Mahendra Singh Dhoni plays a shot during their T20 International series cricket match against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Melbourne.Reuters/Brandon Malone
It's a must-win situation for India against Australia on Sunday. Sri Lanka have proved that Australia is not invincible by beating them in consecutive games, and so, India should come out strong and resilient. The Indians should remember the best way to silence critics is by performing on the ground.
India are on the last leg of a long and gruelling tour and this is the best time for everyone to gather themselves up and give it their best shot. If they can make it to the finals from this situation and then win the title, they will be lauded back home. Everything will be forgotten and people will only talk about how India did a heroic turnaround.
Oz bowling good
Except for the Australian bowling, there has been little else to differentiate between the three teams and, with the passage of time, even the Australian bowling has lost its grip. For Sri Lanka, to chase down 280 was not easy even though they were batting on a belter of a pitch at Hobart. Skipper Mahela Jayawardene's onslaught at the beginning set the stage for Sri Lanka's chase. Australia's bowling seemed to lack bite at the midway and Clarke also seemingly allowed things to drift. It can be a case study for India, that if they can consolidate early in the innings, then Australian bowling also can be found wanting. And, that could be the ideal stage for India to deliver the knockout punch.
India have to get their combination right at Sydney. In the current scenario, they will have some mending to do in all departments. They will have to treat this game against Australia in a manner as if there is no tomorrow. If India lose on Sunday, it will pave the way for their early exit and it could be mayhem after that. Heads could roll, more stories will fly and cricket fans will have a lot of questions to ask.
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(The writer is a former India skipper)