The team didn’t deal with the conditions firmly: Rohit

India captain Rohit Sharma on Friday termed the nine-wicket defeat in the third Test against Australia as “an unusual match”, saying that his team did not show the character and ability to fight. After going 0-2 down in the series and missing out on the Border-Gavaskar trophy, Australia booked their place in the World Test Championship (WTC) final with a memorable win on a spin-friendly pitch at the Holkar Stadium here.

Rohit said at the award ceremony after the match, “When you are playing on challenging pitches, you can create pressure by bowling at one place. We let their bowlers bowl at one place. Credit must also go to their bowlers, especially Nathan Lyon. We had to try and show character but I think we didn’t do that. Lyon took eight wickets for 64 runs in the second innings and paved the way for victory for Australia.

Rohit said, “You can get a match with an unusual result where things don’t go your way. But still you need to unite the players and encourage them. “He said,” We wanted some players to spend time at the crease, but it did not happen. We fell a little behind and didn’t apply ourselves the way we wanted to. Rohit hasn’t started thinking about the fourth Test in Ahmedabad.

He said, “To be honest, we have not thought about it (Ahmedabad Test) yet. We have just finished this Test so we need to regroup and try again. We need to understand that we have to improve as a team.” Australia’s stand-in captain Steve Smith credited the bowlers for the win, saying, “Our bowlers did really well, especially (Matthew) Kuhnemann. has. India bowled well towards the end of our first innings which got us out early. We had to work hard yesterday, Puji (Pujara) played a good innings, but all our bowlers did really well. It was a complete performance.

Smith is leading the team in place of regular captain Pat Cummins. Cummins returned home after the second Test to look after his ailing mother. Smith said, “We were thinking about Cummins. Our prayers are with him. I really enjoyed this week though. I love captaining in this part of the world. I think I understand a lot of the intricacies.

Man of the match Lyon said, “It has been quite a remarkable series. But to come here and do well for the team was special. I don’t have all the skills and tricks, but I put a lot of faith in my stock ball. And I think if you have that, you can have success.” He said, ”. I have been lucky enough to challenge some of the best players like Virat and Pujara. I like to challenge myself.

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