Canberra, Dec 2 | Fast bowler Shardul Thakur said that he was looking to keep the batsmen away from the cut and pull shots during the third ODI between India and Australia. Thakur, who was playing his first game of the series, returned as India’s most successful bowler, picking three wickets for 51 runs.
Thakur’s haul, that included the prized wicket of the centurion in first two games Steve Smith, helped India register a 13-run win and avoid a whitewash in the three-match series.
“The plan was to bowl length consistently. They had scored a lot of runs through cuts and pulls in the first two games, so I decided to make them play straighter lines. That worked,” said Thakur while speaking to the media after the match.
Thakur also revealed the plan the team had to bowl to Smith, who he had caught down the leg-side by wicketkeeper KL Rahul in what he admitted was a lucky dismissal.
“I feel sometimes we get lucky. Wanted his wicket to put them on the backfoot. I had planned bowling at his stumps and he edged down the leg side. Getting him early while defending 302 was big. The win gave us the momentum to go into the T20I series,” added Thakur.
Thakur came into this match after the India bowlers were taken to cleaners in the first two games at the Sydney Cricket Ground, where the wicket was very good to bat on.
“The pitches (in first two ODIs) were good to bat. We have to use variations on wickets that are good to bat. And we have to use the variations smartly and execute it ball after ball,” said Thakur.