November 6, 2022
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Melbourne Cricket Ground
Post Match Media Conference
India 186/5, Zimbabwe 115
Q. You did a lot of things right today, got Virat out, you got Rohit also out early, but Suryakumar took the game away. Can you talk about what you saw from the No. 1 batsman in the world? No matter what you threw at him, he had an answer.
CRAIG ERVINE: Yeah, look, he was obviously exceptional today. I thought our first 10, 15 overs were really good and pretty much kept us in the game, apart from that innings that he played towards the end there. He's such a 360 player, so difficult to bowl to, and once he gets in and gets going, it just makes it more and more difficult.
I thought he batted really well today.
Q. How do you sum up Zimbabwe's campaign in this World Cup because it has been a very interesting campaign for you guys, very impressive. How do you sum up, and do you think after this the growth of cricket in Zimbabwe back home, how will it help?
CRAIG ERVINE: Look, it has been a little bit disappointing to obviously finish with three losses, but we mustn't forget the excellent work that we did during those qualifiers to get us into the Super 12s, and obviously beating Pakistan, as well. So there's a lot to take from this World Cup and build on that going forward.
Q. Throughout the tournament prior to this match, India didn't come up with their game A. Do you think India was at its best against you today for the first time in the tournament?
CRAIG ERVINE: It's very hard to say whether they're at their best or not. There's different situations and conditions and things like that. I just thought that today they finished their innings really well today and probably got 20 or 30 above par. We were looking to try and keep them to around 150, 160 was a really good effort. But like they finished those last few overs extremely well and got them up to a score that was difficult for us to chase.
Q. Can you speak about the experience of playing in front of that crowd and what that might do for your group moving forward, some of the lessons you might have learned out there today, particularly with guys experiencing the MCG for the first time? What types of things from that atmosphere, that stage will you take forward as a group and as individuals moving forward in your cricket?
CRAIG ERVINE: Yeah, look, we played a warmup game here against Sri Lanka before the World Cup actually started, and the MCG was a very different picture then, very close to naught.
But yeah, such an electric atmosphere. It's quite difficult when you're on the field because you can't actually shout at anybody that's close to you because they're just not going to hear you.
One of the things we learnt was you've got to keep your eye on the keeper and obviously me at all times to understand where to go and things like that.
I think it's very easy to get caught up in all the noise, especially bowling at the death there. The crowd is cheering, the ball is disappearing, and sometimes you can kind of cloud your sort of calmness and clarity I think at the top of your mark.
There's lots of little things that we can definitely take out of tonight.
Q. I just wanted to ask you if you could throw some light on what kind of planning goes through when you're bowling to Suryakumar in the final over there. Do you almost concede the fact that if he's going to play a short -- if he's going to shuffle across and hit the ball almost like a third man, there's nothing you can do too much about it? We did see that you were trying to change the field around quite a bit; what goes on in the planning, and then when do you say, okay, too good, the batsman is better?
CRAIG ERVINE: Look, you always have your plan A and plan B and plan C, I guess. Obviously our first plan was to try and execute our yorkers, and it's trying to find a balance between when do you move from that plan A to then trying a plan B and a plan C. I thought today we probably could have moved to the other plans a little bit earlier, but credit to Surya; he batted excellently.
Q. You mentioned about the win against Pakistan; what value does it hold, the win against Pakistan in your campaign in the T20 World Cup?
CRAIG ERVINE: You know, that win against Pakistan has tremendous value. I think those are the sort of memories that you do take away from a tournament like this. It's definitely something that will live on in Zimbabwe cricket. But like I've said before, we want to get more and more victories like that and try and be a little bit more consistent.
Q. You gave a surprising result to everyone by beating Pakistan in the group stage. After going out from the World Cup, what are the learnings and what will you take with them, and when can we expect more and more players like Sikandar Raza and Sean Williams in the Starting XI?
CRAIG ERVINE: Look, Sikandar has been awesome for us, and I think Zimbabwe cricket is at that stage where we are trying to get some development going and trying to bring other players through. Obviously it does take a lot of time, and I think everybody understands that.
It's an important few years for Zimbabwe cricket going forward.
Q. What do you tell the new ball operators, someone who's had 30 matches, 30 wickets, and bowling to the kind of batsmen, the top two run getters in the world in that format? What is the mindset in bowling to Rohit or Rahul or Virat Kohli?
CRAIG ERVINE: I think at the end of the day you've got a ball in your hand and there's a batsman on the other side. I don't think that you look at the names too much because otherwise it can become a little bit overwhelming, and you might feel like you're defeated before you've even bowled a ball.
I think you back the plans that you've had. I think you back the good things that you've done before, and you try and repeat that.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports