Rohit Sharma, India’s captain, was blunt in his analysis of why his team lost the first T20I against Australia after failing to hold Australia to a 208-run goal. “I don’t think we bowled well. 200 is a good score to defend, and we didn’t take our chances in the field. It was a great effort from our batters, but bowlers were not quite there,” he said after India four-wicket loss. “There are things we need to look at, but it was a great game for us to understand what went wrong. We know this is a high-scoring ground. You can’t relax even if you get 200. We took wickets to an extent, but they played really well. They played some extraordinary shots. If I was in that changing room, I would expect to chase that total. You can back yourself to defend 60 runs in the final 4 overs. We were not able to take that extra wicket.”
Hardik Pandya (2-0-22-0), Yuzvendra Chahal (3.2-0-42-1), Umesh Yadav (4-0-52-0), and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (4-0-52-0) all gave up runs. The poor bowling performance by India was noted by ex-players. “Saying this again use Bhuvi for only one over in last 5 overs,” Irfan Pathan wrote on Twitter after the match ended. “And our death bowling is exposed again! High time we introspect and correct why are we succumbing to under pressure so often. #INDvsAUS,” Amit Mishra, former India spinner, wrote on Twitter. “I think India have missed a trick by not giving Arshdeep more games to groom in the death overs. Should give him as many games before the World Cup as possible. #IndvsAus,” Venkatesh Prasad, former India fast bowler, wrote. On Friday, the second T20I will be played in Nagpur.