India captain Rohit Sharma on Wednesday said ineffective bowling in the middle overs coupled with the batters’ inability to build partnerships led to the visitors’ downfall in the three-match ODI series in Bangladesh. India lost by five runs in the second ODI in Mirpur on Wednesday to surrender the three-match series 0-2. “When you lose a game, there are positives and negatives. From being 69/6, allowing them to get to 270-odd wasn’t a great effort from our bowlers. We started well but the middle overs and the back end is what’s hurting us a lot. Happened in the last game as well. It’s something we need to work on,” a disappointed Rohit said at the post-match presentation ceremony.”
On the batting front, he said: “In One-Day cricket, it’s about partnerships and when you get those, you have to ensure that they are converted to match-winning partnerships. That’s what they did.
“If you get those 70-run stands, you need to convert them into 110-120 run partnerships for the team to win games, as it isn’t easy for the new batter. Need to be braver in the middle,” he added .
Invited to bowl, India had Bangladesh on the mat at 69 for six before last match’s hero Miraz (100 off 83 balls) stitched an epic 148-run partnership off 165 balls with Mahmudullah (77 off 96) to take the hosts to a fighting total. .
“Not taking anything away from Mehidy and Mahmudullah, was a great partnership but we also need to find ways of breaking such partnerships,” Rohit said.
The skipper also informed that there are a few injury concerns for India ahead of the third ODI on Saturday.
“There are few injury concerns, we need to get to the bottom of this. Need to try and monitor them, because it’s important to understand this.
“When they come to play for India, they need to be at more than 100 per cent. We need to monitor their workload because we can’t have guys coming in to play for the country half-fit,” Rohit said.
Rival captain Litton Das was ecstatic after winning his first series as skipper.
“Very happy, to win in my first series as captain, it feels good,” he said.
“We felt that 240-250 was a good score. We were under pressure but they (Mahmudullah and Mehidy) were brilliant. Don’t know what their conversations were, but what they did was simply superb.
“I wanted to rotate my main bowlers around because it was a good pitch in the second half, so I couldn’t afford to bowl too many of my main bowlers early on. The focus for the next game will also be about winning,” Das added.
Miraz, who won his second consecutive player of the match award, thanked the Almighty and said his hard work over the last couple of years is finally paying off.
“Last few years, I have worked hard on the batting and focused on certain areas to improve,” he said.
“My coaches have given me a lot of information on improving my game. Riyad Bhai (Mahmudullah) kept telling me that we need to keep playing deep into the innings and the conversations were mostly about keeping small targets of partnerships.
“I was just trying to hit the good areas with the ball and put pressure on them.”
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