TEST

February 22, 2018

International

The ability to leave deliveries outside the off-stump has helped Vijay become India’s No. 1 Test opener over the past few years.But in the Test series against South Africa in January, the Tamil Nadu opener failed in five out of the six innings and didn’t register a single half-century. More than his barren show, the uncharacteristic mode of dismissals – caught behind the wicket on four instances – was a worrying sight. Vijay, who was working with his coach G Jayakumar at the nets on Wednesday, put it down to shot selection. “In all the Tests, I had got in, played a few balls and had a look at the wicket. It all boils down to shot selection, which happens at that level. There were also good bowlers and the pitches were a little difficult. I hope to apply the experience I had gained in future,” said Vijay. Vijay had a great chance of making it count in the second Test at Centurion. But he let it slip away getting out for 46 in the first innings. “We could have won the series. We came up pretty well in the second Test but couldn’t finish it. It was a good learning as a team,” he said.

However, things turned around splendidly since the third Test at Johannesburg. Vijay feels the Johannesburg win has infused a firm belief within the team that they can do “something special” away and he attributed the historic ODI series win to the constant process and preparation methods. “Third Test was brilliant for us. It gave us the momentum and it made us believe even more that we can do something special abroad. Winning abroad is a special feeling. I’m proud of what the team has achieved in the ODIs. “It is down to the constant process, the way we are handling every practice session and preparations and that’s what people are witnessing now. As a team we are on the right path,” Vijay said. Opener ‘to sort out’ things Vijay, who felt the heat from TNCA after he failed to report to the ground after suffering a shoulder injury for a Vijay Hazare Trophy match against Mumbai earlier this month, expressed disappointment at the turn of events. “I just feel sad for whatever that has happened. Things could have been handled better. I’m set to talk with the TNCA officials soon and I feel things will be fine,” he said. And he further added: “I felt let down that my commitment was questioned and I was hurt. I love playing for Tamil Nadu.


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