Hobart:Indian skipper MS Dhoni made it clear his team will not back down against Australian aggression and blamed the world champions for the on-field hostilities.
He criticised the Aussies for their "provocative behaviour" during Sunday's Sydney ODI, which prompted the Indians to lodge a formal complaint with the match referee.
"We believe it was the Australians who have been provoking us. It's been going on for a while. In due course I am sure (my team's) youngsters will learn from it," he said.
"Ishant only reacted to what Symonds said to him," he added when asked about the young pacer showing the "send-off finger" to Andrew Symonds in that game, for which Ishant was docked 15 per cent of his match fee.
"It's never friendly in international cricket and aggression is okay if you don't cross the line," Dhoni said.
"Ishant will learn this art in due course. I call it an art because it happens in international cricket all the time," he added.
Batsmen come good
After complaining about lack of runs from the top-order, Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Tuesday lavished praise on his batsmen and said their thumping display in the seven-wicket win over Sri Lanka was one of the "most comprehensive ever".
"It was one of the most comprehensive performances by our batsmen ever," a beaming Dhoni said after the win which ensured the team a berth in the best of three tri-series finals against Australia.
It was a do or die match for the Indians and they came out with all cylinders firing to first restrict the islanders to 179 before overhauling the target in a mere 32.2 overs.
Dhoni was also all praise for his bowlers who once again came up with a clinical display. Ishant Sharma and rookie pacer Praveen Kumar picked four wickets apiece.
"It was quite a flat track but our bowlers bowled well once again. Praveen and Ishant did well. Overall it was a good performance," Dhoni said.
The skipper hoped that his attack would continue to be in fine form during the finals against Australia.
"Hopefully we would continue to do well in the finals and wickets would assist the bowlers even more," he said.
Praise for Tendulkar
Dhoni also took potshots at Sachin Tendulkar's critics who have been suggesting that the master batsman takes a break to recharge his batteries.
"It's up to Sachin if he wants to take rest. People should be careful about what they are writing about him," he said defending Tendulkar who returned to form with a quick-fire 63 on Tuesday.
Dhoni said the Hobart wicket did not offer the help it appeared at the time of the toss.
"It never quite offered help as can be seen that it was difficult to even get rid of the tailenders," he pointed out.