Ahmedabad: India captain Virat Kohli Friday attributed his team’s defeat in the first T20 International against England to the batsmen’s failure to assess the pitch.
Kohli thought the batsmen needed to use the depth of the crease and ride the bounce, which only Shreyas Iyer (67 off 48 balls) could do.
“We were just not aware enough as to what we had to do on this kind of a pitch. I think [it was] lack of execution of shots that we tried to play out there in the middle. It is something that we have to address as batsmen. It wasn’t an ideal day on the park. You have to accept your faults and come back in the next game with a bit more intent and clarity of plans on what are the areas you want to hit,” Kohli said after the match, which England won by 8 wickets with 27 balls to spare to lead the five-match series 1-0.
“It was a strange kind of start for us. The wicket allowed you to hit the kind of shots you wanted to. I think Shreyas’ innings was an example of how you could use the depth of the crease and ride the bounce, because there was variable bounce at times. He hit in the areas square of the wicket, which the others failed to do. It was just a below par batting performance from us, and England made us pay,” said the skipper, who was dismissed for a duck by spinner Adil Rashid.
The 32-year-old skipper also said that Indian batsmen got ahead of themselves.
“If the pitch allows you to play those kind of shots, you can be aggressive from ball one. But probably we got ahead of ourselves, and didn’t spend enough time in the middle to assess the conditions. Shreyas did that but there were too many wickets down at that stage for us to get to 150-160. If we had eight wickets in hand at the end of 10 overs, we could have made a game of it,” Kohli said.
The skipper refused to attribute the loss to India switching over from Test cricket to the shortest format in a very short span of time.
“It is not tough to switch. We have done that in the past. I don’t think that can be a factor. We take a lot of pride in playing white-ball cricket. We won the last T20I series that we played. And the one before that. These fives games are the only games we have before the T20 World Cup. But we need to try out a few things as well. Having said that, you can’t take anything lightly, especially against England,” Kohli said.