The selectors and team management have also continued to back him and he has been picked in the Indian squad for the T20 World Cup as well.
TimesofIndia.com spoke to Arshdeep’s childhood coach who said that Arshdeep was at no point bothered about or affected by the trolling on social media.
“Arshdeep is a brave guy and doesn’t care about being trolled. He dropped a catch but still grabbed the opportunity with both hands when his captain asked him to bowl the last over,” Jaswant Rai, Arshdeep’s childhood coach told TimesofIndia.com.
Arshdeep in fact was given the 20th over to bowl in both the Super 4 matches that India lost (vs Pakistan and vs Sri Lanka). In both matches Arshdeep was asked to defend 7 runs.
Arshdeep Singh. (AFP Photo)
“In T20Is, 7 runs are very less. It is very difficult to defend 7 runs (in one over). If the target was more than 10 runs, Arshdeep would have turned the game on its head,” Jaswant Rai further told TimesofIndia.com.
“The never-say-die attitude was visible in his action, body language, and in his bowling. He gave his all in both the matches. He has got the captain’s support. He is young. When you have a captain like Rohit and a senior like Virat in the team, there will always be a lot of support for a youngster like Arshdeep,” Rai, who Arshdeep began training under at the age of 13 further said.
‘BHUVNESHWAR SHOULD HAVE BOWLED THE LAST OVERS’
In the Super 4 match vs Pakistan, India had 26 runs to defend in the last 2 overs. Bhuvneshwar Kumar bowled the penultimate over and was hammered for 19 runs (WD,1,6,WD,1,4,1,4) and that brought the equation down to 7 needed in the last over. Arshdeep, bowling the last over to defend 7 runs, gave a single off the first delivery and then conceded a boundary to Asif Ali. He then bowled a dot ball and sent Asif Ali (16) back to the pavilion. Iftikhar Ahmed, the new man at the crease, collected a double to help Pakistan win a thrilling encounter.
In the must-win match vs Sri Lanka, India entered as favourites. But Sri Lanka had other plans. After India posted a challenging 173 on , the Emerald Islanders chased down the total with one ball to spare.
With Sri Lanka needing 21 runs in 2 overs, Rohit once again opted for Bhuvneshwar to bowl the 19th over and the experienced bowler went on to leak 14 runs (1,1,WD,WD,4,4,1,1), bringing the equation down once again to 7 runs needed off 6 balls. Arshdeep once again found himself in a high pressure situation.
Arshdeep Singh. (AFP Photo)
Arshdeep bowled the yorkers at full throttle, with Sri Lanka collecting 5 runs in the first 4 balls. With 2 needed off 2 balls, Dasun Shanaka failed to play a good back of a length delivery from Arshdeep and ran for a single. Rishabh Pant and Arshdeep both had opportunities to inflict a run-out but both failed to hit the stumps with their throws. India lost the match by 6 wickets.
“In my opinion, Rohit should have given Arshdeep the penultimate overs (19th over) and Bhuvneshwar the last overs. Bhuvneshwar should have bowled the last overs, not Arshdeep. Arshdeep bowled really good yorkers under pressure in both matches. Bhuvneshwar gave away so many runs in the 19th over. Arshdeep would have created pressure and the runs needed in the last over would have been defendable. Bhuvneshwar would have been able to defend them easily. Rohit should have opted for Arshdeep in the 19th over in both matches,” Arshdeep’s coach Balwant Rai further told TimesofIndia.com.
Arshdeep Singh. (AP Photo)
“7 runs is nothing in T20I cricket. It is very difficult and almost impossible to defend. Arshdeep bowled really well. The team supported him a lot and gave him a lot of confidence after that match,” Rai said.
“After the Pakistan match, I spoke with Arshdeep. He also sent me a message that he is not bothered about the trolls and social media outrage. He was in fact upset because he conceded a boundary vs Pakistan. He was dejected because of that boundary. He said if that boundary wasn’t scored, he would have won the game for India. I am really proud of Arshdeep. He knows how to bowl under pressure and he did just that,” the coach signed off.