After another loss to Australia, MS Dhoni says India not far off from away Test wins

The Indians lost by four wickets to Australia in Saturday’s second Test in Brisbane after going down all guns blazing by 48 runs chasing 364 in the opening Adelaide Test.
Josh Hazlewood, right, of Australia celebrates with teammate David Warner after dismissing MS Dhoni of India for LBW during Day 4 of the seond Test match at The Gabba on December 20, 2014 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)
Josh Hazlewood, right, of Australia celebrates with teammate David Warner after dismissing MS Dhoni of India for LBW during Day 4 of the seond Test match at The Gabba on December 20, 2014 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

BRISBANE, Australia // Captain MS Dhoni said India have the pace threat and aggression to win Tests away from home and it is just a matter of time before results go their way.

The Indians lost by four wickets to Australia in Saturday’s second Test in Brisbane after going down all guns blazing by 48 runs chasing 364 in the opening Adelaide Test.

Read more: Mitchell Johnson sets up Australia win over India

While India have been in contention in both Tests, the Australians have won the key moments to turn around the contests.

The Brisbane loss was India’s fifth straight away defeat and their 15th in the last 18, with only one win.

India were thumped 3-1 in England this year and trail Australia 2-0 in the four-match Border-Gavaskar series, but Dhoni is undeterred.

“There’s plenty of areas we’re showing improvement, but we’re still not crossing the line,” Dhoni said.

“We need to give it a bit more time. Once they start crossing that line, once they harness that aggression in the right channel you’ll see plenty of good results from this side.”

Dhoni, lining up for his 90th Test match as a player and 60th as captain in the third Test in Melbourne on Boxing Day, said it is important for India to compete against the Australians in what is the toughest tour for overseas teams.

“The exciting thing is we have competed. What’s really important is it can turn at any point of time,” he said.

“The competition has been good, though the results have not been in our favour.

“It’s exciting to see the youngsters putting in a fight. It’s just a matter of time. It will turn out to be a very consistent side.”

Dhoni said it was important for his team to fight it out to the end of their Test matches, irrespective of their situation in the contest.

“It’s important that you fight it out with the opposition and then whatever the result is, you accept it,” he said.

“At the same time, you don’t throw in the towel. It was quite good to see our fast bowlers still running in, giving 100 percent.

“We have seen the execution power of our fast bowlers has increased.

“Ishant Sharma is the leader of the pack. He is someone who can consistently now bowl in one area.

“Varun Aaron is still raw. He does go for runs, but it’s exciting to see somebody from India bowling at a good pace and using the bouncer to get the opposition out.

“We were able to get a few wickets in Australia’s second innings and that helps the youngsters learn that to get another 50, 60, 70 runs it can really matter. Especially, when it comes to Australia and a fifth-day wicket.”

India have not beaten Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in 33 years and have lost their last five Tests there by big margins.

Australia and Ishant Sharma penalised for slow over rate

Australia have been fined for a slow over rate during the second Test against India in Brisbane, while India fast bowler Ishant Sharma has been penalised for a breach of conduct rules in the same match.

The elite panel of International Cricket Council match referees found Steven Smith’s side were three overs short of their target when time allowances were taken into consideration, and consequently Smith was fined 60 per cent of his match fee and his team-mates docked 30 per cent of their fees.

Smith also faces a one-match ban if found guilty of one more minor over rate offence in the next 12 months.

Sharma was seen using inappropriate words after his dismissal of Smith during the first innings of the match. He admitted the offence and has been fined 15 per cent of his match fee.

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Published: December 21, 2014 04:00 AM

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