Despite not being known for hiss batting skills, medium pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar played match winning innings against Sri Lanka at Pallekele during the 2nd ODI which ensured the visitors chased down the required target of 231 with utmost comfort despite stuttering at 131/7 at one stage. Team India got off to a brilliant start as openers Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma shared a 109 runs partnership for the opening wicket before mystery spinner Akila Dananjaya spun the web around the Indian batsmen and bagged 6 wickets within a space of 21 deliveries by conceding only 11 runs.
During a video interview with teammate Rohit Sharma, Bhuvi answered how he dealt with Dananjaya when the rest of the batting order failed to pick any of his wrong uns.
“Bhuvi, obviously it was not an easy situation when you went to bat in but we all have seen you bat and score runs whenever the team has required. So what was going on there? Did you have a special chat with MS (Dhoni)?” Rohit asked Bhuvneshwar during a video interview for the BCCI Tv.
“No. Not really. When I went in he (Dhoni) just told me, just play what your game is. That was the ideal situation for me as I am not the kind of batsman who can hit sixes but you know I can go through the innings and score a few runs. I know that if I can play 15-20 overs, it was a good chance for us to win the match,” Bhuvneshwar replied.
Rohit agreed with Bhuvi before asking him the next question. What did you make of the wicket? Did you think when you were bowling the wicket changed quite a bit and when you were batting was there any change or dew effect?” asked Rohit.
“When I went in for the batting, there was a bit of turn, I wasn’t picking his (Dananjaya) googly or whatever but later on it was coming nicely on to the bat, may be, because I was set and I was seeing the ball really nice. For me, it was easy to bat in this wicket than bowl because it wasn’t easy to bowl in the first innings. It was coming nicely on to the bat,” Bhuvneshwar replied.
Rohit heaping praise on Bhuvi and Dhoni said that he and the whole team had the belief that the duo can finish the match for the visitors. When asked whether he was picking Danajaya confidently Bhuvi said:
“Yes, when I went in, I wanted to play him as a googly bowler. I wanted to play his googly because whatever was going away from me I was getting beaten. So, I just wanted to play him as a googly bowler. That actually worked for me. MS (Dhoni) also said the same thing, to play for the incoming ball, so that if it gets away, you won’t get out. I was really worried about Malinga, especially slower ball because every time I played him in the IPL, I never picked his slower ball.”
He concluded by saying a few words on his bowling.
“I am trying to exploit the conditions. I couldn’t get the wickets in the last two matches but I am pretty happy with the way I am bowling. The plans, whatever I am executing it, is perfectly happening. So, I am really happy with my bowling.”