Greg Chappell thinks Australia “punched themselves in the mouth long before the first ball was even bowled” in their ongoing series against India.
Australia have already conceded the Border-Gavaskar Trophy after being hammered in the first two Tests of the four-match series.
In his column for the Sydney Morning Herald, Chappell wrote: “It was Mike Tyson who said in the lead-up to a fight with Evander Holyfield: Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.
“My concern after watching the first two Tests is that the Australian team punched themselves in the mouth long before the first ball was even bowled.”
The former captain is also of the view that Australia erred in their planning. “It is one thing to plan, but to base that plan on a flawed premise is an exercise in futility,” he said.
Beaten by an innings and 132 runs in Nagpur, Australia opted to go in with only one pacer in Delhi — skipper Pat Cummins. They dropped Scott Boland and handed debut to left-arm spinner Matthew Kuhnemann.
“Australia needed to play to their strengths to have a chance of winning this series. Spin bowling is not our strength. Picking spinners for the sake of it is not the way to success in India. We had to pick our best bowlers and back that with sensible batting.
“That Cummins under-bowled himself and failed to use the short ball on a wicket of variable bounce was another mistake.
On the Australian batters’ over-reliance on the sweep shots, Chappell wrote: “Adding it to your repertoire in spinning conditions can be sensible, but not if it is the only option.
“There are other shots that are less risky and likely to be more profitable, but because the sweep for most has to be pre-meditated, the other options invariably fall by the wayside. One of the first things to learn about batting in Indian conditions is that you have more time than you realise.”
Written with inputs from PTI