Unmukt Chand  remained unbeaten on 79 © Getty Images
Unmukt Chand remained unbeaten on 79 © IANS (File Photo)

Oct 3, 2014

India A comprehensively defeated the touring West Indians by nine wickets in the first practice match at Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai. India A manager Lalchand Rajput and the impressive Unmukt Chand addressed the media at the end of the match.

“All the bowlers bowled well. Dhawal [Kulkarni] really bowled well in Australia as well, and he’s kept up the good work. [Jasprit] Bumrah is a promising bowler. Getting a national team all out early really gives a lot of confidence to the bowlers and the team as well,” said Rajput.

Speaking of the difference on Karn Sharma and Amit Mishra, Rajput said, “They are two different types of bowlers. It is very important for both of them to perform at the level. Amit has been doing very well, and Karn did exceptionally well in the One-Day series in Australia (India A’s tour to Australia). He was even picked for the England tour. It’s a good challenge for both of them to play together and perform.”

“Our strength is always our batting. We have a lot of promising batsmen, one of whom is Unmukt Chand. I always tell him he should try and remain not out and win games, and today he did exactly what the team required,” he added.

Asked whether West Indies’ abject surrender to spin was indicative of their likely plight in the series against India, Rajput remained stoic in his response. “Four of their players aren’t there at the moment, so the when they play the international matches it will be totally different.” However, he went on to say, “This was a good opportunity for them to have practice on a spinning track. Their players have also played in IPL, so I’m sure they will adapt better in the coming matches.”

Chand, who scored an invaluable unbeaten 79, was then asked about whether he had been working on his technique outside the off stump. “I used to get out playing back-foot punches. Even against West Indies A last year, I got out in that fashion. So I was careful of leaving the ball outside the off stump. The first spell is always important because the West Indian bowlers have pace and bounce, so one needs to see off the early spell. Once you get set you can play your shots. The mind-set is very important and I’ve worked on that. It’s important to leave the moving ball outside the off-stump.”

Chand concluded by saying, “Playing for India A, you always want to beat an international side, so we had that added inspiration. All of us are trying to do our best, so that also makes a difference. The way we bowled was exceptional. Dhawal and Bumrah were on the money right from the start. Once we got the momentum, the spinners came on and we finished the task really well. It was a great team effort.”

Complete coverage of West Indies tour of India 2014