Melbourne, Dec 31 (IANS) Australia assistant coach Andrew McDonald said there are no excuses for dropping catches and fielding lapses that saw Australia let India reach 326 in the first innings of the second Test and take a sizeable lead.
“Nothing obvious for fielding lapses. India had a similar problem with the pink ball,” said McDonald after he was asked if concentration was an issue since the players were playing with the red ball after a long time.
“Few catches went down. I would put it down to sloppy moments. Don’t know what happens at the moment in players’ mind, whether they are switched on or not. Our preparation has been good. No concentration issues. Lot of players have played shield cricket and A games. So, no excuses,” added McDonald.
He added, “Executing those moments will be key. Our preparation was good and going into the third Test, our fielding preparation will be good. We have got four solid training days to work on it.”
The Aussies missed quite a few catches, dropping Shubman Gill twice in first innings. The India debutant opener made 45 in the first innings and followed it up with 35 not out in the second.
More crucially, the Australians dropped India skipper Ajinkya Rahane twice with Steve Smith missing one of those catches in slips. Rahane went on to make a match-winning century.