After suffering two horrible defeats, Darren Gough has admitted that it could be difficult for the visitors to recover from the back-to-back batterings from the home side. While calling the Indian team’s mentality elite, he also stated Joe Root would be hard done by the squad that he got.
England’s eyes on the World Test Championship was a far-fetched one but one seemed a reality after their win over hosts India in the first Test in Chennai. However, since then, owing to their rotation policy, the visitors have made a mess of their team combination, including selection a pace-attack for the pink-ball Test, on a surface that was offering more to the spinners.
Post that loss, England have found themselves in a messy state of affair, with them being ruled out of contention for a place in the final against New Zealand. Former English pacer Darren Gough was of the same opinion, that it would be mighty difficult for England to make a comeback after the back-to-back batterings against the hosts, in Chennai and Ahmedabad.
"This England team has been battered in back-to-back games now and it's going to be very difficult to come back from that. You can imagine the mentality of some of the lads will be quite fragile," Gough told PA news agency, reported TOI.
Gough also credited India’s mental toughness, stating that they are an elite side like the Australian cricket team from the late 90s to the early 2000s, a phase in world cricket where the domination was one-sided.
"The mentality of this India now is like Australia in the 90s: get a team by the throat and win, win, win," Gough added.
However, being an English supporter himself, Gough wished for the visitor to come away from India with a draw, which would also rule India out of the final of the World Test Championship.
"I really hope they can come away with a 2-2 draw, it would be a terrific result, but even then they'd be thinking 'have we missed a chance here? What if we'd kept all our best players together?'."
In terms of the limited-overs series, the pacer made his impression that England didn’t have to play their full-strength teams, instead should have given opportunities to fringe players for a place in the squad for the World T20 later this year.
"I know we are building towards the T20 World Cup in India but our main players are settled, they don't need to play every 50-over or 20-over game. For the T20 series we should have gone in with some fringe players and seen who was ready to push for that squad,” he concluded.