We are still looking for answers: Rohit admits after loss

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06 Sep 2022 | 07:00 PM
authorAakash Sivasubramaniam

We are still looking for answers: Rohit admits after loss

Rohit Sharma also insisted that his side were 10-15 runs short on the night

Heading into their second Super four clash of the 2022 Asia Cup against Sri Lanka, India were on the cusp of elimination. Rohit Sharma made one change to the playing XI, replacing the young leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi with the experienced Ravichandran Ashwin. However, India’s batting just did not turn up on the day, against Sri Lanka. 

KL Rahul continued his dismal run, scoring just a seven-ball six while former Indian skipper, Virat Kohli was dismissed on a duck after four balls. Despite the contribution from Rohit, who hit a 41-ball 72 and Suryakumar Yadav’s 29-ball 34, India could only get to 173, a score that the Indian skipper reckoned was easily 10-15 runs on short. 

He also went on to add that losses like this, potentially India bowing out of the competition could help the team understand themselves better. 

“We just ended up on the wrong side, as simple as that. We could have capitalized on the first half of our innings. We fell 10-15 runs short. The second half wasn't good for us. The guys who were out in the middle can learn about what shots can be played. These things can happen. Losses like these will make us understand what works as a team,” Rohit stated after India’s loss against Sri Lanka. 

On the bowling front of things, Rohit uttered that it was a great effort. However, the two right-handers – Pathum Nissanka and Kusal Mendis – gave the Islanders a great start, forcing India’s plans to go awry. Rohit opened up on that phase, stating that Sri Lanka held their nerve. 

“With the ball, it was a good effort to take it to the last over considering the start they had. The spinners bowled aggressively and got wickets in the middle overs, but Sri Lanka held their nerve. We thought with the bigger boundary we could use the spinners well. But the plan didn't work out. Their right-handers batted for very long.”

Why did Rohit not use Hooda?

One question that bamboozled the Indian fans was India not using the off-spin option of Deepak Hooda. In the post-match presentation, Rohit clearly stated that Hooda was well within the plan but the bowling from the seamers forced him to not use the option. Heading into the T20 World Cup, Rohit insisted that they will most likely go with four seamers. However, trying out three-seam option was a test that Rohit wanted to challenge the bowling unit with. 

“I thought of bringing in Hooda and using the longer boundaries. But I was happy with the three seamers. Unfortunately Avesh hasn't turned up well in the fitness tests. He didn't respond well because he was quite sick. Ideally the combination we would play is four seamers, but three seamers was something we wanted to try before the World Cup. 

“We need to find answers as a team, like where we are with five bowlers. We know now where we stand with this combination. No long term worries, we have lost only two games back to back,” he added.

While India’s record under Rohit is still incredible, the loss in the Asia Cup definitely poses up a big question, are India really the favourites? Rohit believes that these games are a big learning curve for the team and revealed that they are still searching for answers. 

At the same time, Rohit backed the likes of Arshdeep Singh, Yuzvendra Chahal and Bhuvneshwar Kumar for the way they bowled throughout the tournament. 

“Since the last World Cup, we haven't lost too many games. These games will teach us. We wanted to put ourselves under pressure in the Asia Cup. We are still looking for answers. These were two back to back games of close finishes. Have to give a lot (of credit) to Arshdeep for bowling at the death and for the way he bowled. Chahal and Bhuvi are the senior pros and have been doing it for a while. I need to get answers from the younger ones.”

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