Asia Cup 2018, India vs Pakistan: Sunil Gavaskar warns India against complacency, praises skipper Rohit Sharma
Former India skipper Sunil Gavaskar believes that Rohit Sharma has been a delight in the ongoing Asia Cup in the UAE, both as a batsman and as the leader of the blue brigade. While Rohit has scores of 23, 52 and 83* to show for his batting, the fact that India remain undefeated in the tournament shows how Rohit has taken to the role of captaincy likes fish takes to water.
“The skipper Rohit Sharma has been canny enough to realise that on these surfaces the slower bowlers will be far more effective than the quicker ones and so has used them smartly. He also has a point to prove for his omission from the Test team and is doing it in his own classy style. There are few better sights in cricket than Rohit Sharma in full flow. Along with Shikhar Dhawan they make the most exciting and destructive opening pair in the world. Both complement each other and take the pressure off each other,” he wrote in the Times of India.
Gavaskar feels that the Indian team has hit the cruise button and have been on a roll in this tournament. The former opener feels that the bowling needs to be credited for this performance of the Men in Blue.
“India are on cruise control in the Asia Cup. Though they were stretched in the first game against unfancied Hong Kong, they upped their efforts and through their bowlers’ splendid efforts are now finding themselves with small targets to chase. There has been no respite for the opposition from India’s pacers, who have kept such a tight line and length that it’s been virtually impossible for the batsmen to break free.
“Then the spinners come on, while the batsmen get the odd big hit but get tempted for another one and are gone. Then there’s Kedar Jadhav, who with his various delivery points creates confusion as the batsmen try to line him up. To add to this attack there’s now Ravindra Jadeja, who has a point to prove to the selectors that he has what it takes to provide the team flexibility,” he explained.
While Pakistan have looked good only in patches, Gavaskar feels they will come back strongly against India. “Pakistan’s narrow win over Afghanistan will give them great heart, because narrow wins show the team’s character and determination to do well. What they will want is a better start to their innings for against both India and Afghanistan they didn’t get that.
“Maybe after two failures, Fakhar Zaman will come good on Sunday. That will certainly be a new challenge for India. Shoaib Malik has shown what experience can do and if the Pakistanis stitch a big partnership then India may have to work harder than they have so far. It’s an India versus Pakistan encounter and as we all know nobody can ever predict the result,” he signed off.
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