Gambhir: Tables will be turned in India


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The Independent Online

The India opener Gautam Gambhir has criticised Australia's batsmen ahead of the fourth Test, which starts in Adelaide tomorrow. Gambhir said the Australians would struggle on the spin-friendly pitches of the subcontinent, and accused Australia of tailoring pitches to suit their young pace attack.

Australia hold an unassailable 3-0 lead ahead of the final Test of the series after a dominant performance in the third Test in Perth, which was won by an innings and 37 runs inside three days. Despite India attempting to stop a horrible run of seven away Test defeats, including a 4-0 series loss to England last year, Gambhir predicted that conditions will be different when they tour India next year.

"We're beginning to realise that when we go overseas, every country prepares wickets according to their own strengths," Gambhir said. "We need to prepare according to our advantage as well. There should not be a lot of talk when Australia, South Africa and England come home that we should not be preparing turners.

"So once these people come to India, I think that we should not be hesitant in making turners. That's when we will get to know whether they're mentally strong. The kind of chit-chat they do when we go overseas and talk about our techniques, that's when they will be tested and see how good they are against spin bowling."

Gambhir played down suggestions that Sachin Tendulkar's quest to score his 100th international hundred has served as a distraction for the Indian team this tour.

"When you are playing for your country you don't think about individual records or what one individual has to do," Gambhir said. "Zero-three is far more hurting than Sachin not scoring his hundred. If we can make it three-one, even if Sachin doesn't score a hundred, it's far more satisfying."

Earlier, the Australian batsman Mike Hussey responded to claims that he was considering retirement and said that he hopes to be selected for the tour of the West Indies in March and the Twenty20 World Cup in September, although the 36-year-old's main focus is on helping Australia secure a 4-0 whitewash of the No 2-ranked Indians.

"I'm looking forward to this match," he said. "I haven't looked beyond that at all at this stage. But my body feels good and I still feel like I'm playing well. I'm definitely thinking of continuing on. I'd love to go to the West Indies."

Hussey is averaging over 80 and scored 150 not out in the second Test.