Kolkata: With the Eden Gardens pitch affording swing with the old ball, Indian opener Gautam Gambhir on Wednesday said host pacers Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma will have a crucial role to play on day two of the Test match against England here.
"We saw [James] Anderson reversing the ball. We have got some very good bowlers in Zaheer and Ishant who too can reverse the ball. If they are on song, England will be in problem," Gambhir told media persons at the end of day one at the Eden Gardens. "Zaheer is a master of reverse swing. If he gets going, it will be difficult for England. The wicket has something for everyone, especially pacers who can reverse swing. It was reversing big, so tomorrow Zaheer and Ishant will have a crucial role to play," he said.
Opting to bat first, India were 273 for 7, with Sachin Tendulkar (76) and Gambhir (60) the top scorers. Conceding that India lost two more wickets than they should have, Gambhir rued the batsmen's inability to convert good starts into big scores. "We lost two wickets too many. But if we still can score in excess 300 or close to 350, it would be a challenging total.
"It was essential that those who got starts converted them into big scores. Me and Sachin should have gone on to make a big score. I am disappointed more from the team's point of view rather than personal," he said. "We did not do well. This is no more a learning stage for us but a stage to deliver," said Gambhir.
He was all praise for Anderson who got the ball to reverse prodigiously, picking up three wickets in the process.
Gambhir, who was involved in a run out with his opening partner Virender Sehwag, conceded that the Najafgarh man's wicket did play on his mind. "Sehwag was hitting the ball well and it was a crucial wicket. The third run was risky and it was taking a chance against the arm of the fielder. The run-out did affect me mentally," he added.