With Tendulkar on song, little could we do: Prior

Still in awe of Sachin Tendulkar's century in the Chennai Test, Eng stumper Matt Prior said opposition can do precious little when the Indian gets going.

updated: December 17, 2008 10:17 IST
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Still in awe of Sachin Tendulkar's sublime century in the Chennai Test, England stumper Matt Prior said opposition can do precious little when the Indian gets going.

"He is a awesome player and it was a fantastic knock," an awe-struck Prior said.

"He is one of the best cricketers ever and when he fires like this, there is little you can do," said the England stumper after the team's nets at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium on Wednesday.

Tendulkar's magnificent ton, coming in the backdrop of the recent terror attacks in the city he hails from, has already led to an eulogy in the British press and "Little Lord" and "Mother Teresa of Cricket" were some of the sobriquets he earned from the English journalists.

More or less of the same view, Prior said keeping the wicket allows him to witness many a great knocks and Tendulkar's unbeaten 103 in Chennai would rank among the best.

Prior said the Chennai tie saw Test cricket at its best but it was "deflating" to lose the match after playing with so much of intensity.

"The defeat was hard. After five days of intense cricket, ending up on the losing side is really deflating," he said. "But we have got huge positives from the match and coming so close (to a win) was a huge plus for us," added the stumper.

Prior despite the defeat, his teammates were high on confidence and also played down the rib injury of captain Kevin Pietersen.

"We have come here full of confidence and KP is absolutely fine. I mean I have not seen him squirm a lot. I'm not the doctor but for me, he seems fine and in top form, as always," he added.

Prior admitted Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma troubled them in Chennai with their grasp of reverse swing but felt England would blunt the threat in the second Test starting here on Friday.

"We knew reverse swing would play a crucial role here in India. We did as much we could have. We practised playing reverse swing in Abu Dhabi. Of course they (Zaheer, Ishant) are fantastic bowlers but I think we can really improve on and take huge amount of experience from the previous match," he said.

Only time the otherwise chirpy Prior looked embarrassed when asked about the Stanford Super Series match during which his pregnant wife Emile was seen sitting on the lap of Texan billionaire Allen Stanford.

"See lot of stuff are hugely blown out of proportion. I mean I know this is modern day cricket where every move you make and everything you do is under scrutiny. I think you have to get on with it and ultimately you need to play cricket," he said.