The following are five reasons (imo) why India lost to Sri Lanka in the World Cup T20 finals:
1. Lost the toss
India is well at chasing especially in T20s. Out of the five matches they played before the final against Sri Lanka, they won four while chasing. Though they won the high-voltage game against Aussies while batting first, chasing a total would’ve been their first preference. Losing the toss and being put into the bat, Indians found themselves under a psychological hammer. The pre-play rain added to the problem and India might also have thought of D/L method coming into play later on which supports, in most of the cases, the team batting second as they can pace their innings in accordance with the requirements.
2. Raina not promoted up the order
Considering Yuvraj Singh out of the form throughout the contest (excluding a single game), Dhoni could have promoted Raina up the order. Yuvraj squandered too many deliveries until losing his wicket without hitting even a single boundary. Raina could have definitely added some quick runs to propel India past 160 or so.
3. Kohli was kept off the strike
The bad start was neutralized by Rohit and Kohli in the middle overs. They were taking the game away from Lankans. But after the departure of Rohit, India was nowhere, with Yuvi wasting the deliveries and keeping the highest run-getter of the tournament watching at the other end. Kohli hardly faced any ball in the last four overs. As a result, India could manage only 19 odd runs between 16th and final over of the innings. At the end of the innings, India was surely 30 runs short of a defendable total.
4. Sangakara wasn’t attacked early on
Sangakara was under 3D pressure——playing the final match of his T20-career, playing the major game and under the pressure of delivering after remaining off-colored throughout the tournament. He was stumbling and out of touch initially. India needed to attack just when he came into bat. Contrarily, they became too defensive owing to a mediocre total of 130. Sanga had no seeing back after getting his eyes in. Mahela-Sanga partnership took the match away from India.
5. Spin didn’t work
Spin played a major role for India and guided them to final. Ashwin and Mishra dominated the opponents in Pakistan, Bangladesh, West Indies and Australia. However, in the final they couldn’t do much, thanks to a low total put on by Indians!
By Arif Qadir