Hardik Pandya at post-match presentation ceremony© Twitter
The Indian cricket team started off the 5-match T20I series against West Indies on a losing note, suffering a 4-run defeat on Thursday. The thrilling encounter saw the Indian batting unit underperform, with no batter barring the debutant Tilak Varma managing to play with the sort of confidence that was expected from the Indian team. After the game, skipper Hardik Pandya admitted that the fact that the team kept losing wickets at regular intervals, without putting in decent partnerships, made things difficult for them.
“We were right in the chase and quite comfortable there. We made some errors which costed us the game which is fine. A young team will make mistakes. We will grow together. Throughout the game, we were in control of the game which was the positive in this game. Good four games coming ahead,” he said.
Hardik admitted that keeping wickets in hand is the key to chasing down any total. After India lost both Hardik Pandya and Sanju Samson in the 16th over, the momentum sharply turned in the favour of the hosts. It became incredibly difficult for Indi to recover despite the fact that Axar Patel was still left to bat.
“In T20 cricket, if you lose wickets, it becomes difficult to chase down any total, that’s exactly what happened. A couple of hits can change the momentum towards you. When we lost a couple of wickets, that halted our chase. It (playing three spinners) was more to do with the conditions. We would like to give opportunities to the two wristies (Kuldeep and Chahal) to play together. Axar adds a very good component in his batting as well. We felt that was the right combination. Mukesh (Kumar) – to have this two weeks which he has had in West Indies – where he made debuts in all three formats is really good. Genuinely, he’s a nice guy. He has a very good heart, wants to contribute for the team. He bowled a couple of overs back to back and that was fantastic,” said Hardik.
With 4 more games to go in the series, India would hope to have the team fire as a unit sooner rather than later.
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