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EXCLUSIVE: Why talk about Rohit Sharma's shot in the World Cup final? It was a superb catch by Travis Head, says Kevin Pietersen

NEW DELHI: India captain Rohit Sharma was dismissed for 47 from 31 balls after he tried to hit Glenn Maxwell for a third boundary in an over during the ICC ODI World Cup final against Australia. Despite Rohit's formidable touch and apparent great form, a hasty shot led to his dismissal.

Former cricketers, including, legendary Sunil Gavaskar also questioned the timing of Rohit's shot.
India were bowled out for 240 and lost the title clash by 6 wickets. This dashed the hopes of billions eagerly anticipating the Men in Blue lifting the coveted trophy at home after a 12-year wait.

However, former England star cricketer Kevin Pietersen applauded Travis Head 's superman effort to send the Indian skipper packing.

After Shubman fell for 4 runs in the fifth over, Rohit tried to hammer over mid-on and sliced it high. Head ran back from cover, dived, and grabbed a blinder to give Australia a big success.

Apart from the spectacular catch, Head scored a brilliant 137 off 120 to hand Australia their sixth ODI World Cup title at the jam-packed Ahmedabad stadium.

TimesofIndia.com caught up with Pietersen, on the sidelines of Legends League Cricket, in an exclusive interview and spoke about India's performance in the World Cup final, England's failure to defend the World Cup title, Virat and Rohit's future, and much more...

England failed to defend the ICC ODI World Cup title. What went wrong for the Three Lions?

If you've had a look at my social media, you will have seen that I identified a serious issue before the tournament, not picking Harry Brooke and having a selection dilemma. The start was not very good, but no one would have expected England to have performed as badly as they did. It was a surprise for everybody. But one thing I will also say is that Jos Buttler if he's in my team, I will make him bat at the top of the order. There's no way the best batter in white-ball cricket is batting 5-6. There were a few selection issues that unfortunately didn't help.

India were the only unbeaten team in the ICC ODI World Cup but things didn't go their way in the title clash...

They just came up against an Australian team that knows how to get the job done in the big games. Australia, as I've experienced in my career, they turn up on the big occasion. Australia's bowlers were outstanding and their fielding was exceptional. 240 was nowhere near good enough to play against this Australian side.

Will India selectors do some chops and changes for the T20 World Cup?

It is too early, to be honest. We're going to have to watch them over the next few months and see what teams are picked and who plays. They've got a lot of T20 cricket and a full IPL season before the World Cup. With that much cricket and with the amount of cricket that these guys are playing now, managing players' workloads is going to be more important than anything else. So, the jobs that the medical teams do, jobs that the coaches do to manage players and give players time off is going to be just as important as players getting hundreds and wickets.

Who do you see among Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma playing the ICC ODI World Cup in 2027?

It's up to them. I'm sure the coaches and management will discuss this. And it's up to them. They've earned the right to be able to pick and choose what they want to do. And I'm sure that they'll pick the right option for the Indian team.

Do you support Hardik Pandya's move from Gujarat Titans to Mumbai Indians?

There's a lot of transfers. The Indian Premier League is like the football Premier League in England now. The Premiership is highly competitive and you've got big players that leave big clubs and transfer to the other big clubs. I'm not surprised. I'm just waiting for the first coach to be fired in the middle of the season (like in football) and I'm waiting for that. That's the next big move that an IPL franchise is going to make. Player moving, it happens. I'm waiting for coaches to be fired in the middle of the season.

Should Rohit Sharma have played that rash shot in the final?

Why discuss and talk about Rohit's shot? It was a great catch too. So, let's appreciate it. It was a superb catch (by Travis Head).