Henriques: Born in Portugal, made in Oz

India, Feb. 23 -- Think about Portugal and the first thing that comes to mind is Cristiano Ronaldo and football. But what will really amaze you is the country's connection with the gentleman's game. Moises Henriques, who became the 432nd player to don the Baggy Green, was born in the European country.

Henriques' family migrated to Australia when he was one-year old. This probably explains why Henriques prefers to be called an Australian.

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"I remember when I was a kid, my parents would talk to me in Portuguese and I would be very angry. I considered myself Australian and only wanted to speak in English," said the all-rounder who rescued his team with a vital 68 on Friday at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.

But the right-hander was not very happy with his maiden Test knock.

"I wouldn't say I was satisfied, to be honest. I felt I had to keep grinding away and was dismissed by the first loose shot I played. I would have been satisfied had I been not out overnight," he said.

Giving credit to the India spinners, especially R Ashwin, Henriques said it was tough to settle even after spending considerable time in the middle.

"It was tough to negotiate the spinners, it did not get easy. They were very disciplined and Ashwin's length was good all day and never gave too many bad balls," he said.

"Ashwin was getting a lot of over-spin and a fair bit of bounce. It is very hard to smother his deliveries," he said.

"He does not bowl a lot of bad balls and almost hits the same length all the time and is very hard to score of," said Henriques, who was finally dismissed by the off-spinner.

The pitch, according to him, has a lot of loose soil and would wear down by the third day. But, the first hour on Saturday would be crucial, "with a lot depending on skipper Michael Clarke, who is unbeaten on 103," he concluded.

Published by HT Syndication with permission from Hindustan Times.

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