Indian spinners buckled under pressure of expectations: Raman

Sports

Former opener W V Raman today said Indian spinners buckled under pressure of expectations in the second Test against England which the hosts lost by 10 wickets to allow the visitors draw level the four-match series 1-1.

"A lot of pressure was on them as a reverse in India is not expected, especially on a turner. All put together, the pressure did them in a bit," said the Bengal Ranji Trophy team coach at the Brabourne Stadium here.

"What adds to pressure is the lack of runs on the board. I think that is a big difference. If you actually dissect the performance of the spinners, once they got the breakthrough (England captain Alastair Cook's wicket) when (Kevin) Pietersen and Cook were playing, they rolled them out quickly after that," Raman pointed out.

"The big difference was that (Cook-Pietersen) partnership. We did not put enough runs on the board."

England, going strong when the two batsmen put on a record double century stand at Wankhede Stadium, folded up quickly once Cook was dismissed but not before they grabbed a vital 86-run lead over India and then shot out the latter for a meagre score in the second innings to set up the big win.

Raman also referred to India's pathetic top-order display in the first innings when the hosts were 119 for 5 and then 169 for 6 before Cheteshwar Pujara, who notched his second successive three-figure knock of the series, and R Ashwin put on a century stand to help the hosts notch up 327.

The former Test opener maintained that in the third Test at Kolkata, starting December 5, there would be more pressure on the Indian batsmen to put up enough runs on the board for the bowlers to tighten the screws on England.

"If you look at the spin combination of both sides, England spinners (Graeme Swann and Monty Panesar) have a better record, both in terms of experience and in the number of wickets taken. They were definitely on top."

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