Published on: Jun 11, 2023
Team India captain Rohit Sharma reckons that the failure of experienced batters in the side to rise to the challenge cost them the World Test Championship (WTC) final against Australia at The Oval. Rohit opined that since the batters have experience of playing in England, they were expected to deliver, but added that the one-off game offers a different challenge.
India went down to Australia by 209 runs in the WTC final at The Oval on Sunday, June 11. Chasing an improbable target of 444, India folded up for 234 in their second innings. While Australia had two centurions in Travis Head and Steve Smith, not a single Indian batter reached three figures. Ajinkya Rahane’s 89 was the top score of India in the WTC final. Three Indian batters were dismissed in the 40s in the second innings.
Speaking at a post-match press conference, Rohit shared his views on India’s batting and said, “Now we have played two finals. You cannot really teach them how to bat in the little time that you have before the game. It’s all about getting yourself ready and how you can do that, it is completely up to you. I don’t want to be too critical about it – the reason I say that is because when we were here last time in (2021), a lot of the senior batters actually put their hand up and got us ahead in the series.
“Whether we played in Australia, we played in England, but yeah, like you said, this one-off game, if you’re mentally not there, you can lose a game. You know, and that is exactly what happened. We honestly wanted to give our best shot.
“Everybody prepared really well in the little time that we had, that is all you can do. But yeah, when you have in your top six, you know, five or six batters who have quite experience played in these conditions before and couldn’t go on to get big runs and that is what probably cost us the game,” he added.
Rohit also admitted that India will have to change their thinking as they plan ahead of the ODI World Cup, which will be held at home in October-November. Looking up to the big challenge, he said, “When the World Cup will be held in October, we will try to play in a different way. We will try to give people freedom and not think that we have to win this or that match. We have been thinking that this match is important, this event is important and things are not happening. So obviously, we will have to think differently and do things differently.”
India’s loss to Australia on Sunday means their wait for an ICC trophy continues. They last won one back in 2013 when an MS Dhoni-led side lifted the Champions Trophy.
–By A Cricket Correspondent