Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting blamed Team India's bowling approach for finding themselves in a hole after day two of the World Test Championship (WTC) final against India at the Kennington Oval. The Tasmanian observed that India needed to bowl fuller lengths during the first hour of day one.
While India dismissed Usman Khawaja cheaply after choosing to bowl first, David Warner took control of the proceedings. The left-hander attacked Umesh Yadav, smashing him for four boundaries in an over before departing for 43. A 285-run partnership between Steve Smith and Travis Head meant Australia reached 469. They reduced India to 151-5 at Stumps on day two.
Speaking to ICC, Ponting reflected that India needed to have Australia four or five down by lunch and it worked well for Pat Cummins and co. The 48-year-old said:
"I think where they let themselves down was in the first hour yesterday and bowling too short. With the wicket conditions, the overhead conditions they had and the brand new Dukes ball, they had to bowl fuller and get the ball driven back down the ground. They needed to have Australia four or five down at lunch and they only had them two down, which was a pretty good result (for Australia)."
Ricky Ponting sees India's decision to play four seamers was the right one:
Ponting observed how long a chat Rahul Dravid and Rohit Sharma had about what to do at the toss, adding:
"I know the captain wears the brunt of it (criticism), but I know it’s not only his decision. I saw Rahul Dravid and him out (Rohit) in the middle yesterday morning and they had a long discussion about what they wanted to do at the toss. If they wanted to bowl first I think they had to play the four seamers. So far you would say it hasn’t paid off - but there is a long way to go and we probably shouldn’t be too quick to judge."
Ajinkya Rahane stayed unbeaten on 29 as he shared a 71-run stand with Ravindra Jadeja, who was dismissed late on day two by Nathan Lyon.