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India : Team Analysis : World Cup


   2 Days to World Cup 2015

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India : Team Analysis

World Cup 2015 CountdownMahendra Singh Dhoni is one of the best when it comes to dealing with critics and criticism. So, as expected, he has dealt well with the criticism he and his team has faced over the last few months. The team has fared badly and the captain must take responsibility but everything is not in his control. The major worry for him at the moment should be his own batting form. The other worry is of course his team’s bowling but pretty much everyone knows that not much can be done to that. The bowling has managed to instil very little hope in the past few months and hence no one expects much from them. Some experts have said that India needs to score 350+ in all matches to give the bowlers a ‘fair’ chance. 

The batting order looks very good on paper. Rohit Sharma has been in good form against the white ball. Shikhar Dhawan has struggled in Australia but he might well be one good innings away from regaining form. India would hope that the one innings happens very soon, preferably against the arch rivals on February 15th. 

Virat Kohli is perhaps the third best ODI batsman in the world right now and is unarguably the best when it comes to chasing a total down. Kohli has proved that he can handle the pace and bounce the Australian pitches typically offer and one can expect him to make a lot of runs in the World Cup

Suresh Raina’s form is absolutely vital for India to do well in this World Cup. He has undoubtedly improved his batting against the short ball and if he is not required to bat in the first twenty odd overs, he is generally very effective. 

Ambati Rayudu will face a stern test in Australia and one can only hope that he passes it with distinction. 
Ajinkya Rahane’s batting in ODI cricket is underrated but he is perhaps the best among all Indian batsmen when it comes to being at ease with Australian conditions.  

The one batsman India needs most is MS Dhoni. Dhoni, the finisher has to be in fine form to make India believe that they can win the World Cup once again. Dhoni’s form with the bat might well end up deciding how well his team fares in the mega event down under. 

India’s bowling has been appalling at most times during the last few years. The pace attack of Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar has been pretty ordinary of late. Kumar can be tough to score from at times but Australian conditions won’t suit him that well. Shami and Yadav both can be very erratic and the challenge for them is to stop bowling the two boundary balls they usually bowl in an over. 

Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel will fight for the position of the sole specialist spinner in the team. Axar is slightly ahead on current form and Ashwin might only get a chance if the opposition batting line-up features a lot of left-handers. Dhoni must not use them as the container in the middle overs. They must, at all times, go for wickets. India has to attack with the ball because that is the only way they can restrict opposition batsmen. 

Ravindra Jadeja and Stuart Binny are the two all-rounders in the squad. Binny might get a look in because of his medium pace bowling but Jadeja’s fielding will also provide him with a fair chance of making it into the final eleven. Irrespective of who plays in the final eleven, India expects some meaningful contribution from the all-rounder in the squad. 

India should easily qualify for the knock out stage and if they reach the semi-finals they will probably consider their World Cup campaign a decent one. Anything beyond semi-finals would be a bonus for the team and their volatile fans. 

The holders have a tough challenge ahead and, fittingly, it starts with a match against Pakistan at Adelaide on February 15th. But they are hopeful and out of hope comes ‘We won’t give it back’...

Squad : MS Dhoni (captain & wk), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Axar Patel, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Stuart Binny, Mohit Sharma (Ishant Sharma's replacement), Ishant Sharma (injured)

Batting and bowling potential charts indicate the percentage contribution of each player in the team.

India Batting and Bowling Contribution Potential World Cup 2015

Key Batsmen : MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma

Key Bowlers : Mohammad Shami, R Ashwin, Umesh Yadav

Big Hitters : Axar Patel, Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni

Most Experienced Player : MS Dhoni

Darkhorse : Axar Patel

Last 10 Matches : Won 7, Lost 3

Team Average Age : 28 years

Oldest Player : MS Dhoni (33 years)

Youngest Player : Axar Patel (21 years)

India played two warm-up matches against Australia and Afghanistan. As expected, they lost against Australia and won against Afghanistan both by a margin of more than 100 runs.

Fixtures for India in World Cup 2015 :

Date & Time Match Details Coverage
Sun Feb 15 (D/N)
03:30 GMT | 14:00 local
09:00 IST
4th Match, Pool B - India v Pakistan
Adelaide Oval
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Sun Feb 22 (D/N)
03:30 GMT | 14:30 local
09:00 IST
13th Match, Pool B - India v South Africa
Melbourne Cricket Ground
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Sat Feb 28 (D/N)
06:30 GMT | 14:30 local
12:00 IST
21st Match, Pool B - India v United Arab Emirates
Western Australia Cricket Association Ground, Perth
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Fri Mar 6 (D/N)
06:30 GMT | 14:30 local
12:00 IST
28th Match, Pool B - India v West Indies
Western Australia Cricket Association Ground, Perth
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Tue Mar 10 (D/N)
01:00 GMT | 14:00 local
06:30 IST
34th Match, Pool B - India v Ireland
Seddon Park, Hamilton
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Sat Mar 14 (D/N)
01:00 GMT | 14:00 local
06:30 IST
39th Match, Pool B - India v Zimbabwe
Eden Park, Auckland
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