India will feel the aftershocks of crumbing to their lowest Test total of 36 heading into the remainder of the four-match series against Australia, Adelaide Oval’s wrecker-in-chief Josh Hazlewood said Saturday.
Virat Kohli going paternity leave from the second Test will also add to the visitors’ woes, according to the Australian.
The duo of Hazlewood (5/8) and Pat Cummins (4/21) produced a sensational performance as the visitors collapsed to their lowest Test score of 36, paving the way for an eight-wicket win and a 1-0 lead in the series for the home team.
India’s historic low: 36/9 is an aberration but Kohli and Co’s flawed process is the bigger problem
“Getting bowled out for 36 is going to leave a few headaches here and there and their best batter (Virat) is leaving as well, it is going to leave a bit of whole,” Hazlewood said at the post-match press conference.
Kohli’s absence is also an opportunity for others to prove their mettle after the forgettable outing at the Adelaide Oval.
“...But they have got plenty of class batters on the side-lines to come in, not of Virat’s class. But in terms of the series, it is great to be one up, it is better than being one-down, as we found out last time,” he added.
The pacer said it was a special day for the Australian team as the script unfolded just the way it wanted.
“Probably I can’t put a finger on when but I looked up and it might have been 6/20 and you have (Cheteshwar) Pujara and (Virat) Kohli both out, it was sort of just the tail to come, so around that time you thought something special was going,” said Hazlewood.
“We just didn’t let up. It was just one of those days when everything went to plan, we kept putting it in on that spot and the nicks kept coming. It happened so quickly, it was over before we knew it,” he said.
He was all praise for the entire bowling unit and compared the match with the 2019 Headingley Test against England, when the hosts were obliterated in their first innings before Ben Stokes played a special knock of 135 to guide his side home.
“I am not too sure, to be honest. It was pretty similar to may be Leeds, looking back to the Ashes, we got them out for 60-odd but I don’t think we changed a great deal from the first innings, we just bowled a touch fuller and I guess maybe a touch straighter,” said Hazlewood.
“I thought Cummo (Pat Cummins) set the scene beautifully and I sort of just followed suit, but everything got nicked and everything went into the hands, one of those days.”
India had a slight upper hand coming into the match on Saturday as they ended day two with a 62-run lead over Australia.
Hazlewood admitted that even though they were a bit stunned, there was a sense of calmness among the group.
“We’re probably a bit stunned, but probably a bit more stunned when we came off from bowling. The mood didn’t change too much throughout the whole game to be fair. I know we were behind by 50 (53) after the first innings, but there was a calmness amongst us.
“I can probably speak for the bowling group in saying that we thrive on those situations when we’re a little bit behind and it’’s up to us to change the momentum of the game, and that’s what we did today,” he said.
Mohammed Shami was taken to a hospital for scans after being hit on the hands and Hazlewood said the visitors will have to dig deep into their reserves if the India pacer is ruled out of the second Test.
“He is a class bowler and he has shown in this game, so they might have to dig deep in their arsenal to cover him but we probably expect him to play. I am not too sure how bad it is, to be honest,” he said when asked whether injury to Shami would give the Australians a psychological edge.
The pacer though cautioned his teammates that the win is history now and they must look forward to the coming matches.
“It is probably a fresh start to a degree for the batters and bowlers, and they have a player coming for Virat and they have got some class players on the bench to be honest, so good players are going to come in and we will have some plans for (them) no doubt,” he said.
With PTI Inputs