Gautam Gambhir admitted that one of the four batsmen, who got good starts in the opening one-dayer in Rajokot, should have gone on to play a big innings.
Chasing England’s 325/4, India finished at 315/9 as Gambhir (52), Ajinkya Rahane (47), Yuvraj Singh (61) and Suresh Raina (50) failed to carry on. “Yes, someone who gets in, need to score a big one,” he said on Monday after India’s practice session. “We got four half-centuries (only three got 50s) in the last match and no one could carry on, if one of us had carried on till the 40th over, it could have been a different story.
Yeah, I think I started off well and one thing is once you get a start you need to continue and get a big one.
(But) when you are chasing 325, you have to score at a decent run rate. It’s not like you have plenty of time and keep playing. So, ultimately you have to take your chances even in the middle overs.”
Gambhir also said he would have been happier if his contribution had come in a winning cause. “It’s not just about opener (carrying on after a start), it’s about 11 players. You can’t say as an opener you have to do this and that, we contribute as a team, we play as a team. Yeah, it was a good game (for me) but I have always believed that if you score runs and teams end up losing then there’s no point. Even if you make a small contribution and team ends up winning that will make any batsman or sportsman happy,” he reasoned.
Gambhir refused to blame bowlers for India’s loss in Rajkot. “Only bowlers don’t win match for you, all the 11 players that get on to the field have to do it for you,” he pointed out. “It’s often seen that one department of the game is blamed whenever the team loses. But it’s always like, whenever the batsmen don’t do well, bowlers cover up for them and vice versa. I don’t believe in blaming one area of the game. I think the bowlers are putting in all the hard work, and the way they won the match for us against Pakistan (in Delhi) was commendable. There has been just one match in this series, and unfortunately the problem here (in India) is after every defeat we start talking about form,” he explained.
The southpaw felt it was important for India not to go 0-2 down in the series. “Rather than thinking about what’s happened in the series, we want to see it’s a start of a new series. Just go out there thinking it’s a four-match series rather than thinking we are 0-1 down. We were pretty close but if we go out there and play up to our potential we are a very dangerous side in our conditions.”