Thursday, June 20, 2024

India are T20 favourites despite Test defeat


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By Ian Botham

After a hard fought Test series, it’s now time for some fun.

Twenty20 cricket is always exciting and India will look forward to win this challenge.

India are the favourites for the two T20 internationals that start in Pune today.

Playing at home is a huge advantage and more so in this format of the game.

T20 cricket brings in a lot of spectators and crowd support matters a lot especially in this format.

Adding to the crowd support, India will also benefit from the experience that their players have. They are also playing few of the players who featured in the Test matches.

The likes of MS Dhoni, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli and Ravichandran Ashwin are all vastly experienced in this format.

They understand the conditions pretty well and they will come out hard at the young inexperienced English T20 side.

The English side led by an experienced Eoin Morgan has a number of exciting shorter version cricketers.

I am looking forward to see how the likes of Stuart Meaker, Jade Dernbach, Jonny Bairstow and a few others perform in these conditions.

The young England side will be full of energy and enthusiasm, and they will look forward to prove themselves against a much more experienced and stronger Indian team.

It’s a right ploy by the English management to field a young T20 side.

It gives exposure to so many young players and presents them with an opportunity to play cricket in these conditions.

I think India could also have done that. At some of point of time you need to get in the new players.

With the amount of T20 cricket they play, I am sure there wouldn’t be shortage of talent for them in this format.

The Indian cricketers play a lot of T20 cricket. The Indian Premier League goes on and on.

I think it’s a very long tournament and despite playing so much T20 cricket, I can’t really figure out why they haven’t been a dominating force in this format.

India have found it very hard to be a consistent team and I don’t seem to remember a time when they dominated every format of the game at the same time.

One of the reasons might be that it’s the same bunch of players who are playing all the formats and are ending up playing too much cricket.

I think they need to invest in younger players in the T20 cricket.

This sort of approach has helped the England side. Though Test cricket remains the ECB’s priority, over the last couple of years, they have prioritised limited-overs cricket as well.

The current management has brought in some brilliant young talents and England have begun to do well in the shorter versions.

The improvement in their limited-overs cricket is visible and one of the highlights was winning the T20 World Championship in the Caribbean in 2010.


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