Rohit Sharma has spoken in defence against the flak received by the pitch at the Narendra Modi Stadium after the day-night Test ended in a little over 5 sessions with India registering a 10-wicket triumph over England.
The Test match ended in 842 deliveries – the shortest completed Test in terms of balls since 1935 – as England registered their lowest ever innings total of 81 against India.
With 28 of the 30 wickets to fell in the game going to spinners, and the pitch offering turn from Day 1, several experts and former cricketers – mostly English and Aussie – have once again, similar to their views of the second Test in Chennai, have come down with severe criticism of the pitch.
However, the Indian players are not taking any of that, as two of the senior batsmen, skipper Virat Kohli and opener Rohit Sharma have, in clear terms, said that it was the batters who were at fault.
You just need to apply and keep concentrating: Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma, who played two exemplary knocks of 66 and 25*, opined that the surface didn’t do many sorts of things – instead, the batsmen from both sides should have applied themselves better and needed more focus to survive.
Rohit pointed out that the batters were dismissed more from the straighter deliveries than the ones which turned – implying that they read the ball incorrectly and played down the wrong line or the inappropriate shots.
“To be honest, on a pitch like that.. the pitch didn’t do anything. If I can recollect, most of the batsmen got out to straighter deliveries. Not just them, we, as a batting unit, made a lot of mistakes. We didn’t bat well in the first innings,” Rohit Sharma said during a virtual press conference.
“The pitch had nothing as such, no such demons as we call. It was a nice pitch to bat on, once you’re in, you can score runs as well. But again, you just need to apply and keep concentrating on a pitch like that. To score runs, you need more concentration on a pitch like that,” the opener added.
The Indian captain as well in the post-match ceremony aired his views loud and clear – indeed he termed the pitch as ‘very good’ and lamented the lack of application by batsmen from both teams.
“[It was] a very good pitch to bat on – especially in the first innings – and it felt like the ball was coming on nicely with the odd-ball turning. It was just, I would say, below-par batting from both teams. Our bowlers were much more effective and that’s why we got the result,” Virat Kohli said.