Tim Paine and Ajinkya Rahane. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)
SYDNEY: Australia Test skipper Tim Paine has indicated that his side was distracted by Team India during the tour which eventually saw the hosts losing the Test series in January this year.
India defeated Australia by three wickets against all odds in the final Test of the four-match series at The Gabba in January to take the series 2-1.
Paine claimed that the Ajinkya Rahane-led side created “sideshows” by saying that the visitors were not going to the Gabba (venue of the fourth Test).
“Part of the challenge of playing against India is they’re very good at niggling you and trying to distract you with stuff that doesn’t really matter and there were times in that series where we fell for that,” news.com.au quoted Paine as saying at a function for the Chappell Foundation at the SCG on Wednesday night.
“The classic example was when they said they weren’t going to the Gabba so we didn’t know where we were going. They’re very good at creating these sideshows and we took our eye off the ball,” he added.
The last time a visiting team came out triumphant from the Brisbane Cricket Ground was back in November 1988 when the mighty West Indian outfit under the leadership of Viv Richards thrashed Allan Border‘s team by nine wickets.
What made the feat even more commendable is how Team India fought multiple injuries and mental fatigue – due to the bio-bubble restrictions — to register a historic win.
In the first Test against Australia, India were bundled out for 36 and there were many pundits who said the visiting team would face a 4-0 drubbing. But proving every critic wrong, the Rahane-led side registered famous victories at Melbourne and Brisbane.
The side also recorded a draw at Sydney and at every step of the way, the team overcame adversity.