The Indian cricket team squad for the Cricket World Cup 2023 has been mostly on the expected lines. The BCCI selectors went with proven performers and did not go for massive experimentations. KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer got the nod despite coming back from lengthy injury breaks. The Indian cricket team also went with three left-arm spinners and three specialist pacers. Hardik Pandya and Shardul Thakur are the two fast-bowling allrounders. The team has clearly gone for batting depth. All eyes will be on the Rohit Sharma-led side when it starts its Cricket World Cup 2023 campaign with a match against Australia on October 8.
However, former India captain Sourav Ganguly, who also has been a BCCI president, had a word of caution for the team.
“Is #TeamIndia favourite because the World Cup is held in India or because we’re playing with strength and confidence @virendersehwag? Yes, we won against Aus in Aus, drew series against England but then we lost to them both in big match situations. I think we have a solid team and a big chance, but we do need to get back to our winning ways before the #ICCworldCup23,” Sourav Ganguly posted on X (formerly Twitter).
In the same post, Ganguly added that the statement was for an ad. Nonetheless, Ganguly’s observations are important.
Is #TeamIndia favourite because the World Cup is held in India or because we’re playing with strength and confidence @virendersehwag?
Yes, we won against Aus in Aus, drew series against England but then we lost to them both in big match situations.
I think we have a solid team…
— Sourav Ganguly (@SGanguly99) September 7, 2023
India captain Rohit Sharma on Tuesday pointed out that the Indian cricket team needs to create depth in batting and bowling, something he feels the team has been lacking.
The skipper wants the bowlers to contribute with runs too in batting when needed. Hosts India announced their squad for the upcoming World Cup set to take place in October-November.
“We need to create that depth (in batting and bowling) as it was lacking in our team for the last few years. When we talk about depth in batting, that No. 9, No. 8 positions become very crucial,” said Rohit during the press conference that took place on Tuesday to announce India’s 2023 Cricket World Cup squad.
India’s top-order failed in their first game of Asia Cup 2023 that was against Pakistan. India were reduced to 66 for 4 at one stage before a 138-run partnership between Hardik Pandya and Ishan Kishan brought the side back in the game. However, poor performance the following batters saw India being bundled out for 266 runs.
“In the first game here (against Pakistan) we saw that we fell short in the backend. We want tailenders to contribute too,” said Rohit.
“Another 10-15 runs in that game would have made a difference. It is the margin between winning and losing. We have spoken to them and told them to don that role too in the World Cup,” he added.
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