This is the year of the T20 World Cup and every team will be looking to fine-tune their compositions and strategies before the mega event. India don’t have any more T20Is scheduled before the World Cup – even though after the 3-2 series win over England last week Virat Kohli said that there was a chance a few are added – but all the players will be playing in the IPL and that should keep them in good stead going into the tournament.
The 50-over world champions, England, are the No 1 side in T20Is at the moment. They started the series against India in that fashion but in the end, lost the last two matches to go squander a favourable position. Following that leg of the series in Ahmedabad, the teams shifted to Pune where India beat England in the opening ODI.
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India would have taken a lot of heart by winning the series against England especially after trailing 1-2. Let’s find out the reasons as to why Kohli’s men will fancy their chances to lift the T20 World Cup this year at home.
Over the years, all good T20 teams have had multi-skilled players. India are blessed to possess a lot of allrounders right now. The likes of Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja and Washington Sundar give a lot of balance and flexibility to the side, and when you consider what Shardul Thakur offers with the bat in the lower order there is indeed flexibility.
One of the biggest positives that came out of the England series was Hardik Pandya’s bowling. He looks fit enough now to bowl his full quota of four overs and that means India can afford to play an extra batsman or a bowler depending upon the conditions and opponents. Even someone like Krunal Pandya, who on ODI debut versus England in Pune slammed a record 26-ball fifty, adds so much depth to the allrounders’ pool.
The emergence of SKY and Ishan Kishan
India’s bench strength has been growing exponentially in the last few months. We witnessed that in the Test series in Australia and also in the home series against England. It is going from strength to strength in the white-ball format too. India did not have their key men in Jadeja and Jasprit Bumrah in the England T20Is, yet looked like a very strong and balanced team.
The emergence of Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan has given the selectors and management a welcome headache in picking the squad for the T20 World Cup. Indian cricket must thank the IPL for the current scenario, in which a player making his debut does not get overawed by the situation and demands of international cricket.
India possess two of the best batsmen
The men in blue must feel lucky to be having two of the greatest batsmen of all time playing together. Kohli and his deputy Rohit Sharma will go down in the history of white-ball cricket as legends. The scary part for all the teams is that they have a considerable amount of gas left in the tank to do more damage.
Kohli opened the batting alongside Rohit Sharma in the final T20I and it proved to be a masterstroke for Team India. The skipper felt he would be doing the same in the upcoming IPL as well. If Kohli opens the batting, India can afford to play an extra batsman or a bowler as they did in the final T20I against England.