England tour of India - Cricket: I never harboured 3-0 whitewash: Ganguly
Published: Sunday, December 16, 2001, 1:35 [IST]
Indians prefer a tame draw in second Test
'Captains not warned, it was informal chat'
Relaid pitch will make 3rd Test 'interesting'
7th occasion of draw chasing over 300 for win
Ahmedabad: After a day of dull game when his team batted excruciatingly slow to settle for draw in the second Test, a relieved Indian skipper Saurav Ganguly said he was happy his team still held a 1-0 lead in the three-matchseries.The man, who talked of a 3-0 whitewash after his team's 10-wicket win in Mohali, was now denying ever harbouring such hopes. "I never had a 3-0 series win in my mind. I was just taking one Test at a time. You cannot walk into a Test series thinking of a 3-0 win," he said."Let's not take credit away from the England team which played well on a good flat track," Ganguly said."Our spinners bowled well and in the end we did well to be still 1-0 up in the series. I hope we will do better to win the series in Bangalore."Ganguly was also willing to give the benefit of doubt to Deep Dasgupta, who has had a very poor match as wicket-keeper, saying he was a very bright prospect for India."He has a good character and very good temperament. Moreover, he is young and just had one bad match. I am sure he will improve soon. In fact, he is a better 'keeper than this and he sweated it out scoring 60 runs today. He is a very fine prospect for India for years to come," he said. England skipper Nasser Hussain was full of praise for his team for putting up an improved performance and earn a creditable draw after the drubbing in the first Test."One could see the improvement over the last five days. The hard work paid off. I would like to congratulate all the members. To bowl out the strong Indian lineup for 291 was an exceptional display by our bowlers," Hussain said."I was not at all annoyed with my boys after we lost at Mohali as our team is an inexperienced one. They tried to adapt to the conditions in Mohali and failed but they adapted well here and got back their confidence."In this Test, except for the one hour when Sachin Tendulkar was batting, we were in complete control," Hussain said."However, we still have to work out a way to get 20 wickets to win a Test match in India."Asked whether his batsmen had learnt to play Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh, Hussain said, "We did pretty well against them in this match but I don't want to be too excited because the next wicket (in Bangalore) may be a turning track and good bowlers like Kumble and Harbhajan have a lot of tricks up their sleeves".Hussain looked quite satisfied with the performance of his own spinners. "It was great to have him back," he said about Ashley Giles who had missed the first Test due to a foot injury. "To come back and bag five wickets was a great effort. "(James) Foster and (Richard) Dawson are playing just their second game and I was pleased by their effort," he said.PTI