The Indian fast bowler, Shardul Thakur went on to reveal that despite conceding an unassailable 2-0 ODI series lead against New Zealand the men in blue are in no mood of letting their positive intent go away. He said that Team India will be going for a win in the dead rubber scheduled to be played at the Bay Oval in Mount Manganui.
Talking to the reporters on Monday ahead of the third and the final ODI, Shardul said, “Every match is important. Just because we are 0-2 down, this does not mean that the final match is important. Every international match holds a key. We are 0-2 down. We can express ourselves and we will play with freedom.”
In order to clinch a consolatory victory, Thakur feels that the men in blue will try to get Ross Taylor early in the innings. Taylor, 35, has played two match-winning knocks and Indians have not been able to dismiss him even once.
In the first ODI, Taylor played a match-winning knock of 109* as the Black Caps chased down a stiff target of 348 in Hamilton. He followed it up with an unbeaten knock of 73 in Auckland as the hosts successfully defended the 274-run target and clinched their first-ever ODI series win over India in the last six years.
Talking about Taylor, Thakur said, “Ross is batting really well. He can play like God on the leg side once he is in. In the last two ODIs, there were chances of us dismissing him, but we did not grab our chances. It is important to send him back early in the innings.”
The Indian fast bowler further said it was important for the Indian team to get their angles right while playing on grounds which have different dimensions.
Thakur said, “The dimensions here are quite different. It is important to understand when you come to New Zealand. Every ground has a shorter boundary on one side and bowling plans change according to them. It is difficult to play cricket here because of the ground dimensions. I think wherever you play, bowlers get the benefit of setting the field, as the bowler knows where he will bowl. The confidence develops when you keep executing your skills, my rhythm feels good right now.”
Having already sealed the three-match series, New Zealand would be aiming for a whitewash and avenge their 0-5 T20I series defeat against the Men in Blue.