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"an off day": India’s batting coach opens up on the hosts’ dismal performance in Indore




Batting coach Vikram Rathour on Wednesday claimed that the Indian team had a bad day at the office despite the excessive turn-on offer as playing spin being one of its strengths. India were all out for 109 on the opening day of the third Test, with Australia’s left-arm spinner Matt Kuhnmann taking 5 for 16 in his only second Test. On the same pitch, the visitors managed to score 156 for four at stumps and progressed to a crucial 47-run lead on day two. The square turning ball attracted much attention in the first hour of play, with critics criticizing the nature of the surface.

Rathour, however, said that playing Turner at home is the team’s strength.

“It’s a challenging wicket for sure. Turned more than we expected. Maybe the ball turned quicker in the morning because of the moisture. We could have definitely scored more runs but I don’t think anyone played badly. Or played in haste. Cricket. We just had an off day as a batting unit,” Rathour told the media.

Asked about the risk of playing on Turner, Rathour said he might be a target of criticism at times but remains a strength of the team.

“Of course you can get out as a batting unit at times but we like to play on turning tracks. That’s our strength, that’s where we are really good as a unit. To be honest it’s a wicket.”

“I don’t think the first two wickets were bad wickets. It can be drier than we expected and we saw that. It did a lot more than we expected on the first day of the Test match.”

“To be fair to the curators. They barely got time to prepare wickets. They had a Ranji season here and it was too late that the decision was taken to shift the game from Dharamshala. They didn’t get enough time,” former he said. India’s opening batsman.

Rathour felt that the wicket could get easier as the day progressed. For Australia, Usman Khawaja played a stormy inning of 60 runs in 147 balls.

“It felt (that wicket got easier). I won’t be able to comment on that. People playing in the middle can tell you better. It felt like it slowed down later in the day. It wasn’t as quick Has been roaming since morning. Asked if the batsmen didn’t deviate from their plan, Rathour replied in the negative.

“Not really. The plan was to rely on your defense and wait for the loose balls and score as many runs as you can. It was one of those days when everything you did was in the hands (of the fielders) Used to go. Basically we just had one. Day off,” he said.

Australia was guilty of playing uber-aggressive cricket in the Delhi Test. On Wednesday the likes of Rohit Sharma, Shreyas Iyer and Ravindra Jadeja fell while going for their strokes.

Cheteshwar Pujara tries to score with a ripper but pulls back sharply wide of off-stump.

“It was a misjudgment in length. He (Pujara) saw a ball that was outside off-stump and expected it to come straight but it turned away. It was a wrong decision that could have happened. On Rohit, he was like Bats, he likes.” Take the game forward and score runs. Most of the days it gets closed, today it didn’t,” said the batting coach.

‘Ever since WTC started, there is added pressure of winning home matches’

Rathore said that ever since the WTC began in 2019, teams feel the added pressure of winning at home because of the points system that decides qualification for the summit clash.

“It’s completely ICC’s call (if they want neutral curator). But yes since WTC started there is more pressure to win more home games. Teams want to win when they are playing at home.” India’s batsmen have often found wanting on Turner but Rathour disagrees.

“I don’t think so. These are challenging wickets. We want to play on turning tracks as a team. You need to bat really well to score runs. The batsmen have done well (in the series). was exceptionally good.” He was looking good even today in the last match. Rohit played a good innings, as well as Jadeja and Akshar.”

Australia taking the first innings is not a big issue

Australia have taken a decent 47-run lead but Rathour isn’t too worried considering the last wicket on this pitch.

“Taking the lead is not a big issue as they will need to bat at number four on this surface. Now the challenge is to keep them as low as possible. We have to bat well in the second innings,” Rathour said.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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