Monty Panesar says England upbeat despite Test series loss

Monty Panesar said he was ready to swap his wickets for England’s win Getty Images

Abu Dhabi: Jan 30, 2012

Left-arm spinner Monty Panesar expressed his disappointment on Monday over England s humiliating 72-run defeat against Pakistan in the second Test, saying he would swap his six wickets for his team s win.

England, playing their first Test series as world number one, went down to Pakistan s spin duo of Abdul Rehman (6-25) and Saeed Ajmal (3-22) after being set a tricky 146-run target at Abu Dhabi Stadium on Saturday.

Panesar set them on track for a series-levelling win by taking 6-62 in Pakistan s second knock.

Pakistan now have an unassailable 2-0 lead with the third and final Test starting from February 3 in Dubai. Pakistan won the first Test by ten wickets, also played in Dubai.

Panesar, who was playing his first Test since Cardiff in the 2009 Ashes, said he was ready to swap his wickets for England s win.

“I m still hurting from the loss. It would be nice to get some wickets but I would rather have a none-for and see England win. I want my performances to contribute to England winning and be part of a successful team,” said Panesar.

The 29-year-old said England s failure in the last innings put paid to their efforts.

“Pakistan played very well at a critical stage of the match. We played good cricket throughout the Test but it was just the last innings where they performed really well. We re hurting and we re determined to come back in the next Test.”

Panesar said the team remained confident despite the losses.

“The boys are still upbeat and looking forward to the third Test. They want to prove we can do well here and we re determined to put on a good show in the last Test,” said Panesar, who admitted playing in Asia was different.

“Playing in these conditions is different from English conditions and we all want to grow and learn and become better at coping,” said Panesar of the conditions which England will also face in Sri Lanka and India later this year.

“Playing in the subcontinent is exciting. We have Tests in Sri Lanka and India coming up so the opportunity to play two spinners is exciting for me and I enjoy playing under the leadership of (Andrew) Straussy and Andy (Flower).”

Panesar said he was not looking too far ahead in his career.

“I want to keep learning and keep growing. I want to experience more challenges to test my character and I think that will help me develop further as a player and as a person as well,” he added.

Panesar has so far taken 133 wickets in 40 Tests. (AFP)