Shardul Thakur was a part of the Shikhar Dhawan-led team that had to suffer a narrow defeat in an extremely close game against South Africa. Team India lost the reduced match by a very small margin of 9 runs. Shreyas Iyer and Sanju Samson batted brilliantly but couldn’t save the Team. Team India could only manage to score 240 runs in their innings of 40 Overs (Reduced due to rain) and suffered a defeat by 9 runs.
India will take on South Africa in the second ODI in Ranchi and the mention of the city from a cricketing perspective inevitably would lead to MS Dhoni’s name being taken. Dhoni retired from international cricket more than two years ago and plays the sport only when the Indian Premier League (IPL) comes around but his presence, or absence, will be keenly felt when India will try to level the series in his hometown i.e. Ranchi.
Everyone Misses MS Dhoni: Shardul Thakur
Fast bowling all-rounder Shardul Thakur got a taste of that when asked in a press conference on the eve of the match if India’s bowlers’ consistency has been affected because they no longer receive Dhoni’s guidance from behind the stumps.
Responding to this question Shardul stated, “Everyone misses Dhoni because his vast experience matters a lot for everyone. He has played more than 300 ODIs, and more than 90 plus Test matches. It’s very difficult to find someone as experienced as him. Our generation has played with him hence we do miss him.”
Adding further to his statement, Shardul talked about consistency. He said, “As far as consistency goes, I think even bowlers playing for other teams tend to get hit for a lot of runs when they play in India. In the T20 series against South Africa, if you are going to criticise the bowlers you need to criticise their bowlers too. We won the series, after all, their bowlers also got hit for a lot of runs.”
Shardul Thakur went on to explain that India has rarely suffered one-sided defeats at home, and has lost very few games overall, regardless of how many runs their bowlers concede because, on a day when the hosts’ bowlers are expensive, the visiting side also receives a similar treatment.
Shardul said, “I feel before you ask about someone’s consistency, you should check what conditions they played in and how the pitch was. Many a time in an ODI game a team scores more than 350 runs and that is a situation where all bowlers are taken for runs. But is the opposition also able to score runs?”
“Whatever matches happen here are never one-sided. Regardless of how the pitch is, we have always given a good fight. We may have lost one or two matches here and there but we have won maximum matches. So, I feel there is a lot of consistency within this team.”