Former Indian Test specialist VVS Laxman opined that the Indian batsmen did everything right in the second ODI against England on Friday in Pune. Even though India set England a stiff total of 337 to chase, the latter successfully did it with six wickets and 39 balls to spare. While several experts lamented Indian batsmen’s conservative approach in the initial overs, VVS Laxman refuses to hold them responsible and instead believes the bowling department was.
Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma perished early, leaving Virat Kohli and KL Rahul to rebuild. Several experts pointed out that the duo did not attack England’s spinners much, even as they added 121 runs. It was after the 40th over that Rishabh Pant started to shift the momentum with his counterattacking knock, while Hardik Pandya also did it. There was also a half-century from Virat Kohli and a ton from KL Rahul; however, they consumed relatively too many balls.
VVS Laxman felt that 336 was a healthy total on the pitch and refused to blame the batsmen for the defeat. The 46-year old believes that even though KL Rahul and Virat Kohli were not hitting boundaries frequently, the pair laid the foundation by milking the ones or twos.
“India usually follow a template to get a mammoth total, and I thought 336 was a very good total to make. You can’t blame the batsmen (for the loss). In fact, that partnership between KL Rahul and Virat Kohli helped India to post such a big total, as even though they were not hitting boundaries, there were singles and twos taken,” Laxman told Star Sports.
They batted well, and I think it is the bowling that led India down: VVS Laxman
VVS Laxman observed that India and England follow different approaches. Laxman said that the latter’s outlook entirely changed after the 2015 World Cup, choosing to go after the opposition from the first ball and made more than 300 42 times. The 134-Test veteran claimed that India played to their strengths and that their bowling unit led them down.
“The character of the England team and the approach of the Indian team are totally different because if you see the England approach since the 2015 World Cup, they have scored 300+ runs more than 42 times, and they go all out right from the word go. So I think every team will have their own approach, and India played to their strengths. They batted well, and I think it is the bowling that led India down,” he added.