Kapil Dev (above) praised Pankaj’s Singh performance in the Test match played at The Ageas Bowl © Getty Images (File Photo)
By Chetan Narula
Manchester: Aug 3, 2014
Former India captain Kapil Dev has criticised the team for dropping catches that allowed England’s batsmen to take control of the third Test in Southampton.
As a result, India lost by 266 runs, squandering their lead in the five-match series that now stands at 1-1. The visitors had won the second Test at Lord’s by 95 runs after the first Test in Nottingham was drawn. The fourth Test begins in Manchester on Thursday, August 7.
The likes of Alastair Cook and Ian Bell, struggling for form, scored runs finally as did debutant Jos Buttler and in-form Gary Ballance, all of them taking advantages of chances missed by India in both the English innings.
Perhaps the key moment was when Cook, on 15 not out, was dropped by Ravindra Jadeja in the first innings, the bowler missing out was debutant Pankaj Singh, who then went for not so impressive figures of 0-179 in the Test.
“Poor chap [referring to Pankaj]. He was bowling first-time in international cricket. On a flat wicket like this, he bowls well enough to take the edge and you drop it.
Then he doesn’t get a wicket in the whole match. He bowled well in the Test, but poor chap!” Kapil remarked about the luck-less debutant.
“There is no easy fix for this,” he added, referring to the catches-dropped in the slip-cordon that is almost becoming a trend with the Indian team.
“You just have to keep practising, because you cannot take 20 wickets if you keep dropping catches. It becomes very difficult for bowlers. We were good in this department at Lord’s. But in Southampton there were quite a few drops and on pitches like these, for our bowlers there’s not much. So you cannot let these chances go away.”
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