Head coach of Australia cricket team, Justin Langer feels that going into the Boxing Day Test – and for the rest of the series – his side has an advantage over the visitors; not only because of their victory in the first Test but also because of India’s loss of captain, Virat Kohli, and pacer, Mohammed Shami.
Virat Kohli is returning home as he has been granted paternity leave by the BCCI to attend the birth of his child. While Kohli’s departure after the Adelaide Test was foreknown, Shami’s injury which ruled him out of the remaining three matches puts India in a spot; especially after already missing senior pacer, Ishant Sharma due to an injury he suffered in the IPL.
Shami was hit on the hand by a short ball from Pat Cummins. He left the field and didn’t come out to bowl in Australia’s second innings. Later scans revealed a fracture in his arm which hinders his participation further in the series- also making him doubtful for the home Test against England.
Our processes don’t change: Justin Langer
Speaking to the press on Thursday, Justin Langer opined that India losing out on Kohli and Shami gives an advantage to the hosts. However, the former opener also said that Australia will not take the visitors lightly, and there is no room for complacency no matter what.
As quoted by India Today, Justin Langer said, “Virat Kohli is one of the all-time great players and Shami I think is a real glue for the Indian bowling attack because he’s so miserly, he’s very, very skilful, So of course it gives us an advantage.”
The 50-year-old reckons they have to keep following the processes which brought them success in Adelaide to keep a lid on India’s interim skipper, Ajinkya Rahane, and his team.
“But we just know we have to keep working hard in all the processes we’ve been talking about for some time. We know we have to start strongly on day one, we know we need to keep the pressure on Rahane if he is the new captain. So our processes don’t change, but when you take the best players out of any cricket team, then, of course, it weakens them, that is just reality, and it gives us an advantage.”
Australia likely to go in with the same eleven: Justin Langer
The left-hander also confirmed that unless there is a forced change Tim Paine’s eleven will the exact same in the second Test as it was in the first. David Warner has returned to nets after recovering from a groin injury that he suffered in the ODIs. However, bio-bubble protocols will keep him away from the side for the Boxing Day Test- meaning Matthew Wade will again open with Joe Burns.
“I’d be a pretty courageous man to change the XI for this Test match after the last one. So at this stage, unless something happens over the next few days, and it can happen in the world we live in, we’ll go in with the same XI, I would say,” Justin Langer stated.