Cricket

Nidahas Trophy: Perera powerplay blitz took game away from India, says Dhawan

[caption id="attachment_63867" align="alignnone" width="580"]DSC09611 Shikhar Dhawan's 49 ball 90 went in vain as India lost by five wickets to Sri Lanka in the first match of Nidahas Trophy in Colombo on Tuesday. Image Source: BCCI[/caption]

Debasis Sen, Colombo: India opener Shikhar Dhawan on Tuesday admitted that Kushal Perera took the game away from them as Sri Lanka cruised to a five-wicket victory in the first match of the Nidahas Trophy here. Dhawan, who scored a career best 90 runs to help India post a decent target of 174/5, felt the batting in the power-play overs made the difference between the both sides.

“After the first six overs, Sri Lanka were 75/2 which was 25 runs too many. Kusal Perera played a great knock and it took the game away from us. However, we did bounce back in the middle overs but the powerplay batting made the difference,” said Dhawan during the post match conference.

India managed only 40 runs in the powerplay when they batted, as they lost two quick wickets. Captain Rohit Sharma (0) and Suresh Raina (1)was back in the pavilion in the first two overs, before Dhawan took control of the innings along with Manish Pandey. The left hander blazed his way to a magnificent 90 off 49 balls, studded with six fours and six sixes to help India reach 174/5.

When asked about India’s low powerplay score, the left-hander said, “Sri Lanka took two wickets in the first two overs and that caused some damage for us. When you lose two wickets at the start, one has to curb aggression. If we had not lost the two wickets, we could have been even more aggressive.”

Dhawan’s 90 formed the basis of India putting up a decent score at the R Premadasa stadium. The left-hander has enjoyed a great run in the shortest format, managing scores of 72, 24 and 47 as India defeated South Africa 2-1 in the recently-concluded Twenty20 series.

The 32-year-old said he was enjoying his batting. “I have been playing aggressively from the start. I know my game. I am very aggressive from the start. The general pattern is that my strike-rate has been quiet high,” Dhawan said.

India take on Bangladesh in the second match of the Nidahas Trophy at the R Premadasa stadium on Thursday.

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