Sanjay Bangar Backs Indian Middle-Order, Says Hamilton Collapse An "Aberration"
India were bowled out for a meagre 92 runs in the India vs New Zealand fourth ODI in Hamilton.
Having already clinched the ODI series in New Zealand (3-0), India suffered a shocking eight-wicket drubbing in the fourth ODI in Hamilton where they were bowled out for a meagre 92 runs. In the absence of regular skipper Virat Kohli and an injured MS Dhoni, India's batting failed in swinging conditions where they had no answers to Trent Boult, who scalped 5/21. India's assistant coach Sanjay Bangar, however, backed the middle-order batsmen to return to their best, saying that the horror show in Hamilton was an aberration.
"The middle order has risen to the occasion many times and delivered. Yes some situation has been trying but it is not that the middle order hasn't performed," Bangar told reporters.
Bangar supported the middle-order by giving accounts of previous occasions when they stood up when the top three got out cheaply.
"When required, more often than not whenever it has been put in a situation, it has delivered, may be the last game was an aberration," he added.
India's top three -- Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, and captain Virat Kohli -- have scored the bulk of the runs for India since the 2015 World Cup with middle-order getting not very many overs to bat.
"If they (top-order batsmen) are batting well then the middle order doesn't get the opportunity required to maintain the groove," the former India all-rounder said.
"It is also one of those series where our top order hasn't got a hundred, so it has given a lot of time to the middle order to go out there and play situations ... and they have finished games when they have got an opportunity."
"It was a one-off game for us. We know we played well below our potential and our expected levels, the boys realise it and we just need to put that game behind and look to the next game," Bangar said.
(With PTI inputs)