“Room for improvement in the middle order”

Rohit Sharma-led India have started well, handing New Zealand a whitewash in the three-match series on Sunday at Eden Gardens in Kolkata.

India opted to bat first to put them under the pump after chasing in the first two matches. Rohit and Ishan Kishan got the home side off to a flying start. With useful contributions from the middle-order India posted a mammoth total of 184 runs.

INDIA beat New Zealand 3️⃣-0️⃣ and Rohit Sharma’s reign as Team India’s new T20I captain begins with a comfortable series win 🏆🇮🇳#India #NewZeland #INDvNZ https://t.co/0AAC1DjaGL

Despite a good performance, Rohit Sharma stated that there is still room for improvement going forward. Speaking at the post-match presentation ceremony, Rohit said:

“It’s important to start well. That’s always been my mindset. Once you’ve seen the pitch you know what you’ve got to do. It was nicely coming onto the bat with the dew coming early. We had something planned as a batting group. Wouldn’t say it worked out well. Room for improvement in the middle order. The batting front – KL missed out today but his form is critical. Middle order didn’t get much opportunity except today.”

Shreyas Iyer (25) and Venkatesh Iyer (20) scored some quick runs. Then Harshal Patel (18) and Deepak Chahar (21*) accumulated some useful runs in the lower-order.

“Teams around the world bat deep till No.8, No.9. Harshal, when he plays for Haryana, he opens the batting for them. And then Deepak, we’ve seen what he did in SL. Chahal was looking forward to bat as well,” Rohit Sharma added.

India will ride on the highs of the three-match T20I series against the Black Caps. They will look to set a template for the upcoming T20 World Cup in Australia in less than a year’s time.

“I’ve practised a lot playing those shots” – Rohit Sharma on playing the pull shots

The 34-year-old cricketer is one of the best players of the pull shot among Indian batters. Rohit stressed that the pull shot doesn’t come naturally to him naturally. He highlighted that he has worked the extra yards to master these shots.

“I’ve grown up playing on a concrete pitch back in the day. Once I started opening a lot of things changed. Won’t say it (playing the pull) comes naturally. I’ve practised a lot playing those shots. Some days it comes off very well but I’ve got out also playing that shot. That’s why I say when you’ve got a certain strength, you’ve got to back it,” Rohit concluded.

The cricketer from Mumbai, who has been rested from the two-match Test series, will return during South Africa’s tour next month.

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