India ready to start fresh after MCG high


WORLD CUP T20, 2022

India kicked off their World Cup campaign with a last-ball win over Pakistan. ©AFP

Less than 48 hours after playing what Rohit Sharma called the best T20 innings by anyone wearing an Indian shirt, Virat Kohli took notice during an optional net session at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Struck. Struck. He played a pair of front foot defenses then was beaten on the outside edge on ball three. “Andar ka dikhata hai by bahar wala karata hai,“(You reveal he’s an inswinger but it’s getting away), he joked with the throwing specialist before refocusing for the next ball. Knock. Another defense forward.

The party may be over, but the happy Melbourne high has lingered, and that’s understandable. So it was important for Kohli, Rohit & Co. to put their heads down and kind of start over and really tackle this World Cup campaign. “For us, from the situation we have won, our confidence will skyrocket,” Rohit said after the MCG epic. “Now we know we can win from anywhere. We saw last year when Pakistan beat us, the way they played after that, it was great. When you win the first game, you can really settle down.”

Useful for India, orange is an excellent cure for hangovers. The Netherlands provide exactly the kind of tempered refocusing they need after Sunday’s emotionally charged finish. That’s not to say the Dutch can’t upset the established order. Indeed, the intensity of India’s batting preparation, with a double session for Rohit on Tuesday afternoon, testified to a cold fact: this game is worth exactly the same number of points as the previous one. India know it is important to grab both, if possible with a boost in case of rain and subsequent results make it difficult to qualify as they did for the other big team in the group – the South Africa.

Meanwhile, the Netherlands, in a World Cup main draw for the first time in eight years, are there to prove they are no ticking box for India. They had a good start to the tournament before losing ground in the last two games, especially with the bat. Scott Edwards insists they will be ready to play their style of cricket. And after the events of this tournament, who could argue with him? Whether they will succeed in converting belief into performance in the greenhouse atmosphere that will assuredly be provided by India’s fanatical fans remains to be seen. What is certain is that they are not uncomfortable on stage. They have had dates with the footballing greats of late, having faced West Indies, England, New Zealand and Pakistan over the summer. The fact that they can’t play against India often marks tomorrow as an opportunity to make a statement.

When:India vs Netherlands, 2022 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, October 27, 6:00 p.m. local, 12:30 p.m. IST

Where: Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney

What to expect: Slight chance of rain around pitch and game start time but clear after that according to the local weather service. SCG produced a flat wicket for the Super 12 opener as New Zealand racked up 200 against the tournament hosts. A similar, perhaps even slower, surface is planned. Unlike the Australia-New Zealand match, India will play to an unused 40 over pitch as it will be the second of two matches on the day and it could put slow bowlers into contention. As of BBL 2019-20, teams have a 7-6 WL record when batting first with an average total of 157 first innings.

Head to head T20I:0-0 This is their first meeting in this format. India beat the Netherlands in each of their two encounters at the 50-year-old World Cups, in 2003 and 2011, and coincidentally reached the final of each of those tournaments.

team watch


Injured/Unavailable: Hardik Pandya suffered from cramps at the end of the match against Pakistan. He cooled his heels alongside Arshdeep Singh, Mohammed Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Axar Patel and Suryakumar Yadav while the others used the optional workout. Bowling coach Paras Mhambrey has confirmed that Pandya and the other 14 squad members are all fit and available to play.

Tactics and clashes:In four matches of this World Cup, the Netherlands have so far made scores of 112/7 (19.5 overs), 122/5 (19.3 overs), 146/9 and 135. The top- order, except for Max O’Dowd, didn’t fire. If there is any assist with the new ball, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Arshdeep Singh and Mohammed Shami will reveal their vulnerabilities.

India are also unlikely to make any changes to the XI who played Pakistan despite having a long trip to Perth after that and a quick turnaround.

Likely eleventh:Rohit Sharma (C), KL Rahul, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh


Injured/Unavailable: Roelof van der Merve injured his back in the game against Sri Lanka but braved the pain to come out at bat. He missed the game against Bangladesh afterwards and remains a doubtful starter tomorrow with the Netherlands hoping to make a final decision after tonight’s training session.

Tactics and clashes:In Fred Klaasen, Tim Pringle and Shariz Ahmed, the Netherlands have a powerful trio consisting of a left arm pacer, an orthodox left arm spinner and a leg spinner respectively – a combination that has troubled the top notch Indian hitters in the recent past. After a collapse that saw India slip to 31/4 against Pakistan, the Netherlands will be hoping to land the first punch with the ball.

Likely eleventh:Vikramjit Singh, Max O’Dowd, Bas de Leede, Colin Ackermann, Tom Cooper, Scott Edwards (C&wk), Tim Pringle, Logan van Beek, Shariz Ahmed/Roelof van der Merve, Fred Klaassen, Paul van Meekeren

Did you know?

– KL Rahul is averaging 19.15-106.41 SR against full member nations in the T20I since October 2020

– Bas de Leede is the top run-getter and wicket-taker for the Netherlands in the T20I after the last World Cup and was player of the match in both of the Netherlands’ first-round wins.

– Left-arm spinner Tim Pringle’s four PowerPlay overs in this tournament have cost the Netherlands just 20 points this World Cup.

What they said:

“Not just for us, I think the finals were also a challenge for other teams. In the last game itself, people went running. We recognize that it will be a difficult phase. Yes, we have bowlers for this, We have prepared for this. For us, we have identified bowlers who will also be our specialists. That said, you need to be adaptable. You need to be able to have other options available, in case it is needed. They might not be sewing bowlers, they might be spinners. I think you’re going to face these challenges, sometimes you’re going to think differently. But we have these bowlers, we have our plans sorted. – Paras Mambrey on India’s bowling problems.

“To M [Cooper] is obviously great to have on the team. He doesn’t have the points from this tournament, but hopefully that’s the game he’s kicking off. He and Roelof van der Merve bring a wealth of experience in T20 cricket. It’s huge for our guys. Especially looking at…we have three-four guys who are under 21 21. They are huge to have around the group and great for team morale” –Scott Edwards why experience is important.

© Cricbuzz



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