safari staff
17 Jan 2023 | 05:11 AM

"Don’t go searching for spinners" - Gilchrist advises Cummins and Co.

The former wicketkeeper-batter wants Australia to pick their four best bowlers in every Test in India

Former wicketkeeper-batter Adam Gilchrist feels Australia have what it takes to defeat India in the upcoming four-match Test series, starting February 9 in Nagpur. 

The 51-year-old, however, has warned Pat Cummins and Co. to stick to their strength and not go searching for an extra spinner to partner Nathan Lyon just for the sake of it.

Australia last won a Test series in India in 2004 and they did it under the leadership of Gilchrist. Australia stuck with three seamers - Glenn McGrath, Jason Gillespie and Michael Kasprowicz - throughout the series and partnered them with Shane Warne. They eventually won the series 2-1. 

“What we tried to change with our mentality back then – and I’d be interested to see if the Australians do it this time – is don’t go searching and just rolling spinners out there," Gilchrist told Fox Cricket.

“Attack the stumps right from ball one. Swallow your pride a bit, be defensive to be aggressive...

“Start with one slip, start with a catching mid-wicket, put fielders out on the boundary to nullify the boundary option, but keep a couple of catchers in place – either at short cover or short mid-wicket – and just be patient.”

Australia have picked four spinners in their squad for the India series. Offspinner Lyon is a certain-starter, while Ashton Agar, Todd Murphy and Mitchell Swepson are also part of the squad. Murphy is yet to make his Test debut, while the other two have played nine Tests between them.

“I think they’ll do it (win the series). I really do. I think they’ve got a squad and final XI that will have a lot of similarities to the team we rolled with in 2004," said Gilchrist.

“So often teams go to India hoping to unveil some new spinner that’s going to come in and adapt and bedazzle in India — it doesn’t really happen.

“Pick your best four bowlers, run with them — and if that is three seamers who can all get really nice reserve swing and Nathan Lyon, who’s outstanding and clearly the best off-spinner we’ve ever had, can play his role — that’s my gut feeling. You do that, you go with it.”

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