Indian bowlers were unable to defend their 199-run total at the HPCA Stadium as South Africa took lead in three-match series with a comfortable 7-wicket win. (Fans attack umpire)
Young left-arm spinner Axar Patel was hammered around the park with Man-of-the-Match Jean-Paul Duminy (68 not out) hitting him for three sixes in the 16th over, collecting 22 runs.
Dhoni said it was imperative for the bowlers to make a strong comeback after being taken to task but that did not happen. (Kohli breaks a record)
"Looking at the conditions it was more of a war of batsmen. At times you have to take pressure off the bowlers, definitely the sides will hit big shots. Once you get hit, how you come back and bowl the next delivery that is very important. You can't get hit for three sixes or boundaries in an over that gives a lot of runs and gives momentum to the opposition batsmen," Dhoni said after the match yesterday.
The captain though was not too unhappy with his bowlers, considering the favourable conditions for the batsmen, but said two or three bad overs intermittently hurt them badly.
After Patel's poor 16th over, Bhuvneshwar Kumar conceded a six and a four in the first two balls of the penultimate over and that took the game away from India.
"There were phases in the game, at least two phases of four deliveries each where we gave away lot of runs. That actually put lot of pressure. Overall I think, when you score 200 on a good wicket, there will be considerable pressure on the bowlers to defend because opposition will also look to chase down the total.
"The effort was good, 200 was close to par score but we could have done slightly better in bowling. You can not give too many runs in those six balls. You have bad overs but you have to restrict it to may be 12 or 15 runs and that helps the bowler coming after you. You have to keep choking the batsmen to win a game like this," he said.
'Aravind not a surprise package'
Dhoni praised spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Patel and also defended his choice of the bowlers for the match. (Who is Aravind?)
"If there is dew that puts pressure on spinners. I think our spinners did bowl really well. If you take that one over out, he (Patel) bowled really well. It happens in T20s if batsman is set even the good bowlers go for runs. He was very consistent with his line and length, I was happy apart from that one over.
"Aravind was not a surprise package, he has done well in T20s. Also he gives you variation in bowling being a left armer. It was also rewarding what he has done consistently in T20 format. The wicket did not support him much."
Explaining his decision of leaving out leg-spinner Amit Mishra, Dhoni said, "About Mishra, you have to consider the top-7, where you can fit. Ideally you want six proper batsmen and 7th who can bowl a bit. We are playing five specialist bowlers, all of them are equally good, I don't see any reason where I can drop one of the spinners and get unless I want to get rid of a specialist spinner."