India vs Australia: Madan Lal backs Mayank Agarwal's inclusion

Former India all-rounder Madan Lal has voiced his support for Mayank Aggarwal and Hardik Pandya's inclusion in the playing XI for the third Test against Australia in Melbourne.

"He has the attitude and the form to play with a positive mindset," said Madan Lal of Mayank Aggarwal after the latter was called up for the ongoing India vs Australia Test series.   -  vivek bendre

Former India all-rounder Madan Lal supports the inclusion of Mayank Aggarwal and Hardik Pandya in the playing XI for the third Test against Australia starting at Melbourne on December 26.

“India’s main problem has been an effective opening pair. It is a crucial area in any format of the game and India needs to address the issue at the earliest, at Melbourne,” he said at an event held at the Zedex Nissan showroom here on Thursday.

The event was organised to showcase the 2019 ICC World Cup Trophy which arrived in Delhi as part of its world tour. Nissan KICKS is the official car of the next World Cup to be held in England.

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Speaking on India’s performance in Australia, he observed, “India has a very good chance at Melbourne. I know the drop-in pitch is going to pose challenges but there are enough reasons to back India. India is the number one team in the world and should play like one. The team won the first Test after a close contest and ought to have won the second too if only the bowlers had not given away too many runs in Australia’s second innings.”

Not wanting to sound desperate, he said, “(KL) Rahul and (Murali) Vijay have not played to their potential. I would love to pick Aggarwal. He has the attitude and the form to play with a positive mindset. I would also pick Parthiv Patel because he can be used an opener. He has the experience and the game to assume the role of an opener.”

In Madan Lal’s team for the Melbourne Test, there is place for Pandya too. “If (R) Ashwin is not available then Pandya is the only all-rounder India has. In my view Ashwin is a genuine all-rounder even though Pandya’s aggression can upset the Australians,” he added.

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Madan Lal was disappointed at India’s failure to stifle the rival tail-enders. “This failure has harmed the team in the past. It is time the bowlers learn to run through the tail. I am disappointed to see Indian batsmen giving wickets to spinners. (Nathan) Lyon is very good spinner. His line and length are impeccable. India will have to watch him in the remaining two Tests. Not picking a spinner for the Perth Test was a mistake but only in hindsight.”