India v Pakistan, 2nd Test, Kolkata, 5th day March 20, 2005

'We can draw level at Bangalore' - Inzamam

Inzamam-ul-Haq was obviously disappointed when he spoke to the press after Pakistan's 195-run loss to India in the second Test at Kolkata. But he still believed his side had fought well and could turn things around in Bangalore.



Inzamam-ul-Haq: 'If we had shown greater responsibility, we could have saved the match' © Getty Images

On the turning point in the match
We had a great opportunity in the first innings to score 500 runs, but we lost eight wickets fairly cheaply and ended up conceding a lead. That was very disappointing. If you miss an opportunity against a good team, then you make things difficult for yourself. Especially on a surface like this, to get 300 runs on the last day is an extremely difficult ask. It wasn't as if the ball was exploding off the track, but it played up and down.

On whether the Pakistanis were having special trouble against Kumble
He has got more than 450 wickets, and not all of them have come against us. He is a great bowler in every sense of the term, and especially on a surface like this, he is even more dangerous.

On Rahul Dravid
He has been batting extremely well for the last 2-3 years. His performances and his average prove that he is one of the best batsmen in the world.

On the effect of losing a wicket off the first ball of the day
In such a situation, the fielding side has its tail up and there is added pressure on the batting team. At the same time, the batsmen that followed did not play all that well. If we had shown greater responsibility, we could still have saved the match. In the last Test, Nos. 7 and 8 bailed us out; today at lunch, we had two specialist batsmen in the middle, and I was fairly confident then that we could pull off a draw.

On whether he still felt his team could square the series in Bangalore
I am confident we can draw level at Bangalore. Even here, if we had put up a good first-innings total, the result could have been different. All our batsmen are in form, we just need to be stronger in the mind and need a combined effort. Hopefully, that will come in the next match.

On the pitch
We saw that it was green, like it was at Mohali, and believed it would help the quicker bowlers. But once play began, we realised it was not suitable for quick bowlers. They did a reasonable job, but I was a bit disappointed with the way the spinners bowled. I think they should have bowled a lot better.

Anand Vasu is an assistant editor of Cricinfo.