2nd Test, Vizag: Anil Kumble backs Indian spinners despite under-par performance in Rajkot against England
Kumble defended the bowlers, stating that it was a good wicket to bat on and six tons from either side proved that.
New Delhi: It wasn't quite the usual performance from Indian spinners in Rajkot after they managed to pick up only 9 wickets (both innings counted) despite coach Anil Kumble and captain Virat Kohli deciding to field three main stream spinners – Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Amit Mishra – a combination which remained untested in the New Zealand series.
The coach begged to differ that England gained advantage with their spinners taking 13 wickets compared to nine by the Indian spinners.
"It's not that we lose anything if English spinners get more wickets than Indian spinners. We will select team as per our strategy. We will play according to the conditions of the pitch. We play to take 20 wickets and win the match. Once we know the conditions, we will put a plan together," concluded Kumble.
Kumble praised the Indian fast bowlers Umesh Yadav and Mohammed Shami for the manner in which they have bowled during the New Zealand series as well as the first Test despite not getting too many wickets.
"Fast bowlers did really well. Shami and Umesh bowled exceptionally well. They got the ball to reverse and trouble the English batsmen. Umesh and Shami not only bowled well at Rajkot but also against New Zealand, so did Bhuvi, all the fast bowlers are doing well."
India dropped as many as six catches in the first Test and that did not go unnoticed.
"I think if you look at only aspect, where we probably we let ourselves down is catching. We have done well in all three departments over the past three and half months that I have been with the team. Catching is one area that the team prides itself. We let ourselves down in that aspect," Kumble said.
Kumble also defended the bowlers, stating that it was a good wicket to bat on and six tons from either side proved that.
"If you look at the first innings, both teams batted nearly 160 overs. It was a challenge for bowlers to pick wickets. It was a good wicket to bat on. Save last day, those 60 overs, I don't read too much into batting. There were six Test centuries, two from our side and four from their side. It was a good Test match."
The legendary spinner did not blame Cheteshwar Pujara for not taking DRS for the contentious leg before decision that he got.
"If you look at that, probably if Pujara would had taken DRS, we would have ended at probably 170 for 1. I don't think you can blame anyone for that. I think both batsmen felt it was not necessary."
(With PTI inputs)