India coach Rahul Dravid admits his side was comprehensively outplayed by a Jos Buttler-inspired England in Adelaide after they crashed out of the T20 World Cup in humiliating fashion on Thursday.
Buttler, with 80, and Alex Hales, who scored 86, were still there unbeaten at the end as England romped past their 169 target with 10 wickets and four overs to spare to race into a final against Pakistan in Melbourne on Sunday.
“Obviously disappointed to finish in the semi-finals. Probably would have certainly liked to go a couple of steps further. But yeah, just outplayed, outclassed today,” Dravid told reporters. “They were the better team in all departments really. The scoreline showed that.”
India topped Group 2 with four wins out of five matches.
“Even in this tournament, I think we’ve had our moments,” said Dravid. “There’s been some real individual quality from a lot of our players, showing some real good skills. But on the day we were just not good enough here.”
England won the toss and restricted India to 100-3 from their first 15 overs as seamer Chris Jordan, who took three wickets, and leg-spinner Adil Rashid, with 1-20 off four overs, led a disciplined attack.
Hardik Pandya attempted to give India a competitive total as he smashed 63 off 33 deliveries, but their 168-6 proved to be nowhere near enough in the face of a batting storm unleashed by Hales and Buttler.
Buttler set the tone with three fours off the first over from Bhuvneshwar Kumar and added five more plus three sixes in his 49-ball innings, the third taking England to the winning line.
“He’s a very dangerous player, and we knew that,” said Dravid. “We knew the key to the game obviously was to try and break that opening partnership as early as we could.
“Class players like that, both Buttler and Hales, I thought their partnership was fantastic today. They just put the pressure on us, never let that go.
“Buttler is one of the most dangerous T20 players going around.”
As the England pair took the game away, India shoulders drooped, heads dropped and there were some comical fielding errors.
But Dravid said it was the batting that had let them down.
“We had been batting well, were one of the teams who had been even in these conditions scoring 180 plus two-three times in the tournament,” he said.
“We were playing well. They bowled really well, were good up front, didn’t let us get away. We felt at that 15-over mark, we were probably 15-20 short. We should have been able to get 180-185 on that wicket.”
© Agence France-Presse