Champions Trophy 2013: India must improve for England final, says Dhoni

Champions Trophy 2013: MS Dhoni admits India must improve ahead of their final against England after beating Sri Lanka

By Callum Orr
ms dhoni
MS Dhoni's side beat Sri Lanka Photo: The Sport Review

Mahendra Singh Dhoni admitted India must improve before the Champions Trophy final against England on Sunday, despite an impressive eight-wicket semi-final victory over Sri Lanka at Cardiff.

India’s bowling attacked limited Sri Lanka to an attainable 181 runs, with Ishant Sharma and Ravichandran Ashwin the pick of the bowlers, taking three wickets apiece.

And the tournament favourites’ batsmen wasted no time in reaching that target, with impressive knocks from Shikhar Dhawan (68) and Virat Kohli (58) helping to seal an emphatic victory with 15 overs to spare.

Yet while Dhoni acknowledged his bowlers’ good work, he suggested that his side still have room for improvement ahead of Sunday’s final at Edgbaston.

“The bowlers have done really well but still there are a few areas where we’d like to improve,” said 31-year-old Dhoni. “[The ball] was still doing a bit and we had to keep a few overs for the fast bowlers at the death, so the only two (seam-bowling) options were Virat and me.

“It went pretty well, which meant we could keep Ashwin for later when they had lots of a left-handers.”

Man-of-the-match Sharma also played down India’s bowling performance, claiming that the overcast conditions had been a major factor in their performance.

“The conditions were really favourable today. The wicket was helpful for the fast bowlers so that paid off for us,” he added.

“Bounce and pace is my strength but Bhuvee [Bhuvneshwar Kumar] and Umesh [Yadav] bowled really well.”

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