Change unlikely for Australia ahead of final Test, says Smith

Acting captain Steve Smith says Australia will reject “mind-boggling” calls for an adjustment to play three frontline quicks as intrigue builds around the condition of the Ahmedabad pitch.

Smith said on Wednesday the Australian camp was still unaware of which of two covered wickets would be used for the fourth Test, a situation he said he could not remember occurring previously in his 95-Test career.

“The short answer is no,” he said when asked whether the team had been informed of the chosen pitch.

“We’ll have a look (later on Wednesday) and we’ll reassess, but it could be we name the team at the toss.”

Scott Boland could return to calculations if the pitch looks pace-friendly, but Smith categorically ruled out a scenario where the Victorian seamer would return to the side along with uncapped speedster Lance Morris.

“It’s been weird with a bit of the commentary back home, people talking about us playing three quicks and one spinner,” he said.

“It’s kind of mind-boggling to me when we look at these surfaces and we see what we’ve had … 11 innings in six days or something like that.

“Spinners have taken the bulk of the wickets and you see how difficult it is to play the spin.”

Australia’s three slow bowlers had enough variation between them to work effectively together for a third consecutive match, Smith said.

“They are all different but they all have good knowledge of the game, a good understanding of what they are trying to do and think it’s been great that we’ve been able to play three spinners and show we can do it effectively,” he said.

“We’ve had faith in what we’re trying to do and it’s good that we are able to show that we can play with three spinners and win.”

Smith said the Australians would embrace the chance to attempt to draw the series 2-2 in front of an extraordinary crowd tipped to push 110,000 on day one.

“It’s a good chance of being a pretty cool atmosphere. If we get somewhere up around that number, it would be unbelievable,” he said.

“We know how loud some of these grounds are over here in India, so if there’s 100,000-plus out there, it’s going to be pretty loud.

“It would be really just a great vibe and atmosphere out there to play in front of.”

Managing to level the series would be a “huge achievement” for the playing group, Smith said.

“Unfortunately we weren’t able to do it earlier in the series and give ourselves a chance to win, but to draw the series here would be a positive for this group,” he said.

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