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It?s hard to digest a loss like this

Well, the bus journey from our hotel to Faridabad gave us a lot of time to ponder our thoughts before the match against Australia, writes Chris Cairns.

india Updated: Oct 31, 2003 12:16 IST

Well, the bus journey from our hotel in Delhi to the venue of the match in Faridabad gave us a lot of time to ponder our thoughts before the match against Australia. An hour in fact.

Unfortunately, the same return trip home gave us the same time to reflect on what had been a match where Australia dominated from the second ball of the match and we never had a look in.

It’s hard to analyse a loss like the one we had on Wednesday. Stephen Fleming indicated at the post-match conference that if he had his time again he would have obviously bowled.

I believed at the time he had done the right thing by batting and I thought it was a good toss to win, as the wicket would deteriorate later on. Also at the post-match conference Ricky Ponting indicated he would have batted by saying it was a good toss to lose.

The Australian bowlers, without their frontline quintet did an excellent job in bowler friendly conditions. It’s one thing having conditions that favour you and it’s another thing maximising them. All bowlers bowled an excellent line and length forcing our boys to play on the front foot and this was vindicated in the modes of dismissal. Catches behind the wicket and LBWs.

The only way you can win defending a low total is to take early wickets and try and create pressure on a team by having them 40 for 5. We did have the Aussies 40 for 5 but unfortunately for us it was 40 off 5 overs. Gilchrists intentions were clear from ball one and along with the in-form Hayden the Aussie openers made small work of our total.

As I said earlier, it’s hard to analyse a match that is so one-sided. The key for us is not to focus on what happened but to get ourselves right for the match we have with Aussie in Pune on Monday. We have to write this game off as a oncer.

Prior to the match in Faridabad we had a relaxing few days just out of Chennai in a resort called Fisherman’s cove.

It was especially good for our Test players to have a couple of days off after an arduous Test campaign and all the boys enjoyed the different activities that were available to us.

Paul Hitchcock was one who thoroughly enjoyed the coastal destination as back home in NZ he has involvement in a small-charted tourist fishing boat and often reels off stories of the one that got away. He ventured on to the water and delighted the locals with both his skill and expertise behind the intricate goings-on of the fishing rod.

I used the time to receive treatment on my hamstring that I injured during the Chennai match.

The decision to not play the Aussie match was an extremely hard one for me, as I love to play the world champs. But, into the consideration came the fact that there is still a lot of cricket to be played in India as well as our tour to Pakistan and to come back too early would be detrimental.

I now have 4 days before the next match and the leg is feeling good. I have to utilise this time well and if so it will give me a great chance of being on the field in Pune.

First Published: Oct 31, 2003 00:41 IST