Indian batting coach Vikram Rathour has revealed that the toughness and character that the visitors have showcased in the series comes from preparation and hard work. He also added that India are still unsure of their XI due to injury concerns and they will take a call on the team tomorrow only.
When the Indian team battled 131 overs in the fourth innings of the SCG Test to draw the game, it was not only a phenomenal achievement for playing out so many overs, but also how the heroes of the epic Sydney classic- Rishabh Pant, Cheteshwar Pujara, R Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari - all had some injury or fitness issue despite which they triumphed in the middle. Not only that, Australia bowled the nasty short stuff in ample at Vihari-Ashwin, due to which the duo, especially the latter, copped many blows on the body.
Despite all the physical challenges, India showcased grit and resilience and overcame arguably Australia's greatest bowling attack of all-time to play put a draw that too without Virat Kohli. Just ahead of the fourth and final Test that starts tomorrow at Gabba, Indian batting coach Vikram Rathour stated that Indian players have a lot of 'self-belief' and the hard work and preparation that they do is the reason behind their tough cricket full of character and courage at the SCG.
"The toughness comes from preparation. They have been working over the years, we have lot of belief in them and so do they have in themselves. That was our message to them as well to keep the belief in the preparation and the way we play cricket. One innings can't let doubts creep in.is what we told them. They put in lot of hard work and that is what has helped them to show so much character," he said in the pre-match presser.
Australia's premier off-spinner Nathan Lyon, who is set to play his 100th Test at the Gabba, is enduring a horror run in the series. He has taken six wickets in three Tests at an average of 57.67 and a strike-rate of 128. He has been unlucky sometimes while at other times, Indians have played him well. Rathour revealed how Indian batsmen have been preparing for the Lyon threat since the lockdown.
"We play Lyon like any other bowler. We discussed the line and lengths he bowls. The discussions had started taking place from the lockdown itself as we knew this was an important tour. The boys were ready with their game plans and everyone has their own plans and they have executed well. More than him bowling bad, we have done well against him," he said.
In all the first three Tests, India announced their XI a day before the game but today, it was not the case owing to the many injuries and suspense over the fitness of the players. The former Indian opener asserted that the injuries are being monitored and a call will only be taken tomorrow. However, he's confident of the team doing well at the Gabba.
"The injuries are still being monitored. The physio and support staff are working hard with the players. We are trying to give them as much time as possible and will take a call tomorrow. On this tour, we got lot of time to prepare. So, we have prepared really well. We expect more bounce on this wicket and the belief is there that boys will do very well."