Indian captain Virat Kohli lauded England’s mighty effort in the third ODI in a losing effort; however, he raised eyebrows at the man of the match and series awards. Sam Curran earned the man of the match in the third ODI for his valiant knock of 96 and Jonny Bairstow got the man of the series award for two significant scores of 94 and 124. But Virat Kohli felt that Shardul Thakur and Bhuvneshwar Kumar should have been the recipients of those accolades.
Shardul Thakur was the pick of India’s bowlers in the final ODI as he finished with figures of 10-0-67-4, dismissing Dawid Malan, Liam Livingstone, Jos Buttler, and Adil Rashid. The right-arm paceman also made an invaluable 30 runs, with India struggling after losing Hardik Pandya and Rishabh Pant after a 99-run stand. Thakur’s 30 included a boundary and two maximums to get the hosts to 329.
On the other hand, the new-ball seamer Bhuvneshwar Kumar was not only amongst the wickets but was also economical. The right-arm swing bowler had figures of 9-0-30-2, 10-0-63-1, and 10-0-42-3 in the three ODIs against England. Kumar made the ball seam and swing from the outset, making it challenging for the England batsmen to lay bat on it and preventing blazing starts. Thus, Kohli reckoned he could have been the man of the series.
These guys were the difference in middle overs and powerplay: Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli felt shocked that Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shardul Thakur did not come under consideration for the awards since he felt that both delivered compelling performances and made the difference in the powerplay and middle overs.
“I mean I’m surprised that he wasn’t the Man of the Match. Four wickets and scoring 30 runs and Bhuvi another contender for Man of the Series. These guys were the difference in middle overs and powerplay,” Kohli said in the post-match presentation.