Former India player turned veteran commentator Aakash Chopra has picked India’s fast bowling as one of their areas of improvement after their defeat to Australia in the Under-19 World Cup final. However, Australia set a 254-run target in the final in Benoni on Sunday, February 11 whereas Team India were bundled out for 174, losing the game by 79 and failing to win a record-extending sixth Under-19 World Cup title as well.
In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra said: “Our fast bowling was not that good. Raj Limbani did very well but I saw the fast bowling as slightly weak. We were slightly more focused on spin but you actually needed fast bowling on this Benoni pitch. We didn’t attack enough with fast bowling. Yes, our fast bowlers picked up wickets but you should have picked up at least three opposition wickets in the first 10 overs. Raj Limbani picked up one wicket. You should have got two more wickets if the fast bowling had been good from both ends.”
Meanwhile, Raj Limbani dismissed Sam Konstas for a duck in the third over and he finished with impressive figures of 3/38 in 10 overs as well. However, Naman Tiwari (2/63 in nine overs) was removed from the attack after giving away 15 runs in his first over and he was replaced by a spinner in Saumy Pandey. Aakash Chopra named the Indian batters’ issues against the short ball as another issue as well.
“A big learning we got was that we are slightly 50-50 against the short ball. It is down to conditioning. When we have not played or learned something from childhood, suddenly when we encounter that, we are not that ready. It makes a difference. The opposing team played four fast bowlers and all four of them were six feet tall, and they bowled bouncers regularly. Even if they were bowling length balls, it was going close to the ears. Their keeper was catching the ball above his shoulders,” Aakash Chopra concluded.