Three Pros Three ConsHarsha Mar 24th, 2014
To be honest I didn’t expect India to be as dominant as they have been at this stage. A couple of factors have gone in their favour. The tracks have taken spin but not the slow, dead kind. There has been a bit of bounce and these are wickets the spinners would crave to bowl on. And so Dhoni has been allowed to, some might even say been forced to, play a third spinner and Amit Mishra has changed the look of this Indian attack.
India have chased both times and those have been good tosses to win. Somewhere in the tournament, India will have to defend a score and if there is dew that day, they will be severely tested.
And Virat Kohli’s form has made watching cricket such a joy. Around him Suresh Raina has batted with authority, showing why he is such a star in t20 cricket and Rohit Sharma has looked a little more composed. Those are the three factors going in India’s favour.
There are some issues to resolve too. The first is the form of Yuvraj Singh. He looks tense, like he is playing for his place which, he probably is. More worryingly, he has dropped a couple of catches. You could see why Dhoni was keen for him to spend time in the middle against the West Indies because if Yuvraj can knit himself together, he gets a matchwinner.
There is also a slight concern over Shikhar Dhawan who seems caught between the desire to attack and the need to play himself in for a long innings. Even during the Asia Cup he kept getting caught in the crease and similar dismissals are what cause anxiety.
And catches are going down. It is a crime in any form, but especially so in t20 cricket where a player can change a game in a couple of overs. Maybe it is the lights but there are really no excuses in modern cricket given the opportunities they have for acclimatisation.
India are looking good but would, ideally, want to win a close, tough game in the two matches ahead. Net run rate could still become an issue and hopefully the lethargy at the end in both games won’t haunt them.