Ravichandran Ashwin’s revealing statement that his side underestimated par scores in the early part of the ODI series leading to their comeuppance against a marauding Australian batting line-up is right on the money.
The ace spinner said:
“In the past 300 or 260s have been winning scores when we came and played an ODI series here. I think we played in that mindset coming into the series, trying to post a score rather than trying to overachieving and falling short. I thought we did pretty well to post 310s and 320s, just that the par scores were 330s.”
It was only in the fourth and fifth ODIs that the Indians were a match for their opponents.
The lessons had been learned but it was too little, too late.
The ODI series was lost without a semblance of a whimper or a whisper.
“As you saw in the last game, even at Canberra and Sydney, I think we would have achieved 350s. Maybe that’s the reason. Obviously the wickets have gone flatter. So I think it was just a question of not calculating the par scores properly.”
Ashwin’s statements highlight the need to aim higher to get what you want.
If you aim for 300, you’re unlikely to get more than that. Less probably, but very rarely more.
The Indian team’s think-tank were definitely out of sync with the changing reality of Australian pitches outlandish batting skills in their young stars and the effect the ever changing ODI rules have had on team totals.
The irony is that this is the same kind of thinking that pervaded visiting teams’ thinking patterns when they assumed a score of 260-280 was good enough to clinch victory on sub-continental wickets a few seasons ago.
Indian batters proved them wrong easily overhauling these totals and posting 300+ totals when batting first.
It certainly has been an Indian summer Down Under this series.