Fielding for India will be a challenge again vs South Africa in windy Port Elizabeth
India will take on South Africa in the fifth One-Day International (ODI) in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday. The visitors lead the series 3-1.cricket Updated: Feb 12, 2018 20:18 IST
Fielding will again be a challenge for India in the fifth ODI here on Tuesday after they messed up in wet conditions in the last game at Wanderers. Port Elizabeth is known as a windy city, and taking high catches is tough here. And unless it rains, there is bound to be plenty of wind at St George’s Park.
While fielding coach R Sridhar admitted the team was a bit sluggish in the last match, he said they have taken into consideration the windy conditions here.
“We were a little below par on the field in the last game. One catch went down, Shreyas Iyer made a great attempt (dropped Chris Morris off Yuzvendra Chahal). It was a difficult catch.
“In Johannesburg, the ball snakes a lot and that’s what happened to Kuldeep. He was trying to attack and save two, but the ball just snaked away more than he expected. These things happen but we are practicing for them. We’ve got our players to pay attention to the detail of every minute aspect of every skill, not just fielding. In this game, we’ll take into account the wind factor, the size of the ground and make sure we are aware of that when we enter the field.”
Under Virat Kohli, and earlier under MS Dhoni, the team has become a very athletic side, stopping runs and plucking out impossible catches like Bhuvneshwar Kumar did in the last match to get rid of Hashim Amla.
“Like Ravi (Shastri) and Virat want, we want the eleven best fielders to take the park every time we get out there. That is the endeavour going into the next 15 months (till the World Cup).”
Sridhar said there has been consistency on the field with this India side.
“If I’m talking about the one-day side, definitely there is more athleticism. Since Champions Trophy, especially. We’ve been saving a lot more runs than the opposition.
“More often than not, the difference between the good days and bad days is very less. We’re not flash (great) one day and really bad on another day, like some of the other teams. We try and reduce the gap between our good days and bad days.”
Sridhar attributed the loss in the last match to the reduced overs and target when South Africa chased.
“We are really upbeat. We have the confidence from the first three games. We know our game plans. See, when the games get reduced, the overs get reduced, then definitely the skill levels between two teams also gets reduced.”