Sammy: Key is bowling straight
Delhi, India, CMC/IANS – West Indies captain Darren Sammy said Monday that bowling tight on a slow and low Feroz Shah Kotla track was the key for their success against the Indian batsmen.
India were bowled out for 209 runs in the first innings of the first Test and at stumps in response to West Indies’ 304 all out earlier.
At the close, West Indies were struggling on 21 for two – a lead of 116 – after a riveting second day’s play when 17 wickets fell.
“It was not a perfect day but I am happy with the performance of the bowlers. When we played in Bangladesh we encountered similar conditions,” Sammy explained.
“We were quite aware of the possibilities of tracks here being low and slow. So we decided to bowl straight, wicket-to-wicket and we got results.” said Sammy,
“The pitch is low and slow. But (Shivnarine) Chanderpaul showed us that if we occupy the crease we can score runs on this track,” added Sammy, who was the highest wicket-taker with three for 35.
He revealed that it was a deliberate ploy by him to bring back fast bowler Fidel Edwards into the attack when batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar walked in.
Edwards, who bowled with pace, trapped Tendulkar leg-before to disappoint the crowd which had turned up at the Kotla in anticipation of the legend’s 100th international century.
“Since coming back, Fidel has been bowling well. He is our strike bowler and when the greatest batsman in the world walks-in why not give your best bowler a chance to go at him. That was the plan and we stuck to it and Fidel was rewarded for his hard work,” he said.
Edwards bowled without luck, however, as opener Gautam Gambhir (41) was dropped off his bowling when 17 and partner Virender Sehwag (55) was bowled off a no-ball.
He was supported by pace partner Ravi Rampaul who finished with two for 44 and Devendra Bishoo who claimed two for 55.
Despite the Caribbean side’s success, the match was left hanging in the balance after rookie openers Kieran Powell (0) and Kraigg Brathwaite (2) fell before the close.
However, Sammy remained confident his bowlers could take 20 Indian wickets in the match.
“Over the last year we have bowled out teams. Even during the last series in the West Indies, we bowled out India on more than four occasions,” Sammy pointed out.
“So we believe in our ability and have to go about putting the ball in the right areas. At the end of the day, it is a cricket match and even if you are playing against Sachin you have to put the ball in the right areas.
He added: “India had a good start. But we kept our cool and pitched the ball in the right areas.”