3 reason why India could be unsuccessful at the World Cup
The 50-over World Cup is set to start in England next year. ICC has reduced the number of teams which will be participating in this edition to only 10. Decent times like Zimbabwe and Ireland will not have an opportunity to display their talent at the highest level this time.
India will be one of the contenders to lift the trophy next year. They will try to forget their disappointing performance in the previous edition and look to emulate the success in 2011 next year. Virat Kohli will be the main man for the Indian team as both his batting and captaincy will have a major outcome on India's performance in the tournament.
However, the 3 factors which we have listed down could cause him some worries as the rest of the 9 teams can capitalize on them.
#1 Over-reliant on the top 3
Shikar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, and Virat Kohli form the most formidable top 3 in international cricket right now. They have all been in excellent form in limited overs this year and hence, India will be confident of a good batting performance in the World Cup next year. However, it also means that most of the opposition bowlers would be strategizing mainly against these batsmen. If that can lead to the failure of these cricketers, then the batting line-up will be in trouble as the middle-order is not in the best form right now. It would be more disastrous if these batsmen do not click in the knockout stages of the tournament.
We have all seen a similar situation in the final of the ICC Champions Trophy against Pakistan when the top order failed and the middle-order could not chase the score despite Hardik Pandya's brilliance with the bat. All the Indian fans will hope that this does not repeat and hence the middle-order should start performing very soon.
#2 Absence of a quality 6th bowler
India's bowling partners Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar are making the right noises with the ball. The spin twins Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal have been successful in recent times. Hardik or Jadeja could play the role of the 5th bowler in the World Cup. Keeping the team balance in mind, it would be difficult to accommodate both these all-rounders in this team. Hence, when one of these 5 bowlers have a bad day, India will be struggling to find the 6th bowler.
Although Kedar Jadhav's unorthodox spin-bowling has led to surprise wickets in a few matches, it would be unfair on him to reproduce the same performances on the green pitches of England. Moreover, Kedar's position in the squad is itself not a certainty. Virat Kohli will then become the 6th bowler for the team which could place the team in risk. India's 2011 World Cup win had contributions from Yuvraj Singh as a bowler. India will miss such a player going into the World Cup next year.
#3 Lack of clarity on the third pacer
If the Indian team cannot afford to play both Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal in the team because of the conditions, the 3rd pacer after Bumrah and Bhuvaneshwar will be crucial to the team's success. Hardik Pandya cannot be relied upon as the third seamer considering his bowling performances in recent times. Hence, India will either have to choose between the current crop of inexperienced bowlers or use one of the experienced duos of Umesh Yadav or Mohammed Shami.
In both the cases, the selected bowler will have less experience of playing for the Indian team in the last year. This can cause more havoc if any one of Bumrah or Bhuvaneshwar have a rare bad day with the ball. Hence, India needs to decide on the bowling combination keeping all the above factors in mind