'Satisfying to score a century'

Marcus North, coming into this Test with a princely 46 runs from his last six innings, admitted he was under pressure to perform.

“That you have to ask the national selectors,” said the left-hander when asked if he thought he had sealed a place in the Ashes squad.“I knew I was under pressure going into this game. Not just because of the outside influences but also the standards I have set for myself. I have got a few disappointing Test matches but I was fortunate to go out and bat on a good surface. I got a start yesterday and made the most of it today.
“It was a satisfying 100 because I was under pressure and also it was the last Test before the Ashes. It was nice to get a score and contribute,” said North, after making his Test highest score of 128 here on Sunday.

North is a late entrant to international cricket, having made his debut when he was 30 against South Africa last year. “Before making my Test debut, I didn’t think I would play for Australia. I enjoy every Test and make the most out of it. It can be a bit difficult at times, this is my 19th Test match, and I try to enjoy every game. My aim is to contribute to Australia in every Test match,” he thought.

Having visited Bangalore as part of his State side, North said he was richer by the experience. “I made a few centuries for Western Australia and played a game for Australia ‘A’ here, but Test match is a different scenario.

“India is a great place to bat but can be a little difficult at times. The outfields are quick and the wickets are good on the first couple of days,” he pointed out.The Victorian batsman showered fulsome praise on Sachin Tendulkar, who completed 14,000 Test runs during his unbeaten 44.

“He is a pretty amazing player. To be on the same ground where he got up his 14,000th run, it is pretty special and it is a great credit to his career.

“I just talked about the pressure of Test matches but this guy has got the pressure of an entire nation on him. He is someone we will be trying to remove pretty quickly tomorrow,” remarked North.

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