BCCI vice-president Rajeev Shukla is facing the ire of Indian cricket team fans on Twitter after his critical remark on their performance during the fifth and final day of the third Test against Australia in Sydney. Chasing 407, India middle-order put up an epic performance to stave off the threatening Australian bowlers while battling injuries to multiple players and play out a thrilling draw.
The performance has drawn praises from the likes of Sachin Tendulkar to Sourav Ganguly who has extolled the performances of Cheteshwar Pujara, Rishabh Pant, Hanuma Vihari and Ravichandran Ashwin. However, Shukla has a differing view and reckons that India could have gone for win had the middle-order been better.
“Actually the middle order could have performed little better and we would have won the match,” Shukla posted on Twitter after the conclusion of the Test.
What’s more surprising is the fact that a couple of minutes before he had posted praising Vihari and Ashwin for their 62-run partnership for the sixth wicket and calling them the new real wall in Indian cricket after Rahul Dravid.
“The new real wall after Dravid in Indian cricket are @Hanumavihari and @ashwinravi99. They scored 62 runs in 259 balls. Good performance to get the match to draw. @RishabhPant17 & @cheteshwar1 played superb knock. @ImRo45 & @RealShubmanGill as usual were good at crease,” he said.
While few agreed with his second observation, there were made their displeasure clear.
With the series still locked at one-all, the fourth and final Test in Brisbane becomes the decider. However, India have been hit by another injury blow with Vihari being reportedly ruled out of the Brisbane contest.
India are already without Virat Kohli (paternity leave), Mohammed Shami (forearm fracture), Umesh Yadav (calf injury) and Ravindra Jadeja (broken thumb).