Aaron Finch responds to Michael Clarke's 'sucking up' comment
Australia limited-overs skipper Aaron Finch shed light on Michael Clarke's comments on the 2018 India series, which ignited a huge controversy. The former captain said Australian players were being "too nice" to Team India in order to fetch IPL contracts. He also said the Tim Paine-led side was overpowered by Virat Kohli's aggression. Meanwhile, Finch has completely denied the claims. Here is more.
Players were not being nice: Finch
"They were not being nice to impress because they wanted an IPL contract. If you ask anyone playing on field, they will tell you it was very very tough. It was played in the right spirit, but it was very tough," Finch told Sports Tak.
Clarke slammed Australian team for being timid
In 2018-19, Australia lost their first ever Test series to India (1-2) at home. They also lost the ODI series 1-2 later on. Clarke felt the Aussies succumbed to pressure during the series. He also questioned Australia's approach following the infamous Newlands Test. The 39-year-old opined the Australians were "too scared" to sledge Kohli throughout the series in the fear of losing IPL contracts.
'Australia were going through transition period'
Finch highlighted Australia's transition period and hailed the Indian bowling attack. "The team was going through a transition and there were a lot of players trying to find their way in international cricket, doing that against India," he said. "Talking as a batsman, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin, you can't hide against that kind of attack."
Australian players struggled to find feet following Newlands saga
Australia were trying to resurrect from the ball-tampering saga after the likes of David Warner, Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft were handed respective bans. Tim Paine was handed the charge of a rather young Australian side, that comprised of new faces.
Tim Paine earlier hit back at Clarke
Previously, the incumbent Test skipper Tim Paine also responded to Clarke's statement. He reiterated the team did not want to sledge Kohli as aggressions suits his batting style. "I didn't notice too many people being that nice to Virat or not trying to get him out. We didn't want to provoke him because that's when he plays the best," Paine told ESPNcricinfo.