Ishant Sharma says the primary aim of the side is to win their first-ever Test series in Australia, and their focus will be solely on that in the four-match series over the next couple of months.
“Everyone is really passionate. We are pretty motivated to win the series,” he said ahead of India’s four-day practice match at the SCG, which starts from Wednesday, November 28.
— BCCI (@BCCI) November 27, 2018
“Not only in Australia, when we played in South Africa and England we were pretty motivated to win a series abroad and I think that is the biggest opportunity for us right now. We always have a good balance in the side, which can do things for that are very promising.
“The biggest thing right now is to win the series and that’s what everybody is focusing. We are not even thinking about personal performances. Just one aim, that is to win a series in Australia.”
To that end, the practice match against Cricket Australia XI assumes even greater importance.
“I think it’s pretty serious for us (the practice game) because we have to set the tone,” Sharma said.
“You know the conditions, obviously (we are) playing here after a long time. You need to get into the groove, get used to the conditions, and it’s a pretty important game for everyone.”
Australia have struggled for consistency since Steve Smith and David Warner were handed one-year bans for their involvement in the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa in March.
However, despite that, Sharma said India wouldn’t take Australia lightly.
“Whoever is representing their country, they are good enough and that’s why they’re representing the country. We don’t take anything lightly.”
The first Test of the four-match series begins in Adelaide on December 6.