead poring over footage from Mohali and trying to work-out
an improved strategy for the remainder of the series.
“We’re aware we’ve been behind the eightball for much of this game, we’re working hard to get through this,” he said.
“After (Mohali) we’ll have some time to sit back and have a bit of a think about what we’re doing and how we can do it better.”
Australia’s bowling attack has appeared listless throughout this game,
today conceding five runs per over despite the ultra-defensive fields
set by captain Ricky Ponting.
“I think if we’d had more people
in the ring they’d probably have scored at over nine runs an over,
maybe 10, we’ve seen so many boundaries hit on this ground,” Nielsen
“If the ball only goes two or three metres to one side of
the fielder it’s very difficult to stop, even tonight under pressure we
were scoring at better than three runs an over for the innings.
realised we needed to stretch out their innings for as long as we
could, we needed to slow them down and take a little wind out of their
sales, hence Mike Hussey, Cameron White and Michael Clarke bowling.
“We had to take stock and look at what was best for us in the short term.”