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Why India FLOPPED

By HARISH KOTIAN
November 11, 2022 07:08 IST
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India faltered on the big stage once again as they suffered a 10 wicket hammering in the T20 World Cup semi-final at the Adelaide Oval on Thursday, November 10, 2022.

It turned out to be a lop-sided contest as India were thoroughly outplayed by a dominant England.

A look at what went wrong for India:

 

Lack of power play by openers

IMAGE: Chris Woakes appeals successfully against K L Rahul. Photograph: Sarah Reed/Getty Images

India were made to play catch up after another slow start in the Powerplay. Though K L Rahul started with a boundary off the first ball of the match, he struggled to carry on the momentum, while the out-of-form Rohit Sharma took his time to get going.

With Rahul perishing for 5 in the second over, India were content to play it safe as they managed just one boundary in the first three overs.

On the other hand, Jos Buttler scored three boundaries in the first over off Bhuvneshwar Kumar to set the tone.

Even though Virat Kohli and Rohit looked to break free later, they could not do much as India managed just 38/1 in the six overs of Powerplay, hitting just four fours and a six.

In comparison, England blasted their way to 63 for no loss in six overs to make most of the Powerplay on a good batting wicket.

It was a struggle for India in the Powerplay all through the World Cup. Overall, India managed a total of 217 runs in 36 overs of Powerplay at a run rate of just over six in the six matches they played.

It was only once against Zimbabwe (46/1) that the openers managed a score above 40 runs in the first six overs.

India's Powerplay scores in T20 World Cup 2022:
31/3 vs Pakistan
32/1 vs The Netherlands
33/2 vs South Africa
37/1 vs Bangladesh
46/1 vs Zimbabwe
38/1 vs England

Rohit, Rahul's batting woes

IMAGE: Rohit managed just a single half-century in six games. Photograph: Sarah Reed/Getty Images

Rohit Sharma had a forgettable World Cup with 116 runs from six matches at a strike rate of 106 including just one half-century against The Netherlands.

Rahul's two half-centuries came against Zimbabwe and Bangladesh, casting doubt on his big match temperament.

'India were timid upfront and England have taken them down,' declared Nasser Hussain as Jos Buttler hit the winning six.

Rohit-Kohli failed to up the ante against spin

Rohit and Kohli -- two of the most accomplished players of spin -- showed no intent at all against England's spinners.

England's Adil Rashid bowled beautifully for figures of 1/20 conceding just one boundary. But his most important contribution was the dangerous Suryakumar Yadav's wicket for 14 to dent India's hopes big time to getting to a good total.

What was equally shocking that India allowed part-time spinner Liam Livingstone to bowl his three overs for 21 runs. Livingstone had given just 11 runs from his first two overs before India hit him for a couple of fours in his third over to get 10 runs.

With short square boundaries at the Adelaide Oval, India could have taken a calculated gamble against the spinners, but they decided to play it safe and preserve wickets for the end.

On the other hand, Alex Hales showed how to tackle the spinners as he attacked Ravichandran Ashwin for a few sixes over square leg, while also taking Axar Patel to the cleaners.

The seven overs of spin by England's spinners, which went for 41 runs, was a big factor in India being unable to lift the tempo in the middle overs.

Overdependence on Suryakumar

IMAGE: Adil Rashid, right, celebrates with team-mates after taking Suryakumar Yadav's wicket. Photograph: Sarah Reed/Getty Images

With the openers struggling to make an impact and the lower order not firing, India were overdependent on Suryakumar Yadav to bail them out of trouble in almost every game.

Suryakumar scored 239 runs in six matches at a strike rate of 189, but his failure against England when he perished for 14 to leg-spinner Adil Rashid hurt India badly.

India could manage only 62 runs in the nine overs at a run rate of just above six between the seventh and 15th over and it was only due to Hardik Pandya's blazing half-century at the end that they got past 150.

Hardik, who started slowly with 13 from 15 balls, smashed 50 from the last 18 balls faced to give the bowlers a good total to bowl at.

No clear role for Pant

Rishabh Pant was drafted ahead of Dinesh Karthik for this crucial match against England, but India were not able to use him effectively.

India could have sent him at No 4 ahead of Hardik Pandya when Suryakumar perished in the 12th over to attack the England wrist spin duo of Rashid and Livingstone.

Hardik and Kohli allowed the two spinners to get away cheaply and Pant only came out to bat in the last two overs when he was forced to swing at everything without success.

Leaving out Chahal

Rashid's impact with the ball left many wondering as to why India didn't include Yuzvendra Chahal at the Adelaide Oval, where spinners have generally have done well.

It was strange that India didn't find the need to use Chahal even against The Netherlands or Zimbabwe despite a good record in T20 Internationals.

He made a good impact for Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2022 with 22 wickets in 17 games at an economy rate of 7.75m, but India preferred the defensive spin options in Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel.

Ashwin-Axar's flop show

IMAGE: Ravichandran Ashwin was taken apart by England's openers. Photograph: Sarah Reed/Getty Images

Ashwin was taken apart by Buttler and Hales as he was hit for 27 runs in his two overs.

Overall, Ashwin had a disappointing World Cup with six wickets in six games at an economy rate of 8.15, with five of those wickets coming against Zimbabwe and The Netherlands.

Axar also flopped with the ball big time, with just three wickets from five games at 8.62 -- going wicketless in big games against Pakistan and England.

Bhuvneshwar-Arshdeep struggled with no swing

IMAGE: Jos Buttler and Alex Hales are all smiles after victory. Photograph: Sarah Reed/Getty Images

With no swing on offer, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Arshdeep Singh became easy meat for the England openers with the new ball.

Buttler set the tone with three boundaries off Bhuvneshwar in the very first over, while Arshdeep was also hit for a four as England raced to 33 in three overs and never let their foot off the pedal after that fiery start.

Mohammed Shami also didn't inspire much confidence as Hales slammed him for a straight six in the fifth over.

Hardik didn't do much with the ball in the World Cup, with eight wickets at 8.11 as India struggled to find a genuine match-winner bowler.

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