Cricket World Cup 2015 is around the corner, all the teams seem well prepared to give us a wonderful show. But the question that torments us — Is Team India prepared well enough to successfully defend the World Title?
Australian tour ahead of Word Cup was treated as a mock test before the real exam in which India severely failed. For the first time in past 43 years, India went duck out without winning a single match on the grounds of Kangaroos. Besides, India did very badly in the warm-up match against Australia too. Although they managed to have some salvation against the minnows Afghanistan, even that match wasn’t fool proof and embarked some weak points to be taken care of.
Major cause of worry is Indian bowling which had led down Indian team on almost every occasion, even on bowling friendly Australian pitches. Bowlers failed to hit the right areas with enough pace to trouble the batsmen. Batting, which is India’s strong point hasn’t been up to the mark too, almost all the batsmen lived on the field dangerously and failed to capitalise the start-ups into big total. There are lot of youngsters in the side; everyone thought that the failure in the matches on the Australian tour was due change of environment, and these young legs will adapt to conditions quickly. Everyone believed that these young talents will come with some blistering performances later in the series which will be a delight to watch. However, nothing of that happened, and India did miserably.
Let’s see what India has to offer in this World Cup. After passing the fitness test, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan are likely to open the Indian batting line up in the World Cup’15. With likes of left-right combo, starting line up looks formidable. One down most likely will be India’s most dependable batsman Virat Kohli as he did miserably at number 4. The decision was taken to provide more depth in batting, however, it backfired. Next is promising Ambati Raydu, who has been new finding on the Australian Tour. At 5 comes Captain itself, he can switch gears at ease. Although he looked little rusty in recent matches as if he isn’t interested more in batting, not even a glimpse of the world-class finisher he is known as still he provides flexibility and depth in the side, a man who can win matches single handedly. Number 6 is a spot reserved for Suresh Raina, a man made for this spot; he is a powerhouse who can score quick 50 in no time. At number seven we need an allrounder, Ravindra Jadeja seems to be included in playing eleven. He doesn’t give too many runs and can take 2-3 wickets at regular intervals, besides his consistent 30-40 runs at number 7 is a boon.
The batting line-up seems formidable that can win any match if all big guns fire. However, their recent disappointments doesn’t give confidence. In fact, some have started claiming them as “flat pitch bully.”
We have nothing much to talk about bowling line up as nothing seems to be going well for India in the bowling section. India needs swing of Bhuvaneshwar Kumar and Mohammad Shami along with the bounce and pace of Umesh Yadav. Point of discussion has been Ashwin and Stuart Binny, who to select in playing eleven. Considering the Australian pitches, Binny being a seam all-rounder might get an edge. Even Dhoni claims him to be the best seam all rounder in the country who can bowl at 120-130 kph and can score those 30-40 extra runs.
Being first World Cup with no favourites, question still remains, does this Indian side have it in them to defend the world title? Did we make a mistake by neglecting the seniors( Yuvraj Singh, Virendra Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Zaheer Khan)? We still have the time, should replace young legs with the experience?