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Playing West Indies challenging for bowlers, but India won’t be fazed, says Rohit

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Rohit Sharma, India’s limited-overs vice-captain, said that the series against West Indies is a good challenge for India’s young bowlers, as they learn to bowl to the reigning World T20 champions, filled with power hitters from top to bottom.

India’s attack for the first two games comprised youngsters such as fast bowler Deepak Chahar, and all-rounders Shivam Dube and Washington Sundar.

Sundar had a tough time on the field, dropping catches in both games, while Dube’s three overs so far have cost 31 runs and Chahar, who has borne the worst of the brunt, has leaked 91 runs in 7.3 overs.

Ahead of the third T20I in Mumbai, which will settle the series, currently tied at 1-1, Rohit, the hometown boy, said: “They have got some power-hitters right from the top to the end. It is a good challenge for our bowlers to bowl against a team like that, where you know every second ball they are going to come and try to hit six.”

Despite what their record might say – they have won only two of the 11 T20Is they have played this year – West Indies have put up a tough challenge, pushing India in both games. It took a breathtaking effort from Virat Kohli in the first to take India over the line.

Rohit expects nothing less, but said India won’t be fazed by the opposition’s might. “They are very unpredictable as a team,” Rohit said. “You never know what they can come up with on that given day, like we saw the other day. Even in the first game, they played very well and it was Virat’s brilliance that got us over. But with West Indies, this is always expected and they play well as a team.

“We are not scared of any team. They were good on that particular day and they won the game, as simple as that. If we are good, we know we can win any game in any given condition.”

Mumbai might be where Rohit grew up playing his cricket, but the Wankhede Stadium is as good as home to the opposition captain, Kieron Pollard, who has spent nearly a decade with Mumbai Indians at the Indian Premier League.

“Pollard has played a lot at this venue, the others have not played that much,” West Indies coach Phil Simmons said. “I think the experience which they have got from here is invaluable, and especially the captain, as he has been here for 10 years.

“He knows things inside out, and that will definitely help our bowlers mainly, there are a few youngsters in this format. It will definitely help.”

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