We have real spin power: S Iyer backs India to go in for the kill on day 5
- At stumps on day 4, New Zealand (4/1) needed 280 more runs to win
- Shreyas Iyer backed India's spin power to do the job
- We have real spin power, so hopefully we can get the job done tomorrow, the debutant said
Owing to the team management's assessment of the Greek park pitch, the Indian Cricket Team may have declared their innings a little bit too late after extending their overall lead to 283 runs on the fourth day of the first Test in Kanpur against New Zealand. However, super debutant Shreyas Iyer is of the opinion that the team has real spin power and will be able to beat the visitors on the final day of the contest.
India declared their second innings at 234/7.
In the four overs that India bowled, it managed to pick up the wicket of opener Will Young. Ravichandran Ashwin left the Kiwis reeling at 4/1 before bad light forced the stumps to be drawn. Now, New Zealand has a herculean task cut out for them.
If they have to win the encounter, they'll have to chase down a record score in the country since the West Indies' 276/5, dating back to 1987.
"To be honest, there wasn't much happening on the wicket. We needed to get to a competitive total, maybe around 275-280," Iyer said at the end of the day's play.
Iyer followed up his first-innings century with a 65 in the second to signal his arrival on the Test arena with a bang.
"The talk was to get to a competitive total and I feel that it's a really good total. We have real spin power, so hopefully, we can get the job done tomorrow. We have spin power.
"We have to have faith in our spinners and know they can really put them under pressure on the final day," Iyer said.
The Mumbai batter though added that the team would also have been content with anything above 250.
"I thought 250-odd including the lead was more than enough on this wicket, and fortunately we got some more."
Iyer bailed the team out from 51/5 in the second innings. He had faced a similar situation during a make-or-break Ranji fixture against UP at the same venue seven years ago. He had prevailed then, and he prevailed on Sunday, too.
"I have been in these situations before, but not with the Indian team. I used to do this in Ranji games. The idea was to play session by session. I was aware I am the first Indian to score a century and a fifty.
"In the end we have to win the match, and that would be the most important thing for me. Rahul sir said that I need to stay out in the middle for as much as possible and build on the score," he said.
"Mindset was to play the session and play as many balls as possible. I wasn't thinking too far ahead, was just focusing on the present," Iyer said.