HomeSportsCricketICC T20 World Cup - The Indian Flavour
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ICC T20 World Cup – The Indian Flavour

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Almost five and half years later it is time once more for the international men’s Cricket teams to compete in the shortest format of the game. Short, snappy, and result-driven. The T20 World cup is back after the pandemic. Put the world on pause for a while.

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Given the unique nature of the world system during the pandemic, it is not surprising that even though India is the host, the World Cup is being played in a foreign land. – The United Arab Emirates. The UAE has been a good alternative for Cricket tournaments that would otherwise have been played in India. But is it what it is and the 2021 edition of the T20 World cup is going to take off on different soil.

T20 – The ‘frantic last ball’ finishes

Let’s focus on the host India. Fresh off a very competitive IPL (Indian Premier League), many of the participating players have had a good run-up to the World Cup. The conditions for the second half of the IPL and the World Cup are the same, so that is crucial. Having said that, the nature of the format allows for the lesser teams to upset the big nations and cause upsets. So, like in life, nothing in the T20 format can be taken for granted. Often, we have seen that seemingly ‘walk in the park’ victories have been reduced to ‘frantic last ball’ finishes.

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MSD’s New Role

Image Source: DT Next

Captain Kohli having announced that he will step down as T20 captain post this tournament, will give it his all, as he is known to do. Reflecting on how India is prepared to take on the world in the shortest format, he addressed the novel role that MS Dhoni as mentor will play, right at the beginning. He expressed he is happy to have Dhoni as a mentor. As he has always been a mentor of sorts for the players. His presence specially for the younger guys is paramount. In the conversations that he has with them giving practical inputs and intricate details of how one reads game situations. And how to improve by that 1 or 2% which is always a huge boost. So having him around will further increase the confidence that is already there in the team.

R Ashwin: A Boon for team India

Image Source: India Today

Speaking about R Ashwin who has not been part of any international T20 since 2017, Virat felt that he is bowling with a lot of courage, and the fact that the finger spinners have made a comeback of sorts, augurs well for the team. His consistency and strong power of reading the game well, is a boon, and the fact that he knows what to do in certain match situations is crucial. Virat felt that Team India needs to always evolve with the personnel they have.

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2007 WC victory & the aftermath

Image Source: ZEE News

A quick rewind to India winning the inaugural 2007 T20 World cup. And the impact it had on Virat Kohli as a player. He mentioned that the World Cup victory and its popularity gave rise to the most successful T20 league in the world.– the IPL (Indian Premier League). That victory gave the young Indian team a sense of achievement in the shortest format of the game. It also gave motivation to players to perform at any level.

The King Kohli’s say…

Full Text: Virat Kohli's press conference after Champions Trophy final -  myKhel

On a personal level the consistent achievements in the format makes Virat one of the finest cricketers to have played the T20. And for this, he has one simple approach. He expressed that he always felt that the basics are the same in cricket. But it’s the ability to adapt, change and observe your game technically gives you the edge in T20s. He went on to say that T20s give him the opportunity to extend the shots that he plays across other formats.  He is able to understand his strengths. Quickly realizing that he is not the one to go and play the big shots. But place the ball in the field and reap the rewards of that approach. The driving point was to make an impact on the team and make the most of a given situation. You just want to win for your team, and you adapt accordingly. Whether it is running between wickets or hitting fours or sixes. You just need to adapt. Sounds simple when he puts it like that, but obviously it takes hour and months and years of fine-tuning your innate talent.

Road Ahead

Team India are favourites and will hopefully make it from the Super 12 stage to the semifinal and then eventually lift the trophy. But it’s all about match by match and the goal quite obviously is to win the World Cup. But more than trophies Virat feels that over the years the main thing is that he and the support staff have been able to build a culture.  Which he hopes will last a long time. Where people want to be the best that they can be.  And the fittest that they can perform at when they are part of Team India. That is what they really drive at with passion and zeal.

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Time will tell, as to where Team India progress to in this 2021 edition. But it’s always nice to get an outside point of view on the team. Former England captain Nasser Hussain shared his thoughts on India’s chances.

Nasser Hussain’s Plan B for India

Nasser Hussain feels that India are favourites but not clear favourites because of the format. The shorter the game, the more unpredictable it is. Individual brilliance doesn’t count for much, so anyone can upset India on a given day. In the past it has been seen that when India gets to a stage in the knockout, they need to perform better despite the immense expectancy from the millions of fans. The mix is a heady one with the form of KL Rahul, the presence of charismatic captain Virat, the fast bowlers the mystery spinners. Add to that the mentor role played by MS Dhoni so they look like favourites. But again the format is unforgiving and in the knockout games they need a plan B. They are good at the top, bossing games and the middle order don’t get a chance to get out there. And then suddenly they are put on the spot. But on paper, he feels that Team India has all their bases covered.

Bring it on. The T20 World Cup 2021. Team India is ready.

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Trishna Bose
Trishna Bose
The kind of person who believes that Today is all we have. Tomorrows may happen but Today is here. Passionate about Sport and daily Life. Married to Cricket, and attached to Golf, Badminton, Tennis, Hockey to name a few. Here to say it as I see it in my mind. It's time to Kreedon.


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