Virat Kohli has showered praise upon Hardik Pandya, who not only kept his nerves during the last over of the third T20I against New Zealand but had also reassured the skipper claiming, “I’ll do it don’t worry”. Kohli also revealed that they had confidence that Pandya’s off-cutters will work.
Kohli has revealed after the series-clinching T20I that he had full trust in Hardik Pandya’s ability, which forced him to hand the ball to the all-rounder for the all-important final over of the third T20I against New Zealand. The match was delayed by rain because of which both sides played a tense eight overs game each.
“I tried going up to him (in the final over), but after three balls he said, I’ll do it, you don’t have to worry. As a captain, when you get that kind of confidence from your bowlers, you aren’t left with much to say. He has confidence in his abilities and he finished off the game well,” said the Indian captain in the post-match press conference as quoted by The Indian Express.
The series was levelled at 1-1 and New Zealand had a good chance to record a rare away win against India after they had successfully restricted the hosts to only 67 runs in the first innings. Later, while chasing the target, the visitors needed 19 runs in the last over but Pandya ended up giving away 12 in it, guiding his team to a six-run victory in the process.
“We had the confidence in Hardik, whose off-cutters are good. The wicket was damp tonight, so the ball was sticking to the wicket,” said Kohli.
The first game of the T20I series was played in Delhi which was the final match of Ashish Nehra’s career and the Indian Team had successfully won the opener to give him a fantastic farewell. But, in the second T20I which was played in Rajkot, Colin Munro’s unbeaten century helped the visitors to level up the series. Finally, India wrapped things up in the three-match T20I series by winning it 2-1 in Thiruvananthapuram.