Poor Umpiring won’t Demoralize the Team: Kumble


Sydney, Jan 7 (mb): An agitated Indian skipper Anil Kumble today hardly minced words in blaming the dubious umpiring by Mark Benson and Steve Bucknor for his side's heart-breaking loss to Australia in the second cricket Test here .

"It's there for everyone to see, I am not going to comment on it," was Kumble's sarcastic response when asked what he thought was the difference between the two sides.

"(The umpiring) was there for everyone to see but it was important for us to keep those things out of our mind. We lost a little bit of focus. I think we should have batted the last two sessions," he added.

India crashed to a 122-run defeat against Ricky Ponting's side largely due to a couple of dubious decisions given by Benson and Bucknor. "We played fantastic cricket from day one after the loss in Melbourne. We even took a lead in the first innings but unfortunately could not save the match. Even today a couple of things did not go our way," he said.

Kumble said he could understand the umpires getting it wrong on a few occasions but their consistent errors probably cost India a chance to go 1-1 with Australia ahead of the third Test in Perth.

"We understand that things happen in a match and you have to get on with it but there were too many things happening in this one. And it's difficult to keep your focus in the face of all this. But we tried hard... played brilliantly," Kumble said, trying to put up a brave face.

"You don’t want to lose a match after being in the position that we were in. We dominated the first innings but unfortunately could not convert into the right result," Kumble said.

Kumble said the Indians never gave up despite the umpiring going from bad to worse and were always hopeful of securing a draw. "I don't think we were ever negative inspite of what was happening out there. We kept fighting till the last ball was bowled but sadly couldn't save it," he rued.

Kumble, however, brushed aside suggestions that the defeat and the poor umpiring would have a demoralising effect on the team. "I know the spirit is good in the team but obviously a draw would have lifted us. But still we are confident of doing well in Perth. We have 10 days to go before that match and assess our performance. We also have a practice game coming up so we are looking forward to that," he said.

"Our job is to go and play to the best of our ability and we will do that in Perth. There are a few positives that we will take from this game, like the batting of Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman and Harbhajan's bowling and his batting as well," he added. 


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