The five-match One-day International series in the bag, India captain Virat Kohli, on Sunday, said the team can afford to make changes in the playing eleven for the remaining two games. India played the same team for all three ODIs but now reserve players like Manish Pandey can get a game, reported PTI.
“We have a squad of 15, we’ll look to give some of the other guys a go. Having won the series already, we can afford to give those guys a go,” said Kohli at the post-match presentation after India beat Sri Lanka by six wickets in third ODI.
Chasing a modest target of 218, India felt the heat for the second game in a row after being 61/4 in the 16th over.
Kohli, however, insisted that chasing smaller targets are not a problem for his side. “Small targets are always tricky. If it happens to you two or three times, I don’t think it’s an issue. Here, the wicket was a bit more challenging,” he said. “The last game we had a collapse. The other batsmen really applied themselves. We have to be a bit patient with the younger players,” Kohli added.
He lavished praise on pacer Jasprit Bumrah, who picked up his maiden five-wicket haul. “He’s got 11 wickets in three games, he’s bowled really well. Last game he missed out on a five-for, but he got it this time. He’s doing a great job for us,” the 28-year-old said.
Sri Lanka’s stand-in captain Chamara Kapugedera said the total they put up was below-par. “I thought it was a good wicket, so we wanted to put on a score which we could defend. Things didn’t go to our plans. We discussed about not playing dot balls in the middle. 260-275 would have been a challenging score,” Kapugedera said.