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Dravid rues losing his wicket

More than missing a century, it is the timing of his dismissal which rankles Rahul Dravid who wanted to carry on batting, reports Atreyo Mukhopadhyay.

cricket Updated: Jan 17, 2008 00:37 IST
Atreyo Mukhopadhyay

It's not easy to be Rahul Dravid. Even after scoring 93, he is asked whether he regrets the way he got out.

On a day the former skipper celebrated his return to his favourite No. 3 slot with a knock that combined class with doggedness before being dismissed in the most uncharacteristic manner, he was peppered with questions on how disappointed he was rather than how satisfying the outing had been.

Call it cold professionalism or his unwillingness to speak from the heart, Dravid was not exactly forthcoming. "Yes, the shot was on," was all he uttered of the attempted heave between deep mid-wicket and long on off Andrew Symonds that ended in the palms of Ricky Ponting at extra cover.

The end of the day was just overs away and the team needed him to stay on. "I played a similar shot a little earlier and it had come off," Dravid said of the boundary against the same bowler.

"We were criticised for being negative in Melbourne and here we were trying to play positively. Basically, it's a fine line between the two.

“Sometimes, they come off and sometimes they don't. I'm disappointed because it came towards the end of the day, when the new ball was due. It looked silly, but that's how it goes."

Dravid was visibly happier talking about batting at No. 3, but again he was cautious to add that it was not about positions.

"It's nice to be back to a familiar position and it does help to come in with 50-odd on the board. Having said that, it's got a lot do with hard work, not just positions."

The batsman, though, was at his candid best, if the term can be used, when asked to explain the difference between batting at three and opening the innings. "I really can't say".

Elaborating, he said, "I have thought about it but haven't been able to get to the bottom of it. I have not done well as an opener, that's there for all to see. You just feel different batting at No. 3.

“It's just not the same opening. Even after batting there for years, it's tough to explain."