No help for bowlers in post-lunch session was problem: Pandya
By Chetan Narula
London, Aug 12 (PTI) The lack of assistance for bowlers during the post-lunch session on the third day was a major reason for England's complete control over India in the second Test, feels all-rounder Hardik Pandya.
England are now 250 runs ahead after finishing the third day at 357 for 6 after being reduced to 131 for 5 at one stage.
It was a 189-run sixth wicket stand between Chris Woakes (120 batting) and Jonny Bairstow (93) that has virtually killed the contest. India will now need a miracle to make a comeback.
"Nothing happened (after lunch). That was the problem. As a bowling unit, we tried but all of a sudden the ball stopped swinging and they – Woakes and (Jonny) Bairstow – took the game away," Pandya reasoned after the end of third day's play.
"It happens – I've seen in Tests. You get four or five wickets quickly and then you get one partnership. Even with our batting line-up, it has happened many times. It's just a part of the game," Pandya said.
"Today the conditions were different. When we bowled today, there was proper sunlight. The wicket was the ideal one, which we would have expected on the first day. But because of the conditions, the pitch started doing a lot."
Pandya, who is doing the job of third seamer, predictably defended the decision.
"Obviously they (team management) had some thought behind it (picking the second spinner). I don't get into that too much. I think three pacers (including him) were enough to be honest.
"If this was a five-day game, spinners would've come into use. But because of the rain and everything, it was short and there's not many footmarks and it was not gripping that much. If this was a five-day game, things would have been different," Pandya said.
"If I am batting, I think as a batsman and if I am bowling, I think as a bowler. I don't have any one particular role."
He further added: "My role when I bowl, I like to keep it tight and try to make sure that the batsman makes mistakes. I don't try much stuff. Keep it tight and let's see what they do. And we know that they love to play shots and playing like that you will tend to make one mistake. We were expecting that they will (make mistakes)."
Toss played a big role as England captain Joe Root was able to make most of the helpful bowling conditions but the Indian all-rounder made it clear that he never believed that there's any such thing called luck in cricket.
"I don't believe in luck too much. Whatever happens is down to hard work. And this is a game, where they won the toss and put us into bat. If we had won the toss, we could have had them in the same position. But it is not.
"Luck doesn't come into this, and it is just a way of saying things. We will keep working hard and try hard and see what happens then," Pandya signed off.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)