Disclaimer: Having played a lot of club and zonal cricket for almost a decade my analysis says there were various instances where india team let the game slip away. I personally have never believed in cricket being too much of a technical game as always discussed like by the cricket experts on television. In reality on the field it’s more about instincts, confidence, awareness and some luck!!
Toss: India having put to bat first was I believe the very first instance where they had a set back in this final! Though Rohit said that it was what they wanted but in a final knowing what you need to chase is a lot better than always guessing what is a good score while pacing your innings batting first. Everyone was of the opinion that the pitch might slow down as the game progresses and will only help the batsmen if and when the due factor comes in but the opinions changed after the game where they believed that infact the pitch played better in the second innings! Now as i said, cricket is not as technical as it’s tagged and so in reality the pitch was more or less the same, the real change was in the intent of the batsmen of both the teams and the overall better cricket from Australia. Let me explain how
Gill’s wicket was not really a setback looking at how he has not really had much of an impact in this tournament.
Rohit got india to a very quick start as usual with 76-1 after 9.3 over and his wicket was very crucial. Question was raised whether that shot was necessary when they had already got 10 runs in first 3 balls of that over from Maxwell but I believe that is his natural game and that has helped india to a good start throughout the tournament and those quick starts are what has let the middle order batsmen’s play a more careful cricket and build slow and steady partnerships and put big runs on the board so why question his intent today? Maxwell was one of the weak links of those 10 over from a part time bowler and Rohit had the right intent to capitalise on him.
Iyer’s wicket was the 1st big setback for India because suddenly India had lost their 3 batsmen for 80 runs in 10 overs. The pressure was on India because our lineup only has 6 batsmen and 1 all rounder which meant they only had 2 more proper batsmen’s to follow with 40 overs remaining. I think this was always a weak link for India but this was never tested and so it was never questioned. Also this I believe was another reason why Rohit was more inclined to maximising the 1st powerplay throughout the tournament so that the middle order does not need to take too many risks in between and then again look to push the pedals in the last 10 overs.
KL Rahul and Kohli’s partnership of 67 of 109 balls now i think this was the biggest blunder in the Indian batting today. India needed a partnership and these two were doing the right thing stitching one for them but the problem was with the intent. India needed a risk less cricket and that they did but india also needed the score board ticking. There were way too many dots and lack of strike rotation and lack of occasional risk free boundaries on the loose balls. Infact in between these 18.1 overs travis head and marsh who were the weakest links in that bowling line up were allowed to get away with their 4 over for just 9 runs. Australia were put to the very same test with 47 for 3 in 7 overs but Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne stitched a partnership of 192 in 216 balls with the intent of atleast getting those singles on every ball and picking that occasionally loose balls for boundaries ( which I believe were a lot too many from the Indian bowlers than they could’ve afforded ). If you’ll look at their innings you’ll see that they never let the bowlers ball too many dots and i think made the biggest difference. Risk free cricket in a one day is not playing dots and ignoring boundaries but rather strike rotation and taking calculated risk on the occasional loose bowls.
kohli’s wicket was sheer bad luck and you can’t really blame anyone but yes you expect the senior and experienced players to step up and play on the big days. I think Kohli was a bit selfish in this tournament and a lot more hungry for those centuries than playing selfless cricket. He is a great cricketer and second to none in the past decade but 50 centuries does not win you the finals it’s the intent to step up and soak that pressure and hold on to the nerves. In the semi’s kohli took the anchoring role way to deep until and unless he got that century he did not look to accelerate even with 9 wickets in hand and less than 10 overs left, his this intent was why india ended up somewhere 20 30 runs short on the total. India is so much about individual performances that mistakes here are always ignored until you end in a losing cause. So for me Rohit and Iyer’s 500+ runs each was definitely better than 750+ runs by Kohli!
KL Rahul was rightly playing the anchoring role but as i said maybe instead of playing 41 dots if he would’ve even played with the intent of getting singles on half of those and india would’ve ended at 260 or so but i think it was just poor intent to play more dots than looking to take singles.
Jadeja was disappointing today because he is one of the big match performers and he has done that so many times in IPL that you always trust him to deliver the same here but it was just extremely disappointing. He hasn’t had the opportunity to play that much in this tournament but that does not mean that it can be an excuse at the biggest platform of professional cricket.
Suryakumar Yadav another huge disappointment for me in this tournament. His role was never put to a real test in this tournament but whenever he got those few balls to play he was still very disappointing and today again he made me think that could india have tried Ishan in the batting order instead of him because nor did Surya seem to play his role of a finisher nor did he bat well. Maybe an extra batsmen who seemed in good form would’ve helped who can also attack towards the end.
The gamble to give the new ball to Shami was a good move and it proved well for India. The first 10 overs both the bowlers showed some great intent but with some poor fielding.
The biggest game changing point in the second innings was the poor bowling from India after the end of the batting powerplay. The target was never enough and ik some of you all will say that it’s always defendable with planning and execution though 240 was never enough on this pitch. The planning was there but the execution seemed to fail time to time. Time to time the Indian bowlers strayed away from the line and length they had set the field for and that gave Travis Head the opportunity to get those boundaries in the gap without having to take much risk and that always released the pressure that was building upon them in the last few balls. Now you can call this better intent of the batsmen’s to keep the score board ticking while also building the partnership or inconsistent bowling from the bowlers. I would personally call it more skill full batting because there was not much turn in the wicket in either of the innings so 240 was always very very difficult to defend and unless your bowlers absolutely stuck to the line and length strike rotation and occasional boundaries was always very easy on this pitch once you spent some time on this wicket. Travis did the same!!
It was hard to see India loose this final specially after the great run they had in the league stage but i think we all need to look ahead of individual performances and milestones and focus more on how to build the best team that can play selfless cricket and perform and step up on the big days when it’s needed the most!!
I am sure some people might not agree with my views and that’s fine I’m an expert but i tried my best to keep the analysis unbiased!
Hit a like if you agree with my views!!