Yuzvendra Chahal let go of the ball following the 3-0 series win over West Indies in the T20s, to grab hold of the microphone on the team bus in Chennai. The spinner went around the bus interviewing members in the team and the team management following a tense encounter which resulted in a 6-wicket win for India on the last ball. Chasing 182 for win, Shikhar Dhawan and Rishabh Pant scored the bulk of the runs – 92 and 58 runs respectively – before a late dramatic finish ensued.
Here is how the interviews went on ‘Chahal TV’:
Yuzvendra Chahal: Hello and welcome to Chahal TV! Joining us today is Rohit Sharma following a series clean sweep. How does it feel?
Rohit Sharma: It feels great. We didn’t want to see the match go to the last over but such things happen in cricket. Winning is important and I’m happy with that outcome.
Chahal: Rishabh Pant. You looked quite tired at the end and went for an outlandish shot in the closing stages. What was the thought behind that?
Pant: I was trying to emulate the captain (Rohit) who plays innovative shots. I was impressed with the shots he plays but the captain does it better.
— Yuzvendra Chahal (@yuzi_chahal) 12 November 2018
Chahal: Now we have hero of tonight’s match – Shikhar Dhawan. Take us through your batting today – the wicket wasn’t turning much and it was slow. And then Rohit Sharma departed early.
Dhawan: After Rohit got out, KL Rahul also gave a good start to the chase. We dominated for two-three overs. When he got out, I knew one set batsman was required to stay in the middle. Rishabh and I batted with that thought. When I saw Rishabh hit well, I thought about joining him as well to ensure he doesn’t come under pressure.
Chahal: You were giving most of the strike to Pant. Was that a strategy between you both?
Dhawan: I saw that he was in the flow of things and he should continue to bat the way he was. Plus it was important for an experienced player to stay in the middle for a longer period. And since we were two lefties batting, they didn’t employ their left arm bowlers either. And then I was giving ideas and suggestions to Pant as well.
Chahal: Now we move on to one man who was extremely nervous and chewed his nails off – batting coach Sanjay Bangar. What would you like to say after seeing two set players do what they did today?
Bangar: Most important is that we won despite the big target. Shikhar Dhawan batted well and so did Rishabh Pant. The good thing is that in each match one batsman or the other has done the job. In the first match it was DK (Dinesh Karthik) who batted well even if a low tricky target and then we had lost wickets. In the second ODI, Rohit Sharma played well and in this one Shikhar did a good job. It wasn’t as warm as it is in Chennai but to play such a knock is a testament of the fitness.
Chahal: Now we go to Australia. Do you think my batting will be required?
Bangar: Oh definitely. You keep trying to bat and learn. But the problem is you get tired during fielding but don’t come on to bat. Maybe at this stage better to concentrate on the fielding and bowling than the batting.
Chahal: Manish Pandey. You came in at a crucial stage in the chase. Were you nervous?
Pandey: I wasn’t really hoping to bat – expected the set batsmen to cross the finishing line. That’s what we were thinking and was the team plan. But when I went in, the situation wasn’t really difficult. As dot balls crept in, everyone came under pressure – including myself. But we have been in such situations before and luckily we were in a fairly better place than Asia Cup recently. We have to learn from such situations and keep moving forward as a team.
Chahal: What were you trying to do on the last ball?
Pandey: It was only my fifth or sixth ball and the intention was to play it down with a straight bat. Luckily there was a misfield and then a single for the win. It is a great learning curve ahead of the World Cup.