Gillespie defends Ponting over bat controversy

Published: Wednesday, April 27, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Chandigarh:Australian pacer Jason Gillespie feels Indian fast bowlers have the potential to trouble the best of sides, but lamented that unfriendly pitches prepared for them are not helping their cause.

"The guys are young and talented. Here the injuries are more due to the unfriendly pitches provided to the seamers. With the kind of wickets here, Indian pacers have to push that extra hard, resulting in wear and tear ... The curators should keep this in mind and work in this regard," Gillespie here on a promotional visit," he told reporters last night.

Gillespie, who has staged remarkable comebacks after missing the action due to injuries, said the new bunch of Indian pacers were still growing in experience and confidence.

"Their bodies are also growing and adjusting. They will learn to keep fit and bowl accurate with age. They must work hard and over the years they will be fine," he said.

Gillespie termed as rubbish the controversy surrounding skipper Ricky Ponting's bat, saying the matter had been blown out of proportions.

"The backside of Ricky's bat has a graphite strip that holds it and there is nothing wrong in it. It doesn't give any extra power to his bat. The controversy is all rubbish," he said.

Asked about what has made the Aussies an invincible side, Gillespie attributed his team's success to practising hard and believing in themselves.

About Indian team's poor show in the recently concluded home series against Pakistan, he said "Pakistan played better cricket over a longer period."

He, however, had a word of praise for batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar and rated him a better player over Brian Lara.

Responding to a question if Indian cricketers were overdoing a bit by promoting different brands, he said, "In India, cricket has the status equal to any religion ... I believe if it affects your training and preparation then it becomes an issue."

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