Moeen Ali: 'Watch out for the bounce'

"I think one has to watch out for the bounce. I think it’s going to get a little bit lower. The cracks are opening up a little bit. I think the bounce will be a problem, We will see that tomorrow," Moeen Ali said.

Moeen Ali England India Rajkot Test

Moeen Ali has warned Indians that the pitch has begun deteriorating and may aid spinners on Friday.   -  PTI

Moeen Ali bowled six economical overs after scoring a century that swelled England’s score to 537, and he’s looking forward to causing more damage on a pitch that is predicted to decline.

"I think one has to watch out for the bounce. I think it’s going to get a little bit lower. The cracks are opening up a little bit. I. It's a very good pitch, yesterday and today was very nice. I think the bounce will be a problem, We will see that tomorrow. There was a bit of spin there tonight which was nice.

"What I like about this wicket is that not every ball is spinning and that makes the bowler a bit more dangerous. The last time I somehow picked up some wickets and hopefully I can do that again,’’ Ali said at the media interaction.

It remains to be seen whether he will be retained for the No. 5 spot, but Alastair Cook would definitely be impressed by Ali’s fine effort.

"I slept really well. I knew I had to get only one more run. I was fine. There is a change in my mentality. Earlier, I almost used to give away my wicket. In the last few months, I have been batting at number three and I have really taken the responsibility. Last winter, I didn’t play that well and I obviously worked hard on my batting this summer. I worked hard at the nets. Hopefully you will see the results. The roles we play in this side are very important for the team. In this series, I will have to bowl spin and do the batting as well.’’

Ali has set roles for himself as a batsman. "When I was coming in at No. 7 and 8, I didn't have the right sort of batting mentality. I have worked hard on it and now, coming in at No. 5, I can bat for a longer time. My aim is to always bat 200 balls. If I can do that, I will score a hundred. That’s what I tell myself.’’

He praised Ben Stokes for playing according to the situation. "We are going to see so much of him with different kind of innings. He can play the sort he did in Cape Town (258 off 198 balls, 30 x 4s, 11 x 6s) last year. We have seen him grind out a hundred as well and also play a smart innings. I think today was perfect where he chanced his arm a bit. When you play with that freedom and that sort of fearless approach, you can become a fantastic all-rounder. I enjoy the kind of situations when we are struggling a little bit. It has happened a few times and I feel it brings out the best in me.’’

Ali felt happy that England made India toil. "The good thing is that we made them bowl a lot of overs. I think we are pleased with the way we played spin. I know there wasn’t much spin but we didn’t just prod around. We used our feet, went back and forth and took the attacking option. I think the wickets are going to get tougher through the series.’’