Australia in India 2016-17 March 14, 2017

BCCI, CA took mature call that cricket has to move on - Kumble

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We've moved on from DRS incident - Kumble

Anil Kumble, India's head coach, has said he is happy India and Australia have agreed to move on from the DRS-related controversy that flared up in the aftermath of the Bengaluru Test match. He also confirmed that the two captains, Virat Kohli and Steven Smith, would meet match referee Richie Richardson before the start of the Ranchi Test.

"I think what was important was to bring the focus back on cricket and I am really glad that the BCCI took a mature call along with Cricket Australia to issue a joint statement that cricket needs to move on and we have moved on from whatever happened in that background," Kumble said on Tuesday, two days before the third Test in Ranchi.

"That's really important because focus obviously has to be on the game, and I thought we made a fantastic comeback after losing the first Test, especially day two and day three (of the second Test); they (Australia) were ahead and to come back from there and win a Test match was rewarding."

M Vijay missed the second Test match with a shoulder injury - it turned out that the opener had been carrying it since the first Test in Pune, but neither Kumble nor Kohli had mentioned it in the lead-up to the game when asked about the fitness of their players. Now, asked if Vijay was fit to play in Ranchi, Kumble said he was "fine".

"Yeah, he's fine," Kumble said. "He is a part of the squad, so he is good."

Ranchi will be the 12th Test of India's home season - which began soon after a four-Test tour of the West Indies - and Kumble was pleased with the way his players had coped with the physical and mental challenges of playing so many games in a relatively short span of time.

"I think they have responded really well," he said. "It's been a long season, not easy playing 17 Test matches on the trot. Back to back, especially for the bowling unit. And of course the batsmen, it takes its own toll.

"Touch wood we have had very little injuries - of course (Mohammed) Shami is injured as a bowler and he is coming back. So we had some injuries but they have responded well to the challenges that have come about. Lots of overs under the belt and that's something that obviously augurs well. If you are winning constantly and keep performing the way we have been performing at home that helps. That's been the hallmark.

"You can't point to just one individual in the whole season that has given us these results. I think every individual has stood up and the captain had led from the front. So it's really nice and augurs well that each individual has contributed to the success.

"We would like to finish the last two Test matches in a very good way, and I am sure it will be something that we will be cherishing at the end of the season."

Kumble praised his bowlers for the intensity they have shown through the season, particularly on day two in Bengaluru, which he called a "fantastic day of Test cricket".

'He may not have a five-wicket haul but every time he has bowled, he has looked like he would pick up a five-for' - Anil Kumble on Umesh Yadav © AFP

"I thought day two was a fantastic day of Test cricket. It was attritional. Only 190 [197] runs were scored in the entire day and we picked up six wickets. But the intensity all the four bowlers bowled with, especially the fast bowlers … It was brilliant. And I think that resulted in the win.

"It showed the character and that's what you want to see in a team… You want to see a lot of character and lot of pride in the way we go about doing things and coming back and winning a Test match."

With Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami missing chunks of the home season with injuries, Umesh Yadav has bowled the most overs - 284.5, with Shami a distant second at 178.1 - among all of India's fast bowlers in 2016-17. Though his returns - 22 wickets at 39.22 - have not been proportionate to his efforts, Kumble was pleased with Umesh's bowling through the season. He also hailed Ravindra Jadeja for drawing level with his spin partner R Ashwin at the top of the ICC Test bowlers' rankings.

"We have seen certainly seen what Umesh is capable of." Kumble said. "Although he doesn't have the kind of wickets that you would expect, the way he has bowled and the way he has given us those breakthroughs - he may not have a five-wicket haul but every time he has bowled, he has looked like he would pick up a five-for. And that's the kind of maturity and improvement Umesh has shown.

"Yes, the chunk of the wickets have been to the spinners, and I am glad that Ashwin will always be spoken about, but I am really glad that Jadeja has come up and done what he is capable of. Really glad that both of them are currently on top of the ICC rankings."

When asked if the pitch in Ranchi - which has been at the centre of speculation, particularly in the Australian media - would produce a contest lasting five days, Kumble said he didn't know.

"I don't know. We only hope we will win," he said. "How many days the Test will last I wouldn't know. But I only hope there will be a result and it will be in our favour."

Kumble brushed aside reports in the Indian media that suggested the BCCI was looking to appoint him director of cricket and hand over the head coach role to Rahul Dravid.

"I have also heard from the media, it is news to me, from the media," he said. "There is nothing else, no one has spoken about it."

Karthik Krishnaswamy is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • wildakerr on March 16, 2017, 11:50 GMT

    @IMONG let me set you straight and we move on from this once and for all. Smith admitted his mistake and therefore left himself open to sanction by the ICC match referee. He didn't deny doing it, he admitted it- that's not making an excuse so you and others can stop the rubbish comments about him trying to get himself out of it. The only reason he wasn't sanctioned is because the ICC regulations don't have such a situation covered, so there was no rule to sanction him under - why else do you think the BCCI wanted to bring the unsportsmanlike charge against him? That's the incident in a nutshell.

  • krisjo4061355 on March 16, 2017, 2:24 GMT

    @NIKHILSACHDEV ON MARCH 15, 2017, 11:53 GMT "Get one Indian to admit and take responsibility for any wrongdoing despite a crystal clear evidence. I bet you, will never happen."

    It's very funny that the person who is guilty is labeled as a saint and the whistleblower is accused as guilty. Good logic mate.

  • Cricinfouser on March 15, 2017, 22:10 GMT

    brain fade is a good excuse whole world saw it. Steven Smith you are so funny playing like kids.......

  • Alex on March 15, 2017, 16:00 GMT

    Kumble is a useless coach. He already lost first test with poor planning.

  • krisjo4061355 on March 15, 2017, 12:23 GMT

    People talk about predictions going wrong here. True some over enthusiastic fans said India was going to win 4-0. It was so stupid of them, the players didn't say that and every team takes the opponents seriously. Then what about McGrath's 4-0 win for AUS that he predicted 4 years ago for the Indian tour of Australia? It was a 180 degree turn and was a 0-4 loss for AUS. These over zeal Indian fans are not any better than McGrath, or should I say McGrath was not any less stupid than these fans !!!

  • Mrcriccanada on March 15, 2017, 11:53 GMT

    Get one Indian to admit and take responsibility for any wrongdoing despite a crystal clear evidence. I bet you, will never happen.

  • Iman on March 15, 2017, 9:59 GMT

    Shaggy076 : He accepted that it was a "brain fade" and he shouldn't have done that, hardly an apology, for crossing the line of fair play don't you think ? I guess it's about time we expand the meaning of the term brain fade. How about tampering with the ball by putting Vaseline or something on it, and call it a brain fade ? Or using an aluminum bat and then calling it a brain fade ? Or sneaking in an ear piece and call it a brain fade ? Good enough ?

  • Graham on March 15, 2017, 9:24 GMT

    Imong Yes we all saw that one incident. He erred and apologised deserving of a fine. But Kohlis statement was more far reaching than this one incident, yet no proof on any of that.

  • Cric on March 15, 2017, 8:24 GMT

    Superb tactical brain himself, kudos to Kumble for taking India in the right path. Hope K&K make India a dominating cricket team. All the team needs now is a good assistant coach for batting department. Bangar is not the man for that. Big names are not necessary but atleast someone who can take the boys to the next level.

  • Mallesha on March 15, 2017, 7:44 GMT

    @IMONG

    Perfectly summarized the after effects of BrainFade fiasco of Smith & OZ's .. super M8 :)

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