Chennai: New Zealand all-rounder James Franklin revealed many in his team were surprised to see Mahendra Singh Dhoni win the toss and elect to field.
Speaking at the post-match media conference, Franklin said that had they won the spin of the coin, they would certainly batted first because they thought Chepauk to be an ideal bat-first wicket.
“Well, when the Indians decided to bat first, it did raise a few eyebrows in our camp… It was a bat-first wicket, that’s what we believed. But they (India) must have had their reasons in choosing to bowl first… We always wanted to bat first anyway… And then Brendon (McCullum) put in a brilliant performance,” Franklin said after his team’s narrow one-run victory, on Tuesday.
Terming Virat Kohli’s dismissal, in the 14th over, the turning point of the match, Franklin said: “With seven odd overs to go, the match belonged to India… At that stage, Virat’s wicket turned out to be crucial. It changed the equations… We managed to bowl tight and that pushed the run rate up.”
“I have always believed that a T20 match can change any time… It happened today (Tuesday)… It was a topsy-turvy game and managed to come out on the top,” he added.
According to Franklin, in the lead-up to the World T20, this victory will definitely serve as a confidence booster. “It’s always nice to win games… After the 0-2 Test series loss, and the washed-out game in Visakhapatnam, it was nice to have a game today and to have won it. It’s good preparation to have tight games under your belt ahead of such big tournaments. Now, we will at least hit Sri Lanka (who will host the World T20) on a winning note… That’s important,” Franklin said.
But he knows that the job in the island nation will not be easy at all. “We are in a tough group… Playing subcontinent teams in subcontinent conditions is always difficult. It’s a tricky job for us, but we will back ourselves,” Franklin said.