Talking wickets in India and against Indian batters is a huge challenge for a spinner, especially those from abroad. However, Australia’s Todd Murphy made the most of the opportunity, making a dream debut with a maiden five-wicket haul in the first Test against India at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium here on Friday.
Nagpur, Feb 10: Talking wickets in India and against Indian batters is a huge challenge for a spinner, especially those from abroad. However, Australia’s Todd Murphy made the most of the opportunity, making a dream debut with a maiden five-wicket haul in the first Test against India at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium here on Friday.
Bowling a consistent line and length and at a right pace, Murphy claimed 5/82 in India’s first innings, becoming the 17th Australian bowler and sixth spinner to claim a fifer on debut.
Murphy’s brilliant bowling helped Australia restrict India to 321/7 in their first innings at stumps on Day 2. The hosts though have a lead of 144 runs and will be pressing to extend it further on Saturday.
The off-spinner said it was a great experience to claim five wickets on debut and he had never hoped of such a thing when he got a surprise call for the India tour.
“Yeah, it’s been a pretty special couple of days and I supposed to top it off today with a fifer and they would probably yeah, more than I could ever hope for. And yeah, it’s gonna be something that I’ll look back on the rest of my life and be really proud of,” Murphy said at the post-play press conference at the VCA Stadium, here on Friday.
Murphy said playing in Sri Lanka with Australia A team last year gave him the confidence, which has resulted in him becoming a Test bowler. The 22-year old was getting ready to play club cricket in Darwin nice months back, unable to make his stateside. He admitted it has been a quick journey for him.
“Probably one of the biggest things for me was getting to go to Sri Lanka and being on that ‘A’ tour and had a little bit of success over there. I think that probably gave me the confidence that I needed going back to Australia that I was good enough to keep mixing it with first class cricketers.
So, you know, I think that trip away with, yeah being around some of the guys that have played Test cricket. We’re sort of observing everything and competing at the nets and then bowing together. I think I took a lot of confidence out of that and reflected and sort of went back and just, yeah, trusted myself a bit more and thought what I’ve got can be good enough,” said Murphy.
Asked about the experience of bowling to the Indian batters who are considered best players of spin, Murphy said he has not bowled to players from other countries to know the difference.
The spinner said one thing he noticed was that the Indian batters use their wrist a lot. He said it was a big challenge bowling to the Indian batters.
“They use their hands really well. They get their hands out in front and yeah, they got a lot of scoring options too. So always, yeah, really difficult challenge there and yeah, it was quite tough,” said Murphy.