Coming off a terrific win in the third one-dayer against South Africa, Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni praised Yusuf Pathan for his blazing knock and said with more experience under his belt, the dashing all-rounder can become a good match-finishing batsman for the country.
Pathan came up with a superb 50-ball 59 run innings on Tuesday night to help India chase down South Africa's total of 220 with 10 balls to spare, after being in the dire situation of 93/5 at one stage.
"He (Pathan) played his natural game. I want him to continue playing the kind of cricket he plays. As he gets more experience he will turn into a match-finishing batsman," Dhoni said. "It was good effort from the batsmen. The lower middle-order also played well. But Pathan was superb."
Dhoni also lauded his pacers for putting on a good show at the death of South Africa's innings. Meanwhile, Man-of-the-Match Pathan, said he was just playing his natural game and it put pressure on the South African bowlers.
"It's a good win for us. I was just looking to hit the balls which were in my areas. If you let the bowler know you can play the shots, you will play the shots and he will stay under pressure," Yusuf said. "I went in thinking that I will play my shots but won't be in any hurry to play those shots. I will wait for the balls in my area and I was successful doing that."
Pathan, who hit six fours and three sixes, said it was a bouncy pitch but he chose to play his more aggressive repertoire of strokes, to put the opponent on to the defensive after they had been on top for the first half of India's innings.
"There was bounce in the pitch. But I knew if I played a few shots, things would get easier. If you hit the bowlers, the opposition gets on to the back foot. A lot of things run through the captain's mind, and you benefit from that," he added.
The Baroda batsman added that with this win, South Africa will be under pressure to fight back into the five-match one-day series.