It’s been nine years since India won an ICC trophy. The last title India won was the ICC Champions Trophy 2013, under Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Since then, the hunt for an ICC title continues and with an ODI World Cup 2023 scheduled to take place in India this year, fans will be hoping for the wait to end. But it won’t be an easy task considering how the team is undergoing a transition phase.
Referring to the same, former India opener Gautam Gambhir has suggested that players like Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma who play anchor in the innings will be crucial for India. Meanwhile, Gambhir also suggested that players should not be forced to play in a way that does not come naturally to them.
“I feel people like Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and all those guys who can anchor their innings, who probably can play spin really well will play a massive role in the coming World Cup,” Gambhir said on Star Spots show ‘Road to World Cup glory’.
He further added, “I always feel that when we talk about this new approach, which India always talks about, the template and stuff, you’ve got to identify players who can adapt those roles or that template very easily. Some people just cannot adapt to that template so why push them to play in a certain way which doesn’t come naturally to them.”
“So, for me, I think identifying players and at the same time getting the right mix is very important, rather than thinking that we have to play at a certain template so we got to select all the 15 with a similar mind-set or with a similar template.”
If franchisees have to suffer, let it be: Gambhir
The World Cup-winning player also shed light on how world cup-bound players need to manage their workload. Gambhir said that those 15-20 players need to play together as much as possible and if they have to miss out on the IPL in the process, it should not be an issue.
“I think the biggest mistake that Indian cricket has made in the last two World Cups has been that these guys have not played enough of cricket together…So these guys have to play enough of white ball cricket, especially for the 50 overs World Cup together irrespective of whether they want to take a break from the T20 or from the IPL,” said Gambhir.
“If the franchise has to suffer they have to suffer. Indian cricket is the main stake holder, not the IPL. IPL is just the by product. So, if India goes out and wins the World Cup, that is the bigger ovation, that is the bigger ring,” he added.