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Great feeling to get five wickets in India: Zaheer

Our Correspondent | October 10, 2008 19:34 IST

Pacer Zaheer Khan [Images] believes India's bowlers did well to restrict Australia [Images] to 430 in their first innings in the first Test in Bangalore.

"First of all, we bowled to our plans. Once we analysed the conditions the plan was to make run-scoring difficult for them and we achieved that. I think the intensity was good right through," he added at the end of the second day's play in Bangalore on Friday.

Ricky Ponting [Images] (123) and Michael Hussey (146) hit maiden centuries on Indian soil, but Zaheer (5 for 91) and Ishant Sharma (4 for 77) limited Australia on a good pitch for batting.

"It's a great feeling to get five wickets in India. It is something special and I am enjoying it," the left-arm pacer added after claiming his sixth five-wicket haul in his 57th Test.

Zaheer took the last three Australian wickets to fall, in the space of two overs for the addition of just 10 runs. In reply, India got off to a confident start, posting 68 for no loss in 18.1 overs, with Virender Sehwag [Images] racing to 43, inclusive of seven boundaries, and Gautam Gambhir [Images] unbeaten on 20 by stumps.

"I definitely won't be able to say anything about the result right now. I wish I was in that position. But it's obviously not easy to bowl on this wicket. It's a bit on the slower side, the ball is keeping low. Let's see; it was important for us to have a good start and we have achieved that. No wicket at the end of the day. That's a big positive for us," Zaheer said.

The pacer added that he tried to be very aggressive in the morning session on Day 2, which didn't help his rhythm.

"I felt in the first session I couldn't get my rhythm going. Maybe, I was trying little too much in terms of length and all. I was looking to be a bit more attacking which didn't work. But in the second spell I decided to go slow," he claimed.

Zaheer also heaped rich praise on Ishant Sharma, his younger bowling partner, saying his extra pace adds a new dimension to the Indian bowling attack.

"He is really shaping up as a good bowler. He is working hard on his game; it is very encouraging to see a youngster coming up and doing so well. He is always ready to take responsibility, always ready to bowl his heart out, which is a great plus for Indian team. Bowling with him in tandem is always special because he adds that pace from the other end which is important," he said.

Complete coverage: Australia in India 2008

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