Cardiff: Despite recording two facile victories in the warm-up games, India are worried about their top-order batting, spinner Ravichandran Ashwin said here on Tuesday.
Like the first warm-up game against Sri Lanka in Edgbaston on Saturday, India suffered a similar top order collapse against Australia on Tuesday. India were struggling at 55 for 5 in the 17th over till skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (91) and Dinesh Karthik rescued the innings with a fabulous 211-run sixth wicket stand. The India offspinner said coach Duncan Fletcher "is addressing the issue, but the players will have to deliver on the field".
"Fletcher has got vast experience of English conditions. He has been passing knowledge to the team but it is up to us to take it forward," Ashwin told reporters, after India's comprehensive 243-run win. "He [Fletcher] has told our batsmen, 'runs will come if you stay at the wicket'," added Ashwin.
Murali Vijay had another bad outing against Australia. (AP Photo)
Karthik (146 not out) scored his second consecutive century and never looked in trouble during his 140-ball stay. "I hope he carries this purple patch wherever he goes," Ashwin said about his Tamil Nadu colleague.
Ashwin expressed a word of caution saying the big wins in warm-up games count for nothing. "It's for us to do best of what we can and get as much as a team. On Thursday [when India play South Africa], it will be a fresh start," Ashwin said.
Australia's stand-in skipper George Bailey termed the massive defeat as "disappointing." Australia were bowled out for a paltry 65 in 23.3 overs and presented India a victory on the platter. Bailey was not amused.
"There were no gremlins in the wicket and this defeat is a good lesson for us. We just need to be more patient," Bailey said, adding Michael Clarke's timely recovery for the tournament will be crucial to the teams success in the Champions Trophy.