Australia will have a heavy upper hand in Brisbane: Ponting

Sydney, 11 January (IANS) Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting believes that the advantage of home conditions and a stable final XI will give Australia a bigger edge in the fourth and final Test against India in Brisbane from Friday.

Australia have not lost a single match since 1988 at the Gaba ground in Brisbane.

The Indian team was on the verge of defeat on the last day of the third Test match played at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). But the visiting team batsmen Rishabh Pant (97), Cheteshwar Pujara (77), Hanuma Vihari and Ravichandran Ashwin batted amazingly and drew the match, beating the hopes of Australia’s victory.

In the four-match Test series, the two teams are tied 1–1 and the series decider will be played in Brisbane, where Australia have an outstanding record. India’s troubles in Brisbane are also going to increase as all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja is suffering from a thumb injury and batsman Hanumar Vihari with a hamstring injury. In such a situation, he is not scheduled to play in the fourth Test.

Ponting told Cricket.com AU, Australia’s weight in Brisbane will be heavy. For the first time, Australia’s record in Gaba is excellent. And if Will (Pukowski) is fit, then the hosts will not have to make changes in the playing eleven as well.

He said, India is again suffering from injuries to many of its players and if these players do not play then they will have to bring other players.

Ponting also said that India should play Pant, who scored 97 runs in the second innings of the third Test, as a batsman and wicketkeeping from Wriddhiman Saha.

The former captain said, if they (India) play another batsman, they can play well at number five. With this, Pant can bat at number six and Saha at number seven.

Ponting said Australia bowled well, but dropping four catches benefited the visiting team.

–IANS

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