Blame me for defeat in the second Test, insists Panesar

 

In an astonishing confession yesterday, Monty Panesar took the blame for England's dismal defeat in the second Test. Since Panesar took six wickets in Pakistan's second innings and was also the not out batsman in England's inexorable decline to 72 all out, it was an unexpected mea culpa.

But Panesar, who made his return to the Test team after almost three years and 29 matches, insisted it was a fair cop after his return in the first innings on a turning pitch. "I should have taken wickets at a quicker rate," he said. "Thirty-three overs with one wicket possibly cost the match."

Panesar might have made more of the circumstances than his 1 for 91 but, after such a long international absence, it was always probable that he would take time to rediscover his rhythm. He re-established his partnership with the off-spinner, Graeme Swann, who took over from him as the side's leading (and usually solitary) spinner early in 2009.

The pair spent four years as a spin partnership at Northamptonshire, starting in 2001 when they each took eight wickets in a 202-run win against Leicestershire.

"I have got to go away and learn how to take wickets quicker," Panesar said. "In the first innings Swanny carried me. He has been great for me. I have always enjoyed the partnership with him."

These are beneficial times to be a spinner in Test cricket. The Umpire Decision Review System has opened up a new world of possibilities and as Panesar pointed out it is not simply lbw that is in greater play.

"I think DRS in general has had an impact on all spinners," he said. "Batsmen can't play defensively with the pad. You have got to use the bat and it's bringing the outside edge and the inside edge into play. That is keeping the finger spinners in the game a lot more and umpires are beginning to see that the ball hits the stumps more often than you thought it would."

Panesar seems certain to keep his place for the third Test, which starts in Dubai on Friday. If it is played on the same surface as the first match in the series at the International Cricket Stadium it will offer both sets of spinners cause for optimism.

It would be perverse for England to change the bowling, especially as, despite Panesar's protestations to the contrary, it was the batsmen who cost England the game in an oddly inert collapse. Whereas in the first innings of the first Test, when Saeed Ajmal prompted their downfall, they played too many shots, in the second innings of the second Test in Abu Dhabi they played too few.

Nobody is saying much as yet but Ravi Bopara must come into serious consideration for a place. England have confirmed that they are not replacing the injured Chris Tremlett – making Panesar's participation more likely. There are two spare fast bowlers, Steve Finn and Graham Onions.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory