Joe Burns, who outscored the Indian team in the second innings in Adelaide, revealed that it was one pull shot off Umesh Yadav which helped him turn his fortunes around and rediscover lost form. Burns entered the series with scores of 4, 0, 0 and 1, but posted a match-winning fifty in the 2nd dig.
Australia might have sealed the first Test in the third inning of the game by bowling India out for 36, but, despite chasing just 90, the final inning meant everything for Joe Burns, who was playing for his career. Having been controversially picked ahead of Marcus Harris despite enduring a rotten run in the lead-up, pressure mounted on Burns after managing just 8 in the first innings, post which he needed a significant contribution to save his career. And, as fate had it, make a significant contribution he did, scoring an unbeaten 51 in the second innings to surge back to form.
Batsmen, generally, get back to form in weird ways, and for Burns, it was just ‘one hit’. Speaking to cricket.com.au, the 31-year-old revealed that the pull shot off Umesh Yadav in the second innings in Adelaide helped him rediscover his rhythm which he’d been searching for all summer.
"It’s funny how in this game there’s often one shot that can just give you everything you’ve been searching for as a batter. The first pull shot I hit off Umesh Yadav…it felt really good off the bat and felt amazing,” Burns told cricket.com.au.
"All summer I’ve been confident I’ve been batting well, just without rhythm. To find some rhythm in the middle, often it can be one shot away, but I’ve just kept working hard. I’ve been in this situation many times before and you know how quickly it can turn, but at the same time you go into the next game and you have to start again. There’s always another job to do."
More than Burns’ knock, though, what caught the headlines was something that happened afterwards - a tight hug coach and mentor Justin Langer gave him for repaying the trust. Langer was seen closely working with Burns for several hours prior to the game, and the Aussie coach was one of the fiercest supporters of the Queenslander. Burns spoke of the role JL played in his resurrection.
"It was just satisfying. Obviously JL’s been right in my corner over the last few weeks.
"The message from JL was about finding rhythm. More than anything in the preparation, he wanted me to play my shots at training and just be strong-minded in our approach. I guess that shone through in that innings."
The fifty in Adelaide means that Burns’ place in the side now is all but secure, particularly with both Warner and Pucovski still struggling with injuries. The 31-year-old, however, is keen to thrive off the confidence he now has and make it big in the rest of the series.
"My job and my goal is to go and get big match-winning hundreds in those (last three Tests) games.”