17 Mar 2021: #NewsBytesExplainer: Problems which India need to address in T20Is
After making a comeback in the five-match series, India lost the third T20I to England.
The hosts remained ineffective throughout, having suffered an eight-wicket defeat.
Although skipper Virat Kohli fired an unbeaten 77, the rest of batsmen didn't complement him in the first innings.
Ahead of the fourth T20I, we identify the problems that India need to address in the shortest format.
Top-order: Constant rotation in the top-order
India's top-order has seen a perpetual rejig of late.
The team management has played three different opening pairs in as many games so far.
While KL Rahul remains constant, Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma have been rotated.
Even Ishan Kishan was tried at the top, an experiment that worked well.
However, this constant rotation might emanate a sense of insecurity in the players.
Assessment: Unfair assessment of players
After the first two T20Is, it was speculated that Rohit will be included for the third at the expense of rusty Rahul.
However, skipper Kohli kept his trust in the latter. This meant an exit for Suryakumar Yadav.
If the management wasn't sure about Surya's role, he shouldn't have been handed a debut in second T20I. An early omission could severely dent his confidence.
Resources: The same old 'problem of plenty'!
Abundance of resources is certainly a boon, but the same must be utilized in the right manner.
At present, there are resources aplenty in the India's reserves.
Due to this, a top-order player like Shreyas Iyer is forced to bat at number six.
Several cricket experts claim that one of Kohli or Rohit should play in the XI, if youngsters are to be exposed.
Bowling: The bowlers need to be picked wisely
The bowling segment has had its own woes.
In the last two T20Is, India have played with only five bowlers, including Hardik Pandya.
It worked in the second game as India chased, but the next one exposed their frailties.
India could have opted for an out-and-out seamer like Navdeep Saini.
His express would have worked on the red-soil surface, which promoted pace and bounce.
Fielding: Fielding has been a bone of contention
The fitness quotient of Indian players is right up to the mark. However, fielding has been a bone of contention lately.
In the third T20I, Indian captain Kohli dropped a regulation catch of Jos Buttler at backward point.
As per Opta, Kohli has dropped eight catches in T20Is since the start of 2019, the most by any fielder from a Test-playing nation.
Approach: Are India moving in the right direction?
During the build-up to the all-important T20 World Cup 2021, the Indian team management seems to be experimenting too much with the squad.
Similar errors made them suffer in the 2019 World Cup as well.
Meanwhile, skipper Kohli's approach of "playing aggressively" also seems to be getting backfired.
Getting predetermined surely has its prerequisites, but ignoring the instincts might not be wise.