Dravid brought the best out of me: Kartik

Published: Monday, November 8, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
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New Delhi:Left-arm spinner Murali Kartik today said having his club mate and friend Rahul Dravid as captain brought the best out of him in the thrilling fourth cricket Test against Australia last week.

"Definitely it helped. I have played with Rahul (Dravid) in my younger days in league cricket in Chennai. So he knows me very well, and understands my mindset," said Kartik who was Man of the Match in Mumbai with a haul of seven for 76.

The 28-year old said there was no shadow cast on him by the presence of Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh.

"There is no such thing as shadow. Obviously when you have two world class bowlers, it is a bit of bad luck for the third bowler. There is no need to take it too hard," the Railways bowler said.

"I have never been in oblivion. It is just that I have always had to wait. Even now, I have to. And I don't think I ever bowled badly for India."

A player who has always been on the fringe, Kartik said there was no such a thing as ideal number of Tests for a spinner to prove himself and it was important that the team management was happy with his performance.

"It is a debatable and open thing. At the international level, you bowl the way the team wants you to. Sometimes you are the stock bowler, sometimes you attack.

"So it is important if the team management is happy with the way you bowl. As long as they know what I have done was in direct relation to the expectations, there is always a chance of comeback."

Kartik said the Man of the Match award at the Wankhede Stadium was something he had not expected, and although it came on a turning track, he would take it anyday.

"I expected the Man of the Match award in Jodhpur (in a One-dayer against the West Indies when he picked 3-36) when I ran through the top order. But then certain things happen at certain times.

"I did bag the award on a spinning pitch but then batsmen have won so many awards on 'pata' wickets.

"Considering that we had to defend a total of 107 against a team like Australia, and when Harbhajan Singh had failed to take a wicket in the first innings, I am all the more happy to get that award."

The Railways cricketer said the public notion about his personality was "media created".

"I say that because at times people have written about the beads I wear, which is very religious to me. We are what you (media) make.

"I have been aggressive and probably mellowed with age. That is the way I play, you can't be timid on the field.

"But off the field, I am a total contrast. I never had my collars up on the field, as people have written."

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