CUTTACK: It may have looked odd to send Axar Patel ahead of India’s ‘designated finisher’ Dinesh Karthik in the second T20 against South Africa but top-order batter Shreyas Iyer defended the strategy, saying the need of the hour was to rotate strike.
“It is something we had strategised earlier as well. We had seven overs left when Axar went in. He is someone who can take the singles and keep rotating the strike,” Shreyas said at the post-match media interaction on Sunday.
“Also, at that point in time, we did not require someone to go in and start hitting from ball one. DK can obviously do that, but he has been a really good asset for us after 15 overs, where he can go in and start hitting straight-away.”
Axar, promoted to No 6, scored 10 off 11 balls before being cleaned up by Anrich Nortje while Karthik slammed an unbeaten 30 from 21 balls.
Shreyas argued that even Karthik had struggled to get his timing right like many others on the day on a two-paced wicket.
“Even he was finding it a little bit difficult at the start. The wicket played a huge role in this game. And as for that strategy, we can and we will be going with it in the next matches as well,” Shreyas said.
Klaasen hopes Barabati knock prolongs career
South Africa wicketkeeper-batter Heinrich Klaasen hopes his match-winning effort against India in the second T20 in Cuttack helps him prolong his international career.
Dropped after the T20 World Cup last year, Klaasen also found himself out of the ODI side and lost his central contract.
“It was a difficult pitch to bat. I found myself struggling up front. Then I decided that if I go out, I would rather go my way and try to be positive. It is just one of those days that it came off,” he said at the post-match interaction.
“It is a blessing from above that this innings came at this time for me in my career... That puts me on the map ahead of international cricket. So hopefully, this will just prolong my career a little bit longer.” Klaasen said he got an indication about playing a couple of days ago after Quinton de Kock injured his hand. It was on the eve of the match he was confirmed a place in the eleven.