Rohit Sharma was an elated captain as India thrashed Sri Lanka by 10 wickets in Colombo on Sunday (September 17) to clinch their record-extending 8th Asia Cup title.
In the all-important Asia Cup 2023 final, India bundled out the hosts for a paltry 50 in 15.2 overs on the back of Mohammed Siraj’s six-wicket haul (6/21). Hardik Pandya (3/3) and Jasprit Bumrah (1/23) shared the remaining four scalps between them.
In reply, the Men in Blue overhauled the target in just 6.1 overs as openers Shubman Gill (27*) and Ishan Kishan (23*) backed up the bowlers' efforts with a quick finish.
“Yeah, it was a great performance. To come out and play like that in the final shows the mental character. Great start with the ball and clinical finish with the bat. I was standing in the slips, and something we take pride in – our seamers have been working really hard. Very very clear in their mind. It was good to see that. Such a performance we will cherish for a long time,” said Rohit at the post-match presentation ceremony.
The Indian captain lauded Siraj for his stunning display with the ball. “I never thought it’s going to do that much. Comes down to the skillset of individuals. Siraj has to be given a lot of credit. Rare for seamers to move the ball in the air and off the pitch. He’s coming off age. We did everything we could’ve achieved as a team in this tournament,” he added.
The triumphant Asia Cup 2023 campaign showed that India’s preparation for the upcoming ODI World Cup is on track. The likes of Shubman Gill, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Virat Kohli, KL Rahul among others stepped up to the plate in pressure situations.
Rohit acknowledged his players for performing under pressure in different junctures.
"The first game against Pakistan under pressure, four down, how Hardik (Pandya) and (Ishan) Kishan batted in that pressure got us to that total. And then KL and Virat getting that hundred was brilliant to see."
"Also Gill, he's in terrific form, he's a batting freak. He likes to keep batting and it's something that works for our team. A lot of the guys at various stages bailed the team out in pressure situations," the skipper remarked.
India will open their World Cup campaign against Australia in Chennai on October 8. Prior to the quadrennial event, they will host Australia in a three-match ODI series.
“Look forward to the series that is coming up in India, and then the World Cup,” Rohit stated.