Australia’s Steve Smith threw an open challenge at Indian pacers to try out the short-ball strategy against him in the impending Border-Gavaskar series which begins next month. Even Australia’s assistant coach Andrew McDonald advised Indian pacers to have a plan B ready for Smith. But contrary to their opinion, former Indian skipper Sunil Gavaskar opined that even the best batters can be unsettled by a good short ball.
“No one is ever ready for the short ball! A good short ball will trouble the best of batsmen. Nobody can say ‘I’m ready’,” Gavaskar told Sportstar.
The strategy had worked successfully during Australia’s home series against New Zealand with Neil Wagner being the architect. Smith had returned with poor numbers by his standards.
Gavaskar also picked Mohammed Shami to unsettle Smith with the bouncer strategy.
“Mohammed Shami in particular has a fabulous bouncer. If he gets it right on target, then you can be pretty certain that not too any batsmen will be able to negotiate him.
“He is not very tall and his short ball will come skidding at you around your shoulder and head, and that’s the most difficult delivery to play. If his rhythm is right, he will not be an easy bowler to play,” Gavaskar said.
The Test series will begin on December 17 in Adelaide.