Pitch has become slow, batting-friendly: Shami

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Leeds, Aug 27 (IANS) India pace bowler Mohammed Shami admitted that the Indian bowlers struggled on the Headingley pitch since it had slowed down and offered little to bowlers by way of movement and bounce.

“When the pitch slows down, your skills get affected, bounce gets lower, we managed edges but they didn’t carry,” said Shami to media in a virtual interaction after the second day’s play.

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“When the pitch starts to get slow, the ball stops seaming and swinging. Everything changes. Like you saw in the morning when the pitch got slow. In such a case, you don’t have to think much. If it is slow you just have to put the ball in one place,” added the right-armer who was the most successful Indian bowler with 3/87.

Shami said that failure of batsmen in the first innings — India were shot out for 78 — also hurt the team much.

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“Batting has become easy [now]. If the pitch hadn’t become slow, the result would have been different. Our batsmen also got out too early. But it has happened after a long time. You have to think about second innings and bat long,” he added.

The fast bowler, who is playing his 54th Test and is just six short of 200 Test wickets, said that the tough outing at the Headingley where England already lead by 345 runs at the end of second day’s play, is a rare bad performance from India and doesn’t affect them mentally.

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“It doesn’t affect [us] mentally. We have played for so long. Finished games inside three days, have finished games inside two days. There will come a time when we will have a bad day, we [will] get dismissed [for low score] in first innings of a Test. Happens sometimes. But there is no point in bringing your morale down. There are two more Tests left. We are 1-0 up. Don’t have to think much. Only one thing: we have to believe in our skills and back ourselves.”

–IANS

kh/pgh

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