As fast bowlers are expected to dominate on the bouncy pitches in Australia and New Zealand during the World Cup, India skipper Virat Kohli was pleased to see Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav getting into the groove during the series-opener against Sri Lanka.
Comeback-man Ishant and Yadav troubled the Lankan batsmen while the India batsmen scored heavily, posting a mammoth 363 for five.
“It was great to see some pace unleashed by India and it will be helpful in Australia. Great to see them hitting the line and lengths and bowl according to the field placements,” Kohli said at the post-match presentation ceremony.
Asked about his decision to take an early power-play, Kohli said he was confident that move will pay off.
“Taking the responsibility of leading a young side, I like it and it excites me, especially with the World Cup coming up. Taking the Powerplay early worked well today. I bounced the idea off Duncan when I was sitting next to him because both batsmen were well set,” he said.
On fast bowler Varun Aaron’s injury, Kohli said he did not want to take risk so he let him leave the field.
“Aaron struggled after the fourth over and I don’t know the extent of his injury. I didn’t want to take a chance and asked him to rest,” Kohli said.
Aaron could bowl only 25 balls. India opener Ajinkya Rahane was adjudged the Man of the Match for his 111 off 108 balls. It was his second One-day hundred
“Both my hundreds are equally important. The first 10 overs were slightly challenging but later on it got really easy for us. Shikhar and I really enjoyed batting in the middle,” he said.
Asked about his role as an opener, he said,”The team asked me to open so I was happy to open. I’m just thinking of this series right now. We’ve started really well and will take one game at a time.”
Rival skipper Angelo Mathews in the absence of paceman Lasith Malinga and spinner Rangana Herath. “Playing in India is always tough. We had to prepare as much as we could in the last seven days. It’s a learning curve or the bowlers. It’s an opportunity for all those who played
today because there’s not much experience in the camp. We let the batsmen off the hook after 10 overs. Rahane and Dhawan batted beautifully. Those two catches were crucial and Gamage looks like an exciting prospect,” he said.