Indian opener Shikhar Dhawan provided insights on how Team India went about planning their eventual successful run-chase of 195 in the second T20I against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Dhawan, who scored a match-winning half-century, said that the plan was to initially get their eye-in in the first couple of overs and then take calculated risks.
India scored just 9 runs in the first two overs before the duo of KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan went beserk, scoring 51 in the remaining four overs of the powerplay.
“The only talk we had was to stay positive after seeing the first couple of overs because the pitch had a little extra bounce. The pitch was quite good, we had scored 8-9 runs in the first couple of overs and after that, we knew our strength and we backed it and made runs from there.” Shikhar Dhawan said during a post-match interview with Sony Sports network.
Former opener-turned commentator Virender Sehwag asked Dhawan whether he was feeling some sort of pressure due to a string of low scores in the last three matches. The southpaw responded by saying that he always backs his strengths during such times and his confidence hadn’t dipped one bit.
“Yes, the runs were not coming in the last couple of matches but it was not that the confidence was less. I always talk to myself positively and back my strengths.” Shikhar Dhawan said.
“I went in with that positivity and I batted well today in a calculative fashion. It was a good win as it is a big thing to chase 195 runs, especially against Australia. So, it felt very nice and everyone played their roles well.”
T20 series ✅ Special effort by the team ?? pic.twitter.com/yjNkq0n6NS
— Shikhar Dhawan (@SDhawan25) December 6, 2020
‘The aim was to get our eye in’- Shikhar Dhawan
Mohammad Kaif then asked the southpaw whether the opening duo’s plan was to go hung-ho at the outset or to save the wickets and lay a platform.
Dhawan responded by saying that the aim was not to approach the powerplay with a defensive mindset but to play as per the merit of the ball.
“As an opener, the aim was to get our eye in but not with a defensive mindset and play on the merit of the ball, whether it was swinging or not. After that, we planned to take calculated chances.” Dhawan added.
The veteran opener signed off by saying that given the fact that India had already got off to a good start by smashing 60 runs in the powerplay, they could afford to play 1-2 overs normally as the pressure was already on the Aussies.
“Like today we had 60 runs in 6 overs, so once you are ahead of the game even if we have a couple of normal overs, it is not a problem and pressure keeps coming on the bowling side.” he signed off.
Shikhar Dhawan top-scored for the visitors with an enterprising knock of 52 which laid the platform for an eventual Indian win.