“Practicing in front of a crowd is always special” – Dinesh Karthik ahead of 2nd India vs South Africa T20I in Cuttack

Team India’s wicketkeeper-batter Dinesh Karthik has described practicing in front of a crowd as “special”. The 37-year-old spoke in reference to the practice session ahead of Team India’s second T20I against South Africa in Cuttack, which saw a massive crowd presence.

India are 1-0 down in the five-match series against the Proteas. They lost the opening match by seven wickets as South Africa chased down a record target of 212. The second game of the series will be played at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack on Sunday, 12 June.

Speaking ahead of the key clash, Karthik shared his thoughts on practising in front of a crowded stadium. In a video posted on the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) official Twitter handle, he said:

“India, as a cricketing nation, we are very blessed because people seem to enjoy our style, enjoy watching how we go about things and have a certain sense of love and affection for us, especially in states that don’t get to watch international matches that often. Practising in front of such a crowd is always something special and I think we value it. It’s a good feeling.”

On Saturday, the BCCI shared images of Indian players preparing for the second match of the series in Cuttack. In the pictures, a huge crowd can be seen cheering on the Indian team. The Indian cricket board uploaded the post with the caption:

“Match day feels on a non-match day. 👌 👌 A packed stadium here in Cuttack to watch #TeamIndia train.”

On Sunday, the BCCI also uploaded a video of Team India’s training session ahead of the second T20I. In the clip, the players are seen honing their skills in an endeavor to get ready for the action. The BCCI shared the clip with the caption:

“Cuttack is ready ✅ WE are ready ✅ Let’s do this 💪.”

Defending a total of 211, Team India had South Africa in a spot of bother at 81 for three. However, an unbeaten fourth-wicket stand of 131 between David Miller (64* off 31) and Rassie van der Dussen (75* off 46) lifted the visitors to victory as they chased down their highest-ever T20I total.

“We have four games remaining” – Bhuvneshwar Kumar backs Team India to bounce back

Despite a disappointing performance in the opening T20I, seasoned Indian pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar has backed the hosts to stage a fight back. Asserting that the hosts can still clinch the series, he said at a pre-match press conference:

“We have four games remaining in this series, we have a chance to win the series. We have to bowl better, and we need to bat in the same fashion as the previous game.”

While admitting that their bowling was off-color in Delhi, Bhuvneshwar insisted that it was not a true reflection of the team’s ability. He elaborated:

“We discussed what went wrong. It was the first game of the series; everyone is coming out of the IPL and almost everyone who is in the team had a good IPL. So, everyone knows what needs to be done and the things we can improve on. As a bowling unit, we had an off day and we all want to make a comeback in the second T20.”

Bhuvneshwar returned with figures of one for 43 in the opening T20I. Harshal Patel and Axar Patel were also expensive, conceding 43 and 40 runs, respectively.

Also Read: “I like the sound that comes from a Lamborghini” – Dinesh Karthik takes part in fun ‘This or That’ game

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