Balaji wants more

PTI | ByAgence France-Presse, Mohali
Mar 09, 2005 11:39 AM IST

Indian seamer Lakshmipathi Balaji said he was hungry for more after claiming a maiden five-wicket haul in the first Test against Pakistan.

Indian paceman Lakshmipathi Balaji said on Tuesday he was hungry for more after claiming a maiden five-wicket haul in the opening Test against Pakistan.

HT Image
HT Image

"I am very happy my hard work has paid off with the first five-wicket haul. I think I can do better," said Balaji, who finished with 5-76 to help his team dismiss Pakistan for 312 on the opening day of the match.

Balaji said tips from former Australian fast bowler Dennis Lillee helped him a lot in his comeback match after nearly a year out of Test cricket due to an injury.

"It is always challenging to stage a comeback after injury but I worked really hard. I sought help from Australian great Dennis Lillee who advised me to change the bowling action a little bit," said Balaji, 23.

"And it all paid off here."

Balaji removed Taufeeq Umer (44) in his first spell before accounting for all-rounder Abdul Razzaq in the second.

He then took three wickets with the new ball to better his previous best of 4-63, also against Pakistan at Rawalpindi last year.

He said his five-wicket performance against Pakistan was special.

"Yes, it's always challenging to play against Pakistan. If you do well against them, it's something very special," he said.

He said Pakistan's gutsy lower-order batting virtually ruined India's day after the hosts had seized the initiative in the first two sessions.

"Lower-order batsmen have been doing well these days, but we kept a tight line and knew the batsmen will make mistakes," he said.

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