'Adil Rashid wasn't given new ball for Virat Kohli': Graeme Swann reveals England's 'masterstroke' in 1st T20I vs India

  • Former England off-spinner Graeme Swann, said Adil Rashid wasn’t given the new ball keeping Virat Kohli in mind but he was asked to start the proceedings to keep Shikhar Dhawan in check as the left-handed opener likes pace on the ball at the start of his innings.
India v England - Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad, India - March 12, 2021 India's Virat Kohli walks off after losing his wicket(REUTERS)
India v England - Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad, India - March 12, 2021 India's Virat Kohli walks off after losing his wicket(REUTERS)
Updated on Mar 13, 2021 06:46 PM IST
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England’s decision to open the bowling with leg-spinner Adil Rashid worked wonders for them in the first T20I against India in Ahmedabad. Rashid not only started off with a two-run over but he came back in the next over to get India captain Virat Kohli out for a duck which really pushed the hosts on the backfoot after England decided to sent them in.

Former England off-spinner Graeme Swann, however, said Rashid wasn’t given the new ball keeping Virat Kohli in mind but he was asked to start the proceedings to keep Shikhar Dhawan in check as the left-handed opener likes pace on the ball at the start of his innings.

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“I think Adil Rashid was bowling in the powerplay for Shikhar Dhawan. England have an idea that Shikhar Dhawan likes to play that big slog sweep and he likes pace on the ball early on. So he (Rashid) was not actually on for Virat Kohli but as it turned out, it became a masterstroke. It wasn’t that delivery (from Rashid) that got him out. It was the balls before he faced from Archer, a snorting short ball,” Swann told Star Sports.

Rashid got one to hold on the wicket in the third over of the Indian innings and Kohli, who wanted to stamp his authority early on in the match, gave a simple catch to mid-off while trying to manufacture an attacking shot out of nowhere.

This is not the first time Rashid has got the better of Kohli. The leg-spinner had got the India captain out twice in the ODI series in England last time around too.

England were all over India in the series-opening T20I, winning the match comfortably by 8 wickets to take a 1-0 lead in the five-match series.

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After opting to bowl first, Archer and Wood were on the money to restrict India to 124 for 7 and then Jason Roya (49) led England’s charge with the bat to finish off the match in 15.3 overs.

Swann said England’s plans with the ball were very good and India, on other hand, were a bit too eager to play shots without getting their eyes in.

“England’s plans were very very good. They used the pace of Wood and Archer. England were very clever. India on the back of Virat Kohli's comments… He said he wanted his team to be brave and maybe they were a bit too eager. It’s difficult when you’ve not played much T20 cricket recently to get into the rhythm of things straightaway. The first thing England did was to win the toss and bowling first. It allows you to settle into the game and it’s very hard to set a total (in T20s) rather than chasing it,” added Swann.

The two sides will again meet for the 2nd T20I on Sunday.

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Wednesday, December 08, 2021