We need to re-think our strategy to handle Murali, Mendis: Kumble

Colombo, Jul 27 (UNI) Blaming ''weak strategy'' for their highest ever defeat in 34 years here by Sri Lanka, Indian captain Anil Kumble said his team needed to look at their strategy to handle the spin duo of Muttiah Muralitharan and Ajantha Mendis.

''We need to look at our strategy in handling (Muttiah) Murali and (Ajanta) Mendis. We have to be a little more positive.

They bowled exceptionally well and we did not bowl well,'' Kumble told mediapersons at the end of the match.

Muralitharan and debutant Mendis shared 19 wickets, as the Lankans won by an innings and 239 runs in the first Test here.

''We need to work on all three departments of the game. We dropped a few catches, Mahela Jayawardhene was dropped and so was Thilan Samaraweera. Zaheer Khan got Malinda Warnapura off a no-ball. We had to bowl well and also ensure we held the chances that came our way,'' the Indian captain said.

However, Kumble was confident that the experienced Indian batting line-up could turn things around in the next Test in Galle.

''They are players who have played for more than 15 years and you can't get a more experienced line-up than this,'' he said.

''We have come back well in the past and it is the same them that has brought some wonderful results. I am confident we will come back,'' he added.

India, who managed only 223 in the first and 138 in the second innings of the game in reply to Sri Lanka's 600 for six, crashed to their heaviest defeat since 1974, their third biggest defeat in Test cricket.


Story first published: Tuesday, July 29, 2008, 15:11 [IST]
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