Dravid refuses to be complacent after victory

Published: Saturday, May 20, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Kingston, Jamaica:India may have drawn first blood in the first One-day match against the West Indies at Sabina Park but it got more than a warning that the rest of the four One-dayers would definitely be close and competitive.

A five-wicket win in the opening match on an overseas tour is generally highlighted as a major triumph but a tour with four more One-dayers and as many Tests would certainly also call for a little more introspection.

Rahul Dravid has been enjoying his captaincy and surely would love to see his form with the bat carry on till the World Cup campaign begins in the Caribbean. But for now he would guard against a return to form of the West Indian batting and their fielding, which would not spill chances that would make Sabina park blush with embarrassment.

After clinching a five-wicket win, Dravid said, ''We are very sure that the Windies are no push-overs and as a team we respect their talents. It was a close match and we would try and ensure that the mistakes that we committed will not be repeated.'' What should have been a walk towards the winning total turned into a mad scramble as Mohammed Kaif suddenly became blind to the gaps as six balls from Jerome Taylor gave only one run in that miserly over.

Kaif's return to form should be a cause for celebration but Kaif the batsmen would not want to think of the two catches that were floored.

Brian Lara, on the other side, was a disappointed captain. His team could have notched up 275 at least but the tailenders couldn't swing the bat around. Even 250 was a competitive total on the Sabina Park but regulation catches were dropped. Things would probably have tilted the West Indies way had not Lara dropped Kaif on six and then Taylor dropped a straightforward chance when the bat was on 35.

With Ramesh Powar out for at least two matches and S Sreesanth most probably for the remainder of the One-dayers, the Indians wouldn't get a chance to rotate their players according to the conditions and pitches. Already, the humidity and heat in the Caribbean at Sabina Park during the day is quite high and as the days slip past, the team would like to be in good shape for the Test matches.

Dravid gave credit to his bowlers when he said, ''It was the bowling of Harbhajan Singh and Ajit Agarkar that pulled it back for us.

Restricting them to 250 instead of 275 was the key.''

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