Following Indis's historic tour Down Under where they became the first side ever to not lose a single series in Australia, accolades continue to pour in for Virat Kohli's men with former Australian batsman, Dean Jones, the latest to join the bandwagon.
"This was the greatest tour that India has ever had to Australia. The only blemish was probably the way they played in the Test match in Perth, but overall the great thing was that a lot of the boys played well overseas. Everyone did something on the tour to contribute." wrote Jones in his column for Times of India.
In what was a legacy-defining tour for Virat Kohli as a leader, India became the first Asian side to beat Australia on their home soil in the Test series, and Jones compared the Men in Blue to the all-conquering West Indies side of the 1980s.
India now is no different to what the West Indies were in the eighties and early nineties. They have got to maintain the reputation that they can win in anyone's backyard now and must not take the foot off the pedal. The Windies were brilliant at it and had that "scare factor", which is what India has now," wrote Jones
One of the most intriguing aspects of India's performance Down Under was that different players chipped in at different moments, and the team was not solely dependent on Virat Kohli or Jasprit Bumrah. While it was Mayank Agarwal, Mohammad Shami, Rishabh Pant and the omnipresent Pujara in the Test series, the likes of Chahal [6-42 at the MCG] and Jadhav chipped in during the ODI series, underlining India's brimming bench-strength, and Jones second the thought in his column.
"The emergence of Chahal on his first outing Down Under was awesome, whileKuldeep Yadav continues to impress and had a wonderful ODI series. He showed everyone why he's so good. Shami worked long and hard in the Tests and then backed that up with another superb ODI series. Sharma was brilliant in the one-dayers too, while Virat Kohli led magnificently right through," Jones wrote.
While lauding MS Dhoni and Team India for their superlative performance in Australia, Jones made a case for Rishabh Pant playing as a batsman in the side and also cautioned Virat Kohli's men to not let their guard down against New Zealand.
"The main 'problem' is Dhoni. He's back in this team and the question is will India if push comes to shove, play Rishabh Pant as just a batsman? India couldn't be having a better journey for their World Cup campaign than what they are having now and they have got to make sure they finish off New Zealand as well. What would be the worst thing to ruin this would be to go out against the Black Caps and drop their guard." Jones opined.
After a historic series in Australia, India will now square off against the BlackCaps for a 5-match ODI series which will be followed by a 3-match T20I series.