Ahmedabad: India bowling coach Paras Mhambrey admitted that the toss was 'crucial' in the World Cup final but it is not something that the team can 'complain about' after losing to Australia by six wickets at Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Sunday.
Put into bat, skipper Rohit Sharma once again provided India with a blistering start with fireworks in powerplay but after his wicket fell, Australian bowlers bowled on very tight lines and lengths and kept taking wickets at regular intervals to restrict the Men in Blue at below-par score of 240.
India suffered two huge blows in the powerplay including Shubman Gill (4) and Rohit (47). Then India's run-machine Virat Kohli(54) stitched a fifty partnership with KL Rahul in the rebuild and when India was looking go-to for the 280-300 mark, Kohli got played on a short pitch delivery bowled by Cummins while playing it toward third-man for a single.
KL Rahul scored 66 runs off 107 balls with the help of a boundary and didn't show any intent of scoring boundaries till the time he was there on the crease. His strike rate was only 61.68. With these dogged innings, he became the first player to score more than 400+ runs while batting at number five for India in the single edition of the World Cup surpassing former India skipper Rahul Dravid.
In the second innings, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami combined to scalp three wickets in the powerplay but failed to continue the dominance in the middle overs. Travis Head (137) and Marnus Labuschagne (58*) unlike Indian batters picked up boundaries at regular intervals and guided Australia across the finishing line.
After the game, Mhambrey pointed out the contrast in the batting conditions in both innings and said in a video posted by Olympics.com, "If you look at it, I would say yes it did make a difference. I thought the way the wicket played in the first innings and the second innings was a contrast. So I definitely think the toss was crucial. But I don't think that is something we can complain about. What is important for us, from my and the team's perspective, all I can say that we tried our best. In terms of the effort, everyone gave their best. That is what we expect."