Mumbai, October 29: After defeating the West Indies by 224 runs in the fourth ODI here to take 2-1 lead in the series, India skipper Virat Kohli said he was happy to see Ambati Rayudu seizing the opportunities at No 4.
Virat Kohli had nominated Rayudu as a long-term option at No 4 and he has already made a fifty and hundred - on this day at the Brabourne Stadium, at that slot. "Rayudu's taken his opportunity with both hands, and we need to back him till the 2019 World Cup. He reads the game well, and he bats with intelligence," said a chuffed Kohli after the match.
Patting young left-arm quick Khaleel Ahmed, who took three wickets, Kohli said: "Khaleel is an exciting talent. If the pitch has something to offer, he can extract something. He bowled in the right areas, not too full not too short. Happy to see him make the ball talk."
Kohli was also happy about the fact India registered a big win after two middling performances - a tie and defeat in the last two matches. "We are definitely back on track and ticked all the boxes. We were clinical in all three departments. We were put under a bit of pressure in the third ODI, but we bounced back," said Kohli. \
Khaleel was quite obviously elated after his three-wicket burst that blunted the West Indian chase.
"I thought there will be moisture in the evening, so I wanted to utilise it. Then when I found the swing, I decided to stick with that line and length. After joining Team India, I have been working on these skills and a lot of input from bowling coach Bharat Arun is coming as well. So, I implemented it after practicing for a few days. I had planned Samuels' wicket. I wanted him to feel I'm bowling the inswinger, but I chose to bowl the other one to him. It paid off. I like to appeal a lot because that makes the batsman uncomfortable, even if I can't get a wicket," said Khaleel.
West Indian skipper Jason Holder said: "We didn't play well enough. I guess we allowed them to score too many runs, and then we didn't apply ourselves. Lost wickets up front, and no momentum thereafter. Run-outs are never something we want, and they were two of our better players. We had to do a lot to rebuild, but that never happened. I've been hearing about batting higher up the order myself, but need to see our team balance. Maybe next game!"