Virat Kohli and his team had a tricky situation in the rain-curtailed third T20I against New Zealand on Tuesday. They were defending a total of 68 from eight overs against some of the most dangerous batsmen in the world. New Zealand would not have got an easier chance to win the series. The bowlers would find it difficult to control the ball as well.
India bowlers had to defending a total which was just over eight runs per over in a T20Is. It seemed difficult but the bowlers once again showed both their captain and opposition captain have praised it.
“In the second innings, they didn’t give too many boundary balls,” Kohli was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz. “We wanted our best bowlers to get done early and leave so many runs in the end they would be left with a lot. They executed the plans well.”
Kohli had to chose between Hardik Pandya and Kuldeep Yadav to bowl the final over and he picked the former. Bhuvneshwar Kumar had completed his two overs and Jasprit Bumrah had bowled the 7th over.
“We had the confidence in Hardik, whose off-cutters are good,” he said. “The wicket was damp tonight, so the ball was sticking to the wicket. I tried going up to him (in the final over), but after three balls he said, ‘I’ll do it, you don’t have to worry.’ As a captain, when you get that kind of confidence from your bowlers, you aren’t left with much to say. He has confidence in his abilities and he finished off the game well.”
Kohli also said that India’s winning run in recent past has been because of bowlers as they have performed in every game. Credit given to bowlers, according to Kohli, is less.
“They deserve a lot more credit than they usually get otherwise,” he added. “The game has moved forward as a batsman’s game, the shorter formats. When bowlers step up in the deciding games, it makes a difference. If you see, both teams got close to their totals, but it was the better bowling side which won the game.
“The game has boiled down to basically be that. If the wicket is not offering much to the bowlers, the team that bowls better usually wins it. Our bowlers have shown better nerves in tough situations, better than the oppositions for a while now. That is something that makes me very proud, and they are also very pleased with their efforts and execution of plans. We are quite confident where stand as a team, and as a bowling unit they definitely deserve a lot more credit for winning these past few series that they have, than they get usually.”