Australian media all praise for New India

Australian media was on Monday generous in its adulation of the winning team and its rising cricket stars.

updated: February 16, 2008 19:17 IST
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As India cruised to victory at the MCG, breathing new vigour into the tri-series, Australian media was on Monday generous in its adulation of the winning team and its rising cricket stars.

The Age published from Melbourne said: "Indian youngsters get under Australia's skin", The Sydney Morning Herald wrote: "India harness fire within for a daring assault" and "Hot pace works a Sharma for tourists", The Australian said: "India young guns bowl series to life" and The Daily Telegraph wrote: "Test great labels firebrand quick a future No. 1" and "Young general leads his troops with style".

The euphoria amidst the approximately 10,000 Indian fans, waving the tricolour and creative banners in a sea of blue at the MCG Sunday night, made one ABC Radio National commentator ask: "Are we in India or Australia?"

Chloe Saltau, writing in the Fairfax newspapers, said: "Spearheaded by a long-haired teenager (Ishant Sharma) and steadied by a batsman (Rohit Sharma) who has not yet turned 21, India hustled to a memorable victory over the world champion Australians in Melbourne to bring the one-day series to life."

While Australian crowd favourite Sachin Tendulkar put on a show in his final appearance at the MCG, Saltau wrote: "This was a victory for India's younger generation... The Indians have repeatedly claimed they are the only team capable of beating Australia at home and last night's victory has injected some interest into a triangular series that has been marred by bad weather and Sri Lanka's limp performance against Australia in Sydney."

The 49,329 spectators got their money's worth. The contest intensified and tension gripped the carnival spirit in the stands as in cricket, until the winning run is scored anything is possible.

Eminent writer Peter Roebuck in his column in The Sydney Morning Herald wrote: "India dared to attack the Australians and it produced the tussle of the season. The hosts met blow with blow, creating a gripping contest between two committed and well-matched pugilists...Throughout its course the Indians played with conviction."

Of Sharma's fiery spell, Roebuck wrote: "Youth knows nothing of mortality let alone fear...Combining pace, cut and bounce, he asked a question with every ball."

Praising the Indian captain, Roebuck wrote: "Dhoni had grabbed his opponents by what President Nixon was once pleased to call 'the short and curlies' and did not mean to let go... Clearly the Indians have learnt how to handle these opponents. It is not a matter of words or gestures but conviction."

India clash with Sri Lanka at Manuka Oval in Canberra Feb 12.