Dhoni praises skilful Praveen

India bowler Praveen Kumar bagged six wickets in his debut Test against West Indies AFP

Kingston: Jun 23, 2011

Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was all praise for seamer Praveen Kumar who had a match haul of six wickets in his debut Test match.

“Praveen is a very skillful bowler. Whenever the conditions are helpful, he tries to make full use of it.

That’s the main reason that he got six wickets in this game,” the satisfied skipper lauded the effort of the Uttar Pradesh medium pacer.

The skipper didn’t seemed to be too surprised with Harbhajan Singh’s pyrotechnics with the bat as the lower-order has been frequently contributing with the bat.

“I always believe our lower order can perform with the bat and our part-timers can take wickets. When we bat, we believe that all our XI players batsmen and vice-versa when we bowl. I happy that Bhajji batted well and so did Raina,” he quipped.

Overall, the skipper was satisfied with the effort of his boys although he feels that there is room for improvement as far as the spinners are concerned.

“The spinners bowled decently. They can still improve the line of attack. They can get slightly better. Of course, it was a bit difficult to bowl with the breeze.”

For Rahul Dravid, who was incidentally also the man-of-the-match when India won a Test match at the Sabina Park back in 2006, the pitch on which he batted five years back was a trickier one compared to this.

“The pitch in 2006 was a lot more difficult to bat on.

This was a great wicket. The one in 2006 saw lots of shooters and lifters. Kudos to the groundsmen,” the veteran batsmen said.

Dravid admitted that it was a big challenge to quickly get acclimatised to the conditions here as they were supposed to play the Test match within a couple of days of arrival.

“It’s a challenge to play Test cricket without warm-up games. But nowadays Test tours are scheduled so tightly that you don’t even have side games. But it was indeed challenging but I am happy having scored runs in both innings. I was a bit disappointed with my shot in the first innings though.”

When the 38-year-old was asked about how much he has been enjoying, he answered, “Enjoying it as much as ever. Days like this, that’s what you play for.”

West Indies captain Darren Sammy was a dejected with the effort put in by his batsmen as has been the case throughout the series.

“Our lower-order today showed again that if we bat properly, we can come out victorious. The bowling has been delivering, we need to bat well as a unit. We as batsmen when we got out there we have to focus and be mentally tougher, play according to the situation and think of the team,” Sammy said.

The skipper admitted that they bowled badly to Harbhajan Singh after getting the visitors on the mat at 86 for six.

“We didn’t bowl as well as we should have to Harbhajan, and he came out playing positively. We reacted too late. That said, we restricted them to 246 on a good track. Can’t fault the effort of the bowlers,” he concluded.