Kumble bowler first, then captain

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/a/anilkumble2.jpg' class='caption'> Anil Kumble on Tuesday stressed that the additional responsibility of captaining India would not have any adverse effect on his bowling.

Updated: December 28, 2007 13:01 IST
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Anil Kumble on Tuesday stressed that the additional responsibility of captaining India would not have any adverse effect on his primary role of being the spin spearhead as his side takes on Australia in the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne on Wednesday.

"I don't forget for a moment that I am a bowler first and then a captain. The team does well when I play my part as a bowler," remarked a typically sedate, in-control Kumble.

Kumble also dismissed the query out of hand that in the three Tests he has been captain, he has tended to underbowl himself.

"I was told by my physio the other day that on an average on all days of the Tests against Pakistan, I bowled 10 overs a day (or 50 in a Test). He said he wouldn't mind if I didn't do anything in between. So that settles the question," he said.

Kumble would need to keep his right arm turning over against an Australian batting machine which comes out firing against all opponents in all conditions.

"We have plans to put a brake on their rate of scoring. Our bowlers need to bowl in the right areas and keep them in check. I am positive and can't see any reason why we wouldn't do well," he said.

Lest anybody entertained the idea that Kumble would have a defensive mindset for the series, like the Bangalore Test against Pakistan, the 37-year-old cricketer made it clear that his team would come out firing on all cylinders.

"We were not defensive in Bangalore. If we have a similar situation in future, I would again do what I did in Bangalore.

"When we bowl we bowl with the intention to pick 20 wickets in a match. People watch the game and draw their own conclusion. As far as we are concerned, we are looking at the strength of the two teams. We are always thinking how we can get the results," he asserted.

"At the end of it, we would like to go and play aggressive cricket and get the right results."

Kumble was a relieved man with no worry on count of fitness and he declared both Zaheer Khan and RP Singh as his key bowlers for the series.

He also stressed that it was important his batters put enough runs on the board for his bowlers to come into play.

"If we can do it, we are quite capable of bowling them out twice in a game," he said.

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