Hope we can fightback and play better cricket: Rahul Dravid

Rahul Dravid said he was a pro-DRS guy six months ago AFP

Perth: Jan 11, 2012

The team morale hit by back-to-back defeats, senior Indian batsman Rahul Dravid is anxious that the ongoing tour of Australia doesn’t turn out to be a repeat of England last year when his team lost all the four Tests and also drew a blank in the one-day series.

“It’s important we don’t go down the same route. Hope we can fight back and play better cricket. We had our moment in Melbourne…we need to take heart from it. It’s important for us we don’t go down the route of England,” Dravid told mediapersons at Perth on Wednesday afternoon.

With talks in media centering about his bowled dismissals; the growing pause on Sachin Tendulkar’s 100th international century and calls for VVS Laxman’s head by past cricketers, India’s revival at the moment, being 0-2 down, doesn’t seem too easy a task.

“I am definitely working on a few things. When you get out bowled three times you do think about it. I’ve worked on a few things but it isn’t anything major. There isn’t anything drastic that I have changed over the last year when I was very successful. I have seen the videos (of England) and I can’t see anything different. I hope it’s just a coincidence.

“I don’t think the talk (of Laxman’s removal) has affected him much. I haven’t read and Lax is not bothered either. It’s part and parcel of our job. You have got to accept it while you continue to play. That’s the way it goes.

He is a pretty relaxed character and I’m sure he would come good in one of these Tests,” he said.

“As for Sachin’s 100th century, it’s not spoken about much. He’s been pretty relaxed about it. He’s been batting so well. He got a 90 in Mumbai and 70 and 80 in the last two games. He is batting well enough to complete it. It’s great if he can do it here. But he wouldn’t be worried as he has been batting beautifully over the last two or three games,” he added.

The Indian batting hasn’t been allowed to get into any sort of rhythm by the Australian bowlers in this series which has led to the debate whether attacking them is the only way to neutralise them.

“Each to his own and each has to plan his own strategy.

One (plan) doesn’t fit everyone. You need to know what your game plan is, what you have done throughout your career and what’s got you success. You need to know what didn’t get you success. You need to do what you know best. You can’t say there is one way. I can’t bat like Viru (Virender Sehwag) and he can’t bat like me. Each one is different.”

“Each one of us have our own game plan and it’s important how we execute it. It’s difficult to do and maintain it when there’s so much pressure. I think the key for us is to keep Australians in the field for as long as possible.”

The situation can be daunting for young Indian batsmen but Dravid said there hasn’t been a formal kind of discussion with them.

“There’s no formal talk as such. In the course of spending time in dressing room, in team dinner or go-karting for that matter, conversations can happen which are useful.

It’s not like a powerpoint presentation, that’s not how teams work,” he said.

“We speak to each other, juniors to seniors and seniors to juniors, and it’s always a healthy conversation.”

Australians have kept harping they have been able to keep Indian batting quiet by bowling a lot of dot balls and stringing together maiden overs. Dravid tended to go along with this opinion.

“They have bowled well. One must give credit where it’s due. If you bowl in good areas with good pace and consistently you are going to do well against anyone and not just India. If you can bowl consistently in good areas with pace, you would trouble any line-up. It’s how we counter which is important.

“I hope they bowl some half volleys,” Dravid said in jest.

The greenness of the Perth pitch and all the talk about pace and bounce inherent in the WACA pitch is drawing a huge response in the media. Dravid said such a contest is exciting for him as a batsman and that it would be a similar test for the home team.

“We have to see how it goes (the pitch). It’s too early to make a judgment. When I saw it yesterday, it had been watered and it was damp underneath. It must have now dried up and got harder today.

“It’s a test for both of us. It’s same for them as well, same for both teams. It’s exciting to have such a challenge for if you do well here, you get judged on it. There’s a great amount of thrill and satisfaction if you do it abroad in the same way if Australia was to do well on a rank turner of India.”

It is learnt that MCC cricket committee, of which Dravid is a member, has decided on a uniformity of acceptance of DRS technology. Dravid, even though he is a member, wasn’t quite updated on it.

“I was a pro-DRS guy six months ago. In the last six months, my own stance is quite weak sometimes. DRS is a work in progress. You have to keep your eyes on it if it keeps improving and reviews keep happening.”

As for being within the touching distance of 40 years in age, Dravid jocularly said that any number scares one after 30. “But till it’s 40, I am okay.” (PTI)