India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni blamed his batsmen for not living up to their potential which led to a humiliating 1-3 Test series defeat to England. “We’ve lost a lot of confidence over the five-Test series. It is disappointing. Right from the start, our batsmen never really performed, the lower order helped out. That blurred the performance of the top order. Just scoring 150-160 runs will not put pressure on the home team,” said Dhoni after India lost the fifth and final Test by an innings and 244 runs at The Oval.
“The batting unit felt the pressure of not scoring, that’s what you have to do in Test cricket, absorb pressure. If we went with Rohit Sharma, the difficulty was who to leave out. Whatever we could have done, we tried. A bit more application from the batsmen and it would have been better.”
The wicketkeeper-batsman added that though the team performed well in the first two Tests, the series was quite demanding. After drawing the first Test, India went on to win the second at Lord’s to take a 1-0 lead.
“The first couple of Test matches were good for us so there is no point in playing practice games later in the series. A five-Test series was very demanding. You could see with Bhuvneshwar Kumar, the effects on him, but we couldn’t replace him,” said Dhoni.
“Our playing XI didn’t have many Tests so we were lacking experience but until they play international cricket, they won’t get that. There will be many experiences which the youngsters will learn. Not many have played Tests away from home and hopefully they can take that it into the future. It’s important to play here, learn lessons and come back strong.”
Starting Aug 25, India will also play five One-Day Internationals (ODI) and one Twenty20 International against England.
“The one-day format, we have some new players coming in and it’s not as demanding. It’s important we leave the Tests behind and enjoy the ODIs and T20. It’s demanding but the wickets were good, nice pace and bounce – in the overcast conditions the fast bowlers get swing,” concluded Dhoni, who has been India’s second highest run-getter in the series with 349.