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Stop talking, concentrate on Cricket: Gavaskar to Indian Team

Batting legend Sunil Gavaskar believes India should “stop talking about aggressiveness” and focus on the game at hand, describing their shock first Test loss to Sri Lanka as “terrible”.

In a remarkable turnaround, Sri Lanka won by 63 runs after being bowled out for 183 in their first innings and being reduced to 5-95 in their second.

Dinesh Chandimal smashed a brilliant 162 off 169 balls to lift the hosts to 367, before India were skittled for 112 on the fourth day chasing 176. 

It would have to be one of the terrible losses that India suffered

- Gavaskar told NDTV.

“Because after you take a big lead like this then you are expected to win the match."

“But clearly, despite taking that huge lead, India were just not able to step up in both the second innings, when they were bowling to the Sri Lankans and when they batted in the fourth innings.And I did say that if India were set around 170 then it would be a very tough challenge.”

Following the defeat, India skipper Virat Kohli said his team were unable to take the pressure of chasing in the fourth innings.

There are no excuses. It was a case of us not playing fearless cricket. We were very tentative

Kohli said. But Gavaskar disagreed.

“I think we should stop talking about aggressiveness, tentativeness and whatever,” he said.

“I think we should just focus on the game and start playing the game. We don’t have to justify anything to anybody as to the kind of cricket you are going to play.You have got to play cricket that suits your team, that suits the position that the team is in, suits the pitch that you are playing on and suits the opposition that you are playing against,” Gavaskar said.

However, Gavaskar said he believed India could bounce back in the remaining two Tests of the series, and suggested they took to Sri Lanka for inspiration.

“I think and hope that India can bounce back. Because this is a kind of loss that can demoralise the team,” he said.

And as I keep saying, ‘you lose the first Test, you are always playing catch-up’. This is going to be huge for Virat and Ravi Shastri to lift the team’s morale, to get them to believe in themselves, to believe that they can come back. The example of the Sri Lankans in the second innings is what they should be showing to the Indian team.

The second Test will begin in Colombo on Thursday, in what will be legendary Sri Lanka batsman Kumar Sangakkara’s farewell to international cricket.

First test Result: Sri Lanka won by 63 runs

Source - CA

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