New Delhi: India’s middle-order batsman Dinesh Karthik is of the view that the matches like the first One-Day International (ODI) against New Zealand will be a learning curve for young wrist spinners Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal and it will only make them ”mentally tougher”.

Both Kuldeep and Yuzvendra, who shared only one wicket between them, had an off day as Tom Latham (103) and Ross Taylor (95) guided New Zealand to victory. 

Virat Kohli’s Record 31st Century and Other Statistical Highlights of India vs New Zealand 1st ODI

Virat Kohli’s Record 31st Century and Other Statistical Highlights of India vs New Zealand 1st ODI

“These are the kind of games which makes you mentally tougher as a bowler. These are the kind of games which are going to help them to stand up to pressure and learn how to handle pressure when the wicket is not so much helping them,” Karthik said at the post-match media conference.

Karthik also believes that one bad game won’t affect the spin duo’s performance in the longer run.

 Kuldeep and Chahal have been instrumental in India’s success in limited overs cricket of late and Karthik feels that their self belief gives team management the confidence and one off day will not matter much in the longer run.

“The team management backed them a lot and they believe in themselves. They are two young guys and they have produced some fantastic spells in the last series and I am sure their confidence is sky high. One game here and there, doesn’t make you a bad bowler,” said Karthik.

Like his skipper Virat Kohli, the Tamil Nadu batsman was full of praise for Taylor and Latham, who stood out in testing conditions scripting a near flawless run-chase.

“Credit to Tom Latham and Ross Taylor. They batted really well. They made use of the conditions and played some good shots. They used the sweep to some good effect,” Karthik observed.

Karthik, who looked good during his knock of 37 off 47 deliveries, admitted that he should have converted the start.

“There are two ways to look at it. It was a decent start. Having said that, a player like me should have tried and batted a little longer. And that is something, I am disappointed about.

“I could have batted a little more and we would have probably ended up getting 15-20 runs more towards the end. May be, I got out at a critical time in the game. So pretty disappointed with that aspect but it was decent start and good to have that partnership with Virat,” Karthik added.

He also said that initially, the wicket looked sticky.

“Look initially, I think the wicket was very sticky and it wasn’t easy. A lot of balls going uppish in the air and it was very hard to drive. It was not coming onto to the bat. It looked like two different wickets (during two innings).

“To be really honest, it was not easy to score runs, the ball going left and right of mid off and covers and in the air, we were not able to time the ball as well.”

(With PTI inputs)