Sydney, Sep 12 (IANS): Former Australia captain Ian Chappell said there are no doubts about the Indian cricket team being a very good all-round side. He added that India, virtually unconquered at home, have proved themselves after winning successive Test series in Australia before leading 2-1 in the Test series against England.
"There's no doubt that India are a very good all-round team. They have conclusively proved it by winning consecutive series in Australia and now having had success in England, albeit Covid-affected, while they are virtually unbeatable at home," wrote Chappell in his column for ESPNCricinfo on Sunday.
"However, that isn't to say they can't improve. That's how good teams remain at or near the top -- by constantly searching for ways to be better. Herbie Collins, a shrewd Australian captain of the 1920s, reckoned the most important aspect of selection was finding the right combination," added Chappell.
He also gave an uncomplicated equation on how Test matches are won. "The simplest equation for winning Test matches is for the batters to score quickly in order to give the bowlers enough time to take 20 wickets."
The 77-year-old pointed out that England's selection of slip fielders is flawed. "On the subject of slip fielding, this is one aspect of England's selection process that is definitely flawed. They are besotted with having a wicketkeeper who can bat, and in doing so they have overlooked that slip-fielding standards tend to imitate the form of the man with the gloves."
Chappell said the return of wicket-keeper Ben Foakes and all-rounder Ben Stokes will boost the slip catching levels of England.
"The recent batting contributions from Jos Buttler and Jonny Bairstow don't compensate for their below-par glove work. If Ben Foakes is the best keeper, he should play. He's no slouch with the bat, and his greater range standing back will help widen the slip cordon and lift the standard. The return of Ben Stokes will also greatly improve the standard of slip catching, which, in turn, helps make the attack better."
He signed off by saying the art of good selection is to see at various ways for making a top team more superior.
"The art of good selection is to be constantly looking for ways to make even a top-class team better. The priority is always to win the next match, but this should be achieved with one eye on the future."