Sydney: Australia coach Justin Langer on Sunday described India’s all-rounder Hardik Pandya’s match-winning innings as an “incredible feat” in the second T20 International and compared him to former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni as a finisher.
Shikhar Dhawan scored 52 off 36 balls and Pandya scored 42 not out in 22 balls to help India win the series-six.
“It was an incredible spectacle of the game. We know how dangerous he (Pandya) is. We had MS Dhoni in the past and the way he (Pandya) played today,” Langer said at a virtual post-match press conference.

“He’s played really well all summer. Obviously it was a good innings there.”
Langer acknowledged that India has been very good to its team, with plenty of experienced T20 players in their lineup.
“I thought the whole game was very close. Our fielding was absolutely incredible. It was electric to watch, but having India with their experienced T20 players is very good for us today,” the Australia coach said.

Virat Kohli played a part in India’s win by scoring 40 off 24 balls and praising the India captain for some of the “extraordinary” shots Langer played on Sunday.
“Some of Virat’s (Kohli’s) shots, I have said for years that (Kohli) is the best player I’ve seen. Some of the shots he played tonight were exceptional and (he got) a good opening partnership and got on the line,” said the former Australian opener.
According to Langer, he felt he had a lot of runs on the board to defend and India needed to bat really well to win the match.

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In the pictures: Hardik Pandya gives India the burden of winning the T20I series against Australia

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  • Hardik Pandya hit two huge sixes in the final over to give India a 6-wicket win over Australia in the second T20, sewing the series for the visitors. . (AFP photo)

“I am proud of my players. It was a fantastic performance against India on Sunday night against Australia. It was very close. It was a really exciting game. We batted well, we scored a lot and I thought India really needed to bat well.”
Returning with figures of 1-25, Lenger praised his leg spinner Mitchell Swepson.
“I thought Mitch (Mitchell) Swepson bowled well. He supplied the best tonight and two leg-spinner bowlers. Mitch bowled very well, took a couple of catches, and he performed really well.

“And Matthew Wade batting beautifully at the top of the order, Steve Smith also batting well, so a lot of good offers, what makes me stand out is the athleticism on the field.
“It didn’t take us there, but like most of the games we played, we definitely had chances to win the game.
Speaking of stand-in-skipper Matthew Wade, Langer said, “He did a really good job, blended the bowling really well. The catch was the best catch to get Virat out. He had a good game.”
The third T20 International will air live on Sony Ten 1, Sony Ten 3 and Sony Six channels from 12.30pm on Tuesday.

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