India were scared: Dale Steyn

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Old 03-Apr-2008
India were scared: Dale Steyn

Although the Sardar Patel Stadium wicket at Motera here helped the South African fast bowlers considerably more than in Chennai, it was a result of no gameplan or strategy that saw hosts India flattened out for 76, Dale Steyn said on Thursday.

"Getting bowled out for 76 is the result of no game plan or strategy from the Indians. After they lost a couple of quick wickets, I think they were scared and they just didn't know what to do. It probably sent shivers in their dressing room after they lost a couple of wickets first up," Steyn said after bagging 5-23 against the hosts on the first day of the second Test.

Steyn revealed that even the visitors had thought of having a bat on the green Motera wicket, but turned out to be "a good toss to lose. We thought we will choose to bat and maybe guts it out in the first session and take it from there."

He added that their intention of keeping Sehwag on his back-foot did the trick for the Springboks. "Our gameplan against Sehwag worked. We pushed him back just as we wanted to and the follow-up delivery worked brilliantly for us. In fact not just for him, it worked for their entire batting order.

"We didn't do much different from the way we bowled in Chennai. Probably the wicket assisted us a bit more than there. I think after having a look at the wicket, the Indians just didn't want to come on to the front foot," said the 24-year-old.

Having already taken a firm grip in the second match of the three-Test series, Steyn said his side is yet to sit down and think about what sort of lead they will target.

The tearaway, who has now taken at least a five-wicket haul in all the tours to the sub-continent, said this was his best performance here. "I think Sehwag and Dravid's wickets were the most enjoyable. Dravid's dismissal was perhaps the ball of the innings."

Steyn said that the visitors knew of India's unhappiness with the preparation of the track. "From what I have read, probably they didn't get what they wanted. But then I don't know what convinced them to bat first," he said, putting all speculation to rest.

He also said that South Africa were pleased with the lead they had already gathered (147) by the end of the first day itself, and were not troubled even though they lost three quick wickets.

"We knew we needed a good partnership. With the kind of total India have put up, it's going to hurt them all the more by any sort of runs we manage over them. We need to give credit to the batsmen who have backed up really well. We already have a lead of over 140 with just four wickets down, which is golden for us. But we will have to add more to it and build pressure on the Indians.

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