India vs Australia: Five statements that backfired
"You really said that, Pup?" Ricky Ponting made two statements that didn't pan out as planned. © AFP

As with marquee series such as India vs Australia, before and during the contest that Virat Kohli‘s team won 2-1 to mark the first Test series win on Australian soil by a visiting Indian side, there were many statements and predictions made by former and current players.

Here are five that did not come true at all during the series.

‘Usman Khawaja will pip Virat Kohli as the leading run-getter in the Test series’

What was said: 

Former record-setting Australian captain Ricky Ponting predicted before the first series that Usman Khawaja would be the leading run-getter, ahead of the No.1 batsman in Test cricket, Kohli. “He’s (Khawaja) on top of his game, his record in Australia is outstanding. As much of a threat that the Indian fast bowlers might pose, I think he’s got a game that can cope with it here in Australia. I’m going with him to be the leading run scorer and man of the series.”

What happened:

Khawaja, Australia’s second most-capped batsman of this squad, scored 198 runs in eight innings for an average of 28.28, with one fifty. Kohli finished the series with 282 at 40.28, with one century and an 82.

‘India’s pretty ordinary away form will give Australia confidence’

What was said:

Ponting’s predecessor Steve Waugh felt that India’s “pretty ordinary” away form in 2018 would provide the hosts with some confidence.

“India, they’re talking up a good game, but they’ve come off a pretty disappointing series in England. Their away form is pretty ordinary over the past five or 10 years. I think Australia might surprise actually. Our bowlers are world class and particularly in our conditions we’ll take 20 wickets.”

What happened:

India won at Adelaide Oval, lost in Perth, won at the MCG and drew in Sydney to beat Tim Paine’s team 2-1.

Steve Waugh underestimated India and overestimated Australia.
Steve Waugh underestimated India and overestimated Australia. © AFP

Michael Vaughan predicts who will win the series

What was said:

After Australia drew level with victory in Perth, the former England captain Michael Vaughan backed them to go and on win the series while predicting that  Nathan Lyon would be the difference between the two sides after he was named Man of the Match in the second Test.

What happened:

India hit back at the MCG to win by 237 runs, thus taking an unassailable lead, and at the SCG wrapped up the series. After taking 16 wickets in two Tests, Lyon managed one in Melbourne while conceding 150 runs and then at the SCG claimed 4/178 from 57.2 overs.

‘I am really sure that it will come in this match’

What was said: 

After scores of 13, 70, 51 and 30, India’s vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane was confident of scoring a century and even a double-century in the Boxing Day Test at the MCG.  “It will come, I am really sure that it will come in this match,” Rahane told reporters when asked about converting his starts in the series. “The way I am batting, with the the mindset of counter-attack, definitely (I will score) a 100 or maybe 200.”

What happened:

Rahane made 34 and 1 at the MCG to lower his batting average for the series to 33.16. He would end the series with an average of 31, following an innings of 18 at the SCG.

Seven innings, two fifties: It was another disappointing series for Ajinkya Rahane.
Seven innings, two fifties: It was another disappointing series for Ajinkya Rahane.
© AFP

‘Pujara’s slow innings will be responsible for India’s defeat at MCG’

What was said:

Ponting found India’s slow batting baffling in the third Test and felt that Pujara’s 106 off 319 balls could end up being the reason for their defeat in the third Test. Pujara consumed 319 deliveries for his hundred while none of India’s top five batsmen scored at a strike rate of more than 50. “If India go on and win the game, it’ll be a great innings (but) if they haven’t got time to bowl Australia out twice, it could be what actually costs them the game,” Ponting told cricket.com.au.

What happened:

Pujara’s hundred proved match-winning as India won the Test by 137 runs to claim an unassailable 2-1 series lead and retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.