‘Hundred against Australia is special’

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PUMPED UP: Gautam Gambhir reacts after reaching his hundred.
PUMPED UP: Gautam Gambhir reacts after reaching his hundred.

Special Correspondent

It is a challenge for us to get better, says Aussie coach Nielsen

Injury to Ganguly’s elbow not serious

Indians bowled consistently better than Australians: Nielsen

Mohali: Gautam Gambhir said the approach of the Indian cricketers in the on-going series against Australia had been aggressive. He added the team believed in itself.

Gambhir was pleased with his second Test hundred. “I was happy with the way I batted today. I was not that fluent yesterday. A hundred against Australia is special.”

The left-hander dwelt on the bonding with his Delhi and India team-mate Virender Sehwag and said he could share things on and off the field with his senior partner.

“This really helps when you open the batting. He’s a positive player and a positive influence. He’s always willing to help you out.”

Praise for bowlers

He praised the Indian bowlers for creating a winning situation for the side. “Harbhajan, Amit and Ishant have bowled really well on this wicket.”

Gambhir expressed the confidence that India would be able to close out the Test on Tuesday.

The injury to Sourav Ganguly’s elbow, he said, was not serious. Ganguly suffered a sprain while batting here on Monday.

Australian coach Tim Nielson acknowledged that the Indian bowlers had bowled consistently better than the Australians in the Test. “They have been good all through. We have only been good in patches. Ishant bowled really well today.”

On the question of Andrew Symonds being selected as a replacement for injured opener Phil Jacques in the squad, he said, “It is up to the selectors.”

He conceded that the Aussies had not been able to carry out their plans in the Test.

“We did well as a group in the first Test but have come up short here. It’s not about Plan ‘A’ or Plan ‘B.’ It’s about the execution.”

Powerful strokeplay

Nielson said out-of-form opener Matthew Hayden had put pressure on the Indian bowlers with some powerful strokeplay but lamented that he could not last long.

The Aussie coach expressed the hope that his team could still fight and possibly save the Test. On the situation the team found itself in the context of the Test and the series, he said, “It is a challenge for us to get better.”

On Greg Chappell’s influence on the team, he said, “It is easy to point fingers, it’s difficult to appreciate. He’s been a great help to the side with his knowledge.”

Chappell, who guided the youngsters in the side here, will be returning home after the second Test.

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