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England 'level-headed' despite India defeat, says Stokes

By AFP

February 5, 2024 06:37 PM


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England skipper Ben Stokes said his team remained "level-headed" on Monday despite losing to India in the second Test, but questioned the call of DRS technology on Zak Crawley's key dismissal.

The tourists were bowled out for 292 chasing a record 399 on day four in Visakhapatnam as India bounced back from an opening loss to level the five-match series at 1-1.

"Being 2-0 up would have been great for us, but that's the great thing about a five-match series, it's the end of the series where everything counts," Stokes told reporters.

"We're a very level-headed team and that allows us to put things behind us, move on to the next thing and concentrate there."

Stokes, whose team handed India just their fourth loss since 2013 in the opener, said: "Last week we were pretty level even though we'd achieved something pretty special. We recognised that but we didn't get too high.

"Same this week, in the changing room we're still very upbeat about some of the great stuff we've managed to do albeit not getting the result we wanted to."

Opener Crawley stood out with his 73 as England came out attacking in their mountainous chase despite losing Ben Duckett on day three.

Crawley's lbw before lunch was a subject of contention.

The on-field umpire denied India's appeal off Kuldeep Yadav, but the hosts successfully reviewed the call.

The tracker showed the ball would have hit a large part of the leg stump, but Stokes said technology got it wrong.

"Technology in the game is obviously there. Everyone has an understanding of the reasons it can never be 100 percent which is why we have the umpire's call," said Stokes.

"But in a game full of ifs, buts and maybes, I am not going to say that's the reason why we haven't got the result we wanted. I'm just saying my personal opinion is that the technology has gone wrong on this occasion, and I think that's fair to say."

England lost Jonny Bairstow four deliveries later, but Ben Foakes and Tom Hartley then put on a stubborn stand of 55 to make the opposition earn their wickets.

Jasprit Bumrah finally broke the partnership, sending back Foakes and later the left-handed Hartley to wrap up the match, but Stokes said it was heartening to see his batters fight all the way.

"I thought Zak and Ben took the game to India in a pretty difficult situation, as it always is when you've not got a long time," said Stokes.

The third Test starts February 15 in Rajkot and the teams will take a break beforehand, with England flying to the United Arab Emirates for the week.


AFP


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