By B Shrikant
Hyderabad, Sep 26 (IANS): With his team overcoming a strong Australian lineup in a three-match T20I series 2-1, India skipper Rohit Sharma was elated that they had achieved all that they wanted to in this series but said there are still areas in which the team has to improve.
India won the series by defeating Australia by six wickets in the series-deciding third and last T20I at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium here on Sunday.
Former skipper Virat Kohli and middle-order bat Suryakuamr Yadav struck brilliant fifties as India overhauled Australia's challenging total of 186/7 to win the series 2-1.
Kohli and Suryakuamr Yadav came together at a difficult time for India when they had lost openers KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma with just 30 runs on the board and shared a 104-run partnership to put India on course to victory.
Rohit said the team had ticked all the boxes and achieved whatever they wanted to from this short series.
"We got whatever we wanted from the series. We ticked a lot of boxes. There will be some areas that we need to improve but overall it was a good series for us, we got to learn a lot," Sharma told the post-match press conference on Sunday night.
Led by spinner Axar Patel, who claimed 3/33 off his four overs, India fought back in the middle overs after Cameron Green (52) had given Australia a good start.
Another youngster Tim David struck a whirlwind 54 towards the end as Australia posted a total they could hope to defend.
But thanks to Virat and Suryakumar, the Indians managed to overhaul the total and win the series. This augurs well for India as they now have three more matches against South Africa at home before they depart to Australia for the T20 World Cup in a few days' time.
Rohit said they want to tighten "our game" in all departments. He said the bowling and fielding need some more work.
"Honestly, we want to tighten (our game) in all departments. I know our batting has been brilliant in the last 8 or 9 games that we have played since Asia Cup. But we still want us to be more clinical, more aggressive, and play with that aggression, we want to keep doing that and I don't see too much fault there," said the India skipper.
Indian batters have really done well in this series with KL Rahul, Suryakumar Yadav, and Hardik Pandya shouldering the responsibility in the first match at Mohali. At Nagpur, Rohit struck a scintillating 20-ball 46 on a difficult pitch in an eight-over-a-side slugfest, while in the third match here, Virat Kohli and Suryakumar Yadav did it for India when Rahul and Rohit failed.
But the Indians struggled in the death overs, conceding a lot more runs than they would have liked. And with the T20 World Cup round the corner, that is one area of the game that worries the team management.
"Bowling, yes, of course, we have our eyes on a thing or two, what we need to do as a bowling unit that's mainly and obviously, fielding is one aspect on which we will never stop working, we want to keep improving as a fielding unit all the time. Bowling is something we are a lot more focused on than batting at the moment," said Rohit.