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Rediff.com  » Sports » Declaration delayed to allow Yuvi, Gautam score century: Dhoni

Declaration delayed to allow Yuvi, Gautam score century: Dhoni

December 23, 2008 18:40 IST

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni revealed that the delayed declaration in India's second innings of the second Test against England was a team decision so that Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh could score centuries, which unfortunately they did not.

"When we came yesterday [Monday] we were not sure of the fog, there was no definite prediction about it. But if we would have lost some wickets we would have really been on the backfoot today," Dhoni said.

"We started well today but it was a team decision to give them (Gambhir and Yuvraj) a chance to score a century and then go for declaration," Dhoni said, after the draw in Mohali on Tuesday.

India declared at 251 for 7 in the post-lunch session only after Gambhir was out on 97 and Yuvraj on 89.

He credited his bowlers for the 1-0 series victory.

"Credit goes to bowlers, especially the fast bowlers. They took wickets whenever it was needed," he said, also acknowledging the contribution of the batsmen, saying they stitched partnerships at crucial junctures in the two matches.

"Even batsmen did their job. There were good partnerships. Whenever we lost a few wickets there was somebody to see that we were through," he said.

While Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar did the job in the first match in Chennai, Gambhir and Yuvraj saw the team through here.

"We concentrated on preparation and execution of our plan. After that whatever be the result does not matter to us. We just looked to get the basics right," he said.

Dhoni also pointed out that a lot of time was wasted in the match due to the weather, robbing them an opportunity to clinch victory.

"We lost 80-90 overs in the match. The third day was the best to bat on but there was not much for spinners. We wasted a fair amount of time," he said.

His England counterpart Kevin Pietersen said the series was quite a learning experience for the team and there were many positives to draw from.

"There was lot to learn in the series. It was played in a very hospitable atmosphere," he said.

"I am proud to captain the bunch of players I have. The way they prepared, they way they trained, the way they performed was all very positive in this circumstances," he said.

Gambhir, who received his first man of the match award this year, was thrilled but said India should have won the series 2-0.

"It feels important and also good to score and make it count as well. But I wish we had won the series 2-0," he said.

Gambhir said he benefitted from his first tour Down Under earlier this year.

"When you go to Australia and come back it helps your confidence," he said.

Player of the series Zaheer Khan said the bowlers worked as a unit.

"I was hoping to get more wickets but nevertheless I am happy to get this award," he said.

About the match in Mohali, Zaheer said he would have liked to bowl in the morning sessions but, unfortunately, it was sunny whenever he went out to bowl.

"We should have got the full game here," he said.

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