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'Short break between IPL, T20 WC won't bother players'

Source: PTI
June 02, 2024 16:26 IST
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Rishabh Pant

IMAGE: India hasn't won the T20 World Cup since its triumph in the inaugural edition in 2007 under MS Dhoni. Photograph: BCCI

Former opener WV Raman backed the selection of four spinners in India's T20 World Cup squad, saying the decision was influenced by the nature of pitches in the West Indies and the performance in the IPL.

India have picked Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal for the ICC marquee event that has started in the Americas.

"Let's not forget that a lot of thought would have gone into it. There must have been enough rationale and thinking behind those additions. Whatever you get to see on the West Indies pitches these days is more conducive to spinners," Raman, who has played 11 Tests and 27 ODIs, told PTI.


"Also, the fact that the spinners have done well in the IPL on good hard-flat tracks in India has prompted them (selectors) to think that you are better off with spinners rather than fast bowlers and then ask them to take the pace off," he added.

For the record, Chahal took 18 wickets from 15 matches (economy: 9.41), Kuldeep (16 wickets, 8.65), Axar (11, 7.65) and Jadeja (8, 7.85) in the IPL.

India hasn't won the T20 World Cup since its triumph in the inaugural edition in 2007 under MS Dhoni.

Raman said the team has a great chance of ending the drought this term, thanks to some brilliant talents in the side.

"It has a very good chance. We have a lot of brilliant cricketers who can be match-winners on their days," he reckoned.

"It's just a case of a few little things coming together. T20 is such a format where you need a bit of luck as well, especially in the knockouts and that's where experience also counts, which we have aplenty in the side."

With India playing its World Cup openers just 10 days after the IPL, Raman stated that the narrow gap will not bother the players.

"Sometimes we say 'it's not enough', sometimes we say 'it's too long of a break and they are not in touch'. So, there is no solution that is appreciated by everybody," he added.

"But today's cricketers are fit enough and more or less used to playing non-stop. So, they will manage."

India will face Ireland in their World Cup opener on Wednesday in New York at the Nassau County stadium. Raman supported the idea of taking cricket to wider destinations.

"I think that is something that the ICC will consider. It will not be overlooked by them," he offered.

"Obviously, they will look at as many cost-effective measures and innovations to get more teams into the fold and venues under their bracket."

'Gambhir is somebody who knows what to do'

Gautam Gambhir's name is leading the discussions about India's new head coach after incumbent Rahul Dravid moves away after the World Cup, and Raman voted for the former India player.

"He will definitely be somebody who knows what to do. What he will deliver and not is something I cannot predict since I don't have a crystal ball in my hand," he commented.

"But, as far as his acumen is concerned, he is good. He has also been a good captain in the IPL, and he is a good strategist.

"But again, it's all about things coming together when you are coaching a side and how quickly everybody (coaches) settles down with the boys and the boys with his ways of doing things. So, that's where the key lies, generally."

'Always a chirpy character'

Raman hailed Dinesh Karthik who on Saturday announced his retirement from all forms of cricket, terming the wicketkeeper batter "extraordinarily entertaining."

"Fantastic career. He must be proud of it. And quite obviously, he doesn't have to sit back and think like many others.

"He's been extraordinarily entertaining and also someone who is highly dedicated to cricket and has overcome so many challenges in his life. He's always a chirpy character with a broad smile."

"He's got another career straight away to get into. I wish him all the very best," Raman concluded. 

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