The Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly believes that middle order batsmen should take the innings forward. The Men in Blue were in dominating position when Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli were batting in the last match but the lower middle order was not able to finish the innings on a high.
The Indian team fell short by around 30 runs and it played out as one of the turning points of the match. The visitors kept losing wickets at regular intervals and thus they were not able to give a finishing touch to their innings. The rain break also didn’t help the tourists as they lost their attained momentum.
Middle order should be at the top of their game.
In the ongoing ODI series against South Africa, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli have done the bulk of the scoring. It is also noted that the middle order has not received many opportunities as the top order has done most of the job.
Sourav Ganguly wrote in TOI column, “Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli have continued their dominance with the bat and are really playing very well. The good thing when they bat is that the run-rate remains healthy. If either of them — more so Kohli — are dismissed early, then the others will have to take the innings forward. This didn’t happen in the last 15 overs at the Wanderers.”
The rain turned out to be a foe for the Indian team as the South African total was revised by Duckworth-Lewis method and the wet ball was harder to grip for the spinners as they took the bashing for the first time in the series.
Ganguly noted, “More than the number of overs, however, it is the rain that probably made it difficult for the Indians, especially the spinners, to bowl. Not that the spinners have turned the ball enormously in the previous three games of the series. Rather, it was a question of very poor batting by the South African batsmen which resulted in 21 wickets for the spinners. On Saturday, the moisture in the surface due to the rain actually allowed the ball to skid on to the bat and that helped the South African batsmen”.
The Indian team will have another opportunity to bag the series as they will take on the Proteas at Port Elizabeth. Men in Blue were able to break their jinx of Durban where they won their maiden match and it would be interesting to note whether they will be able to do the same at Port Elizabeth.