India's loss to Australia in the second T20 International at Guwahati was once again evidence that even a top-notch batting line-up can come to grief against good bowling. India medium-pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar felt that the dismissals of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma in left-arm seamer Jason Behrendorff's very first over of the innings tilted the scales in Australia's favour. The tall fast bowler claimed 4/21 in 4 overs as Australia levelled the three-match T20 series winning the second game by eight wickets.
"He (Behrendorff) bowled really well. He made full use of the wicket. It was the perfect kind of wicket for the line and length he bowled," Bhuvneshwar said at the post-match news conference.
"You need to be bit fortunate to get three or four wickets in the T20s. Rohit's (Sharma) wicket and (Virat) Kohli's wicket were the crucial point for us, in the first over itself," he added.
Pace aided by swing did make a lot of difference for Behrendorff, opined Bhuvneshwar.
"That's his natural thing. He swings the ball, he got pace. Best thing is whatever the line and length needed for this wicket. As I said, you have to be fortunate to get three-or-four wickets in T20Is. He was fortunate to have got those wickets."
Contrary to popular belief that it will be a run-feast, the wicket was not great for batting, reckoned the UP pacer.
"It was a tough wicket for batting. Rain was around, it was a damp wicket. So you know, Australian bowlers made the most of the wicket," he said on Australia, opting to bowl after winning the toss.
India could never get going after the early jolt as Kedar Jadhav (27) was Indian top-scorer, followed by Hardik Pandya (25) to be folded for 118 in the last ball.
"I think we tried to rebuild it. But we couldn't do it. We can't really put a finger on someone and say it was their fault. So it was just an off day for us."
Defending the paltry total, Jasprit Bumrah (1/25) and Bhuvneshwar (1/9) dismissed the two Aussie openers David Warner (2) and Aaron Finch (8) respectively inside three overs.
But India failed to make further inroads as Moises Henriques (62 not out) and Travis Head (48 not out) sealed an eight-wicket win.
"We tried our best to take an initial wicket. But if you have to win the match, you have to keep taking wickets, especially in the middle overs which we couldn't do. I would say they bowled better than us," Bhuvneshwar added.
Both Bhuvneshwar and Bumrah bowled three overs each without completing their quota. The pacer said that it was captain's call.
"There is something part of a strategy... what the captain is thinking, what he wants to do. He made us bowl three overs each in the Powerplay and we took a wicket each.
"It is up to him if he wanted us to bowl, we could have completed our quota. But that was his (Virat Kohli's) thinking. We can't really say we could have bowled the way we began," he concluded.
(With PTI inputs)