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Anil Kumble defends Murali Vijay despite short-ball weakness

Posted By: PTI

Mumbai, Dec 6: India's chief coach Anil Kumble feels that it is "unfair" to pinpoint senior opener Murali Vijay's recent spate of dismissals to "short deliveries" as his "weakness".

Series schedule; Photos

"Vijay has been one of our most consistent batsmen in the last couple of years. He has started off the series very well with a 100 at Rajkot and yes, he has got out to similar deliveries, which probably you can start pinpointing as his weakness, but I don't think that's fair. He is someone we believe is just round the corner to get a big score," Kumble was firmly behind the seasoned opener.

Murali Vijay

The coach said that the team management is trying to help him out during nets, but there was no need to delve deeper into the issue.

"When we go out there at the nets, we try and help him (Vijay) with that kind of delivery. But I don't think we need to go too deep into why he's getting out that way. It's just a matter of time where he will start scoring runs. We certainly believe it's just round the corner."

India's opening woes have continued in this home season with Shikhar Dhawan losing form and then getting injured. KL Rahul had an injury lay-off while Gautam Gambhir also failed miserably. Kumble said he is happy for the fact that the team has been doing well without a settled opening pair.

"That's not in our control as injuries are part and parcel of the game. Ideally yes, we would like a settled pair, but I think under the circumstances we have done really well. Unfortunately (KL) Rahul got injured (shoulder) while fielding in Vizag (in the second Test against England). Parthiv (Patel) came in, in the last game (at Mohali) and did a fantastic job," said Kumble, ahead of the fourth game of the series against England commencing here two days later.

According the coach, he is confident that the Mangalore lad will make it in the final team.

"I am sure Rahul will have a hit today and he should be fine. Let's see how it goes. We had three different opening pairs against New Zealand (in the previous home series won by India 3-0) and even in the West Indies (Murali) Vijay got injured.

"Then Shikhar (Dhawan) got injured against New Zealand. Gautam had a freak injury in Indore against New Zeland, but he could bat. So I think something is happening with openers in terms of injury and I hope that it does not go on. There should be some stop at some stage," he said.

PTI

Story first published: Tuesday, December 6, 2016, 17:06 [IST]
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