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2nd ODI : Plan was to bowl stump to stump to keep pressure on Sri Lanka team : Mohammed Siraj

Kolkata : India’s right-arm fast-bowler Mohammed Siraj revealed that he decided to bowl at the stumps in the ongoing second ODI against Sri Lanka as the swing stopped soon and balls coming out didn’t have much pace.

In the first ten overs, Siraj was wayward as he struggled to get a consistent line and length. But soon got the breakthrough for India to castle Avishka Fernando through the gate.
He would come back later to get Dunith Wellalage and Lahiru Kumara out in the first four balls of the 40th over to end Sri Lanka’s innings at 215 and finish with 3/30 in 5.4 overs.

“Initially, the ball wasn’t coming out quick enough, and there wasn’t enough swing. So the plan was to bowl stump to stump to keep the pressure on the Sri Lankan team from one end, hoping to get wickets and help the other bowlers,” said Siraj in mid-innings chat with broadcasters.

Siraj added that he had to use his wobble seam deliveries more as wicketkeeper KL Rahul told that ball wasn’t having any swing. “KL (Rahul) bhai told me it stopped swinging after first over, so I switched over to hard lengths.

I have a wobble-seam delivery, so I will focus a lot on it as it got me wickets and success too. The plan was to hit that consistently.” Siraj credited left-arm wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav for spinning a web and bamboozling the Sri Lankan batters in the middle overs to take 3/51 in ten overs.

“It is a good batting wicket, but Kuldeep bowled very well to cause a middle-order collapse. Then we bowled well in all departments, the fast bowlers as well as the spinners.”

Siraj signed off by advising the Indian batters to watch and play the ball if they are to chase down 216 and take a unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series. “The outfield is very quick so the message to the batters is just watch and play the ball.”


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