Sydney, Oct 22 : Former Aussie cricket captain Kim Hughes has said that it had always been hard to beat India on their home ground, and as the second best side in the world, only India could topple Australia from its No 1 Test team position.
In an answer to a question if Australia will lose its No. 1 Test nation status, he said "We will probably lose the top spot, but apart from India who is going to storm past us? I still think we will be the best organised team and best fielding side but the days of the four-day Test wins are gone. We will have tougher five-day games now. With the exception of playing in India, I think we can be competitive with anyone because you look at the other teams. South Africa will be competitive."
He said that the present Australian side was not as strong as it used to be till a couple of years ago. He said that the great players which the team once had were no more in the team.
He also said that it has always been a difficult task to beat India on their home ground. "India are the second best side in the world and have always been hard to beat in India. Even when the great West Indian sides were dominating in my era they still had to work very hard to win in India. When you lose your great players it hurts. Great players make great teams. Ordinary players make ordinary teams. The wheels have not fallen off completely," the Courier Mail quoted him as saying in an interview.
Commenting on the Ponting-Lee spat during the Mohali Test, he said that it was like any other incident on the field but it was blown out of proportion because Australia was a losing side now. "Incidents like the one with Brett Lee might have been glossed over a few years ago when the team was going well. But they will be big headlines now that the tide has turned. And where once there was stability now there will be a steady flow of players in and out of the team."
He also advised Aussie captain Rickey Ponting to maintain his cool. "They have an old saying in Madras . . . to lose patience is to lose the battle. That's what he needs to remember. But, I have a lot of confidence in Ponting. He will handle it," added Hughes.