Stand-in captain Rohit Sharma on Monday said that the Indian team got “what they wanted” from the drawn two-day warm-up game against a New Zealand XI going into the first Test starting February 6.
“We got what we wanted from this practice game. All the batsmen got in and made some runs which is a good sign before a Test series. We are ready and both the batsmen and the bowlers got what they wanted from this match. I am happy with how things went in the last two days,” Rohit, who scored a half-century along with Ajinkya Rahane said at the post-match press conference.
Apart from Rohit and Rahane, Ambati Rayudu (49 no) and Ravichandran Ashwin also got some useful batting practice.
Test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara scored 33 runs while Ashwin also had a good time with the ball taking two for 46.
Among bowlers, Ishant Sharma (2 for 58), Zaheer Khan (1 for 42) and Umesh Yadav (1 for 70) were also among the wickets, but the most impressive bowler was unheralded Ishwar Pandey with figures of 3 for 42.
Rohit had words of praise for young Pandey.
“Pandey bowled really well. Given the conditions, he stuck to his plans and he got rewarded with three wickets. All the other three fast bowlers also did well. They did not get the wickets they wanted, but Pandey was the one who got really stuck there,” said Rohit.
Rohit said that it was important to rotate all his bowlers unlike the New Zealand XI, who gave their bowlers longer spells.
“If you look at their bowling analysis, they probably bowled 15 overs each, which is pretty good on day one. We had to rotate the bowlers, and we had to see all the fast bowlers who were in the squad. Everyone got what they needed to get out of this game. We are looking good and raring to go for the Test series,” he added.