The Border-Gavaskar series 2014-15 is over and the clear difference that was between the two teams i.e. India and Australia during the series was the quality of pace bowling. Yes, it can be said that the attack that Australia had was much more experienced that what India had, but, that can’t be used as an excuse to hide the failure of the Indian pace bowlers. The pitches have been flat yes, but, still on those same pitches, the Aussie quickies got wickets and that’s because they bowled a disciplined channel. They did not try too hard. They set the batsman up.
One of the keys to success on flat wickets for a paceman is to make sure that the batsmen don’t get the runs quickly and he has to earn it. You, as a bowler, must not give him any freebies. If you apply constant pressure, you don’t let the runs come freely, the batsmen would definitely try something different and that’s where your chance to get wickets as a bowler lies. That’s what the Aussies did and they were successful. Yes, they could not get 20 wickets either in Melbourne or Sydney, but, they could have done that with a bit of luck. On the other hand, India were miles behind. Forget getting 20 wickets, they did not even look like getting the opposition tail out which was a shame for a top international side.
It’s actually the domestic pitches of India which should be blamed for this. The pitches that these fast bowlers get to bowl on in India are so low and slow that they can’t afford to keep the deliveries outside the off stump. If they keep it there, then, because of the low bounce, the batsmen have the opportunity to play the square drive or even the cover drive for that matter.
So, the pace bowlers in domestic cricket in India have no option but to bowl with in the three stumps and they carry that tendency to international cricket too. When they go to places like England and Australia, where the conditions demand the ball to be kept in the 4th or the 5th stump channel, they are not able to do so. They bowl the middle-stump line and the batsmen pick easy runs. So, the BCCI must consider asking the curators to prepare a few bouncy pitches in India so that these bowlers get this habit of bowling the correct line.