Inzamam: 'Woolmer thought Bangalore Test declaration was wrong'

Electing to bat, Pakistan had posted 570 in first innings. In reply, India was 449 all out. The visiting team then declared at 261 for 2.

The Bangalore game was Inzamam’s 100th Test.   -  FILE PHOTO/V. SUDERSHAN

Former Pakistan captain Inzamam ul Haq says that ex-coach Bob Woolmer had doubted his decision to declare early in the 2005 Bangalore Test against India but he proved him wrong by guiding the team to an emphatic 168-run win.

Walking down the memory lane, Inzaman spoke at length about that famous Bangalore Test. Electing to bat, Pakistan had posted 570 in first innings. In reply, India was 449 all out.

The visiting team then declared at 261 for 2, a decision which Woolmer believed was “wrong“.

ALSO READ | Yuvraj: Every individual can make a difference

“When I was about to declare in the second innings, I sent a message to Bob Woolmer that I wanted to give some overs to India today. Woolmer said that the captain and vice-captain should make that call.

“I asked Younis who agreed with me. I wanted to take a chance and called for the declaration. When I came back Woolmer said that he thought my decision to declare was wrong,” Inzamam said in his Youtube channel.

The 50-year-old said it was his decision to declare early which eventually helped Pakistan win the Test.

“India had to save the last day and they went into a negative mindset. Virender Sehwag was the only player who I thought could take the game away from us.The next day, I told my team that if we get Sehwag then they won’t be able to chase it down.

“Some key players had even refused to tour India in this series and I was left with a very weak attack against a very strong Indian batting line-up. I think they believed that after losing this series I would be removed as captain and that could create chances for them”

“That day, Razzaq ran Sehwag out. I thought that if Razzaq can run a batsman out, then it is definitely our day. India went into defensive mode after that wicket. I attacked with our fielders and even a batsman like Sachin Tendulkar couldn’t score. When we got to the last part of the match, we got an extra six or seven overs which vindicated my decision to declare early,” he said.

The Bangalore game, which was Inzamam’s 100th Test, was the third match of the series with India leading 1-0.

“My 100th Test match (in Bangalore) was a very special moment for me. The entire tour was very special,” Inzamam said.

“The Bangalore Test was very important for us as a team. When we were going for that India series in 2005, all analysts and former cricketers claimed this was the weakest Pakistan team touring India.

“They believed we would get quashed by a strong India side. We did not have a powerful bowling attack and I, as captain, was confused how we would get them out.”

The stylish right-handed batsman also said that many players had refused to tour India, thinking a defeat would see his departure as Pakistan skipper.

“Some key players had even refused to tour India in this series and I was left with a very weak attack against a very strong Indian batting line-up. I think they believed that after losing this series I would be removed as captain and that could create chances for them,” he said.

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos