Poor shot-selection cost India dear: Wright

Published: Monday, May 6, 2002, 17:34 [IST]
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Bridgetown (Barbados): India coach John Wright conceded on Sunday that poor shot- selection was one of the reasons for his team's defeat in the third Test against the West Indies at the Kensington Oval.

The hosts posted an emphatic 10-wicket victory over the tourists on the fourth afternoon to square the five-match series 1-1. The fourth Test starts in Antigua on May 10. "The biggest issue we have on the tour is shot-selection. That's something you've got to practice. Self-discipline is required in shots you play in the middle," Wright said. "It's really disappointing when you see batsmen repeating mistakes, but the first day was our nemesis." India was shot out for its sixth-lowest total of 102 on the opening day, which eventually paved the way for its seventh defeat in eight Tests at this venue since 1952-53. Skipper Saurav Ganguly was the lone middle-order batsman to defy the West Indies pace attack, scoring 48 in the first innings and an unbeaten 60 in the second. Sachin Tendulkar contributed eight in the match, Rahul Dravid 31 and Venkatsai Laxman 44 as the famed Indian middle order twice collapsed. "We also need runs from our tail. To be honest, you expect your frontline batsmen to put them in a position from where it's easier for them to score," Wright said. "We shouldn't blame anything. No matter what conditions we bat under, we've to score 450 in the second innings if we make 100-150 in the first. We didn't do that." India was all out for 296 in the second innings after conceding a lead of 292, setting a five-run target for the West Indies. Ganguly echoed Wright's sentiments, saying the lower-order batsmen should also contribute. "You struggle when you get a few good deliveries on the first morning of the match and lose a couple of wickets. We didn't get enough contribution from the lower order, which is a problem area." Ganguly denied India was a one-batsman team and always struggled whenever Tendulkar failed to score. "It's not a one-man team," he said. "There're other guys around. Tendulkar has done great things for India. He can have a bad game. He's human after all, but I'm sure there's another hundred coming from him in Antigua." The Indian captain said his team would have to bat well in the remaining two Tests to sustain hopes of winning a rare away series. "If we bat well we can win the series. Overall, the West Indies played better than us here and there's no harm in accepting defeat when the other team plays better," he said. West Indies captain Carl Hooper said his team had outplayed the tourists in every department of the game and hoped it would do the same in the next Test. "It was one of the Test matches where we bowled and batted well as a unit," he said. "The bowlers did a great job early by bowling them out for 102 and then the batsmen scored a lot of runs." "The good thing was the win was convincing. We outplayed them in every department of the game. "We've had victories here before. I don't think we should get carried away with this one. We've got two Tests to go. But we've got to be careful, guard against complacency and do well." West Indies coach Roger Harper praised his bowlers, particularly Mervyn Dillon, for scripting the victory. Dillon was named man-of-the-match for grabbing four wickets in each innings. "All credit to the bowlers, especially Dillon on the first morning of the match. He really tore the heart out of the Indian batting and turned the game for the West Indies. "After the second Test, we knew we were capable of beating the Indians. We bowled them out in both the innings. Credit must go to the bowlers, who put the ball at the right place and got wickets for us."

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