MS Dhoni believes India are reaping the benefits of a settled side as they prepare to try to win the ICC World Twenty20 on home soil.
Dhoni’s men sealed a thrilling seven-wicket victory over Australia at the SCG on Sunday to complete a 3-0 series whitewash – a welcome boost having lost the one-day contests 4-1.
Needing two off the final ball to chase down Australia’s 197-5, Suresh Raina hit Andrew Tye’s delivery over point for four to seal a dramatic triumph at the end of a run chase that saw Rohit Sharma (52) and Virat Kohli (50) record half-centuries.
And India, who lifted the trophy in the inaugural World T20 in 2007, will be among the favourites to claim a second title with home advantage in their favour in this year’s competition, which begins in March.
“Lot of credit to the bowlers,” said Dhoni in the post-match presentation. “In the ODI series the batsmen were doing well, we needed the extra 10 per cent from the bowlers.
“That has changed with [Jasprit] Bumrah coming in and others getting their act together. Yes, the batsmen have taken it up a notch, but it is the bowlers who have done their job better, which has made the difference.
“There might be one or two changes based on the conditions in the World T20, but this is roughly what our T20 side will look like.”
“We decided before the Sydney one-dayer that we want to finish the tour four-all,” added man of the series Kohli, who made 50 from 36 balls. “Just because we played so well earlier but didn’t get on the board.
“I was disappointed when I got out because I wanted to finish the game off. I challenge myself to finish them off when I chase. The way Yuvi [Yuvraj Singh] and Raina, both of them coming back, finished it off, credit to their character.
“I have said this many times that I am a big fan of Rohit [Sharma]. The time he has got, and the miles he can hit the ball.”