India captain Rohit Sharma acknowledged the significance of playing high-pressure matches, like the Super 4 clash against Dasun Shanaka’s Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup 2023. He noted that such games challenge various aspects of their game, especially with the ODI World Cup 2023 on the horizon.
In the fixture against Sri Lanka, India won the toss and chose to bat, with openers Rohit and Shubman Gill providing a strong start. Rohit scored an impressive 53 off 48 balls, including seven fours and two sixes. Contributions from KL Rahul (39), Ishan Kishan (33) and Axar Patel (26) helped India post a total of 213 runs.
All ten wickets in the Sri Lankan innings fell to spin bowlers. Dunith Wellalage picked a five-wicket haul, Charith Asalanka took four wickets, and Maheesh Theekshana managed one. In pursuit of the target, Sri Lanka’s top order struggled, with Wellalage (42) and Dhananjaya de Silva (41) being the only players who put up a fight. However, they couldn’t guide their team to victory as Sri Lanka were bowled out for 172 in 41.3 overs. Kuldeep Yadav was India’s star bowler, taking four wickets. Jasprit Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja bagged two wickets each, while Mohammed Siraj and Hardik Pandya secured one wicket apiece.
With this commanding 41-run victory, Rohit’s leadership has steered the team into the Asia Cup 2023 final with four valuable points in their possession. The upcoming final, scheduled for Sunday, will see them face either Pakistan or Sri Lanka, depending on the outcome of their Super Four clash.
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Rohit Sharma expresses satisfaction with the intense and high-stakes nature of the match
In the post-match presentation, Rohit conveyed his contentment regarding the demanding and high-pressure nature of the game they had just played. He underscored the team’s eagerness to face more challenges on such testing pitches as a means to better understand their strengths and weaknesses.
“It was a good game. For us also to play a game like that under pressure on a slightly challenging pitch. Challenging in a lot of aspects. Definitely looking to play on pitches like this to see what we can achieve, we might as well come here and play on pitches like these,” Rohit said.
Rohit Sharma commends Hardik Pandya and Kuldeep Yadav
When the topic of Pandya’s bowling came up, Rohit lauded the all-rounder’s tireless efforts and dedication to improving his skills over the past few years. Additionally, he showered praise on Yadav for his unwavering commitment and remarkable performance as a bowler.
“He’s (Hardik) worked hard on his bowling over the last couple of years, and it’s pleasing to see how he bowled that spell. Not an easy target to defend. The pitch got slightly better towards the end so we had to hold our nerve and bowl consistently,” the 36-year-old further added.
“(Kuldeep) Again for the past year or so bowling well. He’s worked hard on his rhythm and you can see the results in the last 15 ODIs he’s played. He gives us a lot of options. So going forward it’s a pretty good sign”, the Nagpur-born concluded.
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