India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni says the target England set for them was very much achievable but soft dismissals scuttled their chances in the fifth One-dayer.
Dhoni himself was guilty of gifting away his wicket when he chased a wide delivery from Ben Stokes and handed an easy catch to Steven Finn.
India were all out for 253 in a chase of 275.
“We gave away too many wickets, quite a lot of soft dismissals, and because of that we were not able to chase the runs. Shikhar, Ambati, myself, we should not have lost those wickets, in the last ten overs we can get those runs but we lost soft dismissals,” Dhoni said at the post-match presentation.
Dhoni reiterated that Indian bowlers need to do better in the death overs.
“We need to improve our slog, the last ten overs with the bowling, Shami has done a good job but other fast bowlers need to step up. We don’t want to concede so many we can’t chase them down,” he said.
The Indian skipper said keeping everyone fit was the “most difficult thing ” on this tour.
“England tour has been 77 days, then we go to Australia before the World Cup, so it will be important to stay fresh.”
India’s Suresh Raina was named Man-of-the-Series for his terrific run spree in the series
“It was good, I’ve worked hard on my batting, watching the Tests on TV. We got the belief in the one-dayers. I worked hard on the mental side and my fitness. Looking to bat positive, the circumstances and who you are batting with.
“The World Cup is around the corner, we need to stay positive. We’ve worked hard on our game and this group has won us the series. The fielding creates a positive environment in the circle and that has been important.”
England captain Alastair Cook was a relieved man after the win as he was under fire for England’s pathetic show in the One-day series.
“That’s a far better performance, and that’s what we can play like. It’s frustrating not to play like that before. Joe showed what he can do and that’s what we’ve been missing in our batting. We’ve got a lot of 20s and 30s, the first time a guy goes on and gets a hundred we have a better chance,” Cook said.
“You saw how hard it was to chase down 300. We just played better, we didn’t want to lose 4-0. In the first game, we were 50 for 0 off nine overs, but we needed to build more big partnerships. They were two down by the first ten and we were ahead of the game. This is the first time we’ve got a massive chunk of one-day cricket and we can focus on that,” he added.
The England skipper hoped that their run up to the next year’s World Cup would be perfect.
“We’ve got a bit of a break, then Sri Lanka, batting against spin, then the tri-series in Australia. So preparation will be perfect and hopefully we can improve and show it at the World Cup.”
Joe Root was named Man of the Match for his magnificent 113-run knock which laid the foundation for England’s big total.
“It was a tough start with, then the conditions got a bit easier, and it was good to take it on. I tried to think not too much and play on instinct. We knew it would spin, spoke to the guys who’d played county one-day cricket here, nice to see what we worked on go well, that’s a positive.”
About his partnership with Jos Buttler, he said, “I enjoy playing with Jos and the way he played kickstarted the back end of our innings.”