June 28, 2018 / 7:11 AM / 4 months ago

India to continue middle-order experiments, says Kohli

(Reuters) - India will continue to experiment with their middle order in the Twenty20 games against Ireland and England, captain Virat Kohli said after the team made a winning start to a lengthy tour on Wednesday.

Cricket - Ireland v India - First International T20 - The Village, Malahide, Ireland - June 27, 2018 India's Virat Kohli celebrates victory after the match REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

India shuffled its middle order in their 76-run victory over Ireland, allowing the likes of Suresh Raina and all-rounder Hardik Pandya to bat up the order.

Cricket - Ireland v India - First International T20 - The Village, Malahide, Ireland - June 27, 2018 India's Virat Kohli in action REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

“Look, we’ve already announced we will experiment with the middle-order a lot,” the 29-year-old told reporters.

“Even in the next few T20 games, even in England, we will look to throw in guys and surprise the opposition.”

“We’re going to give everyone a go in this series. The management and me as captain decided it.”

Cricket - Ireland v India - First International T20 - The Village, Malahide, Ireland - June 27, 2018 India's Virat Kohli reacts after losing his wicket REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

India also have KL Rahul and wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik in their ranks who are certain to play in the remaining Twenty20 matches against the Irish and the English.

Spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, who picked up 3-38 Wednesday, suggested that the team did not read too much into England’s unbeaten performances in the five-match one day international series and the one-off T20 match against Australia.

“England have scored against Australia, they haven’t scored against us. English spinners have also picked up wickets. So that is also a plus point for us,” the 27-year old said, before quashing claims of wrist spinners guaranteeing success.

“It’s not like wrist spinners are necessary for winning, it is just a recent trend. It is just that the batsmen are mentally more under pressure against wrist spinners and variation.”

India will play their final Twenty20 against Ireland on Friday before taking on England in a three-match series starting July 3.

Reporting By Arnab Paul in Bengaluru; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty

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