'Not making demands for turning tracks'

Change in formats test the batsmen: Kumble
Last Updated 20 September 2016, 18:11 IST

There was a time when there were only a few international spinners who could boast of troubling a top Indian batsman. The last few years, though, have found them dancing to a spinning or a  moving ball. New coach Anil Kumble reasoned the struggles of the modern day batsmen to frequently changing cricket formats. 

The former India leg-spinner, however, assured the results would get better with India playing 13 Tests at home.

“It is quite challenging for the modern day cricketer to keep changing formats. Invariably when you are playing shorter formats, it is always in favour of the batsman. There is hardly anything for the bowler. When they come to play in a Test match irrespective of the conditions, we have seen modern cricketers have been good players of fast bowling when it comes to seam but later have struggled on seaming tracks because of what the modern batsman encounters,” Kumble told reporters on Monday.

“That goes with all teams but one good thing we have had is that we are coming off a Test series and getting into one. We have spent a lot of time focusing on how to respond to playing spinners. It will only improve and you will notice that as the home series goes by.”

The memories of India’s Test series at home against South Africa last year, meanwhile, refused to die down. The rank turners prepared resulted in the matches folding up within three days. The former India captain, however, insisted they were willing to play on any pitch. “We are not making any demands for the pitch. We will play on the pitch that is on offer and we will enter the field thinking that our spinners are the best,” he said. “I feel it will be a typical Kanpur wicket. There has been rain and we have played very less in this part of the country in the month of September. The pitch looks good and I feel the talk should be about the cricket played on the pitch rather than the pitch itself.

“The discussion with the players too has about adapting according to the pitch that is on offer. The interaction of the captain with the rest of the players is one of the best qualities of Virat Kohli.”

Kumble called New Zealand a “very potent all-round team.”
“I have watched their spinners Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi in the T20 World Cup. It is heartening to see spinners playing a major role in Indian teams and foreign teams as well. They have three different variations in the spin department which is something you don’t see in a foreign team.”

Milestone Test
Kumble was eager to commemorate the occasion of India’s 500th Test match with a win.
“I have been seeing this stadium for the past 28 years. We only hope we win this Test match. It is a great milestone to have been a part of the Indian team in the 90s and 2000s. The legacy of 500 Test matches starting from 1932 till today, have seen some great players. I certainly believe every Indian team that has gone on to the park in these 499 Test matches has certainly looked to raise the bar. This team is no different and that is exactly what we will look to do as well. This team certainly has the potential to make Indian cricket something special for the next 5-10 years. To be a part of 132 Test matches as a player, and now to be involved in the 500th Test match as coach, is something really special.”

(Published 20 September 2016, 18:07 IST)

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