Young Renshaw continues to impress

Matt Renshaw, might be only 20-years-old and has the experience of only nine Test matches, but the way he tackled the Indian bowling on a tough surface shows that he is here to stay.

Matt Renshaw in action during Test match between India and Australia.   -  K.Bhagya Prakash

Test cricket, Matthew Renshaw said after play on Sunday, was about “trying to grind it out and beat the opposition at the long game.” He's rather good at Test cricket, then. This series, Renshaw has spent over eight hours at the crease, and only nine innings into his international career, the opener has faced in excess of a thousand balls. On the second day of the second Test at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, he comprehensively beat India at the 'long game', his resolute, painstaking 60 (196b, 263m) helped Australia gain the advantage.

Renshaw began the day on 15. It was well past lunch when he completed his half-century, having faced 136 balls since morning, resisting some serious Indian pressure. “The plan this morning was just to try and bat as long as possible and wear the Indian bowlers down,” he said. “They've come off a long summer and played a lot of Tests so we know that if we can get them into a high amount of overs, we'll be in a good position. It's been a really good couple of days of Test cricket and that's what it's all about, just trying to grind it out and beat the opposition at the long game. It was really challenging to score off both the quicks and the spinners. It was a grind. But we just needed to bat the whole day and we've managed to do that.”

The pitch was - Renshaw felt - harder to bat on than the one rolled out in Pune. “In Pune we knew it was going to spin; this one, we don't really know which one is going to spin, so that's probably the hardest challenge,” he said. “Some are turning quite a lot and some are not turning as much and some are just going on with the angle. It was probably a bit harder against the quicks because it's not bouncing as much, and some are going up so I think that challenge is probably the biggest.”

It helped, the Queenslander felt, that R. Ashwin operated predominantly from over the wicket. “It gave us a pretty clear plan what he was trying to do and how we was trying to get us out. We worked out that and just tried to combat that as well as possible,” he said.

At only 20 years of age, where did he get his patience from, Renshaw was asked. “When I was younger I wasn't the biggest bloke and so instead of retiring on some balls, I retired on some runs. Once we got to fifty we had to retire and someone else could come in,” he explained. “I didn't really want to let anyone else bat. So I tried to get to fifty as slow as possible.” Such efforts will not have gone down well on children's playgrounds, but none of his current teammates will be complaining.

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