'When We Picked Team...': Rohit Sharma Admits To Selection Mistake After Defeating Ireland

June 07,2024

Although Rohit Sharma expressed dissatisfaction with the playing conditions, the team’s key pacer Jasprit Bumrah found the rare seamer-friendly surface to his advantage, something seldom experienced back home in India.

Rohit scored a commendable 52 off 37 balls but was forced to retire hurt after a delivery from Ireland ’s Josh Little unexpectedly bounced higher than anticipated, hitting him on the bicep of his right arm.

"Yes, it's a bit sore," Rohit admitted at the presentation ceremony. "I mentioned at the toss that we were unsure about the pitch. Playing on a surface that's been unused for five months was quite a mystery."

Rohit’s frustration was evident as the unpredictable bounce posed challenges throughout the game.

"The pitch didn't stabilize even when we batted second. There was plenty for the bowlers," said the Indian captain, as his pace attack bowled Ireland out for 96 in just 16 overs.

The conditions perfectly suited the Indian pace quartet , three of whom have substantial Test experience.

"Consistency in hitting those lengths is crucial. All these guys, except Arshdeep, have played a lot of Test cricket. Arshdeep's early breakthroughs set the tone for us."

Despite bringing four spinners to New York, Rohit is uncertain about their utility in the current conditions and possibly in the West Indies as well.

"Playing four spinners here doesn't seem feasible," Rohit remarked with a chuckle. "We aimed for a balanced team selection. If conditions favor seamers, we wanted to be prepared. Spin will be crucial later in the West Indies."

"Today, it was a pitch for seamers, yet we managed to include two all-rounder spinners." Looking ahead to the match against Pakistan, Rohit remains uncertain about the pitch.

"I'm not sure what to expect from the pitch on Sunday. We'll prepare for similar conditions. It’s a game where every player must contribute," he said. Reflecting on his innings, he was content with the start.

"It was a bit scratchy, but it was good to spend time in the middle and understand the right shots to play."

Bumrah, who delivered an impressive 2/6 in 3 overs, had no complaints about the conditions.

"Coming from India, it's refreshing to have some help for bowlers. In this format, adapting to conditions and being proactive is essential," Bumrah stated. "I stick to what has worked for me, covering all bases in these conditions. I’m very happy with today’s performance."

Ireland skipper Paul Stirling acknowledged that India’s bowlers were relentless and gave them little opportunity to counter-attack.

"We needed to put pressure back on the Indian bowlers, but they were consistently accurate. Their lengths and groupings were outstanding," Stirling admitted.