In the Asia Cup 2022, India should continue this short ball plan against the rest of the opponents in the ongoing Asia Cup and even in the future.
New Delhi: The Rohit Sharma-led Indian team put up a stellar performance against Pakistan in their opening match of the Asia Cup 2022, registering a thrilling win. India dashed Pakistan with short ball bowling. The short pitch balls were used well to trouble the Pak batsmen and sending left-arm all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja to No. 4 during the run chase was a good decision for India.
Well, it was not as if the Indian team had never taken such a decision before. But, in a high pressure match like India and Pakistan, these small things play a huge role in beating the opponents, which was seen by all on Sunday.
Indian fast bowlers were the architects of India’s victory. This was the first time India took all 10 wickets in a T20 innings by a fast bowler. So of course the effect of fast pace could be seen in the match and most interestingly, five out of 10 Pakistan wickets came on short pitch deliveries which usually favor Indian fast bowlers in taking wickets in this manner. Not known for ODI and T20 matches.
Dubai usually has spinner-friendly wickets, but since August is one of the warmest months of the year, pitch curators leave enough grass to maintain the track for longer periods, allowing one after another. Having a match doesn’t make their job easy either. The pitch lacked swing and turn, but the pacers were getting bounce, which helped the Indian pacers bowl good lengths at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Sunday.
India’s all-rounder Hardik Pandya made India’s plan a success as he bowled at 140 kmph, taking three wickets. Hardik sent Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan and Khushdil Shah to the pavilion on a short pitch ball.
However, all this ‘short ball strategy’ started with Bhuvneshwar Kumar. The experienced fast bowler used a short ball to dismiss Pakistan captain Babar Azam. Bhuvneshwar, 32, explained the bowling plan. He has been a successful bowler for India in 2022, taking 24 wickets in 18 T20Is.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar during the match
Bhuvneshwar told Star Sports, “Before bowling the first ball, I thought it was going to swing. But none of the balls were getting swing, but I saw that there was a little bounce. We knew we had to take help from the wicket. That’s why the plan was to bowl short in the innings break.”
After finding success against Pakistan in their opener, India should continue with the short-pitch ball formula against other opponents in the ongoing Asia Cup and even in the future.