To help Cheteshwar Pujara overcome the challenges posed by Australian left-arm spinner Steve O'Keefe, Anil Kumble tested the batsman by bowling left-arm spin in the nets. Pujara said that Kumble was trying to bowl the angling delivery into the right-hander and he was trying to adapt to it.
After taking over the charge of the Indian team last year, Kumble has adopted unorthodox techniques to eradicate the flaws in the Indian player's game. While batting coach Sanjay Bangar has been working on batsmen’s technique, Kumble has taken a keen interest in the same from a bowler’s perspective. In a bid to accustom Indian batsmen to play left-arm spinner Steve O’Keefe, who picked up 12 wickets giving away only 70 runs in the Australia’s first Test win in India in 13 years, Kumble went to the extent of bowling left-arm spinners to Pujara in practice.
BCCI (@BCCI) March 10, 2017
"As they have a left-arm spinner, Anil
"So I was just trying to get used to that angle as well. Sridhar was coming in from over the stumps, banging in short and just taking the ball away.
"It was really useful especially Sridhar, he was really accurate. Anil tried his best even though he is a right-arm bowler but he tried bowling left-arm spin and still was decent enough for practice."
During the practice session, Pujara managed to show his usual calm against Kumble as well but the latter still got the better of the Saurashtra batsman when he charged down the wicket.
"Yes, he did. He knew where to bowl, the ball pitched on the rough and I stepped out only to get beaten," said the batsman.
"I was just trying to work on it, getting used to the angle especially when the ball moves away. Just wanted to play close to the body and get used to the angle," added Pujara, who played a crucial 92-run innings in the second Test at Bengaluru.