No two to tango for Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma in 4th ODI win vs Sri Lanka
Virat Kohli reveals in chat with Rohit Sharma how they had decided not to run any more twos after 16th over during India’s 4th ODI win over Sri Lanka in Colombo on ThursdayUpdated: Sep 01, 2017 18:21 IST
The Indian cricket team may be on the path to uber-fitness, but it doesn’t hurt to fall back on smart ways to conserve energy. Skipper Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma did exactly that while smashing centuries and piling on a big partnership in the crushing victory over Sri Lanka in the fourth ODI on Thursday. (4th ODI HIGHLIGHTS | SCORECARD)
Kohli struck 131, his 29th ODI century, and Rohit 104, his second in consecutive games and 13th overall and the pair shared in a 219-run second wicket partnership that effectively put the game out of the reach of the hosts at the Premadasa Stadium.
Once the Indian skipper won the toss, he had no hesitation in choosing to bat first as it was very hot and humid in Colombo on Thursday afternoon. India had batted second in the first three games, winning them all to go 3-0 up before going into the fourth game.
Two is trouble
Kohli revealed the ploy to conserve energy, in a post-match interview by Rohit for bcci.tv. Rohit was discussing with Kohli how tough the playing conditions were, asking his skipper to reveal their tactic in the middle. Kohli said: “As we spoke out there in the middle, it was very difficult. It was hot and humid. So, we decided not to run any more twos after the 16th over.
“Actually, it was very helpful not focusing on too many things. We were just watching the ball, and that is the only thing we could do with the energy we had.
“That was the best thing; we were watching every ball we were playing, not even looking at the scoreboard. And it is always a pleasure batting with you. We have had big partnerships before and it was again special.”
Kohli and Rohit ran just four twos until the 16th over, so thick and fast were the boundaries coming off the bat of the two in-form batsmen. However, the batsmen still ran three more twos – two of them off successive deliveries – between the 16th and 30th overs, when the Indian skipper was out lofting Lasith Malinga to the fielder on the cover boundary. In all, 62 runs out of Rohit’s 104 and 80 of Virat’s 131 came in boundaries.
Team on auto-pilot
India have utterly dominated Sri Lanka on this tour, and can sweep the ODI series – they swept the Tests 3-0 – if they win the final ODI to be played at the Premadasa Stadium on Sunday.
Virat feels the current team is pretty much on auto-pilot, making things easy for him.
“It’s amazing to lead this team. You know how the change room environment is, how the team jells. That for me is the special thing. It’s the hunger of all the guys in the team -- that is what is making us play this way. It’s amazing guys are still hungry, even after performing in one or two games. They still want to go out there and do it in two more games.
“That makes my job so easy. I’m just placing the field, basically. Everything is done by the players.”