India’s campaign in the World Cup 2019 has come to an end after loosing in the Semi-final against New Zealand. The world Cup has been a mixed bag with only a few highlighting bright spots. Rohit Sharma scored 648 runs and Jaspreet Bumrah took 18 wickets to make a mark in the record books.
The loss in the Semi-Final was expected to open the Pandora’s box. The only question being who would be blamed for the loss after an exceptional world cup before the Semi-Final.
The blame game started with abusing Ravi Shastri on social media and then Kohli got dragged into the blame game. Everybody is busy abusing the cricketers, But nobody is addressing the root cause of the entire mishap.
The core reason for the event that unfolded in the Semi-Final was due to absurd team selection. The selectors are the one’s to be blamed entirely along with the Captain and Coach. When on the 15th of April the team for the World Cup was announced, it created a level of debate regarding the team combination. The debate died within 1-2 days because the glamour of IPL was on its peak during that time.
DETAIL DISSECTION OF THE TEAM SELECTION
Let us try to crack the thought process behind the team selection in detail. The Top Order had Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli being the top 3. Their is no doubt about the top three, they are the world’s best top 3 players around. The extra opener picked was K.L.Rahul. Rahul is a fine batsmen but at the time when the team was being selected he was showcasing no spark of excellence in the IPL. The bowlers to be picked were almost certain with Jasprit Bumrah, MD. Shami and Bhuvneshwar Kumar being the spear head of pace attack. The spinners selected in the squad were Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav. Ravindra jadeja was selected as the third spinner which was bizarre becuase Jadeja by all standards is an All-rounder and not just a spinner.
The top 3 and bowling unit was more or less quite certain looking into the approach of the team selection in the previous home series. But the actual point of concern was the middle and the lower middle order.
Their cannot be any level of debate regarding M.S.Dhoni’s place in the team. Dhoni has been the lone warrior in the middle order after the exit of Suresh Raina and Yuvraj Singh from the team. Dhoni with his keeping skills and bating valor is a certainty in any team of team of the world.
For the all rounder’s position the selectors picked Hardik Pandya as a fast bowling all rounder. And Kedar Jadav, Vijay sharkar( the 3-D player) along with Dinesh Kartik as an extra wicket keeper in the middle order of the team.
Ambati Rayudu, who is the best batsman to have at no. 4 was not picked for the World Cup. This was the biggest shocker, looking at the way the guy has performed previously. He could have been the best guy to handle that semi final disaster as he has done that in the past too, lately in New Zealand.
Now looking at the players selected for the squad, one thing was quite visible that neither the selectors nor the captain has thought of a plan B. With almost same kind of players filled in the middle order, the captain was no where looking for variety in the middle order. Be it Kedar ,Dinesh or a Vijay Shankar , all of them are similar stroke makers and with almost the same mindset. Adding Rayudu, shreyas Iyer or Ajinkya Rahana in the squad could have given that extra flexibility in the middle order. These players could have become the Plan B of the team but unfortunately that didn’t happen.
Even after Shikar Dhawan’s injury Rishabh Pant was sent to England and not Rayudu, which had to be disastrous. The selectors not even thinking of Rahane who was in England playing county cricket and was scoring good runs over there was a blunder.
It is very difficult to now understand the basis of selection in Indian Cricket. Are the selectors just having a nice time in the meetings and doing nothing. There should be a standard ground for the selection of the players. Is BCCI taking any note of the disasters that the selectors are committing? Is BCCI even functional at the moment?
While all of the fans and the cricket lovers were pondering upon the cause of the mishap. A news broke today which clearly states that the selection of the players in the team had no grounds but absolute favoritism. Favoritism took the center stage in this team selection. Virat Kohli selected whosoever he felt was capable, ignoring the ones who actually should have been in the squad to built the team. And probably provide the team with ample flexibility.
This favoritism of Kohli developed a rift between Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. The rift developed between both the players started when Rayudu was not picked in the squad. Rohit wanted Rayudu to be included but the captain-coach nexus didn’t believed so.
If the news is to be taken into account then the team is divided into two fragment. The Rohit Sharma side and the Virat Kohli side. The rift can be believed to have become wider with Rohit Sharma travelling alone to india from england and not with the team.
Certain sections of the cricket fraternity have started to voice their opinion of Rohit Sharma to be appointed the new captain of the squad. These voices are gaining support from the fans and supporters of team India. Unlike Virat, Rohit Sharma has a good captaincy record to back the talks around his captaincy. And neither he has the knack of being completely dependent upon Dhoni in crunch situations.
Only time will tell whether the selection panel will think over Rohit as a captain or not.