No power hitting, India to focus on smart cricket
On the eve of the series decider here on Tuesday at the Wankhede Stadium, Sharma acknowledged that the West Indies batsmen tend to pile up tremendous pressure on opposition bowlers with their attacking game.Updated: Dec 11, 2019 00:09 IST
Vice-captain Rohit Sharma said India will not look to match West Indies’ power hitting and will stick to playing their ‘smart cricket’ that has worked well for the fifth-ranked T20 team in the ICC Rankings. India, who suffered an eight-wicket hammering by West Indies in their second T20I in Thiruvananthapuram on Sunday, have once again been hit by the free-flowing Caribbean batsmen who have racked up 27 sixes in two matches so far while posting big scores.
On the eve of the series decider here on Tuesday at the Wankhede Stadium, Sharma acknowledged that the West Indies batsmen tend to pile up tremendous pressure on opposition bowlers with their attacking game. “With the amount of T20 cricket they have played, obviously, they are very confident,” Sharma said on Tuesday.
“A lot of their guys have enough exposure around the world, playing all these leagues. That makes them a dangerous unit when it comes to batting. It is a good challenge to come up against a team like the West Indies where they have got power-hitters all the way through—right from the top till the end,” he said.
“It is a challenge for our bowlers to bowl against a team like that where you know every second ball they will come at you and try to hit a six—so how do you plan against that line-up? How do you try and restrict them? Those are the plans that you know all us have been working on with the bowlers, and they are pretty confident in what they want to execute. Some days it comes off, some days it does not,” Sharma added.
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Sharma said India will stick to doing what they think has worked for them so far. Even with West Indies hammering 137 sixes against India in 16 T20s, India have emerged victorious in 10. “This format is such that you have to take risks. Again, for us, it will be important what we as a team can do, (and) not to try and replicate what the other team is doing. They back their strength which is to play a few balls and then go for a big shot. But for us, it’s totally different,” Sharma said. “We believe in taking singles and doubles and putting the pressure on the bowler by getting 8 or 9 an over without taking much of a risk.
“But again, we are prepared to take risks when it is necessary. At the end of the day you want to play smart cricket. We believe in that,” he said.
Sharma added that India are not looking only at the Twenty20 World Cup.
“The World Cup is still a long, long way ahead. We just need to focus on winning every series and that will keep us in a good state moving forward. If we keep winning games, keep doing the right things, the composition of the team will take care (by itself). If we keep doing the right things and keep winning, for us that is more crucial than any thing else,” Sharma said.