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Think positive, play freely: Kumble to teammates

cricket Updated: Jan 01, 2008 10:20 IST
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Skipper Anil Kumble once again stressed the need for his batsmen to break the shackles and play freely as India geared up to avenge the Melbourne humiliation by the Australians in the second cricket Test at the SCG in Sydney on Wednesday.

"It's very important to get partnerships. When we had that 60-70 run stand (between Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly) it was fine. When we have a partnership, it's important to go on and make a big score," said Kumble looking ahead at the second Test against Ricky Ponting's men after losing the four-match series opener by 337 runs.

Kumble once again called on his batsmen to lift their attitude. He urged them to relax and bat their natural way.

"I thought our batters were very uptight in Melbourne. They needed to play their natural game," he said.

Speculation is rife that India could be investing in Virender Sehwag in this game but Kumble chose to sidestep the matter.

"He is an attacking option. Before he lost form and was made to sit out, he was a very important member of the side. He does bring in that carefree attitude into the team," he said.

Kumble said Sehwag has looked in touch in the nets but stopped short of revealing anything about the final composition for the match tomorrow.

"From whatever we have seen in nets, he looks good. His form is not a concern because he is hitting the ball well," Kumble said. The Indian captain refuted suggestions that after the thrashing they got in the Melbourne Test, the visitors needed to spend more time in the nets to be back in form.

Instead he advocated a switch off from the game for his embattled team. "For some people it is said that if you are seen on the field, you are better prepared. For some, you feel you need a break and get away from it. To think about what went wrong," he explained.

"It was important for us to switch off and remember all the positive things we have done in the past. One extra hit in the nets won't make you a better player." "It's the same. If the mind is thinking positive, then the running between the wickets becomes better," he said.