Rohit praises Pace Bowlers as India capture 2023 ODI series

Rohit praises Pace Bowlers as India capture 2023 ODI series

(AFP extension)

Skipper Rohit Sharma greeted Indian seam bowlers on Saturday after the hosts beat New Zealand by eight wickets to clinch the series in the second one-day international.

Pace spearhead Mohammed Shami returned figures of 3-18 to help dismiss the Black Caps for 108 after India elected to bowl first at Raipur.

Rohit scored 51 as India came home in 20.1 overs to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three match series.

And the captain said his bowlers have been making an impression with their home-stitching movement since Sri Lanka’s recent ODI sweep when Mohammed Siraj led the charge with nine wickets.

“In these last five matches (including three against Sri Lanka), the bowlers have really stepped up,” said Rohit after the win.

“You expect that kind of bowling, that kind of stitching movement out of India. But these guys have a lot of skills, they’ve been working on it all this time and you could see the reward.”

Indian pitches are known to be conducive to spin, unlike wickets in Australia and England where fast bowlers play a more prominent role.

At the draw, it took Rohit a while to announce his decision to field, and told the announcer that he had “forgotten” the team call.

But things soon turned serious as Shami scored in the first over and with his fast mates staggered the tourists to 15-5 in the 11th over.

“I feel the more you work with the ball in training, the more success you’ll get,” said man of the match Shami.

“As a bowler of new balls, it’s important to assess the conditions and get the message across quickly to other bowlers as well.”

Glenn Phillips made 36 as he joined middle and lower order batsmen including Michael Bracewell (22) and Mitchell Santner (27) to take the total over 100, but the innings lasted just 34.3 overs.

After Shami’s opening ball heroics, fellow fastener Hardik Pandya and spinner Washington Sundar took over to return two wickets each.

Rohit on fire

Shami bowled Finn Allen off the fifth ball of the first over, in a venue in his international debut.

Siraj sent Henry Nicholls back, caught out for two, before Shami and Pandya took two wickets caught and bowled to shake up the visitors, whose skipper Tom Latham fell for one.

Phillips and Bracewell attempted to rebuild and counter-attack in a 41-run sixth wicket stand before Shami broke through.

It got Bracewell, who scored 140 in his side’s 12-run defeat in the opener, caught behind.

Phillips kept up the challenge in another partnership with southpaw Santner. The pair put up for 47 before Pandya bowled Santner.

Phillips set off to try to hit spinner Sundar only to be caught mid-wicket, and the innings was soon over.

“We just couldn’t build partnerships at the top,” Latham said. “The guys further down tried to fight but it wasn’t easy. Today we didn’t adapt well, given the surface.”

Indian openers Rohit and Gill, who hit 208 in the previous match, put up 72 runs for the first wicket.

Rohit hit some delightful boundaries including a six-pointer from his signature hook to ease his target.

He held the charge as he reached his 50 from 47 balls, but was soon dropped by fast bowler Henry Shipley.

Virat Kohli hit some bounds before being blocked by Latham from Santner for 11.

Gill hit the winners four with southpaw Ishan Kishan at the other end.

The final match is on Tuesday in Indore.

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