Anil Kumble downplays pitch factor, says India’s bowlers can take 20 wickets
India cricket team coach Anil Kumble has downplayed the role of the nature of the pitch, stating that Virat Kohli’s team has bowlers to take 20 wicketscricket Updated: Feb 07, 2017 18:48 IST
Questions on the playing surface in Uppal was bound to come up as India are facing Bangladesh, a team that has a decent spin attack and relies heavily on it.
There have been talks that India may not give a rank turner to Bangladesh whose three-pronged spin attack can trouble Indian batsmen more than the English attack did.
The likes of Shakib Al Hasan, Mehedi Hasan, Taijul Islam and Mosaddek Hossain make up a strong spin attack for the visitors.
However, coach Anil Kumble downplayed the importance of the nature of the pitch, saying his team has bowlers who can pick 20 wickets.
“It doesn’t really matter what kind of pitch we play or whether we go in with spinners or pacers. We have bowlers who can pick 20 wickets,” said Kumble ahead of practice on Tuesday.
The coach was seen inspecting the surface with captain Virat Kohli as R Ashwin rolled his arm over on the pitch next to the playing surface. It perhaps gives some hint of what is to come.
Kumble lavished praise on his spin attack, especially Ravindra Jadeja.
“I was impressed with Jadeja, the way he bowled in Chennai. He varied his pace on a surface that was good for batting”
Kumble said the emergence of Hardik Pandya has been a boon and justified his inclusion in the squad even though he is not playing regularly.
“He has the ability to bowl 140 kph and he can contribute with the bat. Although he hasn’t been tested in the longer format, he will be important when we tour abroad.” India are due to tour South Africa, England and Australia from 2017/18.
The coach also pointed out that it is important to carry on the momentum even though it is just a one-off Test. “We don’t want to think about the opposition or their strengths. All we want to do is to take it session by session, like we do for matches during a series.”
India will persist with the opening combination of KL Rahul and Murali Vijay. “They’ve done well. Abhinav Mukund will be a back-up and he’s been rewarded for some good performances.”
First Published: Feb 07, 2017 17:37 IST