T20 World Cup 2024 – Rohit Sharma praises India’s ‘calmness’ after win against England in semi-final – Viral News

India captain Rohit Sharma lauded his team’s calmness under pressure as they beat England in the T20 World 2024 semi-final comprehensively to secure a third straight ICC final across formats. On Saturday, India will play South Africa to try and break their 11-year trophy drought at a world event.
“We’ve been very calm as a team,” Rohit said after India’s 68-run win in Georgetown on Thursday afternoon. “We do understand the occasion [of a final], but for us, it’s important to keep calm and composed.

“That helps us make good decisions. We need to make good decisions through the 40 overs. In this game too, we were steady and calm, and didn’t panic too much. That has been the key for us. Yes, we do understand the occasion is important, but we need to play good cricket as well.”

Rohit termed the win over England as “very satisfying”, especially given this contest was a repeat of the T20 World Cup 2022 semi-final. Then, in Adelaide, India crashed to a ten-wicket defeat as Jos Buttler and Alex Hales made light work of England’s 169-run target.

Two years on, it was India’s spinners who turned the tables on England on what was a slow, low turner where Rohit laid down the marker to help India post 171 for 7, which he felt was well above par.

“Yeah, it’s very satisfying to win this game,” Rohit said. “We’ve worked really hard to come to this stage, and to win the game like that was a great effort from everyone. I thought we played to the conditions really well; that’s been the success story for us so far. If bowlers and batters understand and play according to the conditions, things fall in place. It’s very pleasing how we came through.”

Rohit top scored in the game with 57 off 39 balls, but the conditions were tough. A spell of rain eight overs into the game added to his challenge of kicking India’s innings into gear with Suryakumar Yadav. The pair added 73 in just 8.2 overs to give India a chance to aim for a competitive score.

“At one stage, we were feeling 140-150 was a good score as the game went on,” Rohit said. “Then we got some runs in the middle, me and Surya got that partnership, and then we said, ‘Okay another 25 more’. I can set a target in my mind but I don’t want to let anyone know about it. They’re all instinctive players, so I want them to go out and play freely without thinking about the par score. We know when we understand the conditions well, we will get to a good score; [and] that’s what happened, and the bowlers were fantastic.”

Rohit was effusive in his praise for the Indian spinners who applied the brakes on England. Axar Patel started England’s slide by dismissing Buttler off his very first delivery in the fourth over, and then had Jonny Bairstow with an arm-ball in his second. He finished with 3 for 23 off his four overs to walk away with the Player-of-the-Match award.
Axar was complemented by Kuldeep Yadav, who also was magnificent. His dismissal of Harry Brook after being reverse swept was particularly noteworthy because of the subtle change in his line of attack. Kuldeep, like Axar, also picked up three wickets.

“They are gun spinners,” Rohit said. “When conditions are like that in front of them, it’s very difficult to play some shots. Yes, the pressure is on them to execute those balls, but they were very calm and knew what to bowl. We had a chat after the first innings: the plan was to hit the stumps as much as possible and keep the stumps in play, [and] that’s what they did.”

Amid the cheer, Rohit also backed Virat Kohli to come out of his string of low scores in this T20 World Cup. Kohli was dismissed for 9 on Thursday as he was clean bowled by Reece Topley looking to slog one over the leg-side boundary. Kohli has so far aggregated 75 runs in seven innings at a strike rate of 100 this World Cup.

“Look, he’s a quality player, and you can go through that,” Rohit said. “We understand his class and importance in big games. Form is never a player when you’ve played for 15 years. He’s looking good, the intent is there, [and] probably he’s saving himself for the final.”

Speaking to Star Sports, coach Rahul Dravid also backed Kohli while saying he was loving the “intent” and “attitude” the opening batter was showing.

“You know with Virat, the thing is, when you play a slightly high-risk brand of cricket there can be times when it doesn’t come off. Even today, I thought he hit a really good six to set the tempo but he was just unlucky that the ball seamed a little bit more. But I love the intent, I love the way he went about doing it. It sets a good example for the group as well if he’s willing to do it. And you know, for some reason, I don’t want to jinx it but I think there’s a big one coming up. I’m just loving his attitude and that he’s committing himself on the field – I think he deserves it.”

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