5 things from India's 2011 World Cup triumph that Virat Kohli can turn to for inspiration
The current form of Team India in limited overs cricket has been nothing less than sensational. If the team holds any kind of regret for not playing up to the mark, the list should be small - losing the ODI series to England, tied matches with minnows like Afghanistan and West Indies, and the historic loss in the final of the ICC Champions trophy. Except for the aforesaid episodes, India have been right on the money in almost all the series.
Beating South Africa 5-1 on their home soil was truly special. With the 2019 World Cup little more than 10 ODIs away, cricket lovers around the globe are expecting Virat Kohli's men to make it to the finals. Who would likely be India’s opponent in the finals is the hot topic of discussion.
India’s No. 4 conundrum seems pretty sorted at the moment with the arrival of Ambati Rayudu. Expressing confidence in Rayudu’s ability in one of his recent post-match conferences, skipper Virat Kohli said, "We are looking at Rayudu as a permanent No. 4 option."
Rayudu’s inclusion is intended to strengthen the Indian middle order alongside MS Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav. With a vast pool of all-rounders in the lower middle order and world class bowlers in both spin and pace, India are one of the biggest favorites to win cricket’s most coveted trophy in 2019.
If India are to repeat their 2011 World Cup feat this time though, a lot would depend on the balance and composition of the team. First, let us look into all the things that went right for India in the 2011 edition. Kohli can easily get a lot of inspiration from the positives of the World Cup 2011 triumph, which are listed below:
#1: Presence of stalwarts
This parameter may hardly hold any significance as class and form are the two most important attributes that determine the outcome of any match. However, when it comes to judging a team on paper, the names of stalwarts in the side add a lot of weight. Their presence also serves as a means of psychological warfare before a match.
MS Dhoni undoubtedly led a team of stalwarts in the 2011 World Cup. Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Harbhajan Singh, Ashish Nehra and Zaheer Khan were six players who came into the World Cup with more than 10 years of experience in international cricket.
In the 2019 World Cup, India may not have so many stalwarts in the squad, but Kohli can certainly get the best out of the current pool of experienced players. Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav and Hardik Pandya are the most probable experienced names to be included in the squad.