Press Trust of india

Boxing Day Test crucial in deciding fate of the series against India: Joe Burns

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Adelaide:  If opener Joe Burns’ views are any indication, another onerous task awaits an embattled Indian team, as Australia are entering the second Test believing that a favourable result for them in Melbourne could “decide the fate” of the four-match series.

Trailing 0-1 in the series after the batting debacle here and with Virat Kohli going back to India for the birth of his first child, India will be led by Ajinkya Rahane in the remainder of the of the series.

“We have got some scars as well, we just have to prepare well, start well and carry on the momentum from the last game,” Burns said during a virtual press conference on Monday.

“We know that Indians are going to bounce back in the next Test, which is going to play a crucial role in (deciding the) fate of the series.”

The absence of Kohli and Mohammed Shami will be “big losses” but Burns is expecting a strong comeback by the visitors.

“I think Shami and Virat are obviously big losses for India. In saying that the Indian team does have very good depth as well. So, they are still going to be very challenging,” Burns said.

“It is always hard to replace world class players like that, but when we look (at the guys) that they got to come in, we are going to prepare well for the next game. We know that Indians are going to bounce back strongly,” the opener added.

Shami was ruled out of the remainder of the Test series after a nasty blow on his hand led to a wrist fracture.

Woefully out of form in the run-up to the series opener, Burns got his mojo back with a half-century in his team’s second innings at Adelaide Oval.

Burns said that a pull shot he played off pacer Umesh Yadav changed the momentum for him.

“It is funny how in this game how often one shot can get you everything that you are searching for as batters. Probably, the first pull shot I hit off Umesh Yadav, I was on four and felt amazing,” said the opener, who has 1438 Test runs.

If fit, Jadeja likely to replace Vihari in playing XI

ADELAIDE: The Indian team management will be keenly monitoring Ravindra Jadeja’s progress leading up to the Boxing Day Test against Australia this weekend as, if fit, the all-rounder could walk into the playing XI in place of Hanuma Vihari.

Jadeja, who suffered a concussion during the first T20 international, also sustained a hamstring injury which ruled him out of the first Test.

However, over the past few days when India were playing the Test match, Jadeja has slowly returned to the nets.

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