Pant's dismissal was turning point: Kohli

Last Updated 21 November 2018, 13:56 IST

Young Rishabh Pant's dismissal in the penultimate over "changed things", according to India skipper Virat Kohli after Australia won an exciting first T20 International by four runs on Wednesday.

Australia made 158/4 in 17 overs but India were given a target of 174 in the same number of overs owing to the Duckworth-Lewis method in the rain-hit game.

India looked on course with Pant and Dinesh Karthik adding 51 runs in 3.5 overs before the burly keeper-batsman was dismissed trying to play a cheeky shot off Andrew Tye.

"It was a close game, exciting one for the crowd to watch and for the players as well, was a see-saw battle. We started well with the bat, fumbled in the middle overs, in the end we thought we'll win with Pant and Karthik but it changed again with Pant's dismissal," Kohli said at the post-match presentation.

Kohli lauded opener Shikhar Dhawan's power-packed 76 off 42 balls after a prolonged lean patch that started in England and continued till the second last match of the home series against West Indies.

"He's (Dhawan) a very strong player at the top of the order. He hasn't got a T20 hundred yet, but the way he plays it really benefits the team. That's how it goes in the game. What we can do is learn from them and get back better," the skipper said.

Kohli feels closely-placed remaining two games on November 23 and 25 could be a good thing for the team as it won't be fretting over the loss for a long time.

"On the day, if we can have three-four guys to stand up for the team, that's what we want. Don't have much time to think, which can be a good thing as well as a bad thing."

Australian T20 captain Aaron Finch said: "Thought the boys played really well, especially in the middle overs with the bat."

On a lighter note, Finch admitted that he never understands the equations of Duckworth-Lewis method.

"Never been my strong point at school (maths)."

Man of the match Adam Zampa was delighted at having picked up the prized wicket of Virat Kohli.

"Really good feeling. Virat being the player he is, just thought he was a big wicket at the time. Getting him out, I was really excited."

(Published 21 November 2018, 13:43 IST)

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