New Delhi, Nov 25 (UNI) It is just a formality for Team India, but winning the first Test at the Feroz Shah Kotla here will surely give them the 'momentum' in the three-match Test series against Pakistan, feels opening batsman Wasim Jaffer.
Talking to reporters after the conclusion of the fourth day's play today, Jaffer said, ''If you get a lead in the three-match Test series, you always get the upperhand. Win here will provide us the momentum for the rest of the series.'' Team India is just one step away from winning the Kotla Test as they just need 32 runs to pocket the match when Sachin and Sourav come out tomorrow morning. Chasing Pakistan's target of 203 in the second innings, India have reached 171 for the loss of three wickets in 54.5 overs.
When questioned about what his captain had instructed them when they were coming out to chase Pakistan target today, the 29-year-old Mumbai batsman said, ''When we (Kartik and me) were ready to come, Kumble just told us to play positive and not bring any negative thoughts in mind.
''We never thought that we will get the runs today. If it had happened then it would have been great, but the entire fifth day is still there.'' When asked whether his selection of shot today was wrong or not, considering the fact that he did all the hard work in the initial stages, he said, ''My shot selection was not wrong. Its just that instead of trying to hit the ball in the ground, I could have played it in the air.
''But you have to agree that he (Salman Butt) took a good catch.'' Jaffer also came in support for his opening partner Dinesh Kartik, who had a miserable outing in the first Test, scoring just nine and one runs respectively in the first and second innings here.
''Coming out to open the innings is always a difficult job. We have to sympathise with Kartik. He played brilliantly in England.'' ''By mere one or two innings failure you can't judge a player. He will definitely comeback in Kolkata.'' He also rated his and Sourav Ganguly's innings in the second innings as special.
He also lavished praise on Kumble's captaincy and said, ''Giving Ganguly the new bowl in the middle was a good move.'' When asked about the dicey target of 203 set by the visitors Jaffer said, ''200 runs target was always chaseable. When we got early wickets in the morning, we knew we will restrict them below 250, which is always gettable in the fourth innings.'' UNI