IND vs AUS ODIs: We're the underdogs, says pacer Kane Richardson
Australia pacer Kane Richardson stresses on the difficulty of conquering powerful India ahead of three-match ODI series that kicks off at Wankhede tomorrow.
The mighty Australian cricket team has come to India with a full squad and on their previous visit had beaten the hosts 3-2 with a depleted outfit and, that too after trailing 0-2 in the five-game rubber.
But even the return of top batsmen David Warner and Steve Smith into the 50-over squad from last year's World Cup, along with the inclusion and availability of their full complement of Test fast men, hasn't made the visitors complacent about the challenge against batsmen like Rohit Sharma and Indian captain Virat Kohli.
The fourth-choice fast bowler in the visitors' squad, Kane Richardson, in fact called his team "underdogs" in what is expected to be a rip-roaring contest beginning at the Wankhede Stadium on January 14. "The home team is always favourite. Finchy [visiting captain Aaron Finch] has said no team has ever won here back to back. It's going to be hard. India in India is always the biggest challenge and after what happened last year, they will be ready for it. Confidence is up but the home team is always favourite. We are the underdogs," said Richardsion from South Australia, at a media conference on Sunday.
"The biggest challenge in white-ball cricket is playing against India on the surfaces here. It's a lot different than Australia. The ground sizes are a lot smaller than Australia, (even) mis-hits can go for six. Starting today we will figure out a plan to stop some of those guys. It will be a high-scoring contest," he added.
Richardson, who plays for Melbourne Renegades in the Australian Big Bash T20 League and is part of a top-class pace attack comprising Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood, may have to wait for his chance to get into the playing XI.
"It would be nice to take the field with all three of them or a couple of them. I don't know how it's going to pan out in terms of selection. I'm comfortable being that next guy in. I have always spoken about if injuries or form happen being the next guy in," pointed out the 1.90m tall pacer, who has played just 22 ODIs since his debut in 2012-13. The ODI series looks a bit of an aberration with all the teams in the globe preparing for the World T20 Championship later this year in Australia, but Richardson feels it has given him an excellent chance going ahead.
"There's always a chance to put yourself in line to be picked. White-ball cricket, it's the same skill set. It's just 50 overs instead of 20. Any performance is going to get you picked for the T20 World Cup. Any time you can perform for your country when you're fighting for a spot, you're always going to try and take that," added Richardson.
'Stoinis offended many people with his remark'
All-rounder Marcus Stoinis had not only offended Kane Richardson but many others with his homophobic on-field remark when the two were representing their respective Melbourne franchises, Stars and Renegades, in the Australian Big Bash T20 League recently, Richardson said on Sunday.
"Yeah [we had] a little WhatsApp the morning after but not a whole lot of conversation about it. He realised he made a mistake. I could just tell by his body language for the rest of his innings that night that he knew he made a mistake," said Richardson, here part of the Australian ODI outfit to take on India in a three-game series commencing in Mumbai on January 14.
"I didn't need an apology for myself. It's what he said that offended so many people. It was more just his actions and everyone's actions, we can't afford to have that happen again."
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