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It’s time to make way for Rohit Sharma-Rahul Dravid era

It’s time to make way for Rohit Sharma-Rahul Dravid era

November 18, 2021

Author 77baji

Following a harsh reality lesson in the T20 World Cup, India will look to refocus for the 2022 edition under new skipper Rohit Sharma and an experienced head coach in Rahul Dravid, commencing with a three-match series against New Zealand, which begins on Wednesday in Jaipur.

After it became evident that some revamping would be required as part of the change in direction, the duo will highlight the 'Men In Blue' pattern and mindset in the shortest manner possible over the next 11 months. The failure in the UAE edition has prompted India to find a replacement for Hardik Pandya, who has struggled to bring his all-round abilities to the table for a long time.

Venkatesh Iyer, a star performer in the Indian Premier League(IPL), has been brought in as Hardik's successor, and the three games will likely show if he'll be nurtured for the much-needed fast bowling all-rounder's slot. India could use more power hitters in the batting lineup, and Venkatesh, who played for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the IPL this year, has demonstrated his skill to hit long and hard.

Ruturaj Gaikwad, Harshal Patel, Avesh Khan, and Yuzvendra Chahal, who returned to form after being infamously dropped out of the World Cup selection, are the other IPL players in the team. With Jasprit Bumah out for the season, India will need to find a replacement pacer who can consistently hit 140 km/h or above. The extra speed, as shown in the UAE, is always useful, bringing Avesh and Mohammad Siraj into the equation.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who struggled in the UAE, has been handed another chance to show what he's made of. The think tank, which includes captain Rohit Sharma and current coach Rahul Dravid, will also evaluate a player's viability in light of the Australian conditions, which will host the World Cup in less than a year. It will be difficult to place them in various middle-order positions as there will be five shortest format openers on the side.

Rohit and vice-captain KL Rahul are set to open yesterday, but with extra options like Ishan Kishan and Gaikwad, India may be inclined to explore their choices. Even though Venkatesh scored all of his runs as an opener for KKR, he will now bat in the middle order. Suryakumar Yadav struggled throughout the World Cup, but he is a talent India would like to develop at number four, particularly on the true pitches in Australia.

Axar Patel can cover the spin bowling all-rounder spot in the unavailability of Ravindra Jadeja, but R Ashwin is anticipated to keep his spot in the playing eleven following a successful white-ball revival in the UAE. For almost the whole World Cup, India had only five bowling options, when other elite teams had up to seven. As a result, one of the expert hitters may roll his arm over.

New Zealand, on the other hand, who virtually eliminated India from the World Cup, arrived in Jaipur on a chartered flight from Dubai with hardly any time to assess their title defeat to Australia.

Gary Stead, the squad's head coach, has already commented about the difficulties his team confronts in regrouping so rapidly after a demanding tournament like the World Cup. Captain Kane Williamson has been rested for the T20s in order for him to be fit for the upcoming Test series. In his absence, senior pacer Tim Southee will run the squad.

New Zealand, nonetheless, will be a worry in this tournament with Trent Boult and the explosive Daryl Mitchell in the top-order. Athletes who didn't get much playing time in the UAE, such as Kyle Jamieson, who only appeared in the warm-up games, could be given opportunities in the New Zealand squad.

One of the most intriguing match-ups will be skipper Rohit Sharma against Ish Sodhi, since the Indian captain has previously struggled against wrist spinners.