I didn~~t get a chance to prepare, says Shah

Published: Monday, March 20, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Mumbai:Owais Shah might have got tantalisingly close to score a century in his first Test, but the rookie batsman says he did not get a chance to prepare for his Test debut.

''Coach (Duncan Fletcher) said that I had a chance of playing and that's how it happened,'' Shah told reporters after guiding England to a respectable score with his well made 88 runs on the second day of the third Test today.

''I saw Alistair Cook get his first Test hundred but I didn't really see if I will get my chance in this series. It's a blessing in disguise to be picked when I am hitting the ball reasonably well,'' he said.

Maintaining that maiden Test century was not on his mind, Shah said, ''I did not get committed too early and just treated the ball on its merit.'' Speaking about his exchange with Sreesanth, Shah said that it was really light banter.

''He's been the 12th man and we used to speak then and I know him pretty well so it was just light banter and nothing really.'' On whether nerves troubled him, Shah, who was born in Karachi, said, ''The nerves go away once you get in. Also nerves happen a day before which I didn't have luckily. I just treated the ball on merit and if that comes across aggressive then fair enough,'' he added.

Speaking on facing Harbhajan Singh, Shah said the Indian offie was a world-class bowler ''but then theres a reason why I'm playing Test cricket and so is he''.

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