The challenge with the pink ball is during twilight, under the spotlights


The batsman said Kohli and Pujara, who did not play the pink ball warmup against Australia A, have been practicing at the nets.

India’s middle order batsman Hanuma Vihari believes his batsmen are ready to face the challenge of test cricket in Australia, starting with the day and night game in Adelaide this Thursday. Vihari scored an undefeated in the second inning of the century in the second game of the circuit played under the lights against Australia A at SCG, and said the only challenge of facing the pink ball was at night.

“Getting to practice with the pink ball just before the day-night event is an ideal practice for us,” Vihari said. “I think we played decent opposition in both games. The challenge with the pink ball is during twilight and when the lights are on. He does it a little bit in the air and out of the wicket. That’s the challenge we’ve come to realize. as a team. I hope that not just me, but all the hitters will take it as a challenge to go to Adelaide, and we will make sure that as a batting group we add a good total.

India will miss her regular captain, Virat Kohli, after the first test when she goes home for paternity leave. He did not play any of the tour’s matches, but in his absence the others did not move up a place. Vice Captain Ajinkya Rahane doesn’t seem in the mood for a change from his usual No. 5 position, which pushed No. 6 Vihari to hit No. 4 in both games. If India does that in the three Trials that Kohli doesn’t play, it risks bringing two similar defense-oriented hitters, Vihari and Cheteshwar Pujara, together at the same time. Vihari was asked how different it was to hit with Pujara and Rahane. As expected, it didn’t reveal much.

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“At number 4, I always feel like you have more time than you think,” he said. “In national cricket I’ve hit number 3, so I’m a bit familiar with the order. Obviously, hitting with Puji is completely different. We try to communicate and he tells me what the bowler is trying to do. Good communication. And hitting with Ajinkya, I think it’s more outlandish. I also feel like he has a good sense of the game situation. I enjoy hitting with both. But getting to number 6 is a totally different equation. You have to hit with one batter and then with the goalie and the SUV or bowling. I enjoy hitting both positions, but it depends on the situation of the team and the need for the day. “

Vihari said these two games have given them a good chance to get used to the extra rebound in Australia. “The rebound plays a big role,” Vihari said. “We as Indians tend to play every ball because of the bounce at home. But we’re dealing with the extra bounce pretty well. The first two practice games, you see, we’ve put the ball down really well and we’re trying to acclimate to the conditions here. Coming to the first round, we are very well equipped with the pace and the rebound of the terrain. I’m pretty sure we will do well. “

Those who haven’t played both games – Kohli, Pujara being the most important – have been working hard on the networks, Vihari said. “They have been practicing every day on the networks,” he said. “They have been working hard. They are veteran players and they have been playing international cricket for a long time. We have also played a pink ball event before this one, so they are used to it. And they are practicing with him every day. I’m sure they will. being the professionals they are, they will be very well equipped with their game. “

When Vihari last arrived in Australia, he had to open during a period of crisis in order to see him. He is proud of that effort at MCG, but feels much more confident in his ability now that he has established a place on the sidelines. “Arriving in 2018, I was entering my second tour [he had debuted in England earlier that year]”Vihari said.” It was a good challenge for me back then. Although I contributed a bit, I am now very well equipped with my game and quite confident with my game plan as well. I’m really looking forward to the series. “

Sidharth Monga is assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo