Cricket Australia

http://www.cricket.com.au/Global Items/news/2013/3/25/watson-we-must-respond

Watson: We must respond

UPDATED 04 April, 2013 6:52PM AEST |

Stand-in captain Shane Watson has called on Australia to bounce back quickly from their demoralising 4-0 series defeat to India.

Australia's horror tour of India finally came to an end in Delhi on Sunday as the hosts claimed a six-wicket victory inside three days of the fourth Test.

India, who were on the wrong end of a series whitewash in Australia just last year, recorded their first-ever 4-0 Test series win after successfully chasing down 155 runs for victory.

It was just the second time Australia had lost a Test series by that margin and Watson, who became the nation's 44th Test captain in the absence of injured skipper Michael Clarke, said the experience produced some tough lessons for his side.

"The 0-4 margin has been extremely disappointing for us," Watson told reporters on Sunday.

"We came here with high hopes of winning the series but haven't been able to get the desired results. We haven't played our best cricket. 

"It certainly has been a big learning curve and that is one of the biggest challenges for us as a team is continuing to learn very quickly. 

"We have got quite a number of young guys who are still learning."

Paceman Peter Siddle was Australia's top-scorer in the final Test, scoring successive half-centuries as the tourists' top order failed to fire once again.

Watson, whose highest score of the series was 28, pointed the finger at the Aussie batsmen, himself included, for the disappointing run of results.

"I haven't scored enough runs," he said. 

"I needed to score more runs but it was disappointing. 

"I have played a lot of cricket here in India during the IPL and had knowledge of the conditions but I failed to score runs myself.

"The top-order did not score enough runs. We haven't performed as a batting unit. Our efforts weren't good enough. I personally take the blame as a leader for not scoring runs."

Meanwhile, India captain MS Dhoni praised his team for their dominance throughout the series.

India went into the series on the back of a surprise 2-1 loss at home to England, having already suffered defeats to both England and Australia last year. 

"It is a big boost to win 4-0 with this unit," said Dhoni. 

"Credit goes to everyone. The last one and a half years has not been great for us in Tests, but they showed a lot of character, put in good performance and battled it out. 

"You need to battle it out and that was the case in this series."

He added: "I think it was an important series for us, there were a few changes in the side.     

"It was up to the individuals to rise up and do well. I think they all did it, everybody performed."

Indian paceman Ishant Sharma, meanwhile, was fined 15 percent of his match fee for an inappropriate gesture made during India's six-wicket win over Australia in Delhi.

Sharma was found guilty of breaching the ICC Code of Conduct after gesturing towards the pavilion following the wicket of Australian batsman James Pattinson on day three of the fourth Test on Sunday.

Sharma, who claimed figures of 2-13 in the second innings, accepted the charge handed down by match referee Ranjan Madugalle.

"Ishant's reaction after dismissing James Pattinson was inappropriate and clearly in breach of the Code," said Mandugalle.

"I'm sure Ishant will learn from this incident and ensure such actions are not be repeated in the future."

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 25 March, 2013 7:57AM AEST

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