Cook con­fi­dent

> Eng­land cap­tain sees turn­around in Mo­hali Test against In­dia <

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPORTS -

SKIPPER Alas­tair Cook has ex­pressed con­fi­dence that Eng­land can bounce back in the se­ries against In­dia de­spite the crush­ing loss in the sec­ond Test but said win­ning the toss would be key.

The English bat­ting crum­bled un­der pres­sure and were bowled out for 158 on the fifth day of the sec­ond Test in Visakha­p­at­nam on Mon­day while chas­ing an un­likely tar­get of 405.

Cook led from the front with his gritty 54 to put on a 75-run open­ing stand with young Haseeb Hameed (25) to raise Eng­land’s hopes of draw­ing the Test be­fore the In­dian spin­ners struck.

Cook be­lieves the vis­i­tors can still draw pos­i­tives from their 246run loss, which leaves the tourists 1- 0 down in the five-match se­ries.

“Yes we have lost by a big mar­gin. But the mar­gin of runs is dif­fer­ent. We could have played more ag­gres­sively and lost by 150 runs or so,” said Cook.

“But we went that way. It was a mas­sive toss to lose but in cer­tain pe­ri­ods of the game we played some good cricket.”

Eng­land posted a mam­moth 537 in the first Test af­ter elect­ing to bat first in Ra­jkot while In­dia amassed 455 af­ter the coin turned in skipper Vi­rat Kohli’s favour in the sec­ond game.

“We are still very much in the se­ries. A cou­ple of good tosses will help that, there’s no doubt about that,” Cook said, em­pha­sis­ing the im­por­tance of win­ning tosses on th­ese wick­ets.

“We have got to put the whole game to­gether to beat In­dia. If we can get ahead of them in Mo­hali, then we can put pres­sure on them,” he added.

Ben Duck­ett’s fail­ure with the bat is sure to be a cause of con­cern for the team man­age­ment and Cook is ready to take some bold se­lec­tion de­ci­sions come the third Test start­ing Satur­day.

The Northamp­ton­shire bats­man man­aged just 18 runs from his three in­nings so far, which has prompted Cook to have Jos But­tler in mind for the Mo­hali game.

“Cer­tainly some­thing that the se­lec­tors will have a look at,” Cook said about the pos­si­bil­ity of But­tler be­ing con­sid­ered for the next Test.

Af­ter be­ing picked by Ravichan­dran Ashwin on all oc­ca­sions, Duck­ett’s in­abil­ity to han­dle spin on In­dian pitches has been se­verely ex­posed.

“It’s hard cricket in your first few games. The dif­fer­ence, I think, is prob­a­bly quite stark, I think from play­ing in Northamp­ton to play­ing here,” said Cook.

“Ben is a re­ally tal­ented crick­eter and I think we’ll see a lot more of him in an Eng­land shirt.

“Whether he plays in Mo­hali or not, the se­lec­tors will have to take a call on that.” – AFP

Eng­land’s Alas­tair Cook (right) and Joe Root watch the sec­ond Test match.

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