Former India legend, Sachin Tendulkar opines that the current Australian team is much better than that India defeated a couple of years ago. For the first time in history, India won a Test series in Australia when they beat Tim Paine’s side in the 2018-19 series.
However, Tendulkar believes that this time it is going to be a lot tougher challenge for Indian bowlers as David Warner and Steve Smith are added back to the Australian squad along with emerging superstar, Marnus Labuchagne.
Warner and Smith missed out on the previous series against India as they were serving their year-long ban for their involvement in the ball-tampering or the Sandpaper Gate event. However, both the batsman made their return to cricket in a scintillating fashion.
Warner piled huge runs in the last two IPL seasons, the World Cup last year along with a triple hundred in Test cricket. On the back of Steve Smith’s invincibility, Australia retained the Ashes in England for the first time in 18 years. Also, Smith has just scored two thunderous hundreds against India in the ODI series.
In addition to these two, Marnus Labuschagne was a revelation for Australia in the Ashes. He came in the eleven as a concussion substitute for Smith and scored half-centuries in 4 consecutive innings. In 5 home Test matches against Pakistan and New Zealand, the right-hander notched 4 hundreds and 3 fifties, including a double hundred. Labuschagne also was the highest run-scorer in 2019.
Australia felt the void of the senior players: Sachin Tendulkar
Considering the above factors, Sachin Tendulkar feels that the Indian team should be wary of these three players. He asserts that the loss of Smith and Warner earlier created a void in the Australian batting order which is now refilled by their return.
Speaking to AFP, Sachin Tendulkar said, “From the last time that Australia played India they have got three important players. They have got Warner who is back in the team, Smith, and Labuschagne.
“This is a far better squad compared to the earlier one. When a couple of your senior members are not there, suddenly that void is felt and that is what Australia felt.”
India have got bowlers who can swing the ball: Sachin Tendulkar
However, the batting maestro reckons that Virat Kohli has high-quality and plenty of variety in the bowling attack. The former opener points out that India has bowlers with different characteristics which could trouble the Aussie batters.
“India have got bowlers who can swing the ball. When it comes to variations and awkwardness, that is also there. Someone hitting the deck hard is also there. We have got a wrist spinner, we have got finger spinners,” the 2011 World Cup winner added.