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Bowling lacked discipline: Kapil

Manchester: Kapil Dev believes poor bowling was a major reason behind India losing their lead in the ongoing Test series versus England.

According to the former India captain, India’s bowlers lacked discipline and bowled far too many loose deliveries.

England went on to score 569 for seven before declaring their first innings in Southampton and from there onwards, exerted pressure on India throughout, not letting the opposition win a single session in the third Test.

“The Southampton wicket was similar to the one in Nottingham, but just look at the difference in bowling. No wonder the bowlers could have done better.

“There were just too many loose deliveries and England played well enough to make them count. When the other team goes on to score nearly 600 runs, it shows that there’s lack of discipline in your bowling,” said Kapil.

When asked if this was potentially due to fatigue because of playing back-to-back Tests, he replied: “This is Test cricket. This is international cricket and you cannot talk about fatigue here.

“The difference is that one team plays well and the other team plays badly… We must accept that.

“At Lord’s, India should have been bowled out for 160, but they got almost 300 runs. As a result, England lost. Similarly, India bowled badly and lost in Southampton.”

While Kapil was impressed with Pankaj Singh, he feels that Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami let their team down in the absence of Ishant Sharma who was deemed unfit on the morning of the previous Test.

“Bhuvi is moving the ball well and he tried hard in Southampton. But I think since he is a little slower, he didn’t get enough movement there. If he can increase his pace a yard or two, that will help on such pitches,” Kapil said.

“But I am disappointed with Shami. He is a good bowler but he is trying to bowl too fast.

“There is no point bowling too fast if you don’t hit the right line and length. In England, you have to first bowl a good line and length and then think about pace. Only then you can get better,” he added.

The general consensus, though, is that the Indian bowling was severely hampered on a dry pitch with the lack of a fifth bowling option. “Yes, every team should have a fifth bowler. But only an all-rounder can fill up that slot. Someone like Jadeja doesn’t fit in that slot.

“He has to get more runs and he has to do more with the ball to become a genuine all-rounder. At the moment, Bhuvneshwar is filling that role but he needs to carry on consistently for some time. Then he can be a greater asset to the team,” said the legendary all-rounder. (PTI)