India v Pakistan, World T20 warm-up, Colombo September 17, 2012

Rohit backs India's bowling unit


India's bowlers lost the second warm-up Twenty20 from a strong position against Pakistan, but Rohit Sharma does not believe the side's attack is a concern ahead of the World Twenty20. Rohit pointed out that the same bowlers had defended a much lower total against Sri Lanka in the first warm-up match on Saturday.

"It was one of those bad days, I would say," Rohit said. "If you look at the last game against Sri Lanka, the bowlers got plenty of wickets. We defended a low score on that track, 145-odd runs. It was not a par score [for that track] yet the bowlers defended that. Yes, we had an off day today. I am sure we will come hard against Afghanistan and [do well] from there on."

Rohit and Virat Kohli had made fifties to lift India to 185 for 3, which Rohit felt was a decent score on the Premadasa pitch, but barring R Ashwin, who took 4 for 23, all the India bowlers were wicketless and expensive. "The track was very good to bat on. As you saw, more than 180 runs were scored in both the innings. It was a typical Sri Lankan wicket; if you bat well and apply yourself, you will get runs here. It was a good target I felt on this track, because I thought there was a little bit of help for the spinners. But it was one of those days where things didn't come together.

"We still have one more day before our actual game on 19th, so we will see how we should come back. It is not the end, it is just the start. Still a long way to go in the tournament, unfortunately things didn't go our way today."

Rohit said despite it being a warm-up game, India had come out wanting to win it. "We were very focussed. We were quite intense in the field. It's just that our bowling didn't click together, which is a little bit frustrating because if you want to win the game everything has to click together. Our bowlers did a pretty good job in the first warm-up game when we defended 145 on that flat track. I don't want to take any credit away from them. They have been bowling really well. I am sure they will come on well as the tournament progresses."

Batting is certainly India's strength, but the openers Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir haven't had a decent outing in both warm-up games. Rohit backed the experienced duo to come good. "Getting a good start is important. They have been batting really well, there is no doubt about that. I am sure that in the coming games, when the actual tournament starts, they will come good. They have experience playing in these conditions and it is just a matter of one game, and we are right in it after that."

Abhishek Purohit is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on September 19, 2012, 12:55 GMT

    The very next Pk match vs Eng proves the point that IND bowling is extremely pathatic bcz they conceded 180to Pk pathetic batting (who hardly score over 130 & scored only 90 vs Eng & 70vs Aus in last T20)...................& Pk bowling is exceptional as they conceded only 110 to good English batting.........................Whenever Pk plays against any team except Ind it turns out to be low scoring game but whenever Ind plays it turns out to be high scoring game in spite of the fact that they play on similar tracks................Reason is Ind's v weak bowling & V strong batting & vice vers for PK

  • Dummy4 on September 19, 2012, 12:28 GMT

    This match was the best example of how to compare apples against apples...................Harbhajan, Ashwin & Ajmal 3 off spiners played this game on same track ....but we cannot compare Ajmal here with other 2 bcz he faced different batting attack but now we r surely justified to compare Ashwin & Bhaji coz they played on same pitch vs same batting challenge & bowled in nearly same stage of the match & the difference eb/w the 2 is daylight..........Ashwin conceded 23 @ 5 rpo whereas Bhaj 41 @ 10 rpo.......................Debate is over ..........Ashwin 2 times economical than Bhaji ............PERIOD

  • Dummy4 on September 19, 2012, 12:20 GMT

    @Nampally............I have been reading your comments..U come up with coments after doing research & hence so your comments mostly make sense as they do here

  • Dummy4 on September 19, 2012, 12:16 GMT

    @praveen the main problem with Indian bowling is their bowling strategy ....................Yes having some exceptional bowling talent like Stein, Malinga, Ajmal is an asset but most teams do well enough & defend par scores with even mediocre bowling lineup like in Asia cup in Bangladsh's 4 matches Ban conceded 240+ score only once against Ind despite having limited bowling capability......................If u look at the boulndaries that r scored against Ind then u will figure out that 50 % of those r scored of full toses & edges.......& even in death overs E/R for full toss is 2.5 runs per ball whereas for pitches balls is 1 it proves one should never ball full toss...........Yes for pitched balls u need finer 3rd man always in place (so should Ind do) to avoid edges going for boundaries as most boundaries of pitches balls is scored of edges in death overs........

  • Praveen on September 18, 2012, 14:33 GMT

    @ To all my Indian brothers....I am putting in an effort in form of discussion only to find out how much more better our bowling can be made, but never mean to say we have bad bowling. We are okay in bowling. We could defend 146, bowling out SL to 120. Even though it's warm up match bowlers did well. But against Pak they gave too many runs , and even pitch assisted in batting. But all that apart still our bowling can be strengthened, so we need to discuss and hopefully it moves BCCI to rethink and send players whom Dhoni and team management needs and even Dhoni can rethink about his team formation he has been doing.

  • Ashok on September 18, 2012, 13:13 GMT

    Indian bowling is the weakest of all the ODI Nations. Bowling in T-20 requires special skills and Indian Selectors should have considered the 2012 IPL stats. in selecting the bowlers. Bowlers like Murali Kartik, Rahul Sharma, D.Kulkarni, P.Kumar, A.Nehra, Munaf patel are the preferred ones for the T-20. Balaji bowls mainly at 120 KPH with no control on either length or direction.His preference over the above mentioned seamers is irrational. Harbhajan is already past his best in all formats. P.Chawla had the worst record even in recent IPL who kept the batsman confused whether to hit him for 6 or 4!. India still has a chance to recall Rahul, Munaf & Kartik for Chawla, Harbhajan & Balaji to put up a reasonable bowling on the field. If they wish to proceed with the present squad, then Ashwin, Sehwag & Dinda should be the bowlers supporting ZAK & Irfan. Sehwag is better than Bhaiji but ignored by Dhoni.Even Young Aparajith is good.Batting alone Never wins T-20. India must get REAL!.

  • Dummy4 on September 18, 2012, 12:44 GMT

    Indian selection is worse than Pakistans!!! WHERE IS NEHRA? WHERE IS PRAVEEN KUMAR? take out ZAK and what about Munaf where's he? Indian bowling could be just as paks if they make those changes!!!!

  • Munaf on September 18, 2012, 12:20 GMT

    @Hommi : I said it could be possible that Indian bowlers bowled not so well on purpose, and keyword is :possible". If other teams can hide their main bowlers by not playing them in warm-up matches for reasons 1) not expose them to opposition 2) risk them getting injured, why cannot India apply this thoery. During post match interview Dhoni did mention he could have also bowled Kohli, Raina or Sehwag but he did not. It is known in past that during soccer warm up matches before world-cup teams play below par to make opposition complacent and overconfident.These same bowlers or similar bowlers have defended 130 odd scores also in past. So I was just mentioning it as a possibility only not a sure thing. As for your IPL comment bieng substandard, 80% same players who play in IPL also play for their country and suddenly standard becomes high. Is it case of sour grapes with you, but just because its IPL you would want to feel it substandard so you can feel good about your players missing out

  • Samrat on September 18, 2012, 11:29 GMT

    Really hilarious!A guy whose place in the team is not certain,talking about the performance of our bowlers.I cant imagine Dhoni's manic obsession to play Harbhajan.This is clearly affecting the team's composition.I was amazed when he was picked for the world cup.Even Harbhajan woudnt have imagined that he wud make the playing 11,but he did!Maybe in the next match,Dhoni would drop Ashwin and play Harbhajan stating that Ashwin is the reason for the dip in Harbhajan;s performances!Maybe suddenly his fav Jadeja wud be selected out of nowhere.Mr.Dhoni would back only those players loyal 2 him.Even in a big tournament like the w.c he is doing that.Given a chance,this is what Dhoni's team wud look like:1.Irfan 2.Rohit Sharma 3.Kohli 4.Raina 5.Dhoni 6.Jadeja 7.Harbhajan 8.Chawla 9.Sreesanth 10.Ishant 11.Praveen Kumar.What a winning

  • Anand on September 18, 2012, 11:22 GMT

    I see a lot of comments about India's weak bowling..but I would like to question the ability of pakistan's bowling attack supposed to the best in the world for conceding 185 runs and taking only 3 wickets..always remember my friends that the one who laughs last,laughs the longest..All the best team India.

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