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‘Exceptional bowling’

Special Correspondent

Colombo: Anil Kumble, the Indian captain, spoke on Saturday to the media on what his side needed to do to rebound from the innings defeat in the first Test against Sri Lanka.

Excerpts

On where the first Test was won

They bowled exceptionally well. It was never going to be easy after they had 600 on the board. We did not bowl well. Avoiding the follow on was always going to be tough. The wicket was not really helping spin but once you bat that way in the first innings it was going to be tough. It was an exceptional bowling performance from Mendis and Murali.

On what needs remedial work

We need to work on all three departments of the game, not just one. We dropped a few catches, Mahela was dropped and so was Samaraweera. Zaheer got a wicket off a no-ball. We have to bowl well and also ensure we hold the chances that come our way.

On whether the batsmen need to modify technique

There is no need to look at a change in technique. No other line up is more technically equipped. They are players who have played for more than 15 years and have more than 100 Tests. You can’t get a more experienced line up than this. It is important for the bowlers to also put their hands up.

On his personal form

I take it (the criticism), we all tried hard, nobody goes there not to give 100 percent. It was not that I was hiding my best. Possibly the way we folded in the two innings was not right.

On the team for the second Test

It is early to talk about the team for the next game. We have come back in the past and it is the same team that has brought some wonderful results. I am confident we will come back.

On how India will approach the second Test

We need to re-group. When things don’t go our way people think there is no plan in place. It is the same process. Obviously we need to look at our strategy in handling Murali and Mendis. We have to be a little more positive.

On the pre-tour preparation

Any amount of planning will hold good. It is a question of going out there and performing. It is important to balance preparation. It does not mean we were under prepared; we were definitely prepared. Preparation is also an individual thing.

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