Mirpur: India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni feels that the 22-yard-strip at the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium is certainly “not ideal” for the batsmen to try and practice attacking shots keeping the ICC World T20 in mind.
“We thought it will be very good practice for T20 World Cup but in terms of hitting maybe it is not. But when it comes to reading the game and respecting conditions, it is good for us,” Dhoni said after India defeated Pakistan in a low-scoring game where 15 wickets fell in 33 overs.
“Whether it is good (advertisement) for T20 cricket is difficult one to answer with so much of bounce and movement. In games over here, it has been very difficult to come out and play big shots. In one game, we scored 170 but it seemed like we would score 140, because of the firepower in our batting and few good overs, we managed, to reach 170. Otherwise all other games have been low-scoring ones, which is not good,” Dhoni was frank in his assessment.
Dhoni also agreed that scores like 80’s and 100’s are not what people come to see in a Twenty20 game.
“You know people love T20 for the sixes and the fours and at the same time you don’t want 80’s and 100’s to be scored. Low scoring should be 130-135 and high scoring games could be anything between 200 and 240. But in a way it is good for us (chasing 84), as we are a side that plays aggressive cricket.
“In a way it pushes (forces) us to respect the conditions. In the coming games, our openers will not go with a set mindset like what happened in Australia. We knew the wickets were so good that we knew even if there is a bit of movement, you can play on the merit of the ball or the bounce which is not case over here,” he said.
He expressed happiness that Virat Kohli has time and again shouldered extra responsibility in pressure situations but refused to draw comparisons about whether the Delhi batsman was the best India has ever produced in crisis situations.
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“Why it is always that we have to come to comparisons. Others also have performed and I don’t believe in comparing individuals. I have captained for more than five years and I can’t recall amount of pressure each individual takes. He (Kohli) has been very consistent for us and ready to take extra responsibility,” Dhoni said.
Dhoni also praised Yuvraj’s Singh gritty inings last night and feels more than amount of runs scored, the number of balls faced was important.
“The condition was tough. You have to always consider, people batting down the order, there is a pressure of losing wickets. More you go down, the pressure increases. For me more than the runs he scored, how many balls Yuvraj faced was crucial. He got beaten a few teams but tried to play shots. It will give him a lot of strength. Hopefully he will get a chance to express himself in better conditions,” the skipper said.
Dhoni said that chasing 84 wasn’t easy considering it was a middle of the road target.
“It is one of those targets where you are confused whether you should attack or wait. Glad we restricted them to 84 which made it easier for us. Since there wasn’t much dew, the first 4-5 overs, which were crucial, was extended by a few more overs. In these pitches, it seems that 135-140 is a good score but today it seemed 120 was good score.
“The ideal length on this track is just ahead of three quarters, and if you could hit the seam, you will get movement,” he signed off.