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Kohli’s dismissal was the turning point, Chahal says

honi booed by Indian fans on his day of reaching 10,000 runs in ODIs

Image Credit: AFP
India’s MS Dhoni bats during the second One Day International (ODI) cricket match between England and India, at Lord’s Cricket Ground in London.
Gulf News

London: Leg spinner Yuzvendra Chahal felt that unlike England innings when there wasn’t much assistance for slow bowlers, the Lord’s track helped home team spinners Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali as India lost the second One-day International by a comprehensive margin of 86 runs.

The hosts scored 322/7 after Joe Root scored his 12th ODI hundred after recovering from 239/6 at one stage. In reply, India were all-out for 236 in 50 overs.

“I think as a team, we conceded 20-25 runs too many at the death. But the credit should go to Willey and Root too because they batted so well in the end. It was a different, slow pitch. If you bowled slow, the batsmen were able to play it easily. When we bowled, there wasn’t as much turn as there was in the second innings,” Chahal said later.

While Kuldeep Yadav (3/68) provided the breakthroughs, Chahal bowled a tight seven-over spell before the 40th over before Willey-Root broke free.

“When I bowled a couple of overs, I found it to be a bit slow. So I decided to vary my pace on it and keep bowling full because it is a slow wicket, there are more chances of going for runs with short-pitched bowling. So I wanted to keep it wicket-to-wicket, because if the batsman misses, I have chances of taking wickets,” he explained his strategy.

However, the day belonged to the English spinners Moeen and Rashid, who shared three wickets for 80 runs in 20 overs between them. Chahal said that Virat Kohli’s dismissal became the turning point.

“I think the turning point was the wicket of Virat Kohli because a good partnership was going on. When you chase 322, you need wickets in the end. I also think their spinners bowled well,” he said.

On a day when he crossed the 10,000-run milestone in ODIs, Mahendra Singh Dhoni was booed by the Indian supporters for his slow batting during the team’s 86-run defeat against England in the second game.

Dhoni was widely criticised for not showing initiative in his 58-ball 37 as India could only manage 236 in 50 overs after England posted 322 for seven.

While England’s Joe Root found it “surprising”, Chahal said that he was unaware about the booing incident.

Before the start of the 46th over, the match was as good as over with 110 required off 30 balls. However, the crowd got restless when Dhoni failed to score off the first four balls of David Willey’s over. There was booing after every dot ball, a rare occurrence considering the huge fan base Dhoni enjoys around the cricketing globe.

In fact at the end of the over, substitute fielders Shardul Thakur and Axar Patel came in with an energy drink and replacement bat, which on air commentators termed as a message to push things.

Off the very first ball in the next over, Dhoni was caught at the deep midwicket boundary, trying a wild heave.

Chahal, who came for the post-match press conference, however said that there was no message from the dressing room for Dhoni to accelerate.

“I don’t know what was said to him (when he changed bats). After Hardik was dismissed, there was only me, Siddarth Kaul, Umesh Yadav and Kuldeep. So it wasn’t like there were 2-3 specialist batsmen remaining,” Chahal said.

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