Making his Test debut was the fulfilment of a dream, said off-spinner Jayant Yadav here on Saturday.
“It’s a proud moment for any cricketer. As you graduate through U-17, you aspire to play in Tests. I would be lying if I said there were no nerves. There were some in the first over and it gradually got better.”
On his friendship with Ravichandran Ashwin – interestingly Jayant, Ashwin and Murali Vijay turn out for Jolly Rovers in Chennai’s first division league – he said, “Me and Ash, met first in 2014 due to Eric Simons. He was preparing for England tour, very sweet of him to help me. He gave me inputs on how he prepares, we stayed in touch; we have a good rapport, good friendship. He talks a lot of sense about bowling.”
Jayant, who was unlucky not to pick more than a wicket, said, “In this match it wasn’t about technical inputs but he told me about different lines to different batsmen, on being consistent in length.”
Asked about DRS, Jayant replied, “The team thinks it’s a good thing. There is no negative feeling about at it this point of time.”
Jayant felt India should close out the match from here. “If we pride ourselves as a spin unit, we need to bowl well.”
Jonny Bairstow had a fall before coming out to bat yet played an innings of substance. ‘Tripped up, hurt my knee a bit. Turned round and went back. Boot got lodged in the turf. Should be fine. It was sore. It’s one of those things. I don’t think it affected me too much,” he said.
On batting with Ben Stokes he said, “We compliment each other well, rotate the strike pretty well, calm each other down.”
Queried about the pitch, Bairstow said, “I think there are runs to be had on the pitch. That gives us confidence. Everyone can see a bit of uneven bounce. If a ball has got your name on it… We have shown before we can bat for long periods of time on sub-continental pitches. We need to show fight here.”
While he said England could chase down whatever target is set, Bairstow added, “It is important for us to make it as difficult as possible for India to score runs at the rate they want. The longer we can delay them puts us in a better position.”
About facing Ashwin, Bairstow said, “We’ve played him pretty well, to be honest. He bowled nicely today. The accuracy he bowled with makes it a challenge. What every world-class spinner has is accuracy.”
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