@Siam said in Australia v India:
Coincided with a time that Sheffield Shield was huge. There were many names that never or hardly played for Oz but would have walked into any national side: law, Elliott, divenuto, hills, siddons, maher even Lehman off the top of my head. You had to make 1000 runs every season for at least 3 to get a mention. Now, nobody gets 1000.
You can add Bevan to the list too, with a 57 FC average - but he never played a full season due to ODI commitments. Katich and Hodge started posting big seasons toward the end of that decade, but would eventually get a half-decent crack.
That said Aussie's depth is probably better balanced now that it was back then. Yes they are a bit thin on the fringes with the batting, but they have serious bowling depth. They haven't had to trot out a Muller/Cook/Wilson/Nicholson/Dale type in their test attack in the past decade.
In hindsight it is worth looking at the bowling strength in Sheffield Shield through the 1990s, particularly in the second half of the decade, the leading wicket taker lists are dominated by sub-140kmh quicks who would not have looked out of place in a NZ shirt during that period. Queensland had Kaspa & Bichel in and out of test duty, WA had Jo Angel and Brendon Julian which were unique and Colin Miller was an enigma.
But the balance were a mix of ones with international pedigree (Adam Dale, Ian Harvey, Tom Moody, Tony Dodemaide) but more ODI specialists and then some real journeymen like (Saker, Ridgeway, McNamara). I'm still dubious as to how batting on flat tracks against those attacks would have translated against Donald, Walsh/Ambrose, Akram/Younis etc. When those guys played County cricket in the winter not necessarily any better than the leading English journeymen (although still usually in the mix as top run scorers).