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Batsmen had to complement bowlers' effort: Dravid

By Our Special Correspondent

RAWALPINDI, APRIL 14. After his unbeaten hundred on the second day of the third Test here, Rahul Dravid said it was important for the Indian batsmen to complement the efforts of the bowlers on the first day.

"Our bowlers did really well for us yesterday, and it was important that we bat well to put pressure on the Pakistanis. We'll be looking to get another 150 runs to really put them under pressure,'' he said.

On the Pakistani bowling, he said, "I thought they bowled well in patches. There were some very quick spells. Shoaib (Akhtar) bowled really fast and produced two quality deliveries to get rid of (Sachin) Tendulkar and (V.V.S.) Laxman. But we showed character in playing him out. Danish Kaneria also bowled steadily, and kept it tight. He tired a bit towards the end but that was understandable.''

He was lavish in his praise for Parthiv Patel, who performed a creditable job as an opener. "It was a fantastic knock from him. We all know that he has the ability, but he showed great courage too. If all things go well, he'll be a superstar.''

Asked about the move to send the 19-year-old at the top of the order, he said, "That's really a question for Sourav (Ganguly) to answer (smiles). But I think the idea was that if Parthiv could see off the new ball, we wouldn't need to disturb the guys who had done well in the middle-order. We would not need to move them out of their comfort zones.''

The Indian vice-captain felt leg-spinner Anil Kumble might become a factor as the game progresses. "It still looks a good pitch. There are a few cracks which might open up under the sun of the fourth or fifth day. There will be something in it for the spinners then, and on any such pitch, the shadow of Anil Kumble looms over the batting side.''

Dravid was relieved at overcoming a loss of form in the series. "I felt I had let myself down in the first two Tests with poor shot selection, so I was keen to bat through the day. Had a bit of good fortune too, but you need a bit of that as well.''

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