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We will be up for the challenge, says Vijay

DH News Service, Cape Town, Jan 3 2018, 23:17 IST
Murali Vijay

Murali Vijay

Two days before the start of the first Test against South Africa, India received some good news with Shikhar Dhawan going full tilt with the bat at their three-hour practice session here at the Newlands on Wednesday.

The Southpaw is largely expected to partner Murali Vijay at the top of the order and they will have a crucial task of protecting the middle-order from getting exposed to the new ball early in the innings. While Vijay is aware of the challenge, the right-hander said he would rather prefer not to think too much and put too much pressure on himself.

"I don't want to think too much about what will happen in a couple of days' time," he noted. "I just want to prepare myself and be in a confident state of mind which I am at the moment and which is good for me and the team. Hopefully, we can get going on this wicket, whatever is thrown at us and put up our A game," he remarked.

India have largely played at home in the last couple of years and conditions have been vastly different from what the Indian batsmen would encounter here. The fast and bouncy tracks would entail a batsman to be patient and leave a lot more than they can have a go at. When asked about the challenge of changing the mindset, Vijay spoke of not having one fixed idea.

"You cannot have a set pattern. You cannot go into a Test match that you are going to leave so many balls. You also have to be in a frame of mind where you also have to score runs. If they bowl in good areas then you have to try to counter and come out stronger. These are the things I think which will be critical for us to move forward."

India cancelled their two-day practice match and have been preparing by replicating the conditions here and Vijay felt happy with what they have got during practice.

"We got some pretty good net sessions," he said. "We got some pretty good wickets everywhere. So we are used to it. (But) it is more of mind games than physical touch. You have to be mentally prepared to match conditions because in the match it will be entirely different from whatever you replicate outside. We will be up for it."

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