Mistake not to play Monty, admits Andy Flower

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Published: Wednesday, November 21, 2012, 16:20 [IST]
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Flower takes heat off skipper Cook

Mumbai, Nov 21: England coach Andy Flower has admitted that he should be blamed for his team's 9-wicket loss to India in the first Test against India as the team committed an error by not including spinner Monty Panesar in the playing XI.

"With hindsight, yes, it was a mistake not to play Monty in Ahmedabad, ‘Blame me,' said Flower after reaching Mumbai for the second Test, starting on Nov 23.

"I didn't expect that pitch to turn as early as it did. I certainly misjudged it," Flower told Mail Online on Wednesday.

The team management however will have a look at the pitch and decide whether they need to include Panesar in the playing XI for the Mumbai Test, while it looks like Panesar will be considered as Steven Finn has been ruled out of the Test following a thigh injury.

Moreover, when Panesar was missing from the playing XI, there were reports on the slow left-armer's poor behaviour especially during the tour of Sri Lanka earlier this year.

When Flower was questioned about the same, the England coach dismissed reports on Panesar and said he had nmo issues with the left-arm bowler.

"I've got no issues with Monty Panesar," said Flower.

"He's been working extremely well out here and he's in good form. He's ready to play if we want him to. He was OK in Sri Lanka.'

However, Flower also said that the team is working on how to tackle Indian spinners as skipper Alastair Cook and Matt Prior were the only two batsmen who played Pragyan Ojha with ease.

"We'll be judged at the end of it, no doubt, and that is the right time to make those final judgements. Let's judge our batsmen at the end of this tour, not after one Test match," he said.

"We have failed in a number of first innings and if you do that in the sub-continent you pay the price. That's the area where we have failed and I don't think we should over-complicate it. We have to overturn what seems predictable at the moment," Flower added.


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