We should have batted sensibly: Kabir Khan
Colombo, Sep 20: Afghanistan put up an impressive performance against India in their opening game of the 2012 ICC world Twenty20. They hit the deck hard from the word go and went all out against the Indian bowling while chasing a competitive total. Even dropped catches and lapses in the field did not deter them. They picked themselves up and gave India a run for their money. Coach Kabir Khan lauded his team's performance while addressing the media after the match.
Excerpts from his post-match press conference:
On the match
There was a chance of making it. We made a few mistakes on the field; the boys dropped a few catches. That could have reduced India’s total by at least 15-20 runs. And while batting, at some stages we were well in the game but then we lost a couple of wickets in a very short time. Overall, I would say our team played much better compared to the last World T20 game against India [in 2010, which India won by seven wickets]. I think we have impressed them. Our performance was impressive, but we could have done better.
On the dropped catches
I don’t think the dropped catches were decisive because the Indian batting line-up has quite a bit of depth. If we had taken those catches, it would have meant one quality batsman following another quality batsman. They would have scored at least 140 in any case. Sometimes in cricket, you take one wicket, you follow it up with some more wickets. But the way we started, I thought even 160 was chaseable. If we had batted a little sensibly, we could have achieved it.
On whether the big occasion put pressure on Afghanistan
That’s a factor because those boys are not exposed to international cricket. Just the sheer pressure of playing the side we were playing, the crowd, the cameras, it all came together. I have to point out that those who dropped catches are very good fielders. I think the pressure factor came into it. India is a big team and knows how to handle pressure. Then again, we also play less international cricket, and less against the top teams. We played India only twice in two years; but if we had played them five or six times, the result could have been different.