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Pandya is one for the future: Kumble

Pandya is one for the future: Kumble
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India all-rounder Hardik Pandya is one for the future as far as Test cricket is concerned and that is why it is important to keep him \"in the mix\", head coach Anil Kumble stressed on Tuesday ahead of the one-off Test against Bangladesh starting here on Thursday.

Hyderabad: India all-rounder Hardik Pandya is one for the future as far as Test cricket is concerned and that is why it is important to keep him "in the mix", head coach Anil Kumble stressed on Tuesday ahead of the one-off Test against Bangladesh starting here on Thursday.

The 23-year-old Pandya is yet to make his Test debut but has been part of recent India squads. "We want to keep Hardik in the mix because he is someone who has the ability to become a good all-rounder even in the longer format," Kumble said answering a question on why the 23-year-old was part of the team despite not featuring in any of the Tests so far.

"It's rare when someone can run in and bowl 140 kmph and bat in the lower middle order. He is not tested in the longer format but in future when we travel outside India, he will be someone we can probably look at," the 46-year-old former India captain said.

On their opponents Bangladesh, who had a harrowing time in New Zealand going winless in Tests, ODIs and T20Is, Kumble said they have good all-rounders and it will be a good contest.

Kumble said the aim would be to keep the momentum from the England series going ahead of the more important Australia series. Meanwhile, reminiscing his 'Perfect Ten' against Pakistan on this very day 18 years ago, Kumble said nobody gave him a chance to pick all the 10 wickets in an innings.

He said that he felt privileged to achieve the "rare" cricketing feat and be in Laker’s company. Back on February 7, 1999, Kumble returned epoch-making figures of 10/74 in 26.3 overs to hand India a remarkable 212-run victory over arch-rivals Pakistan at the Ferozeshah Kotla ground in Delhi.

Kumble, who emulated English off-spinner Jim Laker by picking all 10 wickets in an innings, termed such milestones as "unique". "When I sat in the dressing room I never thought I would go out and pick up 10 wickets," Kumble said laughing. "It's one of those things which happen. It's nice to celebrate anniversaries of cricketing milestones but if it happens it happens."

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