India dominated the league stage of the World Cup and won seven out of 9 matches. Despite performing well throughout the tournament, one bad performance against New Zealand in the semi-finals cost them the World Cup.
The semi-final defeat against New Zealand highlighted a few areas of concern for India that should be addressed before the next World Cup takes place. As we all know by now, the 2023 ICC Cricket World Cup is set to take place in India. If India is to lift their third World Cup, then these are the four changes that India needs to make in the next four years.
#4 Need for a backup opener
Undoubtedly, India has one of the best opening pairs in white-ball cricket at the moment. Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma have built a solid reputation for themselves as openers. Together the duo has accumulated 4681 runs in 103 ODI innings. This is not only a boon for Inda, but it’s also a bane.
During this edition of the ICC Cricket World Cup, Shikhar Dhawan injured his thumb and had to be ruled out of the tournament. This meant that India needed to find someone else who could open with Rohit Sharma. KL Rahul stepped up and fulfilled the role. However, Rahul’s performances as an opener were lacklustre to say the least. There were times where he lacked the confidence needed to score runs quickly, but India had no other option available to them.
Of course, Mayank Agarwal joined the team towards the latter part of the tournament, but his lack of experience made it very hard for the management to include him in the playing XI.
Given Dhawan’s current age, it is highly unlikely that he will play in the next World Cup. Therefore, India needs to look for multiple opening options in the next four years. Luckily, India has a lot of youngsters that could fill that role. Players like Prithvi Shaw, Shubman Gill, and Mayank Agarwal need to be given more chances in the next few years so that they will be ready to perform on the big stage.