Bangladesh v India, 2nd Test, Dhaka, 3rd day May 27, 2007

'The past is behind us' - Dravid



Rahul Dravid took the positives, but wasn't exactly going to go overboard at India's win over Bangladesh © AFP

This was a truly comprehensive Test win, but Rahul Dravid kept his head firmly in place and said he was not too excited about it. He would do to this victory what he does to defeats: take it in perspective. "You can't look at something else to salvage something else [the World Cup debacle]. The past is behind us and there's nothing we can do about it," he said. "We were here to play some good cricket. I thought we did that. And we did it in tough conditions.

"I don't get excited by most situations. My belief is to keep things in perspective whether it is victory or defeat. We will take some heart from this win, some positives."

One of the positives for them would be the way Wasim Jaffer came back in the second Test after having a torrid time in Chittagong. India are in the middle of an experiment with the opening combination, and Jaffer's comeback was crucial. In scoring hundreds, Jaffer and Karthik have earned their captain's confidence. Dravid will now get only get a couple of warm-up games before he decides who to open with in the first Test in England. Dravid praised both the openers. "They've given me confidence. Wasim's comeback has been good for India. He's got some big scores, some low scores. The challenge for him would be to be consistent, put a string of good scores together, which is what a good opener should do. Dinesh [Karthik] hasn't put a foot wrong in the last three games. He shows character, attitude, hunger, and desire. He's already started thinking ahead about what the challenges are going to be in England.

Even though helped heartily by the Bangladesh batsmen, the Indian bowlers took 20 wickets in 94.5 overs on a track that looked the friendliest wicket possible when their batsmen were batting. Dravid was full of praise for their effort too. "It was a great effort on part of the bowlers to bowl them out in 95 overs in these conditions," he said, "Having batted on it for a long time, we had figured out what line and length to bowl. We knew that the new ball was going to be critical. All our bowlers, especially Zaheer [Khan], did a great job. Ishant Sharma was impressive. RP Singh was a revelation on this tour. The two of them might not even have got an opportunity if not for injuries."

Dravid did acknowledge that this was always a lose-lose series for them. "Had we not done well, people would have said, 'What's happening?' Had we won, it's not a big deal. So it was tough in that sense." There's a bigger challenge awaiting them in England, and as Dravid said, "the conditions, opponents will be different".

Sidharth Monga is a staff writer with Cricinfo Magazine