It was not easy against Kumble: Cook | india | Hindustan Times
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It was not easy against Kumble: Cook

The batsman, who became the 16th England player to score a century on debut, said it was a challenge to play against Kumble.

india Updated: Mar 04, 2006 19:40 IST

Alastair Cook, who became the 16th England player to score a century on debut, on Saturday said he was excited at achieving the feat though it was not easy playing Anil Kumble bowling into the rough.

The 21-year-old left hander, who anchored England to 297 for three for an overall lead of 367 in the first Test against India, said he was keen to complete his ton on Saturday itself and not be stranded in the nervous nineties.

"It's exciting and feels great. I enjoyed the moment. I would not want to be in the 90s overnight," said the rookie batsman who completed his ton just before close to remain unbeaten 104 at the end of the penultimate day's play.

"It was not always easy playing against Anil Kumble bowling into the rough. My job was to hang in there till the end and our aim was to score at over four an over in the last ten to 15 overs.

"Kevin Pietersen eased the pressure on me with his innings".

The South African-born Pietersen cracked 87 in only 110 balls besides putting on 124 runs for the third wicket with Cook.

Cook said the wicket had not afforded as much turn as was expected but there were signs of it doing so.

"Wicket has not spun as we thought it would. But the signs are there (that it will turn tomorrow). If you bowl in the rough there's turn," he said.

Cook admitted that the dropped catches by India, whose butter-fingered fielders let him off twice, helped his team but at the same time it was essential the players made them count.

"You need a but of luck but we needed to make them count too," said the youngster whose two-week stint last year to Mumbai with the Essex county team had helped him tackle the spinners on Indian wickets.

"We will definitely be pressing for a win tomorrow as you never know about a fifth day wicket," he added.