'Win proved 5-bowler theory was right' | india | Hindustan Times
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'Win proved 5-bowler theory was right'

Dravid said the nine-wicket victory justified India's decision to play five bowlers in the second Test against England.

india Updated: Mar 13, 2006 17:39 IST

Captain Rahul Dravid on Monday said the nine-wicket victory justified India's decision to play five bowlers in the second Test against England.

"For winning Test matches you need to take 20 wickets and England have shown that in Ashes, where they played with five bowlers and won. We need to be flexible on that," Dravid said.

"It was a big performance and despite losing on couple of days we managed to win. The team has responded beautifuly," he said after India took a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

Dravid said Patel was of great help to the team. "In that speed if you can reverse swing the ball it's of great help for the team. We have faced it a lot and its nice to have someone now who can give it back."

With young players being blooded in, Dravid referred to the selection dilemma as "happy problems".

"These are happy problems, young kids are coming in and Greg (Chappell) is working hard with them. And with senior players like Anil performing so well we have a good combination of youth and experience," he said.

England skipper Andrew Flintoff said losing the top order cheaply in the second innings cost them dear.

"Probably more than 300 in the second innings would have helped. But last night we lost five wickets and it was always going to be tough today," Flintoff said.

Dravid said the margin of victory did not reflect how close the game had been.

"England were very competitive. We expected them to come hard on us. It wasn't easy (to get to this win). Nine wicket-win certainly does not reflect how close it was."

Dravid said even though the first two days were affected by weather, he knew India would have a chance provided they batted and bowled well.

"After losing a couple of days to rain, it appeared draw was a likely result. But we knew if we can get slightly ahead and have the spinners bowl at them on the fourth and fifth days, we were in with a chance."

On his knock of 95 in the first innings, he said, "it was one of my most satisfying knocks considering I was up against one of the best seam bowlings I have faced at home ever. Although I missed a century by five runs, it did not matter as we ended up on the winning side."

Asked about Munaf Patel, he said the 22-year old from Gujarat "has been fantastic".

"He swung the ball, got good reverse swing as well. He had good pace, was accurate and posed quite a few problems to the batsmen."

Dravid, who would be playing in his 100th Test in Mumbai, said, "it is a very special feeling to join a select list of players some of whom I have idolised and have had the privilege to play with."