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Cheteshwar Pujara acknowledges concerns over India’s fielding at slips

India dropped three catches in the Delhi Test versus Sri Lanka, which resulted in a draw, and Cheteshwar Pujara has said the team will have to improve

india vs sri lanka 2017 Updated: Dec 06, 2017 23:54 IST
Sidharth Gulati
Sidharth Gulati
New Delhi
India vs Sri Lanka,Cheteshwar Pujara,Indian cricket team
India were far from impressive with their fielding at slips in the Delhi Test.(AP)

Cheteshwar Pujara has admitted India’s slip catching is a cause of concern and the team management will decide which players will stand in the cordon before the Test series against South Africa, starting on January 5.

India dropped three catches in the Delhi Test versus Sri Lanka, which resulted in a draw. While two of them were off Angelo Mathews – who went on to score 111 in the first innings in reply to India’s 536/7 declared, makeshift opener Dilruwan Perera scored a steady 42 after he was also dropped at the slips. Had it been for those missed chances from Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma -- substitute Vijay Shankar dopped Mathews at mid-off -- the result could have been different.

“To be honest, we’ve not fielded well (in slips). We’re having a chat about it and will assign a few players who will be there throughout the series. We will also discuss that when we reach South Africa,” Pujara, who stood at first slip against the pacers, said.

READ | India vs Sri Lanka: We weren’t playing for a draw, says Dinesh Chandimal

Injury woes

The India No 3, however, pointed out that injuries had played a role in the slip cordon fielders being unsettled.

“There have been injuries. Openers have missed out, someone like Murali Vijay who used to field at first slip, he had injury and didn’t play for about six months. So, we had to replace Vijay,” he said. KL Rahul has also had injury problems.

“There have been occasions when batsmen have got injured and we had to replace him but at the same time yes, we haven’t taken enough catches. So, we are trying to figure out options and we will definitely get better. Overall Indian team has improved as a fielding unit, but slip fielding is something we are looking to improve.”

There have been questions raised about catching technique for the let-offs.

Pujara said: “Technically I don’t know what is going wrong. But we put in lot of hard work in our fielding.

“Day in and day out, all those players who were standing in the slips, they are taking about 50-100 catches. We’re trying to improve. Eventually the results will come.”

First Published: Dec 06, 2017 22:40 IST