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England v India, 2nd Test, Trent Bridge, 2nd day
'Karthik is a fighter'- Shastri
July 28, 2007
Ravi Shastri reviews the second day of the 2nd Test at Trent Bridge
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Siddhartha Vaidyanathan: Hello and welcome to Cricinfo, I am Siddhartha Vaidyanathan and joining me at the end of the second day's play at Trent Bridge is former India captain Ravi Shastri. Ravi, another good day for India, the batsmen really built on what the bowlers did. But to start off with, the bowlers got the tail out pretty cheaply.

Ravi Shastri: Fantastic day, just what the doctor ordered. Their main aim, when they came out today, would have been to be patient, to try and bowl out England under 200, and they did that. Then they complemented that with good old fashioned Test match cricket. Not since 1979 that India has had such a good opening partnership [in England], and that was good to see. They both complemented each other very well. [Wasim] Jaffer the solid opening batsman, [Dinesh] Karthik the more pugnacious, and they really went about their business in great fashion - they showed a lot of heart. Even though they had slices of luck, the important thing was that they put a price on their wicket and did not give it away that easily. They came out with a game plan, not to be bogged down or be over cautious - if the ball was in their area of strength they were quite prepared to play their shots. I think by scoring a 100 runs in the session between the lunch and tea they clearly showed that there is not only hunger out there but the important thing was that they got runs. Then, [Rahul] Dravid and [Sachin] Tendulkar just carried on from where they left, unfortunately Dravid was dismissed just before stumps. But, I think India are in a position to drive home the advantage. They have got England by the scruff of their neck and now it's upto them to keep them there.

SV: Just a word on Karthik, he was made into an opener a couple of series back - he has got five fifties in five Test matches after that, he has shown a lot of confidence.

RS: Lot of confidence. I mentioned pugnacious, he is a fighter. He is a kind of guy who treats it as a challenge and relishes the opportunity, and I thought today he was positive. The intent was there, from both Jaffer and Karthik. Karthik in particular, who was even prepared to chip down the track at times, he played some lovely shots all around the wicket.

SV: A word on English bowling, did they deserve more than two wickets?

RS: You could say so, on another day they could have picked up six or seven quite easily. The ball did beat the outside edge and it will continue to beat the outside edge as the game progresses, but the important thing is for them to be patient. If you start off well then there could easily be a session in which you take four or five wickets. So, from England's point of view their main aim would be to not allow India to get away with a big lead. India on the other hand, with so much time left in the Test match, would like to bat at least two and a half if not three sessions.

SV: Lastly, Tendulkar batting towards the end of the day, looked positive and some good signs for tomorrow.

RS: Good signs for tomorrow, and I thought - when he got hit on the helmet - that was like a wake up call, because that really charged him up. There are lots of players who get their competitive juices going when you get hit, yet, there are a lot of other players who get weak-kneed. But, a player like Tendulkar who has been around for so long, you could just see that he wanted to be competitive after that, and he played fluently. He is batting on 57, and if he can get a hundred here, then it could well be a match winning hundred.

SV: Thanks a lot Ravi, thanks for joining me. This is Siddhartha Vaidyanathan signing off from Trent Bridge

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