England captain Alastair Cook led by example, scoring 41 and 176 when the other frontline batsmen failed to come to terms with the Motera pitch. However, his effort was not enough from stopping India post a nine-wicket win.
“If we have to win this series, we need everyone to contribute,” Cook said after the match. “The lads have not performed as much as they would have liked in this game and they would be very disappointed. That’s cricket and we have to bat strong as a team.”
Cook said his team needs to improve a lot. “When you get beaten by nine wickets you have to look at a lot of areas. There was a small chance of saving the Test, but we could not take that today and that has cost us.”
Cook was pleased with his form, having scored centuries in all his three Tests as captain, the first two coming in Bangladesh in 2010. “I am very happy the way I batted, to score any hundred is special for England. To score in that situation made it even more special for me, but the result is really what matters at the end of the day.
“We were not good enough in the five days to win. We showed a lot of character towards the second half of the game. We got bowled out for 191 in the first innings and it was pretty much there we lost the game.”
Cook admitted that the think tank might have erred in leaving out Monty Panesar for the first Test. “I thought it was a very good wicket. It behaved better than we expected to. There was a bit for the spinners. We thought we did the right thing (by leaving Monty out). Results show we might have got it wrong.”
Cook was confident of his team scoring runs against the current Indian attack. “It’s just that we have to score in both innings and give ourselves a chance of winning the game,” he said. —With agency inputs