India's chances in the Cricket World Cup 2015

AniM By AniM, 27th Jan 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Reviews>Games>Sports

A brief analysis of India's chances at defending the World Cup

The Batsmen

Come 14th February 2015, the cricket World Cup gets underway in Australia-New Zealand with the match between Australia and England at the MCG and between Sri Lanka and New Zealand at Christchurch. India, being the defending champs, start their campaign on 15th Feb, against arch rivals Pakistan at the Adelaide Oval.
But, honestly, most Indian die hard fans also don't expect India to successfully defend their title won in 2011, more so because this outfit does not inspire confidence in their ability. The team of 2011 consisted of Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Yuvraj Singh, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan and the Legend Sachin Tendulkar, all of whom have either retired or been discarded since. Quite a few new players have been inducted, which in itself is not a bad thing, but whatever little we have seen of them in ongoing series so far, has been far from inspiring or confidence inducing. Today, I will take you through the members of the new look Indian team and try to rate their chances in their upcoming campaign.
Shikhar Dhawan - The way he's been batting in Australia, bowlers have him all figured out. Bowl outside his off stump, and within the first 20 deliveries he's going to snick one behind. Looks like he's got very important appointments off the field, so he's in this great hurry to go back into the pavillion! Unfortunate timing for a form slump!!
Ajinkya Rahane - Been in good form in the Test series, but fairly inconsistent in ODI's. Has to get going, finding the right balance between circumspection and a cavalier attitude. Important that he gives India good starts,if he's sent in to open.
Virat Kohli - The mainstay of the Indian batting lineup, has been in the form of his life in the Test series,but terribly off-color in the ODI's. I think captaincy brings out the best in him, would India try it? Not likely, since MSD and his BCCI patrons are not likely to think out of the box. Virat needs to come back to no.3 in the lineup and show the hunger of 2011!
Rohit Sharma - An extremely talented man, but fickle too.He reminds me of Vinod Kambli, as far as his talent and the results thereof are concerned. Has to respect his God gifted talent and not throw away his starts. Mental stability required very strongly for him.
Suresh Raina - Another talented guy, the best fielder in the team but fighting his own demons. Doesn't have to pull every short delivery to prove a point, but that's what he precisely tries to do. With someone to continuously mentor him, can play a good hand.
Mahender Singh Dhoni - Captain Cool, a great wicketkeeper and below average batsman, he brings a lot of stability to the team mentally. But of late, dressing room rumbles indicate chinks in the teams unity, which does not bode well for the upcoming campaign. The fearsome finisher has to keep his wits around him and get the desperate best out of his team, if India has to have a go at the title, the unity and hunger of the last edition has to be seen.
Ambati Rayudu - The right hand bat is also a capable wicket keeper and has a formidable reputation in the domestic circuit. But consistency in the international arena has not been seen from him and given the fact that he may not play every match, he has to grab the chances that come his way and leave his mark well.
Ravindra Jadeja - An extremely agile fielder, capable left arm spinner and a decent bat, Jadeja brings a lot of energy and verve to the lower middle order. But like Suresh Raina, he fails to instill confidence in the Indian fan's mind. Specially in overseas conditions, most of them behave like fish out of water.
Stuart Binny - An allrounder, with a bowling action mirrored on his father. But a less capable cricketer than Roger, he has to capitalise on the limited chances he will get and make significant contributions to the teams' fortunes.

The Bowlers

Ravichandran Ashwin - This teams offspinner of choice, and an extremely handy bat, Ashwin's form yo-yo's constantly. His penchant for experimenting, and trying new things has in a way destroyed his natural bowling talent. Does not look like someone who can run through an innings. But India's only offspinning bet.
Axar Patel - This slow left arm orthodox spinner from Gujarat, looked very promising in the IPL, but his tour record in Australia has been far from impressive. If he gets a few games, he not only has to impress with the ball on unfriendly surfaces, but also has to contribute a handy few with the bat. India's tail cannot continue to contribute 10-15 runs between the four bowlers.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar - Had a very impressive tour of England, both with ball and bat as he got swing friendly conditions there. Out of most of the Australia tour with ankle injury, looked less than fit in the ODI's. Hopefully he gets back into some significant form by the World Cup, but will not get much swing here. In India's woeful bowling lineup, he looks a star!
Mohammad Shami - How he has fallen from his blast of a debut! The pace is there, but line and length have both deserted him. Like Ishant and Umesh, got over excited at the bounce in the pitches down under, but has to bowl a consistent line and length to be useful.
Umesh Yadav - Fast and Furious when he broke onto the scene a few years back, but like the others in the team, bowls all over the place. Must remember that there are only 3 stumps facing him, not 11 or 12. Bowling manuals talk of line and length for a reason, not any line and any length. Must use his brain to devise plans to get a batsman out.
Ishant Sharma - Maverick and inconsistent, he epitomises all that is wrong with Indian bowling. Far from being the leader of the attack, he himself struggles for direction, rarely uses his intelligence to work batsmen out. Talented but wayward.


So, to sum it all up, in my humble opinion - India's chances look bleak, some mini miracle might see them in the semi-final, otherwise a quarterfinal exit looks to be on the cards.
The spark, the determination, desperation and hunger which characterised the 2011 campaign, is all missing here. They look like a lost bunch, desperate to catch the earliest flight home. A billion prayers might not be enough to change that sad eventuality.


Cricket, Cricket Indian Team, Cricket World Cup, Games, Sports, World Cup

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author avatar AniM
I have been an avid reader since my childhood and that is my biggest passion! I will write on Telecom, Cricket, Book reviews and some politics

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author avatar Archana
29th Jan 2015 (#)

That's a pretty fair and detailed analysis. Though chances look bleak but miracles do happen and this time nothing short of a miracle will make India win this.

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author avatar Shantanu Kanjilal
29th Jan 2015 (#)

Nice analysis of team players Aniruddha.......may they overcome their lacunae and gift India a very proud troffy......

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