Sydney: Australia coach Mickey Arthur has thrown down the gauntlet to India's famed batsmen by claiming that they have "chinks in their armour" and that his team's young pace attack has inflicted "psychological blows" on them for the remainder of the ongoing Test series.
"They all have chinks in their armour. They all come with great records and fantastic scores. Yet every batsman in world cricket loves to keep scoring. If we can step the dot balls up and build pressure, it's a way in for us. Pressure is the name of the game in Test cricket," said Arthur after his young pace attack laid low the Indians in both innings of the first Test in Melbourne.
"We could keep them under the pump (in Melbourne) long enough. I would like to think we have struck some psychological blows," stated Arthur as he looked to build an early lead into a 2-0 advantage during the second Test at the SCG, starting on Tuesday.
Indian batsmen appeared shell-shocked against the pace trio of James Pattinson, Peter Siddle and Ben Hilfenhaus at the MCG, losing their last eight wickets for 68 runs in the first innings and being all out for 169 in the second. The pace trio took as many as 19 of the 20 Indian wickets
Arthur, who earlier coached South Africa, mocked the Indian batting line-up and claimed he now has "information" on them to execute their plans better in Sydney.
"I do think our bowlers were very good. I do think we executed our plans very well. I do think we now have a lot of information we can use going forward. We will alter our game plan slightly for the top four of the six. There is enough information to enable us to do it."
Arthur has no fears that Tendulkar averages 221.33 from his four Tests in Sydney and that he once struck 241 at the hallowed turf. Another Indian veteran, VVS Laxman also averages 96.20 at the SCG and has three hundreds from as many matches.
"If you look at Sydney, Sachin and Laxman have played very well there. Traditionally, the bounce has been a little lower here. It's been one of the wickets in Australia where they were as close to the sub-continental conditions as you could be outside."
"But the SCG has changed a little, as we will see. I hope there is some grass on it. I have no doubt that he (Tendulkar) will get his 100th century at some stage. He's a quality player. But I would like it to be after the tour of Australia."
"Sydney has seamed around a little bit of late. Perth is going to be bouncy and quick. We believe we have a method. We just need to execute it," said Arthur. "Still, whatever plans you make, you still need bowlers to execute them. I can't speak highly enough of them."
Arthur said the present Australian attack has the potential to be world's best.
"I do think this pace attack has the potential to become the best in the world. The potential Australia have, and not just in bowling stocks alone, is very exciting. We've got guys firing all the time. We wanted 15 players who can play international cricket at any time. By the end of the summer, we could have 22," he said.
"There's competition for every spot and that's a good sign. We need to reduce our 12 to 11 for Sydney; when Watson comes into picture, we would have to squeeze 11 out of the 13; if (Pat) Cummins comes in at Perth, we would have to get 11 out of 14. What it means there is no guarantee for anyone."