'Rohit allowed Australia easy runs…': Ganguly hammers India captain's decision after horrendous Day 1 in WTC Final

Jun 08, 2023 08:49 AM IST

Sourav Ganguly didn't mince his words as he bashed Rohit Sharma's captaincy after a poor Day 1 in the WTC Final against Australia.

Team India endured a tough outing on Day 1 of the World Test Championship final against Australia, as the latter put up a strong score of 327/3 at Stumps, with Travis Head scoring a brilliant century. While Head remained unbeaten on 146 off just 156 deliveries at the end of the day, star batter Steve Smith continued to frustrate the Indian bowlers from the other end, as he remains only five runs away from reaching his three-figure mark in the innings.

Rohit Sharma (R) with Mohammed Siraj(AP)
Rohit Sharma (R) with Mohammed Siraj(AP)

India had made an impressive start to the game after their captain Rohit Sharma had opted to bowl at The Oval. The side picked up an early wicket of Usman Khawaja – sending him on a duck – in only the fourth over of the match. David Warner (43), too, was dismissed minutes before the lunch and Mohammed Shami gave India an important breakthrough at the start of second session, removing the dangerous Marnus Labuschagne on 26.

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Also read: He went up to Kohli and said 'No, you're wrong': Hussain after India's 'brave man' overrules Virat in WTC final

While it seemed India had an upper hand, Head produced a counter-attacking display as he took on the pacers. Smith, meanwhile, bid his time at the crease while punishing the bad deliveries at times. The duo stayed the entire day unbeaten and former India captain Sourav Ganguly wasn't too happy with Rohit, stating that the skipper allowed Australia back in the game with “easy runs.”

"India will be a bit disappointed. They had Australia at 76/3 and let them get off the hook. I know that partnerships happen in cricket. There will be a batting team who will come back and play well. I thought India started well just after Lunch but lost the feel a bit as the game progressed," Ganguly said after the Aussies had reached 170/3 at tea.

"I thought they let Travis Head get off the hook very easily. I know he has been in good form, he has scored a lot of runs, but still they were 76/3. I think Rohit Sharma with his field placements at that stage probably allowed some easy runs to happen and now Australia are in a good position," Ganguly further said.

Both sides are chasing a maiden WTC title, with India aiming to avoid a second-successive heartbreak in the final; the side faced a disappointing defeat to New Zealand in the inaugural final in 2021.

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