5th ODI - Losing early wickets did us in, says Dhoni
The Indian captain rues that a good start could have set the tone for a successful chase but...cricket Updated: Nov 19, 2007 00:45 IST
Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni rued that a good start could have set the tone for a successful chase but they failed to recover from the early jolts in the fifth and final one-dayer against Pakistan.
"We lost just too many wickets inside 15 overs. Chasing a 300-plus score, you badly need a good start, which we did not have. After that, we were doing only trying to catch up. With the asking rate soaring, it was almost an impossible task for the lower order batsmen," Dhoni said after his side lost to Pakistan by 31 runs.
Chasing an imposing total of 307, India slumped to 62 for four inside 12 overs and could not recover from there. Eventually, the hosts were all our for 275 in 49.5 overs.
Dhoni has an unbeaten 183 in the same ground against Sri Lanka. Asked what went wrong on Sunday, Dhoni said, "The only thing wrong was that I got out."
He patted Pakistan for batting well in the middle over and felt that clinched the issue. "Outcome of a match depends on how you bat from the 20th to 40th over and I think they batted brilliantly in that stage.
"Our spinners did not get any assistance from the pitch. We played an extra batsman today and I think they exploited it well," he said.
Dhoni, however, was happy that some of the cricketers, who did not get to play in the series till now, could be tried out on Sunday.
"This was an opportunity to give chance to the bowlers and batsmen who have not played so far," he said.
On Rohit Sharma, who struck his maiden ODI fifty on Sunday, Dhoni said it was good to see the youngster do well in limited opportunity.
"It's quite difficult to perform when you are not playing regularly. I think he got a chance after 8-10 matches and still came good."
India and Pakistan will now meet for a three-match Test series where Anil Kumble would take over as the new captain for the hosts.
Asked about his reaction, Dhoni said, "Well, I'll get some rest I guess, some breathing space. It's not easy facing the media you know."
He said though he did not get much time to talk to Kumble, Dhoni hinted he would give his inputs to the Test captain on the Pakistani side.
Despite the defeat, Dhoni was at his jovial best. Asked what he lost and gained during the course of the series, he said," Well, I think we lost two Man of the Match awards, which they won. On what we gained, I think we won the series and the trophy."
On a more serious note, he said "I think they bowled better than us at the death and fielded slightly better too. We did everything well but in patches. We have to address that issue."
He said the forthcoming Test series would be a different ball game altogether and there was no question of underestimating the Pakistani side.
First Published: Nov 19, 2007 00:39 IST