Via Manish Khorgade | www.sportskeeda.com | Feb 17
In the much talked about opening encounter against Pakistan on February 15, MS Dhoni’s men came to the party when it mattered the most.
It was a great team effort that ensured a convincing victory over Pakistan. A victory that meant India are still unbeaten against Pakistan in World Cups. Pakistan’s wait, on the other hand, continues.
They might meet again in the latter stages of the tournament, but if not, Pakistan will have to wait another 4 years.
Throughout the match, Dhoni made few very good decisions that had a telling impact on the match. A captain is just as good as his team, but he is the one who has to live by the sword and die by it.
Let’s have a look at the five things that the Indian captain did right in the crucial opening game against Pakistan:
#1 Batting First
It seems trivial, but England – who lost to Australia in their opening match – know that just winning the toss is not enough. You have to make the right decision on the right kind of surface. Dhoni’s streak of good decisions started with him opting to bat first after winning the toss.
In a sense, these two teams are quite opposite to each other. India’s strength is Pakistan’s weakness – batting. Dhoni had to choose between keeping India’s strength against exposing Pakistan’s weakness in the second half of the game. Dhoni chose the latter.
Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina made sure India’s strength delivered and bowlers bowled the best spell of the season and created pressure that eventually got to Pakistan’s batsmen, making it 6-0 in World Cups.