Melbourne, Mar.5 : Australian captain Ricky Ponting believes that the victorious Indian team might have taught his side a lesson or two after all.
Ponting believes the vivacious energy of the youthful Indians as well their skill undid the vaunted batting line-up of the home side.
He particularly cited teenager Ishant Sharma for praise, saying his spirited form of attack throughout the Australian summer motivated others to follow suit.
In Sharma's absence from the Brisbane one-dayer due to in jury, 21-year-old Praveen Kumar, filled the breech with a four-wicket, man-of-the-match performance that shattered Australia's top order, The Age quoted Ponting, as saying.
With most of Australia's side on the wrong side of 30 and the majority of the Indians well under that mark, Ponting admits the youthful make-up of the touring squad had given him food for thought.
Ponting said the question of player burn-out had already been broached before last night's loss and there may be a case for a greater interchange of talent between the Test and limited overs squads.
"We've only got a changeover of one or two players now between Test teams and one-day teams. That's really unusual for us. The last couple of years we've had up to five or six players changing over form Test cricket to one-day cricket," Ponting said.
"It gave a bit more life to the group. Not having much of a changeover now means the guys have been playing international cricket for a long time and haven't had much of an opportunity or ability to be able to get away from the rigours of international cricket," he added.
Last night marked the first time in 23 years Australia had lost back-to-back series in the now defunct tri-series contest.
"They went with a youth policy and brought some of the younger players in. I said at the time I was surprised that (Saurav) Ganguly was left out but the younger players that have arrived have added some energy to their group. And, that's what you need playing one-day cricket. What they've done probably gives us something to look at down the track," Ponting said.
Ponting failed to use the simmering tension and off-field issues that have clouded the summer as an excuse, saying he had no regrets in the way he handled the storm of controversy. "As a captain and a leader you have lots of things you have to deal with. No doubt this summer has been a tough one, but I felt I've dealt with the issues as well as I possibly could and tried my best to put them behind me and prepare myself and the team," Ponting said.
"And I think for the vast majority of the summer, we've done exceptionally well at doing that," he added.