Cricket Australia Items/news/2013/3/5/doherty-finding-form

Relieved Doherty finding form

UPDATED 31 July, 2014 9:39AM AEST | by James Ranson, Omnisport 22

Australia spinner Xavier Doherty said it was a relief to break through on day three despite India maintaining control of the second Test.

Doherty faced a tough initiation in Hyderabad after replacing Nathan Lyon as Australia's sole spinner but admitted he was prepared for a grind.
Doherty mopped up India's tail on Monday with his first wicket coming 42.2 overs into his spell, but the hosts still lead by 192 after Cheteshwar Pujara's double century set the foundation for the hosts total of 503.
"We knew it was going to be hard, they're very good players of spin, but it's just about grinding away," Doherty said.
"Warney (Shane Warne) actually came down and spoke to the guys for the first Test and he averaged 45 over here, Murali (Muttiah Muralitharan) averaged 47 so some of the best bowlers in the world have struggled over here," he said.
Doherty and all-rounder Glenn Maxwell have come in for criticism as Australia managed just one wicket on day two, but they combined for seven on day three as the visitors cleaned up the last eight wickets for 116 runs.
"We came into today knowing we were up against it, knowing that we needed to put in a better day than yesterday," Doherty said.
"Today we took 9-190 (sic) which was a pleasing effort for today but the damage was done yesterday."
Doherty improved his figures to 3-131 and said it was pleasing to finally find some rhythm.
"Particularly with that close lbw, things just didn't seem to be going my way," he said.
"But to get a couple of wickets in the last five or six overs it was just more pleasing how the ball started to come out."
Doherty insisted a lead of 150 by the end of the fourth day will give Australia a fighting chance of winning or squaring the Test.
"You'd hope that we'd at least be in front by tomorrow and have someone at the crease ... 150 would be an ideal target but we just need to get through tomorrow," he said.
"Watching the two Indian guys today (Pujara and Murali Vijay), how disciplined they were yesterday and then again this morning, that's what we need to do.
"We've got some quality players at the crease and still to come if we can play like they did yesterday and absorb all the pressure we threw at them early and then score runs later on."

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 05 March, 2013 7:54AM AEST

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