Virat Kohli-led India are virtually out of Asia Cup 2014 © Getty Images
Mirpur: Mar 2, 2014
India‘s stand-in skipper Virat Kohli on Sunday said it was a good learning experience for him leading the side and he is proud of his young teammates, who showed amazing resilience in the lost matches against Sri Lanka and Pakistan.
India are virtually out of the tournament following the close one-wicket defeat against arch-rivals Pakistan.
Kohli led the side in the absence of regular skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
“It is a good learning experience for me. I am proud of the way the boys played in the last two matches. We almost pulled of both. It’s a young team. I am pleased to the see the fight shown by the bowlers,” Kohli said at the post-match presentation ceremony.
Talking about his strategy to rotate his bowlers quickly, Kohli said,” the idea was to not let them get used to one bowler. The guys put in a good effort after a modest total. Mishra was getting it to turn and I kept him for the end. Ashwin was confident of bowling in the death, so I kept his two overs as well.”
Kohli said, “it could have gone either way, but they 20-30 runs short. ”
Pakistan skipper Misbah-ul-Haq said the jinx that they choke under tense chases has been broken with this win.
“It is really an important win and I am very happy because wen played really well under pressure. We are labelled as bad chasers but Hafeez and Maqsood did well and Afridi finished it for us perfectly,” he said.
When pointed that often when he is run out in a match, Pakistan emerge as winners, Misbah said, “I’d be happy to keep getting out if Pakistan win. If I don’t score and Pakistan win nothing is better than this.”
He also said, they were not looking ahead to the final yet, just taking one game at a time.
Mohammad Hafeez, adjudged Man of the Match for his fiery 75-run knock, said the way Pakistan won pleased him and that he has no problem bating at number three.
“The management wanted me to bat at number three and I am happy to perform.”
Asked about his opening the bowling with his off-spin, he said, “whenever there is a left-hander, the captain asks me to bowl upfront and I am happy to deliver.”
Talking about his 87-run partnership with Sohaib Maqsood (38) when Pakistan had lost four wickets at score of 113, Hafeez said, “I he had a chat with Maqsood about playing normally because the run-rate was not too daunting. And then Shahid Afridi finished it in the end. Want to dedicate the victory to the Pakistan people.”