Manchester: India’s pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah feels Mahendra Singh Dhoni played a “top-rated” knock in the World Cup clash against the West Indies and did the right thing by taking his time in the middle.
On Thursday, the former skipper scored 56 off 61 balls, exploding in the last over, to help India post a winning 268-run total on the board against the Caribbeans.
“Such type of innings is highly underrated. Sometimes, it appears as if he (Dhoni) is playing slowly and takes a lot of time. But while batting on such wickets, it is important to take your time. We all saw how he took the game deep and in the end, it was because of him that we could reach 268 which was a very good total on this wicket,” said Bumrah while speaking to Yuzvendra Chahal for BCCI.TV.
Against the West Indies, Dhoni once again started slowly as he took his time to get used to the pitch and scored his first 20 runs off 40 deliveries. However, he compensated for it in the later stages of the game as he ended up scoring 56 not out, of which 16 he collected in the last over of the innings bowled by Oshane Thomas.
During the course of his innings, he shared a 70-run partnership with Hardik Pandya and helped India reach 268/7 which according to Bumrah was a par score in Manchester.
“This is where his experience comes in handy for the team as he absorbs all the pressure, takes the game deep and backs his style of play. We youngsters learn a lot from him. So, it was a top-rated inning because of which we could reach around 270,” Bumrah added.
“Dhoni absorbs the pressure and takes the game deep. It was top-rated innings and got us to 268, which was a good total on this pitch. He knew there were pinch-hitters coming later so he could take his time. Youngsters can learn a lot from this knock,” he added.
Speaking of his own performance, the world No.1 ODI bowler reflected on the two-wicket haul which could well have been a hat-trick.
“While bowling the hat-trick ball I was hoping the batsman (Kemar Roach) would expect a fast yorker. So, I thought I would bowl a slower one. I executed it as well but he managed to stop it. But I am glad I could execute what I planned,” he said referring to the 27th over delivery.
Earlier, Bowlers led by the deadly Mohammed Shami had produced yet another splendid performance to put Team India on the cusp of a semi-final berth with a 125-run rout of the West Indies in their sixth ICC World Cup encounter here Thursday.
With 11 points, India are now almost through and another win in their next three games will seal their position in the top four as West Indies were knocked out with two games remaining.
Dhoni was criticised by many for his slow batting against Afghanistan where he took 52 balls to score 28 runs which had reduced India’s scoring rate in the middle overs and India managed to score just 224 runs in their allotted 50 overs which eventually they were able to defend on the back of some disciplined bowling from Bumrah and Mohammed Shami.