Dunith Wellalage ran through India’s top order in the Asia Cup 2023 clash, leaving Gautam Gambhir dissatisfied.
After a remarkable performance against Pakistan, India’s top-order collapsed against Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup 2023 Super 4 match. Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, and KL Rahul, all of whom reached more than 50 runs against Pakistan, were all eliminated early on Tuesday. Sri Lanka’s 20-year-old spinner Dunith Wellalage dismissed all four of them, earning up a 5-wicket haul in the match. While the young Sri Lankan performed admirably, veteran India cricketer Gautam Gambhir lamented the’soft dismissals’ of Kohli, Rohit, Rahul, and others.
In a post-match interview with Star Sports, Gambhir mentioned a concerning ‘trend’ in the Indian team, notably against spinners. He even cited a match between India and Australia in which spinners ripped through Indian hitters similarly to Wellalage.
“This is turning into a pattern.” You recall the games against Australia in Chennai, when the ball was gripping a little and India was chasing 260-odd runs against spinners like Adam Zampa and Ashton Agar. And we were unable to pursue it. We struggle whenever the ball grips, and we’re unsure whether we can take the game deep. This isn’t a 350-run wicket; it’s a 270-run wicket. If you’re three down for 160 or 170 in 40 overs, it’s critical for the batters to adjust when the ball grips. The dismissals of Virat Kohli and KL Rahul were soft, but the rest of the team was thrashed on the front foot.
Gill outplayed Rohit Sharma with a superb ball. “You expect better from Indian batters,” he stated during the rain delay following India’s 47th over.
In order to be efficient in defence, Gambhir highlighted why certain deliveries must be played on the backfoot rather than the front foot.
As batsmen, we frequently try to play the angle, but things get tricky if the ball starts to spin from there. Delivering it gets easier the closer you get to the wicket; but, delivering it farther away from the crease gets challenging. The frontfoot, where both edges are tried, is where it should be played, thus the backfoot is required. Watch how Hardik was fired. And you brought up (Ajantha) Mendis; he had carrom ball, and we had no idea how those deliveries would act. However, he pointed out that they were legitimate left-arm spin deliveries.
Gill had the ability to stop that ball. It was not an unplayable delivery, you cannot say that. Regarding the bat’s face, it is on the leg side, or mid-on. Always play the ball towards mid-off or the bowler when facing such deliveries. Going for mid-on gives you the opportunity for an outside advantage, the speaker added.