The current Australian team that is touring India is completely different from the teams in the past that were led by the likes of Steve Waugh and Ricky Ponting. The most obvious difference is the player’s body language on the field and their passive behavior.
Aussie Players Scared Of Sledging
The Aussies in the past engaged in ‘mental disintegration’ which was sledging and aggressive body language both on the field and in the media which was aimed at upsetting their opponents. The likes of Steve Waugh, Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and Ricky Ponting have showcased the art of verbal sledging on numerous occasions when they have toured the sub-continent and played against India.
Australia just lost the ODI series 4-1 and there was no hint of any sledging or aggressive body language from the current crop of players. Vice captain David Warner who was once known for not holding back has looked a completely different player staying out of any altercations or controversy.
Former opening batsman Virender Sehwag has also noticed the change in the Australia players and alleges that the main reason why the Aussies have stopped sledging Indian players and engaging in mental disintegration is because they did not want to put the IPL contracts in jeopardy.
IPL Contracts Changed Their Behavior
In a statement, Sehwag said “They (Australian players) are scared because of the next year’s mega IPL auctions. If they had sledged the Indian players in the ODI series, then the Indian franchise owners might think before bidding high for the Australian players.”
Australian players make up a big percentage of foreign players that appear in the IPL. Players like David Warner, Steve Smith, Aaron Finch, Patrick Cummins and Marcus Stoinis are key players for their franchises and in the 2017 edition both Warner and Smith captained their respective IPL teams.
Are Sehwag’s Allegations True?
The allegations made by Sehwag are pretty serious because if true, it means that the Australians are thinking about other things on the field instead of going hard at the Indians and giving it their all. However it could also be because the Australians are playing a different brand of cricket under Captain Steve Smith.
If the Aussies continue to play and perform poorly with this new brand of cricket, they might need to rethink their strategy and go back to their old methods of ‘mental disintegration’ and put winning matches for Australia above their lucrative IPL contracts.