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‘I knew Gilly wouldn’t expect spin upfront’

Hyderabad's stand-in captain Adam Gilchrist does his best to hide his anger at his team's 11th loss in 13 matches, reports G Krishnan.

cricket Updated: May 26, 2008 01:48 IST
G Krishnan

Hyderabad's stand-in captain Adam Gilchrist did his best to hide his anger at his team's 11th loss in 13 matches. "We have tried almost everything, changed everything including swapping the dressing rooms," Gilchrist said after the five-wicket loss to Bangalore. "I have been sleeping upside down. I will bat right-handed next game," he joked.

On a serious note, Gilchrist said: "We don't have the skills. This is not what we had set out to do. I don't know what else to say.

"We scored two runs in the last 12 balls whereas Akhil came out and smashed 27 runs off 7 balls (for Bangalore). We suffered from skill deficiency. We now know the level at which IPL is being played. We have to learn the skills and practice them though I don't know the rules about players being bought and sold in the second year or the transfers."

Gilchrist maintained his cool throughout, even waiting patiently for a localite to finish talking on the cell phone in the middle of the press conference before proceeding to take the next question.

Gilchrist and his opening partner Herschelle Gibbs laid the foundation, sharing 101, which was not capitalised by the rest. He was not actually surprised with the way Bangalore opened their attack with leg-spinner Anil Kumble.

"I was not wholly surprised. It was good captaincy by Rahul (Dravid). We knew he was going to try something different and used Anil to take the pace off the ball. Kumble and Dale Steyn bowled particularly well at the start. It was crucial for us to get through these two world class bowlers."

The victorious captain, Dravid, was relieved not to finish at the bottom of the table. Opening with Kumble was part of the strategy. "I knew Gilchrist would not have expected to play spin straightaway.

“We had the idea in the last match against Chennai but we did not have a big total to defend. Just that it clicked today."

Dravid had a pat for man of the match, medium-pacer Vinay Kumar (3-27 in four overs). "He is playing good cricket, getting the opportunities and learning."