Words will be less to describe the sort of innings Dinesh Karthik played yesterday. It was a sensational knock of 28 off nine deliveries which helped India seal the Nidahas Trophy beating Bangladesh.
The Tigers were well in pursuit of their first T20I victory against India, but it was Karthik who destroyed their hopes and put their dreams to rest.
Bangladesh was well in control of proceedings when Karthik walked out n the middle. The Men in Blue needed 34 of the last 12 deliveries, and it needed a miracle to win the match for India. Karthik started off with a straight six of Rubel Hossain in his very first delivery. There was no stopping Karthik as he smashed the next two deliveries for a four and six respectively. From 34 off 12, the equation was down to 18 of 9 deliveries. India looked to seal the deal especially with Karthik at the crease.
Vijay Shankar who came in to bat earlier than Karthik found it pretty difficult to get going. He failed to find the gaps which added the pressure. Karthik smashed 23 runs in the penultimate over of Rubel which brought the target down to 12 of the final over. While speaking to India Today, Karthik said that there were a bit of nerve sitting in the dressing room but once he came out in the middle things got a lot calmer.
“A lot of times, a lot of the nerves happen when you are sitting in the dug-out. But when you walk out to the field, you feel a lot calmer and a lot more settled in your mind. I was in that zone where I was seeing the ball clearly and trying to execute the plans I had,” Karthik was quoted as saying by India Today.
The final over of the match was handed to Soumya Sarkar. He is a part-time bowler and with someone of Karthik’s stature in middle India were the favourites to win.
However, he bowled some good Yorker and conceding only three runs in the first three deliveries. Shankar managed to squeeze a boundary in the 4th delivery. However, he was dismissed in the penultimate delivery while going for a big shot. Karthik was left with 5 to chase of the final delivery. Keeping his calm, the wicket-keeper batsman deposited an outside the off stump delivery straight over the extra cover region for a huge six.
Karthik said that he realised that the bowler was also under immense pressure as he was in those dying stages of the match.
“As much as there was pressure on me as a batsman to score a boundary, there was pressure on the bowler too to not give away that boundary. I tried to be as calm as possible and keep a still head and go through the line wherever the ball came and I am happy I executed it well,” he said.
Team man Karthik credited the whole team for the victory. He added that he would be looking for more such opportunities to prove himself at the highest level.
“The team was expected to do well in this game and it was important we did well in this match. It was a great tournament not only on a personal level but for the entire team. These are great signs for Indian cricket and I am happy to be a part of it,” Karthik said.
The stumper further stated that regarding timing and the way it turned out, it would surely rank as one of his best knocks till date. He said that he would try to get better with each game.
“In terms of timing and the way it panned out, it was one of my better knocks in international cricket for sure. It’s everybody’s dream to keep getting better and keep performing for the country and I am no different. I will keep trying to do that.”
The Men in Blue came into the tournament without many of their main players. Kohli, Dhoni, Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar and Hardik Pandya all were rested. India began the series quite poorly losing the opener against Sri Lanka. However, they came back strongly to win the remaining four matches to lift the trophy.