The exciting, sometimes-controversial, ongoing India-Australia Test series is in its final lap, and Virat Kohli's team have everything to play for in the fourth and final Test match, starting Saturday. The series is poised at 1-1, and India have to win the Test in Dharamsala to clinch the series as well as the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
A draw would be enough for Australia to retain the trophy as they are the current holders. Hence, India will be under pressure, and desperate to play some brilliant cricket, beat the Aussies and continue their impressive record in Test series at home. They defeated New Zealand, England and Bangladesh earlier, but things have not gone according to plan against Australia, who were in fact written off even before a ball was bowled in the series.
Former Australia captain Steve Waugh knows the importance of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, which has witnessed some brilliant contests in the past as well. With India expected to come hard in the fourth Test, he wants Australia to enjoy the game in the picturesque HPCA stadium in Dharamsala, which is also making a Test venue debut. It is the 27th Test venue in India.
"I think a lot of the pressure is on the Indian side. They've been expected to win this series and they now come into this Test match with the possibility of losing it. So for Australia it's about enjoying it, working together and not looking too far ahead," Cricket Australia's official website quoted Waugh as saying.
Australia, to their credit, have been impressive. Steve Smith has led his team from the front, and Australia have played good cricket in difficult conditions, where spin has dominated proceedings. However, things could fall in their favour in Dharamsala, as the conditions could assist the seamers. Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood could be a huge threat in the fourth Test with their fast bowling.
Batsmen like Matt Renshaw, Smith, Shaun Marsh and Peter Handscomb have stood up when required to help Australia in the series. In the last Test in Ranchi too, Handscomb and Marsh batted brilliantly on the final day to draw the game.
However, one of their key players David Warner has not been impressive, scoring 131 runs in this series so far. The left-hander has not been able to play the spinners well in this series. Out of his six dismissals, five have been against the spinners. With great players like Warner, it is just a matter of time, and Waugh feels he could score big in Dharamsala.
"I really admired the way the side fought hard in that last Test match. Cummins came into the side and made a huge impact, while batting-wise Shaun Marsh did a really good job together with (Peter) Handscomb. All the batsmen are pretty much in form and I think David Warner is ready for a big score," Waugh said.
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