India’s fielding coach R Sridhar admitted that the hosts’ catching has been below par in the ongoing Test series and praised the resolve displayed by the England batsmen in the fifth and final Test in Chennai and left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja for his adaptability.
The visitors rode on a sensational batting performance by Moeen Ali (120 batting) and Joe Root (88) to reach a commanding 284 for 4 at stumps on day one at the Chidambaram Stadium after opting to bat.
The visitors were aided by some missed opportunities on the field, including a catch of centurion Moeen.
“I would agree that our catching, especially our close-in catching, off pacers, behind the stumps, has not been up to scratch as far as this series is concerned. We have set high standards the last couple of years, and in this particular series, things haven't gone our way,” he told a news conference after the day’s play on Friday (Dec 16).
“It is a work in progress. There have been a few injuries for players in the series. We have changed personnel in the close-in cordon all the time. That is something we are working on. It is not an excuse, but it is something we have to get around. We are trying to manage the workloads, and the injury part as far as fingers are concerned. We are working hard to improve. We are sure to get better from here,” he added.
KL Rahul dropped Moeen early in the innings.
“It burst through his fingers over the head. Maybe his timing of the jump could have been better,’ 46-year-old Sridhar noted.
“But these things happen in cricket. It was a tough situation for England at that time, getting Moeen out early could have helped us because (during) the first hour there was little moisture in the wicket, later
Jadeja was the pick of the Indian bowlers, with figures of 3-73 off 28 overs. Sridhar lauded the spinner’s patience and endurance.
“I think on this wicket, the pace at which the